Saturday, September 24, 2016

Service Of Hold Mail For USPS

If you're going to be away from home for a while, the your local post office can hold your mail to avoid an overflowing mailbox. Fine.

In the old days (and you can still do this), you went to the office and filled out a form (PDF). Someone on the show who has done this said the Postal Service doesn't validate the identity of the person who requests mail to be held. It validates only the identity of the person who comes to pick up the mail.

Government techies copied this manual system to the Internet.

You can go to (or click on Hold Mail at the Postal Service home page, as shown below) and put a hold on mail delivery. Notice that I didn't say put a hold on your mail delivery. You can put a hold on mail delivered to anyone. This is true with the traditional system, too, but the Internet makes it worse, adding more anonymity and making the process easier. Too easy.

The agency site claims that it needs a name, address, and phone number to stop mail delivery. When tested, however, this turns out not to be the case. Requests with wrong names and wrong phone numbers were accepted, according to a listener who wrote in to the show. All you really need to know is an address.

And with the address, you can stop all mail delivery, not just mail to one person. Quoting from the Frequently Asked Questions: "All mail, regardless of name, will be held for the address entered. Submitting an online Hold Mail request once is all that is required to hold mail delivery for everyone at the address."

Don't have a computer? Simply call 800-ASK-USPS

Details About Hold Mail Service For USPS:

Last updated Feb. 5, 2016, 3 p.m. ET USPS Service Alerts provide information to consumers, small businesses and business mailers about postal facility service disruptions due to weather-related and other natural disasters or events. Service alerts are done in near real time. Residential customers and small businesses can use this website to learn if mail is being delivered, or if their Post Offices are open. Business mailers are provided more detailed information about USPS mail processing facilities, and the operating status of postal delivery units. Residential customersService disruption alertsWill I receive mail delivery?Is my Post Office open?Change of addressHolding mailContact usBusiness mailersService disruption alertsDelivery units not accepting drop shipmentsMail Service Disruption ReportUSPS facilities statusDUO changesScheduled closings2015 Network ConsolidationsNetwork Rationalization Service Standard Analysis 2015Customer Letter regarding 2015 Networks ConsolidationsMailer informationContact usInternational mailersLibyaDue to the current situation in Libya, and the closure of Libya's international airport and office of exchange, these nations have temporarily suspended their transit mail services to the country: Greece Malta Turkey Until further notice, the above countries will not accept transit dispatches forwarded from third countries destined to Libya. (posted 8/15/14) RussiaAirmail dispatches addressed to Ukraine should not be sent through the Russian Federation due to the suspension of air traffic between the Russian Federation and Ukraine. (posted 7/21/14) SyriaThe Postal Service has suspended mail service to Syria due to transportation issues. Until further notice, all Post Office and other acceptance locations will not accept mail destined to Syria. The suspension affects Express Mail International, Priority Mail International, First-Class Mail International, First-Class Package International Service, International Priority Airmail (IPA) International Surface Air Lift (ISAL), and M-Bag shipments. Mail addressed to Syria will be returned to sender endorsed “Mail Service Temporarily Suspended — Return to Sender.” Upon request, postage and fees will be refunded, or mailers may opt to hold and later re-mail the package with existing postage when service to Syria resumes. When re-mailing, customers must strike the endorsement “Mail Service Temporarily Suspended — Return to Sender.” The Postal Service appreciates its customers’ business and regrets any inconvenience posed by this temporary service suspension. Customers are advised to periodically check USPS Service Alerts for updated information. (posted 3/13/13) UkraineSuspension of Mail Services to Donetsk and Luhansk Regions of Ukraine In January 2015, the Ukrainian postal operator (Ukrposhta) advised that delivery services have been suspended for international mail addressed to certain localities in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Ukraine (generally in the postal code ranges 83001-87650 and 91001-94870). The specific localities and postal codes where service is suspended are listed on Ukrposhta’s website: That web-site notes that international postal items to the above localities may be sent as Poste Restante (General Delivery) to post offices in localities that are controlled by Ukrainian government authorities, and provides instructions for addressing such items. Delivery services for international mail addressed to Crimea (postal codes in the range 95000–99999) are still suspended. The temporary suspension affects Priority Mail Express International?, Priority Mail International?, First-Class Mail International?, First-Class Package International Service?, International Priority Airmail? (IPA?), International Surface Air Lift? (ISAL?) and M-Bag items. For Global Express Guaranteed? Service Effective immediately, USPS can no longer accept Global Express Guaranteed (GXG) shipments to certain cities in the Crimea, Donetsk and Luhansk regions in Ukraine. View the listof cities to which GXG service is temporarily suspended. (posted 2/11/15) YemenEffective Aug. 1, 2015, the Postal Service will suspend mail service to Yemen. Until further notice, all Post Office and other acceptance locations must not accept any mail destined to Yemen. The temporary suspension affects Global Express Guaranteed?, Priority Mail Express International?, Priority Mail International?, First-Class Mail International?, First-Class Package International Service?, International Priority Airmail? (IPA?), International Surface Air Lift? (ISAL?), and M-Bag items. (posted 7/31/15) ? ? Lithium battery shipping regulationsU.S. Postal Service acceptance of international lithium battery shipments The Postal Service is now allowing specific quantities of lithium batteries — when installed in the equipment they are intended to operate — to be sent to many international destinations, including Army Post Office (APO), Fleet Post Office (FPO) and Diplomatic Post Office (DPO) locations when permitted by the destination or host country. The postal operators of Germany and Italy are not accepting packages containing lithium metal or lithium-ion batteries to German or Italian addresses. Postal employees will decline electronic items containing lithium batteries to addresses in those two countries. This does not apply to shipments to and from German or Italian APO, FPO or DPO locations. Items that can be shipped include: cameras, video cameras, mobile/smart phones, Bluetooth headsets, laptop computers, shavers, portable DVD players, tablets, two-way radios, GPS devices and most other small electronic devices requiring lithium batteries. Items that can’t be shipped include lithium batteries not installed in the equipment they are intended to operate. In addition, when installed, they may not exceed the quantity or limits defined in the IMM or DMM. Domestic shipments of packages containing lithium batteries, and electronic devices containing lithium batteries aren’t affected. Currently, U.S. customers aren’t permitted to take international and APO, FPO, DPO mail containing lithium batteries to Village Post Offices, contract postal units, commercial mail receiving agents or approved USPS shippers. For more information, click


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