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Topic: wrap packages at the post office??!!

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Subject: wrap packages at the post office??!!
Date Posted: 4/12/2008 9:19 AM ET
Member Since: 4/23/2007
Posts: 145
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I have a problem. Several days ago when I went to my local post office to mail packages, they told that next time I have to bring the packages (my books that I'm mailing) to the post office and wrap them in their presense and also informed me that I have to bring the supplies...like the tape. They said it's a new law and they have to inspect them. They is a huge inconvenience! I asked my other PBS friends if they're having the same problems and they said no. Could it be just within my state (Minnesota)? I am also convinced that if this was a national policy, PBS would have informed us via email...

Could someone please tell me what's going on!

Date Posted: 4/12/2008 9:56 AM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2007
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Let them show you this law somwhere written. Sounds like a lot of bull to me.
Date Posted: 4/12/2008 11:18 AM ET
Member Since: 2/25/2007
Posts: 73
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It is a lot of bull.

The post office does not want a lot of people standing around wrapping packages.

They must think that they should inspect anything that says "media mail" and they don't want to be bothered. We (postal employees) are supposed to check things that look suspicious (like the one we had once that was leaking oil - car parts!), but not everything. If an item is suspicious to us, then we open the package. If it is not media, we send it on it's way with postage due at the other end and an explanation as to why. If it is media, we send it on it's way. In either case they should have stamps, or stickeers that say "open and inspected by USPS".

There should be no state policiew that effect USPS services and/or requirements.

niffir - ,
Date Posted: 4/12/2008 11:59 AM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2008
Posts: 495
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My post office in New Orleans insisted on seeing media mail packages wrapped in their presence.  You could have it all the way done but leave just enough open so that they could see that it was a book, and that was ok with them.  I think a lot of people had heard about the Media Mail rate and were using it to send out a lot of non-media items.  It was a HUGE pain, so I am very happy that my post offices in Kentucky just take my word for it that I'm mailing books. 

Date Posted: 4/12/2008 12:05 PM ET
Member Since: 4/25/2007
Posts: 11,697
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I'm in Minnesota, I've never run into this.  I don't go to the PO much, I do most of my mailing at home and drop stuff in a blue box.

They do have the right to inspect Media Mail if they want to.  Try having a discussion with your postmaster about this issue if it's going to be a huge inconvenience.

Date Posted: 4/12/2008 12:17 PM ET
Member Since: 4/23/2007
Posts: 145
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thanks for you imput...i'm gonna try another post office near my area and see what happens...


Date Posted: 4/12/2008 9:05 PM ET
Member Since: 6/15/2006
Posts: 1,691
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Could you imagine?  I mailed about 22 Media Mail packages this week & last.  And other PBSers with pacakges are being asked to step out of line in favor of other customers who are just buying stamps.

Thank goodness I have a blue box across the street !!!

Date Posted: 4/12/2008 9:57 PM ET
Member Since: 7/23/2005
Posts: 7,551
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Wow, how insane.    I usually average several media mail pkgs a day (not just through this site, some are for the troops).  Plus, EBAYers and a guy who owns a UBS and does a lot of online sales frequent the same PO.  If they enforced that here, where would they put us?  I can just imagine all of us out in the parking lot wrapping packages, LOL, with some poor PO Peep walking around inspecting them! 

I hope you can get it resolved or find another PO that's more convenient!


Subject: Crazy
Date Posted: 4/13/2008 1:53 AM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2005
Posts: 5,445
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I live in Minnesota and I bring the wrapped package in w/o a problem.  I usually use pre paid postage so i just have to drop them in the blue box.  I have never had a problem with my PO.

Date Posted: 4/15/2008 5:58 PM ET
Member Since: 3/25/2008
Posts: 1
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I live in CO and have never been told that.  I just tell them I want to send it media mail and they say ok.  They have never even asked what is in the package - although its obviously a book.  Sounds like an employee with not enough work to do.  Maybe you should go to a busier branch . . .

Subject: NOt Wrapped too tight....
Date Posted: 4/15/2008 10:41 PM ET
Member Since: 9/21/2007
Posts: 2
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The postal at the desk where I paid for my PBS shiping was delighted to see that I was shippinga PBS book and we actually talked about the website. MOve to Dayton Ohio!

Date Posted: 4/16/2008 4:35 PM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2007
Posts: 5,526
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they ask if what is in the package is a book (if not obvious since it is in an envelope vs being wrapped with just the wrapper).  but then I use the APC machine as much as I can and don't deal with employees.  I haven't had any problems and I'm in Texas

Date Posted: 4/16/2008 11:12 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,225
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Its that goofy state you live in :) (hehehe, borned and raised MN, but jumped the border to ND 13 years ago.)

