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Sun July 11 2021 20:48:55

USPS Monetizes Basic Services: What Next?

By: Ina Steiner

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USPS seems to be on a mission to monetize basic services. One example was its premium tracking service - another is a mail forwarding service.

Matthew Hertz of Second Marathon shared with us a notice he received from the USPS telling him his mail forwarding was ending and pitching him an extension - at a cost.

"Don't miss any mail! Extend your Mail Forwarding Date now.
"Don't wait, and don't forget. Extend your Mail Forwarding End Date now, at a cost of $19.95 for 6 months, $29.95 for 12 months, or $39.95 for 18 months."

It advised him that 12 months after a permanent change of address, any correspondence addressed to his old address would no longer be forwarded to his new address. 

The idea for the service isn't new, however. Back in 2012, the USPS Office of Inspector General (OIG) raised the issue of who should pay for mail forwarding in a blog post.

At that time, mail forwarding cost the Postal Service almost $300 million a year, and the cost of returning mail to sender was another $800 million.

"The cost of mail forwarding - and returning to sender and treating as waste - is baked into the overall First Class Mail rates, so all customers effectively pay for this service whether they use it or not," the OIG noted.

Last year, the USPS revealed it was testing the service that allows customers to pay a fee to have their permanent Change of Address mail forwarded for up to 18 months, for a fee, in nine districts: Alabama, Dakotas, Dallas, Northern New Jersey, Northland, Ohio Valley, Sacramento, San Diego and Santa Ana.

Hertz, a logistics consultant, had also brought to our attention the premium tracking service the USPS now offers that allows people to extend the amount of time that tracking information remains available. Hertz said he found the extended mail forwarding service to be more helpful than the Postal Service's premium tracking service. 

What do you think, and more importantly, what other services to you think (or fear) the Postal Service will begin to monetize? 

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Readers Comments

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by: Silver Ice King This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jul 12 00:55:59 2021

If USPS really wants to increase their revenues have them raise the E-packet rates up to levels that allow them to make a profit off of the Chinese instead of constantly trying to dig deeper into our pockets.  DeJoy must be taking lessons on how to run a business from Ebay as everything that seems to get implemented or he wants to implement either costs us more money or downgrades the services we get for our money.

The whole idea of threatening to withdraw from the Universal Postal Union was so we could finally charge China the proper amount of postage to ship to the US instead of the bribery induced rates equal to that which Ghana pays.  As of last July DeJoy and the USPS had the right to adjust the postage costs charged to China for their shipping to the USA and unless it was done with little or no fanfare, which I highly doubt, that subject has been completely ignored by the new Postmaster and his staff.  

Until this is addressed , USPS should not be allowed to increase any rates nor charge us for services that they want to try and create to monetize, or has the current administration put the kabosh to this idea so that US residents can continue to pay for Chinese Sellers shipping costs, which last i heard is costing USPS about $1 loss on each and every E-Packet they handle.

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by: Actual Seller This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jul 12 02:19:08 2021

Because the Deep State is China FIrst, that will never happen.

Outsource our jobs and do all you can to hurt those who found another way to make money online.

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This user has validated their user name. by: Rexford

Mon Jul 12 06:37:20 2021

My guess is that those free USPS mailing supplies we love will at some point no longer be free.

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by: cvsharkey This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jul 12 06:48:26 2021

Would that include junk mail & catalogs? I'd rather they not forward those.
There are fewer qualified first class letters that anyone receives these days.

If they give you the option of paying extra & you're willing to pay it because you're too lazy to notify the senders of that mail.

So be it. You get 12 months for free.  Be thankful for that and take responsibility.

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by: ShortSeller This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jul 12 17:57:44 2021

Put some bubble wrap around Dejoy and mail him to Greenland.



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