Fayetteville Policies and Procedures  318.0

Meter Mail Guidelines and U.S. Postal Regulations

The original PDF version of this policy is linked from the revised date below.

Metering of outgoing mail is a service offered by PMC Solutions-Mail. Outgoing U.S. Mail is collected by university mail officers from departments at the same time deliveries of incoming U.S. and campus mail are made. In order to process outgoing mail effectively, certain guidelines must be observed. These guidelines enable PMC Solutions-Mail to affix the proper postage to each department's mail. Compliance with these guidelines also helps to ensure prompt and efficient handling of the mail by the U.S. Postal Service. This results in mail arriving at its destination without delay and at the lowest possible cost to each department.

PMC Solutions utilizes mail code numbers for the purpose of identifying departmental mail by department. These code numbers may be used not only for postage meter service, but may also be used to identify each department when completing a United Parcel Service shipment form or a Postal Service Bulk Mail form.

Daily records are kept of the amount of meter postage used by each department. To maintain these records effectively, it is necessary that mail presented for metering has the departmental return address and the metering code number on the mailing pieces as identifiers.

Letter size envelopes to be metered must be grouped separately by the following categories:

  • All envelopes to U.S. addresses
  • Envelopes addressed to Canada or Mexico
  • Envelopes addressed to all other foreign countries
  • Envelopes with handwritten addresses

Thin rubber bands serve as an excellent means of separation. Once envelopes are separated and rubber banded, simply place the department’s metering code on the top right side of the top envelope of each bundle.

All other mail must be separated from metered mail and grouped as follows:

  • Outgoing mail to which postage stamps have been applied
  • Campus (interdepartmental) mail

PMC Solutions-Mail equipment will automatically close and seal business size envelopes, except for thick envelopes. Thick envelopes, 1/4 inch or thicker, must be sealed prior to collection because PMC Solutions equipment will not seal envelopes of this thickness during metering.

Certified, insured, registered, and international mail weighing 16 ounces or more must be brought to the campus post office by 3:45 p.m. daily for processing.

U. S. Postal Service Express Mail is available to departments for the shipment of any mailable matter weighing 70 pounds or less. Next day delivery is guaranteed by the U.S. Postal Service to limited locations. Please contact PMC Solutions-Mail for ZIP code appropriate deadlines.

Flats (envelopes larger than standard business envelopes) must be sealed prior to collection by mail officers as the equipment will not seal these items. Flats are to be kept separate from letter mail and grouped according to the categories listed above, numbers 1 through 6.

Parcels must be prepared in a manner that is acceptable to the U.S. Postal Service. International parcels that do not include printed materials require a customs notice. Please contact the campus post office at extension 5-2650 for information.

Classifying Mail

To ensure that parcels and flats are mailed at the proper rate, departments must stamp or write conspicuously on the address side of each package the class of mail desired. Otherwise, unmarked flats will be mailed first class and unmarked parcels will be handled as priority mail. Information regarding classes of mail appears below:

First Class

All mailable matter may be sent first class. Some mail, hand-written or typewritten, having the character of actual and personal correspondence, must be mailed first class. The weight limit is 13 ounces.


Essentially the same as First Class, but used for items weighing more than 13 ounces and not exceeding 70 pounds. Delivery time is normally 2-3 days to most domestic destinations.

Parcel Post

Rate used for parcels weighing between 16 ounces and 70 pounds. Delivery time is slower than that for Priority Mail.

Media Mail (Book Rate)

To qualify for this rate the item(s) being mailed must be one of the following: books of at least 8 printed pages containing no advertising; 16 millimeter or narrower films; printed music; printed objective test materials, CDs, and DVDs.

Reformatted for Web May 6, 2014
Revised December, 2010
April, 2007
Revised January, 2002
Revised December, 1998
February 3, 1989