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Topic: how to tell postmark

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Subject: how to tell postmark
Date Posted: 9/12/2011 10:29 PM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2010
Posts: 1,540
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on these pre-printed wrappers w/DC?   I don't see anything on the package that would tell me, plus, if they aren't scanned at acceptance then how would you know?

Date Posted: 9/12/2011 10:48 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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Those are the only ones I do not enter a postmark for Laura. There's no real way to tell with some of the pre-printed postage.  Ideally, the PO is supposed to refuse/return stale postage (no idea how they tell either) so the receiver shouldn't have to worry, the package should have been mailed when stated....should have lol.

My personal experience, it's sometimes the packages with stamps that are mailed late...but most often, counter postage I notice mailed very late.  Possibly the inconvience of actually going to the PO causes delays, or trying to send book packages with family members that forget (how may times have we heard that one?).



Last Edited on: 9/12/11 10:51 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/12/2011 10:58 PM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2010
Posts: 1,540
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Thanks for all your help, Denise!

Date Posted: 9/13/2011 1:16 AM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2010
Posts: 1,540
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Denise,

I was waiting on one to take on my vacation.  All the scanning said at beginning was :electronic notification received blah blah blah

 

I know all that means is that the user printed epostage with DC.  So, there's that date. 

 

Then, a full 12  days AFTER that date, there's a scan from another PO that's only a few hours away from it's original mailing location!!!!!  .

Then, the rest of the scans are normal in time frame and the package progresses along at a normal rate.

So, I want to know:  how long can a PO hold a media mail package without sending it on?   Because I have a hard time believing the package took 12-13 days to go 5 hours away the first time it *moved*.

 



Last Edited on: 9/13/11 1:17 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/13/2011 2:03 AM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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Media Mail travels on a 'space available' basis.  If there's room in the First Class bin your book might travel from coast to coast in 24 to 48 hours.  If the local PO is backed up or just doesn't care, the Media Mail can be set aside and ignored for several days (or more).  12 days seems rather long (ok really long), but honestly...distance and time are impossible to figure with Media Mail rates.

I live near the Federal Way, Washington, sorting center.  Packages are usually scanned at my local PO (I buy counter postage) and the next day in Federal Way, then on to their destination rather quickly.  Couple weeks ago one was scanned at Federal Way, then again 5 or 6 days later was again scanned at Federal Way before continuing on it's journey.  Must have tumbled behind some equipment or got pushed aside and forgotten for awhile there.

Unfortunately with printed postage, it can be difficult to impossible to determine the actual mailing date...and therefore RWAP for late mailing.  If the member is having a number of books lost or delayed in travel, TPRB will likely review the account.

Date Posted: 9/13/2011 7:24 AM ET
Member Since: 7/30/2007
Posts: 4,275
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local PO is backed up or just doesn't care, the Media Mail can be set aside and ignored for several days (or more)

 

This is false. The local PO is required to be completely clear of mail each evening. We have to fill out paperwork to that effect and they do spot inspections and if even one piece of mail is found, the manager and dispatching clerk are reprimanded. If it happen repetedly they could get fired. The trucks have plenty of room in them for normal mail flow, they usually even have enough room in them for pek season mail flow. The equipment we dispatch the mail in at my office is usually only about 1/4 full every day, so we could get 4 times the volume of mail and not take up any more room on the truck.

 

The sorting plants are where the delays can happen.This is how it works at our sorting plant. They are 24 hour facilities, people working around the clock. Mail from the branches usually comes in starting around 6:30-7:00 PM or so. There is a mad hustle to unload trucks, spread the mail--put each container to the correct area to be worked. Then the first class and priority mail gets worked, then the periodicals--things you pay a subscripion for, then the bulk mail and package services--parcel post, media mail and the like. The trucks back to the local post offices, and to other sorting plants start being loaded about 3 in the morning. Then the morning and afternoon shifl has trucks come in from the other sorting plants throughout the day.

Date Posted: 9/13/2011 12:19 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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And I really believe my local PO follows the 'no mail' rules Brandy.  And this is more outgoing mail than incoming...but what about those members who report their PO appears to hold Media Mail several days (or more) before delivering to them?  Some members report that incoming DC will show the 'arrived at unit' scan but the package is not delivered for several days (2, 4, even 7 days)?  Where are those packages, and does the same rule apply?

Date Posted: 9/13/2011 12:48 PM ET
Member Since: 7/30/2007
Posts: 4,275
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Some members report that incoming DC will show the 'arrived at unit' scan but the package is not delivered for several days (2, 4, even 7 days)?  Where are those packages, and does the same rule apply?

 
I can't speak on this without some more info, but my guess would be that it was attempted the first day and then reattempted/delivered a few days later. 
Date Posted: 9/14/2011 12:35 AM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,200
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Laura its very unlikely that the person used printed postage and then didn't mail it for 12 days, the postage would go stale and the post office would not accept it. It is possible to have that line show and not have used printed postage though, that line just indicates DC has been used so it could be PBS-DC only and stamps are applied to the book and then mailed late.  Some people don't mail from USPS retail branches and therefore the USPS policies and procedures don't apply. Some people mail from grocery store courtesy counters and other mail alternative like campus post offices where packages can get set aside and misplaced.

Date Posted: 9/14/2011 1:01 AM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2010
Posts: 1,540
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Thanks Melanie.

 

<<<and therefore RWAP for late mailing.<<<

Denise, I am pretty much the kind of person who would not RWAP for late mailing.  I mean, if I get the book withiin a *reasonable* amount of time (even if somewhat disappointed that maybe the person *did* mail it late).......and the book is in nice conditiion, I'm not going to RWAP them. 

I just know that stuff happens in people's lives.

In this case, I was more concerned about the actual PO practices.  Mostly because as they are closing my little PO, I've also noticed that other post offices have more on their plates.  

The reason I asked was that I was already annoyed because  friend sent me temperature sensitive time sensitive Priority Mail (and included a cold pack inside) with the vitamins.   Can you believe, it took 8 days to get to me?????   Paying for Priority Mail and waiting 8 days is just not acceptable. 

Now that they are closing my PO, our rural carrier wiill be doing double duty (more work for her) as she will be doing stuff the counter person did.  I feel bad for her.

Date Posted: 9/14/2011 1:04 AM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2010
Posts: 1,540
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Melanie, it's also been suggested to me to open up one of those little post office within a store type places out here.  It' 15-30 miles to town for some people out here, including a lot of seniors.   What do they call those PO's again?

Date Posted: 9/14/2011 7:09 AM ET
Member Since: 9/9/2009
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The small post office offering locations are called Village Post Offices - offer services at grocery stores or other locations folks frequent.  Can also order stamps online/phone that will be delivered, buy postage online with click-n-ship - so there are various alternatives available.

Date Posted: 9/14/2011 11:39 AM ET
Member Since: 7/30/2007
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they are also called contract postal units-or CPU's

Date Posted: 9/17/2011 6:42 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,200
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they are also called contract postal units-or CPU's<-- this is what I have always heard them called too.

Date Posted: 9/17/2011 11:15 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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Oh hey, I received a package this week and the postage sticker said CPU right on it.  I've seen those before and didn't know what it meant...apparently CPU's have their own designated postage meters!