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Topic: Little Help on Postage Amounts please

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Subject: Little Help on Postage Amounts please
Date Posted: 5/4/2012 11:27 PM ET
Member Since: 11/17/2011
Posts: 11
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I used the PBS label and paid for postage and confirmation w/ PBS money.

According to the tracking the book was delivered this morning.

 

I just got a PM from the recipient indicating that the letter carrier is demanding an additional 5 bucks and change.

 

That seems like a lot of additional money.

 

Can anyone advise what's the procedure.  I want to tell her to not pay it, let the USPS return it to me and I'll try again but it's possible that the same thing will happen.   I do recall that this book went out first class as opposed to media mail but I didn't make that choice; that was the PBS label.

If the book comes back to me, am I obligated to return the credit?  On the surface I don't really mind doing so yet in my mind, I didn't do anything wrong and now I'll be out the cost of postage.  However if that's what it takes, thats what it takes.

 

Any advice before I answer the recipients PM?

 

Thanks

Date Posted: 5/4/2012 11:31 PM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2009
Posts: 11,727
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How much postage did you put on it?  You say it went first class?   I will need to know the weight and zip code.

Date Posted: 5/4/2012 11:39 PM ET
Member Since: 12/31/2009
Posts: 3,995
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Did you happen to re-use a Priority Mail box or envelope?

Date Posted: 5/4/2012 11:39 PM ET
Member Since: 11/17/2011
Posts: 11
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3.8 oz at $1.81

 

I didn't weigh the book, I trusted PBS.  I also didn't pay too much attention; it's possible that the book was heavier but not as heavy as the recipient's postal carrier indicated.

 

 

Date Posted: 5/4/2012 11:45 PM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2009
Posts: 11,727
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Did you use anything priority marked to mail it, even if turned inside out?  What was the name of the book?  What was the zip code?  If it needs more money, it was treated as priority for that amount of money, I think.  If the book was heavy and mailed first class and  you only paid $1.81, it went priority because it was shortpaid and marked first class/priority.

Date Posted: 5/4/2012 11:47 PM ET
Member Since: 11/17/2011
Posts: 11
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It went from 11201 to 61604

 

It was well wrapped in a plain manilla envelope.

Date Posted: 5/4/2012 11:49 PM ET
Member Since: 11/17/2011
Posts: 11
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sorry the book was:

 

The McGraw-Hill Guide to Writing a High-Impact Business Plan: A Proven Blueprint for First-Time Entrepreneurs
Author: James B. Arkebauer
ISBN-13: 9780070030602
ISBN-10: 007003060X
Book Type: Paperback

 

Thanks for the help.  This particular issue hasn't happened before.

Date Posted: 5/4/2012 11:57 PM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2009
Posts: 11,727
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This book alone weighs 15.2 ounces according to Amazon.  Since you sent it first class, the extra weight made it priority.  It probably went over the 1 pound and it is charged at 2 lbs priority.  You need to get a scale and not rely on PBS.  But this book looks like it weighed nowhere near just 4 ounces.  If you had mailed it media mail it would have cost you probably $3.05 with DC.  That is the 2 lb media mail rate which is much cheaper than priority which is for anything over 13 ounces.

BTW, I am originally from B'klyn; my zip was 11205 and 11223.

Date Posted: 5/5/2012 12:01 AM ET
Member Since: 11/17/2011
Posts: 11
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Thanks Priscilla.

 

It never would have occured to me not to trust PBS.  Paying a little attention would have helped too.  

 

I'll deal with the recipient then.  I think I'll tell her not to pay it, let them return it to sender and then at her option I'll either ship it media mail or just give her back her credit.

 

Brooklyn still Rocks.

Where do you live now?

Date Posted: 5/5/2012 12:08 AM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2009
Posts: 11,727
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Lou,

If you have the book returned you will need to pay that postage; it does not come back for free.  So either you pay it to her or the Post Office to get the book back.  I used to work for them and so did Hubby.  You can often get by with a small scale from Staples or Walmart.  Mine goes up to 5lbs and cost me a little over $30.00 but I know exactly how much postage to put on.

