Along with many other services provided by USPS, media mail is also one of the top-rated services offered by the US postal service. This service is often used by the USPS customers who want to send some media items to the desired destination.
Let us get to know more about the USPS media mail.
What is Media Mail?
If a customer wants to send the materials like books, films, DVDs, videotapes, recorded media, CDs, music tracks, and other sound recording things, they can send it through the Media Mail. It is an affordable method to send these media materials to the desired destination. Cost-effectiveness is one positive point, but the downside is that, if you want to use this service to send your items, then be ready to spare a longer time for your items to reach their destination. To be precise, as per the USPS, your item may take 2 to 8 days to reach.
The only condition to send a post-media mail is that you cannot send a material if it weighs greater than 70 pounds. Another thing which is a must to know is that the US Postal Service has a right to open and examine your item. This is done so that no person is found to be abusing the system. So, take care to mail the items as per their rules and guidelines strictly. You can know more about it by studying the restrictions. You must not mail non-media material through this mail service. If the USPS catches hold of it, then your package will be sent back to you for insufficient postage. Including even the most trivial non-media material in the package along with the media item may result in your parcel getting rejected.
How Does Media Mail Work?
When you decide a media mail shipping through USPS, you need to mention the correct address of your item. Sealed your package well, and then take its weight. If you find the weight of your package less than 8 ounces, then you will not have to shell out more money to send your item. You can send the same by using the USPS First-Class Mail. But, if you find that your package is more than 8 ounces in weight, then you are required to print your postage and add media mail shipping label.
As we know, the price of this service will depend on its weight and size, and not on the zone-based distance system that normally the other services of USPS depend on like Priority Mail, Retail Ground, and Priority Mail Express.
Now that you know how to ship media mail, you must also know that the users are also permitted to add some add-on services for sending their packaging. Though the USPS Tracking is included as a free service along with it; you can purchase additional services like insurance, COD, and Signature Confirmation for your items.
Media Mail Rates:
There has been a revision in the price list of the USPS media mail. The new rates have been implemented w.e.f. January 21’ 2018. Post office rates of this service were increased by 1.9% in the year 2018 as compared to the year 2017. A 1 lb. package traveling to Zone 8 can cost you $2.66 in 2018 as compared to $2.63 now. The table below summarizes the prices depending on the size of the package in lbs.
The media mail cost table:
|Weight of the Package||Price in 2017||Price in 2018||Increase in Price|
How Long Does Media Mail Take?
To send your educational items through it, it may take a longer time for your items to reach its address. The good thing is that the media mail postage rate is not high, but your shipping time is 2 to 8 days. You can also read the article on USPS Delivery time to know about the delivery time of each USPS service.
Media Mail Rules and Restrictions:
The media mail rules and restrictions include:
- Its packages do not include the Comic books. Books can have incidental announcements of other books, and sound recordings may have incidental announcements of other sound recordings.
- As per the standards in the Mailing Standards of USPS, Domestic Mail Manual (DMM), according to Section 170, the Media Mail packages must have a delivery address and the sender’s return address which is eligible for inspection by the Postal Service.
- The distance of the longest side plus twice the width plus twice the height should not be more than 108″.
- As per the weight limit, the package should not be more than 70 pounds.
- The package must be marked as “Media Mail.” In the case you are using MM shipping labels, the label will be recognized as Media Mail automatically.
- The mail should be one of the below-mentioned eligibility lists.
To know what can be shipped through this service, read below.
What Qualifies as Media Mail?
As per the media mail requirements, only the following items qualify to be sent through it:
- CDs and DVDs.
- Play scripts
- Manuscripts for books, periodicals, and music.
- Books (must have at least 8 pages). It should consist of reading matter or scholarly bibliography, or reading matter with incidental blank spaces for notations and should contain no advertising matter other than incidental announcements of books.
- Sound recordings
- Video recordings and player piano rolls are classified as sound recordings
- Printed music in bound or sheet form
- Computer-readable media containing prerecorded information and guides or scripts prepared only for use with such media.
- Loose-leaf pages and their binders that have medical information for distribution to doctors, hospitals, medical schools, and medical students.
- Sixteen millimeters or narrower width films.
- Printed objective test materials and their accessories.
- Printed educational reference charts.
All the explanations of qualified items can also be found in the DMM.
For any other information about Media Mail service, please visit the official site of USPS (www.usps.com) or call 1-800-ASK-USPS (1-800-275-8777).