Daily Mail Prep

Daily Outgoing Mail Preparation

1. It is important to indicate how your outgoing mail is to be sent, i.e. First-Class, Book Rate, etc. One method is to use preprinted mailing address labels obtained from Reprographics. The preprinted labels have the SDSU return address, an area for the outgoing address and a checklist of options to specify how the mail is to be sent. Other options include using a hand-stamp or envelopes preprinted with the preferred mail class.

2. All mail must include a barcoded number for chargeback purposes.

3. All outgoing mail should be bundled into groups by account numbers and held together with rubberbands (or, if a larger mailing, placed in trays).

4. Mail pieces should be separated according to their weight. This is especially important for larger mailings. In order to take advantage of automation and machinery, and to reduce labor costs, we weigh one mail piece from each separate bundle or tray, determine how much postage is needed according to its weight, and then affix the same amount of postage on all of the other mail pieces in the group. Commingled mail pieces of different weights may inadvertently be metered with incorrect postage. Mail pieces metered with a lower rate than required will be returned by the USPS due to insufficient postage. Mail pieces metered at a rate higher than required simply waste valuable postage dollars.

5. Mail pieces should all be grouped to face in the same direction. Flaps must be up on envelopes that need to be sealed. (NOTE: larger envelopes, such as 9x12, can only be sealed if the flap is on the long side of the envelope).

6. The mail should be bundled and/or separated according to the following groups:

a) Weight
b) By barcoded postage chargeback number
c) Letters within the United States
d) Flats (larger envelopes, such as 9x12), together with postcards, within the U.S.
e) International (except Canada and Mexico)
f) Canada
g) Mexico
h) Intercampus, with correct mail code and individual name
i) Special mail (Express, Certified, etc.) on top (with the yellow "Special Services" card filled out) so that it is easily visible to the mail clerk at the time of pick up.

7. Only mail with a San Diego State University return address will be metered with University postage.

8. When addressing your mail pieces, the USPS recommends printing or typing in clear, plain uppercase characters, with no punctuation. Handwritten, italic, script and other stylized characters should be avoided. Suggested font types include Elite, Futura Medium, Helvetica and Univers.

9. The bottom line of the recipient's address must contain the zip code. The address should be parallel with the length of the mail piece, not slanted. There should be sufficient contrast between the address and the envelope. Please avoid using red or dark colored envelopes. The USPS uses high-speed mail sorting equipment with Optical Character Readers (OCR's) which read the destination address on each mail piece. Mail pieces with handwritten addresses, or improperly formatted addresses, cannot be read by OCR's and are pulled out of the automation process, resulting in delays.

Sample of Proper Address Format
Information / Attention: JOHN DOE PRES
Name of Recipient: ABC CORP
Delivery Address: 1234 ELM ST RM 201
City, State, Zip: ANYTOWN CA 98765-4321

10. Printed matter going to foreign destinations must be packaged to protect the contents and permit easy inspection. If not contained in envelopes or wrappers, folded items must have the open edges secured by tape, tabs, or wafer seals (no staples) of sufficient quantity and strength to keep the items from opening during postal handling.

11. A U.S. Custom's Form 2076A should be completed, signed, and attached to international packages weighing one pound or more. This requirement is due to increased security for packages sent by air. Forms may be obtained by calling Mail Services.

12. If you send flats (i.e. 9" x 12" envelopes) that weigh 1 ounce or less, consider placing your contents in a regular #10 business size envelope. The USPS requires an $.11 surcharge on larger, non-standard size envelopes which exceed either 11 _" in length, 6 1/8" in height, or _" in thickness.