Envelopes Industry Overview
Understanding United States Postal Service regulations for mailing envelopesThe United State Postal Service (USPS) processes all regular mail in the United States. The unofficial motto of the postal service reads, “Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.” Mail that meets the postal regulations will, according to this creed, reach its destination barring the obstacle of a natural disaster. However, an envelopes industry overview reveals mail that fails to meet the USPS regulations will most definitely fail to reach its destination.
The USPS classifies printed envelopes and other mail pieces into three categories based upon shape and preparation. Each classification determines how efficient it is to process those envelopes within that category. The categories are as follows:
1. Machinable pieces of mail, such as perforated envelopes used for bank statements, are thin and have accurate addressing.
2. Postal workers must sort nonmachinable pieces of mail, such as unique business envelopes containing a pen or other bulky items, by hand.
3. Return business envelopes, and others with the correct delivery point barcode printed under the address, qualify for the automation category and cheaper postal rates.
Use business envelopes that are machinable or qualify for automation
Plan for extra charges when your mailing envelopes are nonmachinableEnvelopes that fall under the nonmachinable category are subject to an additional charge by the postal service. Nonmachinable mail contains items such as pens, buttons or coins that cause the envelope dimensions to be uneven. These envelopes weigh more than 3.3 ounces, have a plastic material enclosure and close with the use of clasps or stings (such as manila envelopes), among other criteria.
Find envelope manufacturers that provide products that meet USPS requirementsMost envelope suppliers and manufacturers provide all possible options for your envelope needs. Stick with size 10 envelopes, which generally meet machinable requirements, for all of your regular mailing needs, such as invoices and letters. This will help save your business money on postage.
- The tear portion of perforated envelopes must not eliminate or interfere with the address, postage or coding systems or compromise the integrity of the mailing envelope. If you choose to use perforated envelopes, the recommendation is to use those that tear open on the shorter sides of the envelope and print the mailing and return addresses opposite the perforated edge.
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