Discussion Forums - USPS Postal Regulations USPS Postal Regulations

Topic: DC size

Club rule - Please, if you cannot be courteous and respectful, do not post in this forum.
  Unlock Forum posting with Annual Membership.
Subject: DC size
Date Posted: 3/30/2010 4:59 PM ET
Member Since: 6/23/2006
Posts: 234
Back To Top

Hi I was wondering if anyone has heard that a DC can only be used on a 3/4 inch thick package or larger.

The book I sent was a drawing book that is 1/2 inch thick and the PO said that it wasn't big enough for a

DC so I wasted the fee here for it. If this is true then it should not be available for certain books when you go to print the label.

Subject: Dc and thin books
Date Posted: 3/30/2010 6:07 PM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2005
Posts: 5,428
Back To Top

All you have to do it wrap a layer of carboard in with the book and then it will be thick enough

Date Posted: 3/30/2010 6:18 PM ET
Member Since: 6/23/2006
Posts: 234
Back To Top

Thank you I did not know that. I will use that if I ever have this type of problem again. 

Date Posted: 3/30/2010 7:06 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,201
Back To Top

Here is the section from the Help Center that talks about the 3/4 inch requirement. Since the package must meet all 3 of the other requirements if it is not 3/4 inch sometimes you will need to bulk it up instead of stiffen it up. Note that it does not need to be uniformly 3/4in, you can stick something lightweight in to get at least 1 spot over the 3/4 inch.

Are there any requirements to use Delivery Confirmation?

Yes.   The package must be at least 3/4 of an inch thick ("at its thickest point"), according to USPS Delivery Confirmation Regulations, and is being sent to a USPS-validated address.

  1. "rigid" (most books are)
  2. be greater than 6" x 3" x 1/4 " in dimension
  3. weigh more than 6 ounces


If you are concerned that your package does not meet the dimensional criteria above, you can always "bulk up" its dimensions with lightweight material that will not add significant weight (for example, Styrofoam, crumpled plastic bags or paper).

mistie -
Date Posted: 3/30/2010 8:26 PM ET
Member Since: 9/27/2007
Posts: 2,019
Back To Top

All you really need to do to add thickness is to put a foam "packing peanut" or two in the envelope - it will add the necessary bulk, but next to no weight. As another poster said - you only need to reach 3/4 inch thickness at one point.

I have never had the need to do this with  book, but, have used it before when I sold/sent a gift card and wanted to have DC on the envelope.

Date Posted: 3/30/2010 11:11 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
Back To Top

Maybe that's why I occassionally receive small books with an inner layer of bubble wrap.  Which also lightweight and easy to recycle.

DC also dosn't work with all mailing rates, but at the moment I can't remember which are ineligible.

Date Posted: 3/31/2010 5:23 PM ET
Member Since: 1/8/2009
Posts: 2,016
Back To Top

I was told of this rule by a postal clerk who claimed that "First class" had to be "at least 3/4" thick" and I did some research on the regulations.

I came to the conclusion that you can mail books as first class PARCEL, not LARGE ENVELOPE, less than 3/4" and get DC without the styrofoam packing peanut.

If you look at the definition of a flat, it has to be flexible.

If they are not flexible as defined by this test,  it is considered a parcel. (Basically, it has to bend by more than an inch)  

Books are not that flexible.

If it is a first class parcel, it is eligible for DC.

Edited for typos and clarity.

 

9.2.2 Eligible Matter

Delivery Confirmation is available for First-Class Mail parcels; all Priority Mail pieces; Standard Mail prepared as Not Flat-Machinable pieces or as machinable or irregular parcels (electronic option only); and Package Services or Parcel Select parcels under 401.1.0. For the purposes of using Delivery Confirmation with a Package Services or Parcel Select parcel, the parcel must meet these additional requirements:

a. The surface area of the address side of the parcel must be large enough to contain completely and legibly the delivery address, return address, postage, and any applicable markings, endorsements, and extra service labels.

b. Except as provided in 9.2.2c, the parcel must be greater than 3/4 inch thick at its thickest point.

c. If the mailpiece is a parcel under 401.1.0 and no greater than 3/4 inch thick, the contents must be prepared in a strong and rigid fiberboard or similar container or in a container that becomes rigid after the contents are enclosed and the container is secured. The parcel must be able to maintain its shape, integrity, and rigidity throughout processing and handling without collapsing into a letter-size or flat-size piece.



Last Edited on: 3/31/10 6:31 PM ET - Total times edited: 3
Date Posted: 4/1/2010 11:25 PM ET
Member Since: 1/19/2010
Posts: 62
Back To Top

Dang!!  Wish this had come up a week or two ago!!!

Date Posted: 4/1/2010 11:37 PM ET
Member Since: 1/19/2010
Posts: 62
Back To Top

Another question?  Why are we able to pay & print for this?  Shouldn't we be warned if it is not up to PO code...that our PBS $ would only be wasted???

Date Posted: 4/2/2010 11:24 AM ET
Member Since: 8/17/2008
Posts: 8,606
Back To Top

I wasn't familiar with this regulation ... thanks for the information. 

Date Posted: 4/2/2010 11:36 AM ET
Member Since: 7/18/2005
Posts: 209
Back To Top

Sophia, some thinner books are flexible enough to go as flats.  The styrofoam chunk is a good idea.  One of our local government agencies has switched to Signature Confirmation  from Certified.  They put a 1" cube of styrofoam in a poly envelope.   Works out a lot cheaper for them then Certified and doing it electronically saves them even more money and time because each piece doesn't have to be verified at mailing.  Sometimes they mail out thousands at a time.

Date Posted: 4/6/2010 7:12 AM ET
Member Since: 1/8/2009
Posts: 2,016
Back To Top

@Coffee: I guess I must read thick books.

However, it seems like the package has to pass the test in both dimensions, and I am a little unconvinced you can bend the spine by one inch without damage.

Date Posted: 4/6/2010 4:38 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,201
Back To Top

Another question?  Why are we able to pay & print for this?  Shouldn't we be warned if it is not up to PO code...that our PBS $ would only be wasted???

Shelly - the site has no way of knowing how we package our books. Many people automatically use packaging that gets it over 1/4 inch. Nor can the site know the flexibility of the book. You are warned in the Help Doc I have copied above about the possible issue and given  suggested ways to deal with it. Because there are too many variables involved to know if a book will be accepted or not and the fact that online postage requires the DC, it is left up to the sender to know how the rules applies to their particular book and what steps they are going to take to deal it.