Mailing it in: What's the future of t...

Mailing it in: What's the future of the U.S. post office - and your mail?

There are 24 comments on the Sun-Journal story from Jul 7, 2007, titled Mailing it in: What's the future of the U.S. post office - and your mail?. In it, Sun-Journal reports that:

“It certainly will be different from the post office we know today. If you look at the post office of 50 years ago, it was significantly different from the one we have today, so it will evolve just like other government institutions.”

Could mail one day go the way of many pizza chains, where customers can pick it up or pay extra for home delivery? Will the mail still arrive six days a week? Will the government still be involved? The Postal ... via Sun-Journal

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Sun-Journal.

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speed buggy

Arlington, TN

#1 Jul 7, 2007
Whatever happens I hope they are not replaced with UPS.

When I called UPS and tell them the size and weight of the package they are sure to mention the home pickup fee.

I wanted to send more than 1 package so I don't mind a home pickup fee but when they gave me the total of the price I almost fell out of my chair.

I said, "That can't be right."

So I stood my ground and she also stood her ground. That actually went on for about two minutes.

Finally I said , "OK, why don't you go down the itemized list of what is going on here."

She went down the list including the pick up fee and the same problem still persisted.

Finally I said, "OK, here is what is going wrong. I have listed here in my column of numbers the price per package and the pickup fee and what you are doing is MULTIPLYING the pick up fee X times."

Then suddenly she was clear as a bell on the issue.

Once we cleared that up I hung up the phone.

So here is the deal, if I had followed through on my order, UPS makes 1 pickup at my house but charged multiple pickup fees.

I think this is crooked. Especially when the woman on the phone knew all about this but I had to literally drag the information out of her in a forced conversation.

Why was she concealing that when her computer right there in front of her face states these multiple pickup fees when there is only 1 pickup? She knows she entered these things in the figures.

Worse, she told me the 1 pickup fee which is WHY I had that listed in my figures 1 time.

Is that because everyone would object to paying multiple pickup fees when they only made one pickup?

Would they do what I did and go to the post office and unload the packages for less that half of UPS's price? Not only that but shipped for less that the pickup fees alone without even counting UPS shipping fees.

When you can totally discount the UPS shipping fee for several packages at home pickup and still mail your package(s) at the post office for less than their pick up fee alone they have a serious problem. Maybe that is why this information was withheld because they hope people don't do simple math.

Since I did not do business under their terms I would like to see some receipts that include home pickup fees. Is it one fee or is it multiplied?

As long as they withhold these little tidbits of information I would call that hidden charges and if the multiple charges of pickup fees aren't on the receipt then it could be more than just hidden.

I also called back later and it was he same routine with a different person, not one word was spoken about these multiple pickup fees and I had to force it out of them.
AlphaDog

United States

#2 Jul 7, 2007
I did some free-lance investigative work for a few law firms. There were occasions I had to drive 100+ miles one way to conduct investigations involving 2 seperate cases in the same town. Invariably, the law firm's clients were BOTH billed the hourly rate for the drive time to and from plus each were billed for the TOTAL miles. I combined the 2 cases into 1 trip to save the law firm money and I guess I was doubly successful. Maybe this is how some lawyers can have 100 billable hours per week.
schmitty

Lakeland, FL

#3 Jul 7, 2007
US postal rates continue to steadily go UP
while their service steadily goes DOWN! But they are still cheaper and more reliable than any other deliverer!
American

Mount Vernon, MO

#4 Jul 7, 2007
With all these delivery services and their outrageous prices it may soon be cheaper literally to deliver it yourself. And all of them should deliver packages on Saturdays and Sundays.
Imagine That

AOL

#5 Jul 7, 2007
There should be absolutely no deliveries on Saturday, much less Sunday. That is one way the USPS can cut costs.
speed buggy

United States

#6 Jul 7, 2007
What USPS needs to cut costs is oversight, even if it is forced oversight.

Take for instance the remodeling of all of their lobbies and service counters.

There are three or 4 registers in a row but there is never more than one being used. The only time a second register is opened is when the line is backed up to 10 or 15 people.

The other two registers are never used except on occasion.

Even in places of low walk in volume they added all those registers for nothing.

Add all that up and see if it is pork for the contractor.

I would be curious who those contractors are.

Did they lobby for this?

Are they connected to politicians or post office big whigs?
anywhere town

Rochester, NY

#7 Jul 8, 2007
Lets cut out all of the subsidies that the USPS receives and make them stand on their our two feet. USPS would have to raise rates so high UPS and Fed-X would be dirt cheap. I throw away 90% of what comes to my house any way. Talk about green, a a forest could be saved by not sending so much crap to my house.
alas

Newburyport, MA

#8 Jul 8, 2007
anywhere town wrote:
Lets cut out all of the subsidies that the USPS receives and make them stand on their our two feet. USPS would have to raise rates so high UPS and Fed-X would be dirt cheap. I throw away 90% of what comes to my house any way. Talk about green, a a forest could be saved by not sending so much crap to my house.
You are so right! Does anybody ever look at the junk mail?

As for service I guess it depends where you live.
A decade ago maybe the USPO was delivering our mail after dark, living on a long driveway with no street lights we would have to pick up mail the next morning. Not good when you are expecting some important mail so we had some sent registered but the Postman would not bring mail up to sign and left a card to pick up. At least Parcel Post leaves it at the door. After many pleas and complaints, lost mail, and a battered mailbox we went to a neighboring town and took out a private box. The box cost started out at $44 and is now up to $72. Our local town PO charge is double at the PO is further away. Never took down the box at the end of the driveway just told those of importance our new mailing address. We now get double junk. The moral of this story is you can't Fight City Hall.

