Snail mail is becoming less popular every single year due to slow delivery times, but some tips for sending things snail mail can still make it a reliable option if you can’t afford other options. The postal service seems to be getting a worse reputation as time goes by, but a few precautionary steps can help ensure it’s still a good option for using it to mail important documents and packages. If you’re looking for a few helpful tips for sending things snail mail, check these out and let me know if you have any too!
1. Correct Information
One of the simplest and best tips for sending things snail mail is to make sure all the information you have on the letter or package is correct. Check addresses, spellings of last names, and if they have a PO box, make sure the package can be delivered to a PO box. Some items require UPS or Fed Ex home delivery, while others are fine to send through snail mail at the postal service. Being sure you have all the correct information on your letter or package is the first step to preventing it from getting rerouted, lost, or returned back to you.
2. Good Packaging
If you’re sending an envelope or package, be sure you’ve taped it shut very well, and check with the postal office to make sure it fits in with their regulations. Packages that aren’t taped well can become lost in the mail, be an easy pathway to theft at the postal office, or can simply delay delivery times as it might get sent back to you as a result. Letters and documents are usually fine to tape shut, but don’t staple them, as this isn’t an approved enclosure method for sending things snail mail.
3. Tracking Number
It costs a little bit extra, but obtaining a tracking number on your package is important. Ask for delivery confirmation when you mail it at the post office, which will provide you with a code. With that, you can either call in to check to ensure it has been delivered, or get tracking updates online or over the phone. This is especially important during high volume seasons at the postal service, such as the holidays. It's also essential when you’re mailing something of high value or for business purposes. If it gets lost, there will be no way to track it. Insurance through delivery confirmation and a tracking number will also ensure if something is lost, you’re reimbursed for the difference.
4. Express Mail
You should also consider sending snail mail through express mail if you want a quicker delivery. You can also ask for certified mail options, which will require it to be sent in a certified mail envelope or box. This is a good option if it’s something you want to be 100% backed by the postal office. It’s usually more expensive, but still a cheaper option than sending something FedEx or through UPS.
5. Clear Writing
When making out your labels for your packages or letters, you also need to be sure to write everything in clear, legible writing. If your writing isn’t legible, it could cause your item to get lost, especially if your return address isn’t legible. Most postal workers will ensure that writing is legible before accepting it, but for your own sake, double check yourself by getting others in your home or office to see if they can read it first. The best bet is to use printed labels in a clear font, or to get the postal service to issue labels for you.
6. Ask for Dates
Though you might get delivery confirmation on your package, it’s still a good idea to check with a postal worker to ensure the item or items are packaged well and to see when the expected delivery date is. This will give you some sort of an idea when you can expect the item to arrive. Most postal agents will tell you this, but if not, be sure to ask.
7. Double Check It All
Last but not least, before you mail anything, whether at the postal office or from your home, double check everything. You can also visit the postal service online to get answers to questions or tips for sending mail at usps.com.
I personally like to send things snail mail, since UPS and Fed Ex are great, but can be costly at times. Do you send things snail mail? If so, what tips do you have to make sure items arrive on time?