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Topic: RESOLVED and Sharing Info - Custom DC - Won't Accept Address

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Subject: RESOLVED and Sharing Info - Custom DC - Won't Accept Address
Date Posted: 9/1/2009 8:44 AM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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For others that may encounter a similar problem.   I wrote the PBS and rec'd this information - which makes total sense. 

Dear Robin,

We're sorry you are having trouble with this.  You do need to enter an address that is recognized by the USPS online database.  The one you have been entering "Camp Virginia, APO, AE" is not recognized by the USPS online database.

We understand that that address may work to get mail to your friend, BUT since you are doing this online the online database has to recognize the address. If you can find out the official address and it is recognized by the USPS online database, you will be able to use Custom DC for that address.

We hope this information is helpful. Have a great day!


I might be addressing this wrong. Any help would be appreciated.  I only want to use DC and not postage.  I am sending to a APO AE address and I filled the To Field as follows.

Name:   entered his name
C/O:   USO Kuwait 
Street: Camp Virgina
City:  APO
State:   AE
Zip:  zip code

Any idea why this wouldn't be accepted?

edited to add received hey-hoo error???

Last Edited on: 9/1/09 9:38 AM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 9/1/2009 10:07 AM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,226
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jubead - one thing I've noticed about the Custom DC is that is does not like certain symbols on the second line. If you haven't gotten the package mailed yet, I'd recommend trying to print it without the c/o: on the second line.

Date Posted: 9/1/2009 10:24 AM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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Thanks Melanie.  The c/o is part of the form field - I didn't add it - but I did try to take out Camp Virgina in that field- didn't work either.  Actually I tried various entries.  There was another person that was more like the addresses toAPOs I have sent in the past and that wasn't recognized either.  It is ok - they (the soldiers) are worth the DC cost at the PO.  I just didn't want to hand write the label - being lazy and all today.  Good to know about the symbols - I will keep that in mind when I use custom DC for other addresses.  Thanks for the informaiton.

Date Posted: 9/1/2009 3:48 PM ET
Member Since: 3/28/2009
Posts: 441
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do you know you're missing an i? it's Camp Virginia -  ...Try fixing the spelling and see if that works...

If the spelling doesn't fix it, I would also try Camp Virginia as the CITY and APO AE as the State as a variation on what you've entered...

Last Edited on: 9/1/09 3:50 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/1/2009 4:03 PM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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hmm  - I don't know if I had the same spelling error in the DC and the box went out this afternoon.  I have two more APO shipments in September so I will try it again and be extra careful with spelling.    I typed it from scratch for this post so I am not sure if I had the same spelling error - but it is possible .... ok probable!  You can't change AE in the state - there are preselect options for the state field -no write ins.   I did try another address to another APO which I did cut and paste from the soldiers request and it wouldn't take that one either.  The postal clerk had a problem with the one I used as a example but was able to process it and apply DC.  The second one she didn't have a problem.    If these address are new, then maybe it hasn't been updated in the online database???   Thanks for the catch and suggestions.

BTW - USPS changed the custom forms - they are much easier to read and fill out!  Just a side note.

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 9/1/2009 4:05 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
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Just a thought, can you either use the book you want to mail as a mail to a friend and just use the DC part instead of the PBS/DC?  I just looked and that's 27 cents. 

I've gotten so lazy I hate to hand print labels! :)

Date Posted: 9/1/2009 4:26 PM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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I wasn't using postage - just DC  - the address I put in wasn't recognized and I kept getting a hello oh or something similar.  I agree I am lazy and didn't want to hand write that label - but did just the same!

Date Posted: 9/1/2009 5:07 PM ET
Member Since: 11/14/2005
Posts: 6,421
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Go to the www.usps.com website and enter what you have for an address, they will give you the proper address needed for DC (when you use postage, you are using DC also, so it doesn't matter what you are using, you have to have a proper address approved by the USPS) if they can't give you one, then you need to get more info from your friend on their proper mailing address. Just because it's getting there, doesn't mean it's correct, it may just mean that someone is going above their duty and sorting the mail using the knowledge they have about the person which is more than what is on the envelope you usually send.

For example, sometimes someone misreads my address, or mishears it on the phone and they put something else. Because our address is familiar to the PO, they put it in the proper mail bag for it to reach us, and the carrier recognizes the name, so he brings it to our house. But, if the person were to have used DC from somewhere (PO, PBS, PayPal, Endicia, etc) they would not have been able to send it, because the address must match a validly acceptable address from the PO and must be in the format that they want it to be in.

This system was instilled many years ago, but each year they get a little closer to being less lenient and start sending mail back that isn't proper according to their rules, so people start using the proper addresses.

Date Posted: 9/1/2009 5:26 PM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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Thanks Sherry - I will keep this in mind if I have trouble in the future.  The issue they aren't my friends sort to speak.  It is part of the organization I belong to to send books to soldiers overseas.  This is provided by the soldiers when they sign up to receive books - the site can't verifiy it either - they only can confirm that they are military when the sign up.  The majority of the soliders I send to seem to be deployed in Iraq or Afghanistan.  There isn't any way for me to check or anything - it is what is provided.  The postal clerk was able to put it through, normally I write the label and just go to the PO but I was lazy today andn didn't want to write a label. ... which I ended up doing anyway.   I might look up the  address and see if the USPS comes back with a different address. 

They were mailed today and the postal clerk filled out the information (customs) and ok'd the information on the package and added DC.  I can only hope they get there.