Discussion Forums - Questions about PaperBackSwap Questions about PaperBackSwap

Topic: Really? Media mail not suppose to be picked up at my mailbox?

Club rule - Please, if you cannot be courteous and respectful, do not post in this forum.
  Unlock Forum posting with Annual Membership.
Subject: Really? Media mail not suppose to be picked up at my mailbox?
Date Posted: 1/30/2011 12:09 PM ET
Member Since: 11/30/2007
Posts: 4,974
Back To Top

Posted this in the PO forum, but not much traffic there, so thought I would try here. I live in a suburb of Detroit, not in a rural area.

Yesterday, I went to the PO to mail some books and the Postmaster there asked me why I hadn't been there for a while. I told her because of the snowy weather I had been mailing my books from my house. She then told me, "Really? The postal carrier isn't suppose to pick up media mail from your mailbox. Huh? That's the first time I ever of that before. I have placed both media mail books with stamps and PBS postage/DC for months and not once has my postal carrier told me I can't do that. Plus, on the forums here, many members have remarked about the convenience of just placing their books in their own mailboxes. So, why did this postmaster say that it is illegal to do that?

 

Date Posted: 1/30/2011 12:37 PM ET
Member Since: 3/4/2007
Posts: 4,549
Back To Top

IIRC, if you're using prepaid postage from PBS or one of the other online postal services, it shouldn't be a problem because with those services the package can be traced back to you.  If you're using stamps and the book is over a certain weight , then technically it has to be taken to the counter at the post office.  I also remember reading that a mail carrier does not have to pick up anything from your mailbox; delivery is what they do, pick up is an optional service. I've never had a mail carrier not pick up something from my mailbox, but apparently they technically don't have to.  I'm sure someone will correct me if I'm wrong on these points, but these are things I remember reading in the postal forum and hearing from my local post office.

 

Cathy A. (Cathy) - ,
Date Posted: 1/30/2011 12:50 PM ET
Member Since: 12/27/2005
Posts: 4,135
Back To Top

I think your clerk is confused. She is thinking of Carrier Pickup where you call ahead and schedule a pickup. You are not using that service. Here's the USPS' FAQ about Outgoing mail:

Outgoing Mail

The United States Postal Service makes every effort to pickup and deliver your mail. Outgoing mail is picked up:

    For curbside delivery if the flag is up or if there is mail to deliver.
    For door delivery if there is mail to deliver.
    From the outgoing mail slot in a Cluster Box.

If you would like to hand your outgoing mailpiece to the letter carrier (and you don't need a stamped or dated receipt for the item), keep in mind that the amount of mail a letter carrier can pickup is limited by the space that they have available to them in their vehicle. All mail picked up by letter carriers must comply with normal weight and size restrictions:

    Correct postage must be applied to the item.
    The mailpiece must fall within the size and weight restrictions of the class.

If you are concerned that you may have too much mail for the letter carrier to pick it all up, you may either:

    Drop it off at a local Post Office facility.
    Request a Carrier Pickup (not available in all markets).
    Schedule a Pickup on Demand online.
    Contact your local Post Office for further help.

If your mailbox is located on the street, letter carriers should pickup outgoing mail if the flag is up. If your mailbox is attached to the house, letter carriers are not required to pickup mail if they have no mail to deliver. Mail cannot be delivered to or picked up from a blocked mailbox..

If outgoing mail was not picked up from a cluster box or your curbside mailbox, you may call Customer Service at 1-800-ASK-USPS (1-800-275-8777) to have them document the problem.



Last Edited on: 1/30/11 12:51 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/30/2011 12:53 PM ET
Member Since: 5/15/2005
Posts: 1,328
Back To Top

My understanding is that unless you fall under Rural Delivery Service, or you arrange for carrier pickup (available for priority and express mail), a mail carrier is not obligated to pick up any mail from your mailbox unless they are delivering mail to your box/door (corrected based on the information Cathy provided). But I've also never had a carrier refuse to pick up mail from my mailbox, even when I lived in areas not considered to fall under Rural Delivery Service.  



Last Edited on: 1/30/11 12:57 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/30/2011 1:38 PM ET
Member Since: 11/30/2007
Posts: 4,974
Back To Top

I perceived the clerk to mean absolutely no "media mail" at all is to be picked up from my mailbox. Never heard that before, thought it was allowed. My postal carrier has been picking up my media mail for months with no complaints so far. I don't think all the members here go to the PO to send their media mail. It sure would be an inconveinence if the clerk is right. If my package is 13oz or over and I use stamps, I bring it to the PO. Otherwise, if I use PBS postage/DC and it weighs 13oz or over, I put it in my mailbox. I also put in there, books with stamps and/or PBS postage/DC books weighing lower than 13 oz.

Date Posted: 1/30/2011 6:01 PM ET
Member Since: 5/1/2007
Posts: 6,559
Back To Top

I posted this in the PO forum also.

Per the USPS website:   The Postal Service™ has two different options for pickup of outgoing mail.

Carrier Pickup allows you to schedule a pickup for your mailpiece(s) at the same time your mail is delivered by your letter carrier. There is no additional charge for CarrierPickup when your mail is picked up as part of your letter carrier's route and he or she does not need to make a special trip to pick up your mailpiece(s).  There is no limit to the number of packages that can be left for CarrierPickup.  The service is available in most ZIP Codes nationwide. To see if your ZIP Code is available, visit CarrierPickup at www.usps.com/pickup. 