We moved out to Oregon and love it.  But a part of me is still there in Brooklyn!  Go Yankees; I do not care for the Mets like my sisters but as a kid it was always the Yanks.  What part of B'klyn is 11201?  My nephew is a NYPD Captain in B'klyn.

 

Date Posted: 5/5/2012 12:14 AM ET
Member Since: 11/17/2011
Posts: 11
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Really, well thanks for the info.

 

I love Oregon.  I've been to Portland 7 or 8 times and the last time, we spent 4 days by the McKenzie river east of Eugene.

Date Posted: 5/5/2012 1:26 AM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,186
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It never would have occured to me not to trust PBS.

All that information just comes into the database from outside sources and can even be manually entered/edited by members.  Its always best to check packaged weights when using full postage.

You may want to ask the receiver if they have a scale to weigh the book and submit a data edit so that it gets listed correctly in the PBS database.

Date Posted: 5/5/2012 3:30 AM ET
Member Since: 8/26/2006
Posts: 9,327
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I'm sorry this happened, Lou.  Here's a help doc with good info:

 

The *recommended postage* on my wrapper was wrong!

The 'recommended postage' on the PBS wrapper is usually correct, but not always. Our database is compiled elsewhere, and it includes some inaccuracies, including the weight of some books. The weight of a book as recorded in the database determines the "required postage" that appears on the PBS Wrapper.

You can see, and adjust, the weight estimate on the Wrapper Settings page when you go to print a wrapper.  Adjusting it to the correct weight will ensure that correct postage prints out.  If you do not have a postal scale, you can take the wrapped book to the PO to be weighed.

This is particularly important if you are using PBS Printed Postage--check and adjust the weight before you print!  Printed Postage can't be refunded after it is printed.

If you want to change the weight of the book in the database permanently, so that no one else has trouble with this for this book in future, you can submit a correction to our Data Correction volunteers.

  • To submit the correct weight of a book to the PBS Database:
  1. Click "More Options" to the right of the book cover image on the Book Details page and choose Edit Book Data from the dropdown menu (you can also access Edit Book Data from the Member Tools page, which is linked from the bottom of any page on the site).
  2. Enter the ISBN for the book and click Next->
  3. Enter/adjust the weight of the book (this will be on your postal receipt) on the next page, leaving any correct information in place
  4. Click Submit.


Please know that any effort you make to improve the accuracy of the database is greatly appreciated.

Date Posted: 5/5/2012 9:23 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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Even a mass market paperback with only about 300 pages will usually weigh at least 5 oz.  Some little cozies might only weight 4 or 5. 

You definately need a scale if you are going to use PBS postage.  You can edit book data yourself to show the correct weight if you see that it's wrong.



Last Edited on: 5/5/12 9:24 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/5/2012 1:05 PM ET
Member Since: 8/19/2007
Posts: 4,239
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I've often found the PBS postage to be way off when I get my books to the PO.  They know to change it to the 'cheapest rate available.'  Had one book once that PBS said weighed several pounds.  As I recall it was a mmp cozy mystery of a little over 200 pages or so.  Think the postage on it showed something like $11.00.  At the PO it was about 2.46. (someone had entered it as weighing xx lbs instead of xx ozs.  I really don't trust the PBS postage to be accurate, so like others have suggested if you're going to use it get a scale.  Good luck.  Pat

Date Posted: 5/5/2012 4:48 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,398
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PBS takes the weight from several different databases. So the accuracy varies very widely. Books that are posted less often, such as textbooks or nonfiction seem to be off most often. There must be one database that PBS gets data from that is way off. I used to go to Amazon and check what they listed as the weight before I got my lovely scale.

PBS uses the weight to determine if a book is media rate or first class.