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Topic: I still don't understand?

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Subject: I still don't understand?
Date Posted: 10/22/2010 6:52 PM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2010
Posts: 652
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Okay, I don't understand what I'm supposed to do.  I submitted a previous post but instead of adding to it, I just made this new one.

I bought the Delivery Conformation and am I supposed to tell the postal clerk what?  I didn't know I was supposed to do anything else other than pay the .27 cents to PBS and print the wrapper and mail it.  I sent out 4 packages not knowing I was supposed to spend and additional .19 cents at the post office.  I don't mind the .19 cents, I bought DC knowing it was cheaper than the .80 the post office charges.  I read the help docs but for some reason it's not clicking tonight LOL!

Please tell me the steps I need to take to make sure I'm doing this right.  Thank you very much!!

Last Edited on: 10/22/10 6:55 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/22/2010 6:57 PM ET
Member Since: 5/22/2005
Posts: 1,592
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If you buy the Delivery Confirmation through the PBS site you only have to buy postage at the post office.

Why not but postage through the site along with the DC? That way you can just mail from home and avoid the post office and clerks and you get your credit when you click MAILED?

Date Posted: 10/22/2010 7:00 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,220
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When you pay PBS the 0.27 you've paid the PBS fee to print the DC, but you still need to pay the postage cost for it. The only time you pay for the DC in full is if you use the full PBS printable postage. When you apply postage (either yourself or at the PO) there will be 0.19 postage cost due for the DC in addition to the regular postage charge. If you go to the counter to pay, they should scan the DC to get the correct postage cost (0.19) to apply. If you apply you own postage, make sure to apply the full amount PBS says to only label (it will show regular postage + DC fee 0.19 = full amount of postage due). The DC will then get scanned along the way at a sorting/processing facility or at the time of delivery.

Last Edited on: 10/22/10 7:01 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/22/2010 7:04 PM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2010
Posts: 652
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Thanks Melanie.

 When I gave the clerk the packages, all he did was set them on his scale and print a label and put it on the box and set it aside.  He never scanned the barcode.  So, does that mean it'll get scanned sometime, or did I not pay the additonal fee?

Date Posted: 10/22/2010 7:06 PM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2009
Posts: 1,083
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You can also print postage through PayPal with the DC automatically added into the cost.  But, with PayPal DC you are not guaranteed your credit if the book goes lost or the recipient never marks it as having been delivered.  Personally I think that the expense is worth it since I let people know what their tracking number is and I think that people are less likely to not mark it as received when they know I have a way to see that it was delivered.

I would love to buy my postage through this site, but at .46 a pop, it is not worth it to me.  I would rather see this site charge a fee to join than to help support the site by paying an extra .46 every time I ship a book. 

Date Posted: 10/22/2010 7:09 PM ET
Member Since: 1/23/2009
Posts: 3,041
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If I purchase PBS-DC only and then take a book that weighs less than 1 lb. to the post office, I know that I will be charged two things:

1.) .19 for the DC

2.) 2.38 for the postage

Altogether for this one book, I will have spent 2.57.

Look at your postal receipt. It should itemize everything for you and tell you what you spent and for what.

I've never had a problem getting my Quick Credits; usually they show up in my account a few hours after the books have been taken to the PO.

Date Posted: 10/22/2010 7:20 PM ET
Member Since: 10/23/2005
Posts: 7,719
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Yes, Forrest, if he didnt scan the bar code, you probably didnt pay the additional .19 fee to the PO.

They may catch it and return the books to you, they may deliver them and the packages may end up being .19 postage due from the recipients or they may go through without ever being caught.

When I use DC only, instead of the PBS Printable postage, I usually add stamps or use the APC machine in my Post Office lobby. I add the .19 to the total postage I attach to the package.

Date Posted: 10/22/2010 7:47 PM ET
Member Since: 1/8/2009
Posts: 2,016
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(1) Print out the label on the PBS website with PBS-DC. Your PBS Money account will be charged 27 cents. This goes to PBS and its postal partner, Endicia, to offset costs and for Credit Assurance.

(2) Package the book and affix label to the book.

(3) Ask the postal clerk to scan the barcode. This will alert the clerk that he needs to charge you the eDC rate = 19 cents

  • this counts as a scan into the USPS system. Some forum posters say you should mark the book mailed before going to the PO so the PBS system thinks the book has been mailed so it can interpret this scan correctly and add the Quick Credit to your account at this time.
  • If the postal clerk is confused and say "You can't buy DC like this, you need to pay 80 cents," explain he is wrong. There is supporting documentation which you can access in the Help Docs; search for "My PO doesn't understand electronic (printed) postage!"

(4) Pay the clerk the cost of eDC (19 cents) and the cost of postage (2.38 for package up to 1lb, total of 2.57)

Date Posted: 10/22/2010 8:42 PM ET
Member Since: 8/19/2007
Posts: 4,392
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Forrest - I usually ask the Postal Clerk (and they know me now so ask if I have any DC to scan), but I make sure that they do scan it right then.

I had one once that I forgot to ask them to scan (so wasn't charged the $.19) and it got scanned later, but there was no way to pay for it the next time I went, so it is possible that it will get scanned later.  Good luck.


Date Posted: 10/23/2010 6:18 AM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2010
Posts: 652
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Well, one of them got scanned in transit, so it's looking promising.

Date Posted: 10/23/2010 9:18 AM ET
Member Since: 6/1/2006
Posts: 5,073
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Forrest, this has happened to me when I first started using PBS-DC.

