06 October 2010

Shipping Out the Holidays to Military Heroes

/PRNewswire/ -- Ensuring care packages arrive in time for the holiday season is a priority for friends and family members of military personnel serving around the world. To help get packages on their way, the U.S. Postal Service offers a discount on its largest Priority Mail Flat Rate Box.

The recommended mailing date for the most economical postage to overseas military destinations, including Iraq and Afghanistan, is Nov. 12.

Mail sent to overseas military addresses is charged only domestic mail prices. The domestic mail price for the Priority Mail Large Flat Rate Box is $14.50, but for packages to APO/FPO addresses overseas the price is reduced to $12.50. Additional discounts are available for customers printing their Priority Mail postage labels online at Click-N-Ship.

Environmentally friendly Priority Mail Flat Rate boxes are available at no cost at any Post Office, or can be ordered online at shop.usps.com. Postage, labels and customs forms can be printed online anytime using Click-N-Ship.

The Postal Service continues to show support to those serving in the armed forces by offering free Military Care Kits, designed specifically for military families sending packages overseas. The mailing kits can be ordered by phone by calling 1-800-610-8734 and asking for the Military Care Kit. Each kit includes two "America Supports You" large Priority Mail Flat Rate boxes, four medium-sized Priority Mail Flat Rate boxes, six Priority Mail labels, one roll of Priority Mail tape and six customs forms with envelopes.

For online ordering of the large Priority Mail APO/FPO Flat Rate boxes featuring the "America Supports You" logo and information about mailing letters and packages to military destinations, go to Supporting Our Troops.

"Shipping holiday packages early helps ensure that they arrive in time for the holidays," said Pranab Shah, vice president and managing director, Global Business. "They are a great morale boost for those men and women serving their country in places far from home."

To ensure delivery of holiday cards and packages by Dec. 25 to military APO/FPO addresses overseas, the Postal Service recommends that mail for service members be sent no later than the mailing dates listed below. Mail addressed to military Post Offices overseas is subject to certain conditions or restrictions regarding content, preparation and handling. APO/FPO addresses generally require customs forms. To see an online table of updated APO and FPO addresses and mailing restrictions by individual APO/FPO ZIP Codes, click here, select "Pull-Out Information" and click on "Other Information."

MILITARY MAILING DEADLINES
Military Mail Addressed To
Express Mail Military Service (EMMS)1/
First-Class Mail Letters and Cards
Priority Mail
Parcel Airlift Mail (PAL) 2/
Space Available Mail (SAM)3/
Parcel Post
APO/FPO AE ZIPs 090-092
Dec-18
Dec-10
Dec-10
Dec-3
Nov-26
Nov-12
APO/FPO AE ZIP 093
N/A
Dec-4
Dec-4
Dec-1
Nov-20
Nov-12
APO/FPO AE ZIPs 094-098
Dec-18
Dec-10
Dec-10
Dec-3
Nov-26
Nov-12
APO/FPO AA ZIP 340
Dec-18
Dec-10
Dec-10
Dec-3
Nov-26
Nov-12
APO/FPO AP ZIPs 962-966
Dec-18
Dec-10
Dec-10
Dec-3
Nov-26
Nov-12



1/ EMMS is available to selected military post offices. Check with your local Post Office to determine if this service is available to an APO/FPO address.

2/ PAL is a service that provides air transportation for parcels on a space-available basis. It is available for Parcel Post items not exceeding 30 pounds in weight or 60 inches in length and girth combined. The applicable PAL fee must be paid in addition to the regular surface rate of postage for each addressed piece sent by PAL service.

3/ SAM parcels are paid at Parcel Post postage rate of postage with maximum weight and size limits of 15 pounds and 60 inches in length and girth combined. SAM parcels are first transported domestically by surface and then to overseas destinations by air on a space-available basis.

The Postal Service receives no tax dollars for operating expenses, and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.

A self-supporting government enterprise, the U.S. Postal Service is the only delivery service that reaches every address in the nation, 150 million residences, businesses and Post Office Boxes. The Postal Service receives no direct support from taxpayers. With 36,000 retail locations and the most frequently visited website in the federal government, the Postal Service relies on the sale of postage, products and services to pay for operating expenses. Named the Most Trusted Government Agency five consecutive years and the sixth Most Trusted Business in the nation by the Ponemon Institute, the Postal Service has annual revenue of more than $68 billion and delivers nearly half the world's mail. If it were a private sector company, the U.S. Postal Service would rank 28th in the 2009 Fortune 500.

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