Looking Back to Go Forward: The US Postal Service and the Future of International Mail

With the looming US withdrawal from the UPU one month away and the likely impending chaos that will engulf the American consumer and business markets the USPS would be well advised to look back over the past twenty years when it had in hand international services developed on the framework of its domestic products seen in these examples as a guide going forward 

– International Business Reply Service, IBRS

– International Customized Mail, ICM 

– Inbound Priority Mail Direct Entry from Canada Post

– Inbound Priority Mail Flat Rate from Singapore Post (see photo below)

– Inbound Direct Mail from Singapore Post

– “Clicks2Bricks”, Integrated Global Distributed Photo Processing/Finishing (printing) and Delivery Model – “Clicks to Bricks”™ USPTO Patent Application: 0090310181

– USPS FedEx public private partnership: Global Express Guaranteed®

Navy Takes First Big Step to Cloud, Pushing Logistics to Amazon’s Service – Echoes USPS EMS Contract with USAF

August 30, 2019


The recent news item on the US Navy’s award to Amazon Web Services (AWS) for its supply chain to meet the Navy’s requirements to unify the movement and documentation of some $70 billion worth of parts and goods into one accessible space, where the information can be shared, analyzed and protected in a more uniform fashion is significant. The Navy’s acquisition, logistics, and back office data will be moved to the cloud over the next two years.

While the contract is for IT cloud services, it is also significant in that it focuses on Supply Chain for parts and goods for Navy flight operations. So a good question is, will this lead to a ‘two for one’ win for Amazon; i.e., will Amazon’s ever growing logistics operations have an in on the transportation and delivery piece of the parts and goods business, offering full integration for both the shipments, and the information about the shipments? Amazon’s HQ2 will be the Pentagon’s next door neighbor starting in 2020 (one Metro stop away), and closer to the Pentagon than Boeing’s Crystal City campus.

And who else might be in the wings for the logistics piece of the business? In the late 1970’s the US Postal Service won a multi-million dollar, multi-year contract with the USAF to handle the exact same type of shipments for restock and repair parts and supplies for aircraft. Shipments, outbound and inbound were carried via the eponymous US Postal Service “Express Mail Customized Designed Service”, every routing leg was individually designed and programed by time of day for PUDO on a 24/7/365 day schedule for the Air Force, with full en-route tracking.

Today USPS ® Priority Mail Express ® service is a shadow of its former glory. However, another contender may very well be FedEx® Aerospace Solutions, possibly one of the reasons FedEx Express® cancelled its Amazon contract.

U S Postal Service Enhances Merchandise Return Service for eCommerce

 On May 3, 2019 the Postal Service has updated the Merchandise Return Application (MRA) and the Web Tools API to provide consumers the ability to print a Quick Response (QR) code

on the following return labels: 

The MRA labels with a (QR) Code

·  Priority Mail Return Service

·  First-Class Package Return Service

·  Ground Return Service

·  Parcel Return Service (PRS)-Full Network (NSA only)

 The Web Tools API Return labels with a (QR) Code

·  Ground (Parcel Select Ground)

·  First-Class Package Service

·  Priority Mail Return Service

·  4 x 6 Parcel Return Service generated by Web Tools Application (NSA only)

The key benefits are greater satisfaction for consumers by eliminating the need to visit a Post Office to drop off their return packages and making the Return shipping experience easier and more convenient for our customers. 

To use this new feature, customers simply scan the QR code using the camera on their IOS or Android device.  The device must have USPS Mobile®, Informed Delivery®, or another QR code scanning application installed on the device.

When customers scan the QR code on the Return label with their iOS or Android device, Schedule a Pickup and Find a Post Office options will be provided for them to select as shown below.  

·  When “Schedule a Pickup” option is selected it will direct them to the mobile “Schedule a Pickup” application where they can specify a date and time for a USPS Carrier to pickup their Return shipments.

·  When “Find a Post Office” option is selected, it displays ten closest post offices nearby with distance and the hours of operations, and

This new service is another example of the Postal Service providing more convenience to consumers while also satisfying the needs of merchants who appreciate greater efficiency and cost savings for package deliveries.  For more information, go tohttps://tools.usps.com/go/ScheduleAPickupAction!input.action.

SOURCE: USPS Industry Outreach website.

(C) Industry Engagement & Outreach/USPS Marketing












Postal Regulatory Commission issues Final Rules on Minimum Contribution of Competitive Products to Institutional Cost

Washington, DC – The Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) issued Order No. 4963 adopting final rules for the share of institutional costs that U S Postal Postal Competitive products must contribute. The previous share requirement was 5.5 percent of institutional costs. For Fiscal Year 2019, the PRC has determined the appropriate share as 8.8 percent. 


The PRC addressed two general topics that provide necessary background.

First, the Commission described developments in the parcel delivery market and discussed how both the market and the Postal Service’s position in the market have changed since the Commission first set the appropriate share in 2007 and since the Commission last reviewed the appropriate share in 2012.

Second, the Commission discussed the appropriate share requirement and its purpose in the context of the statutory scheme for regulating competitive products.

A copy of the order can be found at https://www.prc.gov/docs/107/107901/Order4963.pdf