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Topic: Here's one I haven't seen before

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Geri (geejay) -
Subject: Here's one I haven't seen before
Date Posted: 5/12/2009 3:52 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
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I made a deal to send someone four books.  I wanted to have a DC so bought that through PBS. 

The label printed with the bar code and I took it to the PO.  The person behind the counter asked what was in the package and I told her books.  She asked if I wanted to send it media mail.  A little duh there but to go on.  She took a black sharpie and scribbled over the DC and when she started I said wait why are you doing that.  She answered that if she didn't cross it off the package would come back to me!  Is this so???

Also, I was surprised to learn that if the package is over 13 oz it can't go first class. 

I don't usually go to the post office since I send out one or two books and can do that from home with PBS postage. 

Date Posted: 5/12/2009 3:58 PM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2005
Posts: 2,354
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Over 13oz can't go first class, that I knew.  Over 13oz you have to send it priority if you want first class speed.

I don't quite understand her crossing it out.   DC purchased at the counter is a different price for priority vs media, maybe that's her confusion?

Cathy A. (Cathy) - ,
Date Posted: 5/12/2009 3:58 PM ET
Member Since: 12/27/2005
Posts: 4,132
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I send books Media Mail with DC all the time. The package should not come back to you as long as it has sufficient postage plus 19 cents for the eDC.

Yes, parcels over 13 oz cannot go 1st Class. You have to use Priority or one of the other classes.

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 5/12/2009 4:01 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
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Well, I found out two new things today.  I didn't think the package with the DC would come back but I wasn't going to raise a ruckus in th PO.  Next thing you know you're a terrorist!.

Date Posted: 5/12/2009 4:04 PM ET
Member Since: 6/25/2007
Posts: 5,637
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I've never heard of crossing out the DC. I always use PBS DC and the clerk has never done that to my package. I would imagine that might cause problems with it being scanned.

Last Edited on: 5/12/09 4:04 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/12/2009 4:20 PM ET
Member Since: 4/10/2009
Posts: 1,691
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Last Edited on: 8/10/10 5:48 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/12/2009 4:51 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,188
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their system cant print postage for the 19 cents of DC added to your package - this is 100% incorrect and if a PO employee told you that, they were lying or un-informed. I almost always send my books out from the counter with PBS-DC only and they print it no problem. All they have to do is scan the bar code and the correct price is charged.



Last Edited on: 5/12/09 4:52 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/12/2009 5:14 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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THey can print the postage difference.  I had one last week where the girl printed the postage and forgot to scan the DC.  All she did was reweigh the package, scan the bar code and put in that it had 2.23 postage already. So it printed out an .18 postage sticker. 

The postal employee who crossed out the PBS DC didn't know what they were doing.  I've had to "train" a few postal employees on how to handle the PBS DC. One even argued with me about the cost until he scanned and saw that it did indeed only charge .18 for the DC when scanned.

Date Posted: 5/12/2009 7:22 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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The only other thing I can think of with this is that if you bought PBS postage and not just the DC, and you didn't adjust the weight to compensate for your bonus books, the system could have possibly calculated your postage at the 1st class rate.  If your actual package weight was over 13oz and it had 1st class pre-printed postage on it, the rate would have been incorrect, plus they can't alter it to media mail anyway.   USPS postal regs say that online labels can only be used as a whole, the way they were printed.  I'm not sure exactly how they handle that, since it's never happened to me, but I imagine they'd have to cancel the label.   Other than that, I'm with the consensus above - your PO worker was probably a ditz:P

Date Posted: 5/12/2009 10:18 PM ET
Member Since: 4/25/2007
Posts: 11,496
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There is no First Class mail after 13 oz.   After that, your options are Priority Mail or Parcel Post.  First Class turns into Priority Mail at over 13oz, the classes of mail are basically the same.

Date Posted: 5/12/2009 11:35 PM ET
Member Since: 4/7/2007
Posts: 663
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I don't use DC very often, but when I do, I mail the package from one of the postal substations, because the clerks at the main post office insist that DC is only for first class and priority mail. I know that's wrong, but would rather save my fights for when I need to send certified mail and they try to sell me the little green return post card, when what I want is an online receipt...

Hello! If I know this, why don't they?

Arrgh!

Date Posted: 5/12/2009 11:59 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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Your USPS clerk was totally incorrect to cross out the DC.  I've used PBS DC for at least a hundred media mail packages, and I buy the actual postage at the USPS counter.  The package would NOT have been returned to you, your clerk is misinformed.

Date Posted: 5/13/2009 2:11 AM ET
Member Since: 2/26/2009
Posts: 35,930
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I buy only the pbs dc and they charge me 18, now 19 cents.  But my post office does cross out first class when it is cheaper to mail media. Can't remember if they put a media sticker on it or just hand wrote it.

Date Posted: 5/13/2009 9:43 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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They can cross out 1st class and put the media mail stamp on it if it's just a pre-printed label, and I believe they can even do that if you just buy the DC, and then buy your actual postage at the counter.  What I think they can't do, according to how the postal regs read, is alter an online postage label & change it from one service level to another.  I believe those have to be cancelled & you have to buy a whole new postage label & DC sticker.  What I don't know is whether or not they'll give you credit for the money you spent on the cancelled label.  I know I bought a PBS postage media mail label once and asked at the counter if I could upgrade to 1st class, and they said not using that same label; they could black out everything but the address and I'd have to buy 1st class postage.



Last Edited on: 5/13/09 9:45 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/13/2009 12:35 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 9,793
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I have also had to help the PO clerks understand how to do the packages with a preprinted DC label on them. My clerks kept telling me that I had to pay the (then) 18 cents _online_ for it instead of bringing it to the counter and paying there. They were even going to write a letter to someone (I assume the postmaster) so they could "prove" it to me!

Anyway, I think they finally got the correct answer, because lately I haven't had any trouble getting them to do the correct procedure,  which is, you can take your DC printed packages to the counter, they scan the DC, it comes up as 19 cents, and then they add the proper postage to the 19 cents, print the postage, and off it goes!  Preprinted DC is just fine on first class or media mail.

Date Posted: 5/13/2009 2:16 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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My post office sometimes crosses out and changes the rate stamp on the bottom right hand corner of PBS labels...ie media mail and restamp it first class or vice versa.  But it was totally unnecessary and wasteful to cross out the DC barcode as Geri originally mentioned.  That is an untrained clerk.  DC barcodes have no 'rating' and do not need to be replaced if the package rating changes. 

Every so often I upgrade a book marked media mail to first class while at the USPS counter.  My USPS staff merely crosses off the Media Mail 'stamp' and restamp with 'First Class, they do NOT void or replace the DC portion of my pre-printed label, merely scan it as usual.

Sara's second paragraph is spot on...that's how it's supposed to work :-)

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 5/13/2009 4:44 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
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I've had some packages that were hardbacks and I had them packed in a box but with a PBS DC label.  I've taken them to the PO substation near my house and in one instance waved the box at the clerk who was across the room.  He waved back and said it's okay?  I said yes, he said just leave it there and I'll take care of it.  

Yep, join PBS and become well known at the post office.  At least our pictures aren't on the wall. 

I agree that the clerk was new and I just wasn't in the mood to politely correct her.  The wasy she scribbled over the DC there is no way it could be scanned.  I hope that box gets to where it was going.