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Topic: Tape UNDER the stamps

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Subject: Tape UNDER the stamps
Date Posted: 10/10/2007 5:58 PM ET
Member Since: 8/27/2005
Posts: 4,138
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Today I went to the post office to hand over a couple of books that were over 13 ounces and had stamps on them.  The Postal clerk told me she would let it go this time (!) but I was not supposed to put stamps over the tape.  I said, I know I shouldn't put tape over the stamps, but I didn't know I couldn't have tape under the stamps--she said no, no tape under or over the stamps.    I leave a space untaped for the stamps but since I have several older denomination stamps to use up they frequently have to cover part of the tape at the top and side.  Has anyone else ever been told this?

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Date Posted: 10/10/2007 6:50 PM ET
Member Since: 2/9/2007
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I had never heard that before. I sometimes have to put my stamps over the tape (well back in the day). When I wrapped my books there would somtimes be tape hanging over the top. I just put my stamps right on. What's the bug deal? The PO has so many rules. I wish I did not have to use them.

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Date Posted: 10/10/2007 6:52 PM ET
Member Since: 7/30/2006
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I'd like to know this too.  I tape the heck out of the books I send and almost always put the stamps on top of the tape.  No one at the PO has said anything about it.  Curious.


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Date Posted: 10/10/2007 6:53 PM ET
Member Since: 4/7/2007
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One of my super sweet post office ladies gave me a good hint.  If you post stamps over tape and the stamps aren't secure, you can tape along the edges, and as long as the stamps are cancellable, you should be in a good shape.  I've done it numerous times.  I don't have a printer at home, so I always use stamps.  I have a good post office that I use near work when I have to dump and run books out.

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Date Posted: 10/10/2007 8:37 PM ET
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The post office puts stamps right over the tape on my packages.   No problem.  I am not positive but I think it certainly IS ok to tape under the stamps.

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Date Posted: 10/10/2007 10:33 PM ET
Member Since: 2/25/2007
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Tape under the stamps is fine. The only problem that might arise is that the stamps might not adhere as well to tape. But it IS NOT against regs to put stamps on top of tape.

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Date Posted: 10/11/2007 10:39 AM ET
Member Since: 7/12/2005
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Both the PO and I put stamps over tape all the time.

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Date Posted: 10/11/2007 8:55 PM ET
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Me too!  I put postage on tape on my packages all the time and the post office clerks ( and I use a couple different post offices) do too. Your post office clerk is wrong.

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Date Posted: 10/12/2007 2:55 AM ET
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Ive had to pay postage due because the person who sent me the book put stamps on top of tape. The stamps fell off. So after that when I used stamps I left a space for the stamps without tape. Ive never heard that it was against regulation though.

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Date Posted: 10/12/2007 11:23 PM ET
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Thanks everyone, I was pretty sure the clerk was mistaken (funny how confidently people can give you the wrong information, isn't it?) but there have been other postal regulations I hadn't heard of before starting to read this forum.  I'll have to try to tape only along the very edges if it's a book I'm taking to the p.o., in case I get the same clerk next time!

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Date Posted: 10/14/2007 8:18 PM ET
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I never heard that either. I don't think it's a rule but maybe a warning because the stamps could come off. I had some old .37 stamps to use up and I was worried they wouldn't stick to the tape. I put extra on to use them up and cover incase one came off. They all got to their destinations. 

I had a postal clerk tell me that audiobooks can't go media mail.  Just because they work at the PO doesn't mean they know all the rules.

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L. G. (L)
Date Posted: 10/15/2007 2:55 AM ET
Member Since: 9/5/2005
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She's wrong.  I have sent ~600 books with tape under the stamps.  Never had a problem.


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Date Posted: 10/15/2007 8:00 AM ET
Member Since: 5/29/2007
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Yep, you were told wrong.  You can tape underneath.  How silly to pick that and confidently inform you of wrong info. 

I do know you can tape on the edges of stamps tho.  I had a few $2 stamps that I had to lick, but they would just not stick in the humid weather, so the PO guy taped the edges for me.  I told him I would have done that myself if I had known - ha ha.  Learned something new.  If only they made self sticking $2 stamps.

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Date Posted: 10/17/2007 1:24 PM ET
Member Since: 9/13/2006
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I place stamps over the tape all the time and when I take my packages to the PO, they place their label over the tape also.  I think some postal employees just like the "power" they think they have in regards to things like this.

663 avatar
Date Posted: 10/19/2007 8:18 AM ET
Member Since: 3/31/2007
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It's important to remember that the rules are written one way, and interpretted in another.  That goes for pretty much anything in life.  It gets all the more confused when an individual Post Master enforces his or her misunderstanding of a regulation as though it were the letter of the law.  Of course, that goes for everything in life, too.  Any rule, law, or regulation can be enforced incorrectly.

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Date Posted: 10/20/2007 8:27 AM ET
Member Since: 8/17/2006
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 Maybe it was a former regulation that isn't in effect anymore? I had an older postal clerk get quite snippy with me that she didn't have a spot with no tape to put on the printed postage. She gave me the "I'll do it this time....'' statement about putting postage on over tape. She's also the clerk that told me when I took in my first PBS packages that if I used the pre-printed PBS DC that I had to use pre-printed postage as well and that my books couldn't have postage put on them at the post office. I had to ask for the postmaster to get my books mailed.....sigh.

I think she must have had other problems though, because she isn't there anymore. Maybe she retired? I dunno. But I'm GLAD to be able to mail my stuff without getting crabbed at every single time, or having mailing problems, for things that aren't actually wrong with my packages.

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Date Posted: 10/24/2007 12:02 PM ET
Member Since: 8/27/2007
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As a PBS customer that has had to pay postage due because of stamps over top of tape I'd like to say, please don't tape under the stamps.  As an ex-postal employee I have to say that I've never heard that rule.  I'm thinking that they are saying it because of the fact that stamps can fall off very easily.  But back when *I* worked we would take care to look at the package.  If we could tell that the stamps were on there in the first place and had indeed fallen off, then we would NOT charge postage due.  Of course that was well before this age of computerized everything.

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