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Topic: Are postage stamps ok?

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Subject: Are postage stamps ok?
Date Posted: 6/6/2009 11:14 PM ET
Member Since: 7/9/2008
Posts: 82
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I usually just go to post office and have them use one of their postage stickers but today I actually had stamps on hand and put 7 of them on (it was a media mail book over 13 ounces) and was told that they arent suppose to accept packages over 13 ounces that have stamps they are suppose to use their own...Anyway just curious if anyone else ran into this?\


Date Posted: 6/7/2009 12:07 AM ET
Member Since: 2/19/2008
Posts: 2,007
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Yes, the 13 ounce rule has been part of the postal regulations for some time now.  Any package weighing over 13 ounces and mailed using only postage stamps needs to be brought to the post office and handed to a clerk.  If you use any form of electronic postage (such as PBS postage, postage bought through an APC machine, or postage from places like PayPal or Stamps.com) then it's okay to just drop it in any mailbox or hand it to your letter carrier.

The idea behind the regulation is that they want to be able to verify who sent any package that is over that weight limit.

Date Posted: 6/7/2009 2:23 AM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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Jennifer...are you asking about using your own stamps?  Yes, you can use your own stamps for media mail (or any package).  IF the weight is over 13 oz, you must pass the package over the counter to a postal employee.  When doing this, I would apply my own stamps before going to the post office.  If there was a line, I would stand off to the side.  When a clerk looked up I catch their eye and show them the stamped book, and wait to be waived over...I then pass the book to the clerk, smile, and leave.  There should be no fuss over where the stamps were purchased.

As Bernhard says, tracable postage may be dropped in any mail facility.  Although there is something about rural routes & return addresses, the details escape me just now :-)

Date Posted: 6/7/2009 4:02 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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You should have been able to hand it over to a clerk.  You can't just put it in the blue blox.  But a clerk should be able to accept a 13oz or large package with stamps on it. 

Subject: stamps for over 13 oz
Date Posted: 6/7/2009 7:05 PM ET
Member Since: 5/25/2009
Posts: 7
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I too went to the post office and used the automated machine.  It would not give me media mail option so I thought stamps.  AFTER I put it in the drop with 6 stamps, I read the 13 oz rule posted on the box. (I do a lot of things like read the instructions after I make a mess).  Fortunately, this office had someone in the back (Sat morning) and I told him what I had done and ask if he could retreive the book.  He did and I removed the section with the stamps and will take to the post office in the morning for the USPS blessing inside.  I'm not sure why the 13 oz rule.  this book weighed 15.7 oz.  But as we know rules are rules with USPS

Date Posted: 6/9/2009 6:03 PM ET
Member Since: 7/9/2008
Posts: 82
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No no...I know about the 13 ounce rule to hand it to someone-I have no problem with that-I sell alot on eBay and with mailing books and packages prefer to stand in line and have someone wait on me. My concern is that I stamped my wrapped book with my own stamps (more than enough for the postage required to send it media mail) and was told upon handing it to the clerk that we are NOT allowed to stamp our own packages if it ways 13 ounces or more anymore. I was told that it was less than 13 ounces I could continue using my own stamps whenever I would like to but if it is more that they have to use their postage stickers...

Date Posted: 6/9/2009 9:45 PM ET
Member Since: 9/24/2005
Posts: 447
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Nope, your PO is not correct. They do need to indicate that someone at the PO counter has accepted it, usually done with a $0.00 meter. But postage stamps are valid for any weight.

Last Edited on: 6/9/09 9:46 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 6/10/2009 12:09 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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Jennifer, your PO is in error and your postage stamps are acceptable for mailing all media mail.  If this arises again, ask them to produce the written rule...it doesn't exist.   Besides providing some form of adequate postage, your only obligation in this situation is the 13 oz rule of handing your package directly to a postal employee. 

M S T - this also applies to your situation.  You did not need to remove the stamps/postage.  In fact, once the postal employee retrieved your package you should have been able to immediately hand it back to them...thus fufilling the requirements of the 13 oz homeland security rule.  And if you explained the situation, the Saturday morning USPS employee should have had the knowledge to assist you.

I love my post office :-)

Last Edited on: 6/10/09 12:11 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 6/11/2009 12:03 PM ET
Member Since: 6/25/2006
Posts: 382
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if you used the APC thats consider "electronic stamps_ even if the package is over 13 oz you can drop in the blue mailboxx

you dont need to go the post office     

and the APC doesnt know media mail prices

you have to know that *before* hand)

then you can use the APC and go to section to buy stamps

the APC will let yiy buy stamps in any amount