Pickup on Demand is perfect for those time-sensitive situations when you need to have your mailpiece(s) picked up on a specific date in a specific timeframe. (All mail for a pickup must be totally ready for mailing) A Pickup fee is charged per trip (regardless of the number of items scheduled for pickup). For more information on the Pickup fee, go to

www.usps.com/pickup.

Mail Service Eligible for Carrier Pickup

 

Your letter-carrier can pickup packages and return merchandise using the following services:

 

·         Domestic:

o        Express Mail® service

o        Priority Mail® service

o        Parcel Post® and other packages may be picked up also when combined with Express Mail, Priority Mail or International Mail requests for pickup

o        Merchandise Return Service

o        Parcel Return Service

 

·         International  (provided packages meet applicable International mailing requirements):

o        Global Express Guaranteed®

o        Express Mail International®

o        Priority Mail International®

Date Posted: 1/30/2011 6:01 PM ET
Member Since: 5/1/2007
Posts: 6,559
Back To Top

It doesn't mention media mail as being eligible for pick-up.

 

Ronda -
Date Posted: 1/30/2011 7:16 PM ET
Member Since: 6/27/2006
Posts: 14
Back To Top

I was a rural mail carrier in MO a few years ago.  I was told that I picked up mail from a mailbox on two instances: when I was delivering to that mailbox, or if the flag was up.  If I had no mail for that address and the flag was not up, I was under no obligation to stop.  I don't recall being told not to pick up media mail (and this was before the 13 oz rule).  I was also told to SCAN delivery confirmations when I picked them up from the customer, something that doesn't seem to happen today. 

Date Posted: 1/30/2011 7:19 PM ET
Member Since: 10/5/2010
Posts: 196
Back To Top

I do not know if this is just my area or not but even if my flag is up and if there was no mail delivered to my address, then my outgoing mail for that day don't get pick up. They just skip right over my house that day.

Date Posted: 1/31/2011 9:08 AM ET
Member Since: 7/13/2008
Posts: 42
Back To Top

I had this conversation with the manager of my local post office after my mail carrier refused to pick up media mail from my apartment complex. 

The media mail was under six ounces.

The post office manager told me that since media mail is not paying first class rate, it is low priority and they are not required to pick it up even when delivering to the same address.

I was told that if I don't want to drop it at the post office, my carrier may or may not choose to pick it up at any time.

Cathy A. (Cathy) - ,
Date Posted: 1/31/2011 9:57 AM ET
Member Since: 12/27/2005
Posts: 4,135
Back To Top

Yengkong and Laurie -- as per the USPS page I linked above "If outgoing mail was not picked up from a cluster box or your curbside mailbox, you may call Customer Service at 1-800-ASK-USPS (1-800-275-8777) to have them document the problem."

This page does not indicate in any way that Media Mail will not be picked up. Your Post Office may be claiming that the mail carrier didn't have room for a 6 oz package, and they're allowed to do that; but you can still report them and if the complaints pile up enough, things may change.

Date Posted: 1/31/2011 10:12 AM ET
Member Since: 4/10/2009
Posts: 1,691
Back To Top

It doesn't mention media mail as being eligible for pick-up. 

Actually it does, but you must have a priority mail or express package to go with it. Mine will pick up packages as long as that priority package is with them. And if your doesnt call 1800askusps and make a complaint. I have had neighbors state that the mailman left the media mail but picked up their priority. They called that 800 number and the next day their media was picked up too.

 

Parcel Post® and other packages may be picked up also when combined with Express Mail, Priority Mail or International Mail requests for pickup

Cathy A. (Cathy) - ,
Date Posted: 1/31/2011 11:45 AM ET
Member Since: 12/27/2005
Posts: 4,135
Back To Top

Carrier Pickup is a different service. It's not the same thing as leaving the flag up on your mailbox to indicate that you have outgoing mail.

You can leave Media Mail in your curbside mailbox with the flag up. The mail carrier is supposed to take it if he has room. If he doesn't take it, you can call and complain.

Carrier Pickup is for when your outgoing mail does not fit in your mailbox, or for when you have a mailbox attached to your house instead of at the curbside. This service does not include Media Mail unless you are also mailing something by Express or Priority.

Date Posted: 1/31/2011 12:07 PM ET
Member Since: 2/5/2007
Posts: 30,800
Back To Top

When I joined PBS, I put my packages in my mailbox.  I was informed by my mail carrier that he did not and would not pick up packages, unless it was a priority package and was scheduled.

I immediately went to the Post Office to complain. When I mentioned it, they said, "OH so and so must be your mail person."  RIGHT  They told me that they are a mail delivery service and while most carriers would pick up packages, they have the option to not do so. 

Date Posted: 1/31/2011 12:09 PM ET
Member Since: 10/5/2010
Posts: 196
Back To Top

Cathy, thanks! I should probably do that next time it don't get picked up. There's times where my mail just sit there for days without it getting picked up.

Sianeka - ,
Date Posted: 1/31/2011 1:39 PM ET
Member Since: 2/8/2007
Posts: 6,630
Back To Top

Yes, I was living in another town and mail carrier didn't pick up my letter I was mailing out when they dropped off my mail.  I took it to my local P.O. and told them, and was flabbergasted to be told  that mail carriers are only there to "deliver mail.  They are NEVER obligated to pick up outgoing mail.  They do this only as a courtesy, when and if they want to."

(I have to admit, that response caused me to totally lose respect for USPS.  Prior to that, I had had excellent postal workers and post offices and had high respect for the profession.  USPS has never regained my admiration toward them ever since.)