Holiday Cities

This time of year, it is all about the excitement of the year-end holidays: Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza, New Year – whatever form the festivities take. However, in these cities with holiday theme names, it is holiday time all year long!

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PRC Issues Findings and Proposed Changes to USPS Pricing System

The Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) on Friday, December 1, 2017, published an order on the findings of its review of the USPS® pricing and classification systems for Market Dominant products. The Market Dominant pricing and classification system in place today was put into place by the 2006 Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act (PAEA). As part of that act, a mandatory 10-year review by the PRC was put into place to evaluate whether the pricing system has achieved the objectives of the original act. This review of the current systems was begun in December of 2016.

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An Important Set of Keys

We all have keys to lock and unlock our homes, offices, vehicles and other critical items in our lives. What then, you may ask, do keys have to do with mailing? To aid in the proper identification of postal facilities, particularly in eDoc, the USPS has assigned unique identification codes, called Locale Keys, to each postal processing and delivery facility. This allows for very precise identification of the postal facilities that mailers are using for their origin entry and for any additional entry points at which mail is entered.

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FTP Package Shipment Transmissions Ending in August

Just another gentle reminder that the United States Postal Service® (USPS®) is eliminating the File Transfer Protocol (FTP) method for transmitting package shipment files to comply with recent audit findings, and to provide more secure data transmissions. FTP is currently one of the acceptable transmission methods for submitting shipment files to the Product Tracking and Reporting (PTR) and Electronic Verification System (eVS) systems, but this option will no longer be available effective August 31, 2017.

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New IMpb Compliance Assessments coming in July

The United States Postal Service® (USPS®) is implementing new Intelligent Mail® Package Barcode (IMpb) compliance assessments starting in July 2017. If you recall, back in January 2015 the USPS implemented a non-compliance fee of $.20 per package for package mailings not meeting the requirements for Intelligent Mail, such as having the IMpb on the packages. Starting in July– just a few months away! – those assessments will be extended to include the quality of those required elements.

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Informed Delivery™

The United States Postal Service® (USPS®) has been pilot testing a program called Informed Delivery, which allows participants to receive a daily email notification, including black and white mailpiece images, of the mail that will be delivered to their mailbox later that day. The email notifications may contain up to 10 mailpiece images, which may be viewed on any computer or smart phone. If you receive more than 10 pieces of mail, additional images are available for viewing on an online dashboard. The pilot test is currently limited to areas of California, Connecticut, Maryland, Virginia and Washington, DC. However, this program will be rolled out nationally sometime in May.

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2017 Tactile, Sensory & Interactive Promotion

The second offering in the United States Postal Service® (USPS®) 2017 promotion and incentives program is the Tactile, Sensory & Interactive (TSI) Promotion, which runs from February 1 through July 31 of 2017. Registration for this promotion started on December 15, 2016 and runs through June 30, 2017. This promotion leverages some of the latest technological advances within the print industry that encourages sensory engagement with a mailpiece. Features such as special visual effects, sound, scent, texture/tactile treatments, pop-ups, infinite folds, and even taste may be used to enhance how consumers interact and engage with mail.  

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Don’t Forget – PostalOne Mandatory Software Update This Weekend

The United States Postal Service® (USPS®) is issuing a mandatory software update for the PostalOne! production system this weekend. This update will be implemented on Sunday, January 8, 2017. The PostalOne! Production (PROD) system will not be available during this update process, on Sunday morning January 8, 2017 between 12:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. CT. PostalOne! will then be updating the Test Environment for Mailers (TEM) on Monday, January 9, 2017 and TEM will be unavailable during that update period, from 6:00 am to 4:00 pm CT.

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