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Topic: Sent book came back with "Return To Sender"

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Subject: Sent book came back with "Return To Sender"
Date Posted: 7/15/2009 8:21 PM ET
Member Since: 5/4/2006
Posts: 14
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Yes, that' right, the book came back as I packaged it, apparently the reciever (or someone at that address!) wrote "Return to sender" over the To: address and the post office put a REFUSED sticker over the address. I mailed this July 1 first class (it's a thin book and First Class was cheaper than Media Mail) and got it back yesterday, so most of the time was surely spent coming back to me. The PBS book status page says it's still "En Route."


Why might the receiver have done this (in the hospital or something? I looked, last books were added in June, so could be), and how do I handle the problem of PBS saying it was not received?


Date Posted: 7/15/2009 8:43 PM ET
Member Since: 7/7/2007
Posts: 4,815
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Well, first PM the sender and ask about it.

The Help Center section on "A book I sent was returned to me!" might be useful here.

Books are most commonly refused if they arrived postage-due.  That's covered in the Help Center section titled "I received a book postage-due!"

You may need to talk to your post office to see if they can determine if postage was insufficient or what the issue was.



Date Posted: 7/15/2009 8:53 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I would PM the requestor.  It's possible it was misdelivered and instead of "wrong address" whoever received wasn't nice and put Return to Sender. 

If they did it then you should contact PBS. They owe you a credit for the postage. If it had been media mail it would have come back to you postage due for full media mail.

Date Posted: 7/15/2009 10:48 PM ET
Member Since: 5/4/2006
Posts: 14
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I looked at the help center with the "returned" thing, and I suppose it helped, the only "reasonable" reasons I can see are that the requester has the wrong address in their account, or "USPS error," the post office delivered it to the wrong address.

It's definitely not postage due, there's nothing about that on the package.I gave it over the counter to the lady at the post office as Ive done many times before, she weighed it, printed out the first class postage sticker and stuck it on.

I wasn't really thinking of it being misdelivered and the receiver never saw it. I'll definitely PM and see what's up.


Date Posted: 7/16/2009 3:43 AM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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When you pm the requester, set a time limit for response, such as 24 or 48 hours.  If the situation remains unresolved, you may wish to contact PBS admin and include the transaction number.  Merely reposting the book may direct you back to the non-responsive member.





Date Posted: 7/16/2009 7:10 AM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,603
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I agree, PM the member if their account is still active. They're the only ones who can solve the mystery for you.


Date Posted: 7/17/2009 2:43 PM ET
Member Since: 5/4/2006
Posts: 14
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Sure enough, I just got a PM back, the recipient never saw the book, and says the address is good and has received other PBS books. I'll just mail again.

Date Posted: 7/17/2009 2:52 PM ET
Member Since: 5/16/2008
Posts: 2,212
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Does that mean you have to pay for postage again? I'm always curious about this, b/c I send a lot of pen pal letters, and every once in a while, one comes back postage due. The PO has crossed out (usually with what looks like crayons) the stamp(s) I put on there. Which means I have to not only ADD the postage that was due, but put all new postage on there. To me, if you mailed that book in all good form, why should you have to pay to mail it again?

Cathy A. (Cathy) - ,
Date Posted: 7/17/2009 4:09 PM ET
Member Since: 12/27/2005
Posts: 4,152
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You should take the book to the P.O. and tell them you've been in contact with the addressee, who says this package was never delivered to him and that the address on it is correct. They should accept that this was their error and not charge you again for postage.

Date Posted: 7/17/2009 4:39 PM ET
Member Since: 1/8/2007
Posts: 8,139
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Ditto what Cathy said. You shouldn't have to pay for postage again because of this mistake. Be sure to print out the PM to bring with you as well.

Date Posted: 7/17/2009 7:20 PM ET
Member Since: 4/25/2007
Posts: 11,717
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It could be it was delivered to the wrong person too even though the address was correct.  I've gotten mail for people on a whole different street.  Could be that whomever received it took it back to the PO and instead of them re-delivering to the correct place, they marked it "return to sender" and sent it back to you.

Date Posted: 7/17/2009 9:33 PM ET
Member Since: 7/31/2007
Posts: 2,695
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Also, could be a spouse that is not happy with them getting so many books and they intercepted the book and sent it back...

Date Posted: 7/19/2009 9:42 AM ET
Member Since: 4/21/2008
Posts: 13,426
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I had that happen once, and there is a form that the PO uses to resend so that you don't have to pay the postage again. It goes right to the postmaster at that person's PO and they make sure it gets delivered and also check why it was incorrectly marked return in the first place.

Let them know that everything is correct, and the person at that addy never rec'd it nor did they send it back.