I figured the clerk would notice the labels had DC and scan them.

I didn't realize until I returned home and checked my receipt that he didn't scan the bar codes.

I thought for sure I would get the books returned and have to remail.

But they went through and from then on I always let the clerk know I have printed DC.

Date Posted: 10/23/2010 11:55 AM ET
Member Since: 5/18/2007
Posts: 13,223
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When I used just the PBS DC I made sure they scanned the book while I stood there -- and it was common practice for them to do so anyhow so  I wasn't asking them to do anything they didn't normally do.

Doing that, as others have said, triggers the .19 charge for the DC and second, it also triggers my quick credit.

I just use PBS postage now -- aleviates the headache of actually having to go to the PO.

Date Posted: 10/24/2010 10:41 AM ET
Member Since: 7/12/2010
Posts: 4,177
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I don't consider it a headache to go to the PO and I never use any kind of DC. Simple, Fast and Cheap.
Date Posted: 10/24/2010 12:21 PM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2010
Posts: 652
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They've all been scanned in transit.  Now I'm just waiting if the PO catches it and sends them back to me or if they deliver with postage due to the recipient.  I will gladly reimburse them the money if that is the case.  Just a headache and don't think I'll be using again.  I've never had a problem with Media Mail before.  The only reason I got the DC is because it was a multiple book order 4+.  

Date Posted: 10/24/2010 12:40 PM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,601
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Really, DC isn't a necessity. Some folks worry about their credits so they use it, but I've sent hundreds and hundreds of books without it and only a handful weren't received--definitely not cost effective! When I was going to the PO and just using regular media mail, I did use DC for multiple-book orders only.

For me, now, going to the PO is definitely a headache--well, no...it's actually not possible except one day a week due to my work schedule--unless I wanted to drive into downtown Mpls to use the 24-hour PO, which I definitely do NOT. (Headache wouldn't begin to describe it...) So I use the PBS postage (DC+postage) which means I can mail any weight book in the blue box in front of my work.

I'm not worried about my credit or a book going lost or anything like that--it happens so seldom it's just not a concern. It's a matter of convenience for me, and I don't mind paying the extra fee since it does support PBS, maintenance of the website, and helps keep the site free to use for everybody.


Date Posted: 10/24/2010 1:16 PM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2009
Posts: 1,083
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Now I'm just waiting if the PO catches it and sends them back to me or if they deliver with postage due to the recipient.

I doubt they will do either. It will cost them more than .19 in man-hours to return the book to you or to go through the hassle of trying to collect the .19 when they deliver the books.  

Date Posted: 10/24/2010 5:06 PM ET
Member Since: 4/7/2008
Posts: 15,690
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Like Cheryl, I use electronic postage mostly because I don't have time to go to the post office. For single shipment books, I use Paypal and for multiple order books I use PBS postage.

Date Posted: 10/24/2010 10:09 PM ET
Member Since: 4/28/2009
Posts: 1,262
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I've mailed over 500 books  and never had anyone fail to mark the package received. 

I have to go to the post office to pick up my mail anyway (I live in a rural area - there's no home delivery), so that part of equation is moot in my situation.

I did use the DC with postage one time when the correspondence with a member who was taking 3 WL books just didn't sit right with me, so I am glad it's available when I want it.  But I can't see using every time, just to insure I don't lose a credit, not when all my dealings have gone so well. 

Of course, now I've probably jinxed myself, :)

Date Posted: 10/25/2010 8:59 PM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2010
Posts: 652
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All 4 packages made it through without the receiver having to pay 'postage due'.   All of them were scanned in transit even though I didnt pay the extra .19 at the PO for their part!  YAY!

Date Posted: 10/25/2010 9:03 PM ET
Member Since: 8/26/2006
Posts: 9,350
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Great news, Forrest -- thanks for letting us know!

Date Posted: 10/26/2010 4:23 PM ET
Member Since: 2/2/2010
Posts: 1,207
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OMG - this is not worth the bother!  I too sent a book with PBS DC the other day and didnt pay the 19cent but it was scanned anyway - so all good.  Then today I print it to mail a mutiple shipment in hope to get instant credit and the lady at the PO says if I print that part at home I have to print the postage at home.  So I paid 2x for the DC and they put a new bar code on it so as far as PBS is concerned it will never go in the system b/c their barcode will never be scanned.


I know its not PBSs fault but if the PO gets so confused and I pay twice and don't get credit assurance it is not worth it! 

Last Edited on: 10/26/10 4:23 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Cathy A. (Cathy) - ,
Date Posted: 10/26/2010 4:33 PM ET
Member Since: 12/27/2005
Posts: 4,150
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You do get credit assurance. If your package goes lost and the original DC barcode was never scanned, you just need to contact PBS and ask them for help.

And yeah, your Post Office was totally wrong to claim that you can't do eDC without printable postage.

Date Posted: 10/26/2010 5:16 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,220
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Margaret, usually it works to just tell them to scan it and they will see that it IS a product they sell. They press the button for DC and it shows at retail price, then when they scan the number their system can tell it is a valid eDC and adjusts the price to 0.19. If it weren't a valid product they sold, her computer wouldn't know what to do with it. I am always amazed when a clerk won't accept that the computer knowing what to do with it as valid proof the eDC is good. There are also documents in the Help Center on Delivery Confirmation that you can print and take to you post office when they don't know what they should be doing.