I think some places just get really anal. Maybe they'd let you have it all wrapped but one end so they can see its a book? Otherwise try another PO or take about 15 books in and stand there at the counter and take 45 minutes to wrap them, they'll change their minds really fast.

Date Posted: 4/17/2008 8:59 AM ET
Member Since: 3/13/2006
Posts: 2,024
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Melanie, I was thinking the same thing.  What would they do if the original poster actually began wrapping books at the counter?  ;->

Date Posted: 4/18/2008 11:22 AM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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I live in Washington, and that's bogus.  Talk to your postmaster.  I've shipped lots of books over the counter, and the only thing I get asked is the "anything liquid, hazerdous, or perishable" question.  I do my postal business at various times of day, and even our small post office receives hundreds if not thousands of packages a day...I can assure you they do not want to watch them all being wrapped.

Remember tho, for security reasons, there is a weight restriction regarding what can be mailed in a blue box.  Any package over 13 oz (?) must be handed directly to a PO employee (a larger book, or multiples). This regulation is not always enforced, but I HAVE had a package returned to me for this reason.

Last Edited on: 4/18/08 11:23 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/19/2008 3:06 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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If you use the printed postage you can put a package over 13oz in the blue box because they can trace the postage back to you.

I try to avoid the PO as much as possible. I only go if I have something non-PBS to mail or I'm out of stamps.  When I do go, they just ask if there's anything perishable, hazardous or fragile and when they see media mail on the package they remind me that there can't be any personal correspondence in the package. 

I use the printed postage for anything over 13oz.  I buy a bunch of $1 stamps and some smaller variations and use those for the smaller books.  I weigh them at home and look up the rates on the post office website.  If First Class is only a little bit more, I'll use that.

Date Posted: 4/19/2008 1:04 PM ET
Member Since: 3/6/2006
Posts: 3,070
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That is CRAZY!!!  I'm sure there's room enough for everyone at the PO to bring in his or her media mail and wrap it all up...ppppffffftttt.  And I'm quite sure the other folks waiting in line would be so appreciative of this as well!

Date Posted: 4/21/2008 7:14 AM ET
Member Since: 8/26/2006
Posts: 9,354
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...take about 15 books in and stand there at the counter and take 45 minutes to wrap them, they'll change their minds really fast.
lol!  And ask your friends to do the same!  Party!

Date Posted: 4/21/2008 6:39 PM ET
Member Since: 7/7/2005
Posts: 392
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I also live in MN and have never had anyone tell me that I had to wrap my packages in the PO.  I guess I would just tell them they are welcome to inspect any package I bring in, as is their right, but that it is clearly their responsibility to repackage anything they open.

Hey Sue, I checked out the others who said they live in MN and just had to say hello neighbor!  I live in Faribault.  Hello, neighbor, lol! 

Date Posted: 4/21/2008 10:03 PM ET
Member Since: 4/23/2007
Posts: 145
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Ok, I went to a different post office in my area and I didn't have a problem. I assume that something happened at that post office and now they're being cautious.



Date Posted: 4/22/2008 4:35 PM ET
Member Since: 11/11/2007
Posts: 232
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The line at my post office is always out the door, so I doubt they would ever implement something like this.  However, I was asked for the first time today what I was mailing out.  Once I told her it was books and she saw the PBS logo on the wrapper, she started asking me how to set up her own account.

Date Posted: 4/23/2008 7:56 PM ET
Member Since: 7/8/2007
Posts: 15
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I haveheard that some post offices the require them to leave the package openfor media mail,

I feel that was the most ludacris thing ever. 

From what I know they don't have to see in the package but the are subject to inspection if for some reason they feel the contents don't qualify as media mail.

Date Posted: 5/26/2008 11:18 AM ET
Member Since: 9/18/2005
Posts: 3,299
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One post office in rural WI that I drive through occasionally has a sign that says they inspect media mail and require the packages be brought to the counter unwrapped. I use four different post offices near where I live and NONE of them are strict about this.

Last Edited on: 5/26/08 11:18 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/26/2008 12:54 PM ET
Member Since: 5/29/2007
Posts: 13,347
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I would do just that.  I'd bring all my books and supplies and lay it all out, across their counters and take my granny sweet time while each and every person in line behind me had to say, one at a time, "do you mind if I step in front of you?", so I could loudly say, over and over, "I'm so terribly sorry for all this, the employees here insisted I wrap all my packages in their presence, I sure hope they change this rule soon."

Subject: Media postage
Date Posted: 6/4/2008 6:53 PM ET
Member Since: 6/3/2008
Posts: 1
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I have found that these little rule differences tend to be rules at THAT post office.  Another post offfice in same area will accept or have different rules.  I had problems when mailing newsletters, so my guess is if it isn't first class they make up their own rules.