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Topic: What's the point of the printed delivery confirmation?

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Subject: What's the point of the printed delivery confirmation?
Date Posted: 11/13/2008 7:02 PM ET
Member Since: 2/27/2006
Posts: 6
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I've sent a couple hundred books at least, and every time I've tried to use the delivery confirmation from PBS, and had PBS print that onto my wrapper, the post office charges me for it anyway! I've never understood this. It's been like this for the last couple years.

Instead, what I do is just print the "regular" label with no delivery confirmation, and the post office puts it on for me, and then I only pay once.

I feel like PBS just dings us left and right - we get charged a fee for delivery confirmation, we get charged again when we take the packages to the post office (so that's money that PBS is pocketing, I guess?). What's the point of having PBS charge us for printing a delivery confirmation when we'll just get charged again?

Date Posted: 11/13/2008 7:42 PM ET
Member Since: 5/27/2006
Posts: 11,985
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The Post Office should NOT be charging you again for DC that you purchase here at PBS.  It's the PO that is "dinging you" not PBS.  When you purchase DC here .27 goes to PBS & .18 goes to the PO.  When the PO charges you AGAIN that money goes to the PO.  

Each time you use PBS-DC, it will cost you 45 cents:

    • 27 cents to PBS paid in PBS Money
    • 18 cents to USPS paid in postage applied to the package. 

Here is the info from the help center regarding the PO "double dipping" and making you pay twice! While it addresses the use of online postage, the issue of DC already being paid can be found in the links.

My PO doesn't understand electronic (printed) postage!

If your PO is saying that your package doesn't qualify for DC because of its dimensions, read about the required dimensions to use DC to send a package in Are there any requirements to use Delivery Confirmation?

If your PO is arguing that you can't use electronic DC (e-DC) or that DC is not included in your printed postage, and they want you to purchase DC at the PO instead to send your PBS package, this misunderstanding happens occasionally.  Some POs are not as informed about electronic DC (e-DC) and online postage as they should be, considering that it is rather commonplace nowadays. 

  • The PO employees can weigh your package, compare the printed postage on the package with the postage necessary to send the package, and they will see that the 18 cents for online (electronic) DC is included in the postage you have paid.
  • As long as you have checked the weight on the wrapper Settings page before you printed, and adjusted the weight to be accurate before printing, then the postage (and postal class) that printed out should be accurate also, and the DC fee of 18 cents will be included.

Below is the information from USPS's own website that you can print out and show to your postmaster/PO employees if necessary.  This shouldn't be necessary, of course, but you would be doing them (and yourself, of course) a service to help them out here:

  • Here is the URL location of the USPS guidelines regarding using Delivery Confirmation on First Class mail and on Media Mail.

the link is  http://www.usps.com/send/waystosendmail/extraservices/deliveryconfirmationservice.htm

The fourth paragraph on this page indicates that you do not have to use online postage in order to use electronic DC.   PBS does receive electronic information on all DC printed through the site.   Also, anyone who requests it is capable of receiving electronic files by simply entering your tracking number and requesting USPS email you the tracking results.

  • Here also is a link to the Domestic Mail Manual on the usps.com website, section 9 (Delivery Confirmation).

the link is   http://pe.usps.gov/text/dmm300/503.htm#9_0

The information on this page includes (the following is the relevant information for Media Mail, which is a Package Service):

9.1 Delivery Confirmation Fee

9.1.1 Fee

Fee, in addition to postage and other fees, per piece:

Delivery Confirmation

Package Services (parcels only)

Retail Fee: 0.75

Electronic Fee: 0.18

9.1.2 Fees and Postage

"The applicable Delivery Confirmation fee in 9.1.1 must be paid in addition to the correct postage. The fee and postage may be paid with postage stamps, meter stamps, or permit imprint. Precanceled stamps are not permitted as postage payment."

  • Here is the page at USPS.com about online postage, including links to authorized providers (endicia.com is among them).

It is clear from the above information taken from the Domestic Mail Manual published by USPS that

  • Delivery Confirmation is available for use with package services (Media Mail is a package service)
  • The fee for electronic Delivery Confirmation used with Media Mail (a package service) or First Class is $0.18
  • The fee may be paid with postage stamps or meter stamps (the meter strip you obtain at the Post office counter) or using online postage
  • The electronic Delivery Confirmation fee does NOT need to be paid online but it can be, with online postage
  • The postage does not need to be paid online in order to use electronic Delivery Confirmation

Please print out this information (if you can, print out the unedited page from the second link above), and show it to your postal employees if necessary.

Last Edited on: 11/13/08 7:46 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 11/13/2008 7:59 PM ET
Member Since: 2/27/2006
Posts: 6
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Thanks a ton!

ARGGGGHHHH, I am so upset at my post office! They actually sent me back to talk to the manager about this and claimed that I was wrong, that they HAD to charge me. How frusterating! I'm sure they've gotten quite a bit out of me.


Date Posted: 11/13/2008 8:11 PM ET
Member Since: 2/10/2008
Posts: 1,080
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Are you using PBS for postage and the delivery confirmation? If you are only using the delivery confirmation, the post office should be charging you 18 cents which is the current electronic rate for the service. The retail delivery confirmation (bright green label you stick on), the price is 75 cents for first class parcels or media mail. When you print the postage from PBS, the 18 cents is added in for you and the postage is right if the weight is correct. The 27 cents PBS charges helps support the site.

From the PBS help docs....

If you use PBS Delivery Confirmation Only to send a package, you will need to add 18 cents to the postage.

  • This is the USPS fee for DC
  • This fee is not deducted from PBS Money; it needs to be applied in postage to the package.
  • The PBS portion of the PBS-DC fee is 27 cents, and is deducted from PBS Money when you print the wrapper with DC.
Date Posted: 11/13/2008 9:38 PM ET
Member Since: 2/27/2006
Posts: 6
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Oh! So it's actually cheaper to use the printed version, and then pay the 18 cents?

Date Posted: 11/14/2008 3:33 PM ET
Member Since: 5/27/2006
Posts: 11,985
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Yes! Sorry if I wasn't a little clearer in my earlier post.   At the PO you'll only have to pay them .18 for the DC.  Where they charging you the .75?

Date Posted: 11/14/2008 5:12 PM ET
Member Since: 2/27/2006
Posts: 6
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Yep, they definitely were.

Well this is all very interesting! I've printed out the stuff to take to the post office. I'll start using the delivery confirmation again, and see how it goes. Thanks a ton! :)

Date Posted: 11/14/2008 9:43 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,226
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Hollie, make sure they understand that you are paying for electronic DC, not the regular DC and if that doesn't help, make them scan the bar code - it will show up in their system as .18 not the .75.

Subject: PBS DC
Date Posted: 11/14/2008 10:49 PM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2005
Posts: 5,448
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I remember going to the PO and having the DC on the package and the cleark just sort of stares at it.  You can tell  she hadn't seen it in some time...if ever.  I clued her in and told her to scan the bar code.  The woman looked relieved!  I like using the PBS postage and I can avoid the PO all together.

Date Posted: 11/15/2008 1:09 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I've had to explain a few times to postal clerks how the printed DC works.  I only use it on game books as it doesn't seem cost effective to use it on every book.  I've had to stop them from over charging me more than once. A few times I've seen them look at the bar code and start to toss it in the bin thinking it already has the postage as well.  I've had to stop them and have them put on the postage.