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Here’s how to address your mail for faster delivery


The US Postal Service is driven by Bar Code on the Big Pitney-Bowes Machines (The Machine).

These machines sort the mail into bundles, which the postman carries down one side of the street, or maybe into an apartment complex. The postmen don’t have to think anymore!!! If an item isn’t on their Route, they resubmit it to the system, or put it in an undeliverable bin where, when somebody has some time they’ll see if they can figure where it’s supposed to go.


1) The bottom 5/8" of a letter on both sides, is a reserved space for this Bar Code.

     If there is some writing or marks in this area, it will most likely be rejected by The Machine.

     If returning the letter or it came to the wrong address, it’s advisable to Black or White out the Bar Code.


2) These machines and the postmen read the address from the Bottom Up.

    The bottom address line is supposed to be City (with 2 spaces between the City and State) (State Code) Zip

    The next line up is the (street address and APT or STE) or PO BOX

    The next line up is the Persons Name or Company Name

    When an attention line is necessary, always put it first.


3) The preferred Font is ARIAL and ALL CHARACTERS MUST BE CAPITALIZED, except the Return

     Address. No punctuation is allowed, i.e.: comma or period.

     If these standards aren’t adhered to, the letter cannot be processed by The Machine. In this case it goes down

     another isle and is displayed on a postal workers screen, in Rancho Cucamonga. This worker reads it and

     keys it in. When this happens a Pink Bar Code is printed on the bottom of the back side of the letter.


4) Your Return Address, you don’t want it to be Postally correct because The Machine may pick that one up

     instead of where you wanted it to go, and will be delivered back to you.


5) You can visit the Postmasters Web site and find out the correct “Full Address in Standard Format”.

      http://www.usps.com/ and then pic “Mail & Ship” pic “Look Up a Zip Code” or

      https://tools.usps.com/go/ZipLookupAction_input


Zip Codes: Five Numbers dash “-“ Four Numbers, the -4 numbers is the bundle that the postman carries down one side of the street or on the 1st or 2nd floor of an apartment complex. If your not sure about the -4, don’t use it or it may get returned to you.


Sometimes there’s another Code after the Zip Code. This is the Carrier Route which consists of 2 Alpha and 2 Numeric, ie “AB12", or just 2 numeric. This isn’t of concern to you.


Correct Abreviations:

State Codes: two capital letters, and Country Codes: three capital letters.


Street Address’: AVE(Avenue), BLVD(Boulevard), CIR(Circle), CMN(Common). CT(Court), DR(Drive), LN(Lane), PKWY(Parkway), PL(Place), RD(Road), ST(Street), TER(Terrace), WAY(Way)

APT(Apartment), LOT(trailer park), RM(Room), {SP(Space)(trailer park)}, STE(Suite), TRL(Trail), UNIT(Unit)

(I’ve seen where CARRIAGE CIRCLE COMMON is CARRIAGE CIRCLE CMN)


PO BOX (Post Office Box), PMB(Private Mail Box)

N(North), S(South), E(East), W(West), NE(North East), NW(North West), SE(South East), SW(South West)


Please type or print address clearly in the middle of a white envelope, using black ink. And, for fastest processing, use the printed reply envelopes provided in your bills for making payments. They usually also have the Bar Code already printed on them.

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