We still need a box not just for paying bills but because being Senior Citizen the Insurance Co. refuse to pay for drugs that are picked up at a drug store so all medication are delivered USPO.

The police, PO no one wants to hear your tale of woes and could care less and the teens are stealing these drugs to get high on.

The United States Post Office is just another part of our failed Government.
alas

Newburyport, MA

#9 Jul 8, 2007
I forgot to mention our town has a population of 22,000 and the PO is in the Town, the line is always long.

The neighboring PO I use has a population of 8,000 and it has 3 Post Offices. The one I use is about the same size as Our Town, you never wait on line and the clerks are pleasant and friendly.

Go figure?
Common Sense

Columbus, OH

#10 Jul 8, 2007
As mentioned in previous posts, I agree with these.

Eliminate junk mail or charge a higher rate from the businesses sending them.

Mandate, require that insurance companies pay for drugs mailed to another location such as a drug store. There are times where this is needed.

Eliminate Saturday delivery. More people are getting their bills online. In addition, I understand the Post Office does not want to do away with Saturday delivery because it is overtime on that day or pays more. What's more important, maintaining efficient costs or needles higher payroll costs?
speed buggy

United States

#11 Jul 8, 2007
A solution to the long driveway, if you have disabled papers from your doctor you can put your mailbox attached on your house beside your front door.

And, triple the price of junk mail.

I would guess that is the majority of the bulk of the mail that they haul around in the delivery truck.

Notice that it is their business philosophy that there is no such thing as junk mail but they refuse to allow you to treat it like regular mail such as "return to sender" or "refuse to accept."

Most junk mail does not even have a return address.

I think that junk is delivered by the printers or picked up at the printers and not the one who pays the postage.

One must go through living hell to get their name off of those mailing lists but if you could treat it like regular mail and "return to sender" the PO would resolve that problem quick with the sender because all the sudden there IS such a thing as junk mail and they would be swamped with it.

Piles of trash and stuck with the bill of throwing it out.
Just An Observer

Grand Rapids, MI

#12 Jul 8, 2007
Any excuse to privatize and let crooks ransack the company coffers, eh? When there's no accountablility, the criminals of corporate America can have a field day.
Common Sense

Columbus, OH

#13 Jul 8, 2007
Speed Buggy stated, "Notice that it is their business philosophy that there is no such thing as junk mail but they refuse to allow you to treat it like regular mail such as "return to sender" or "refuse to accept."

Interesting point. I never knew this. If the post office says there is no "junk mail" then we should be able to treat it as regular mail, have the sender investigated if requests against them to stop the junk mailing does not stop, then go through a proper complaint channel with the post office.

They want to be treated like a business, then they should act as one and minimize junk mail to speicif senders when asked.
speed buggy

United States

#14 Jul 8, 2007
Common Sense wrote:
Speed Buggy stated, "Notice that it is their business philosophy that there is no such thing as junk mail but they refuse to allow you to treat it like regular mail such as "return to sender" or "refuse to accept."
Interesting point. I never knew this. If the post office says there is no "junk mail" then we should be able to treat it as regular mail, have the sender investigated if requests against them to stop the junk mailing does not stop, then go through a proper complaint channel with the post office.
They want to be treated like a business, then they should act as one and minimize junk mail to speicif senders when asked.
Yeah.

If I had a scanner I would give you a pic of a USPS keepsake I have. A once in a lifetime thing if even then.

Somehow my junk mail got trashed in the machinery. Boo hoo. Really trashed. Ripped to shreds and dragged through the mud kind of trashed.

Well, the address was still visible on the junk mail so they repackaged it in a nice envelope and sent it onward in its journey to my mailbox.

The envelope even had a transparent window so I could see the contents.

I never opened it.

I even thought about putting it on ebay.
paterald

Broken Arrow, OK

#15 Jul 13, 2007
Common Sense wrote:
As mentioned in previous posts, I agree with these.
Eliminate junk mail or charge a higher rate from the businesses sending them.
Mandate, require that insurance companies pay for drugs mailed to another location such as a drug store. There are times where this is needed.
Eliminate Saturday delivery. More people are getting their bills online. In addition, I understand the Post Office does not want to do away with Saturday delivery because it is overtime on that day or pays more. What's more important, maintaining efficient costs or needles higher payroll costs?
n Saturday. Well that is wrong, the post office may pay some overtime on Sat etc, only if they have to bring in someone to cover for person that is on vacation or called in sick etc. otherwise they have rotating personel that have days off in the week so as to work Sat. just so there is no overtime pay required. And its not the P.O. that doesn't want to do away with Saturday deliveries, its the business population that is requiring the Sat. deliveries. Its a shame that people don't know that in 82 the government gave all the P.O. buildings, equipment etc, to the P.O. and stopped paying subsidies to the P.O. thats when the rates started going up as the the P.O. has to pay its own way and as the cost of living goes up, so does the postal rates.
paterald

Broken Arrow, OK

#16 Jul 13, 2007
n Saturday. Well that is wrong, the post office may pay some overtime on Sat etc, only if they have to bring in someone to cover for person that is on vacation or called in sick etc. otherwise they have rotating personnel that have days off in the week so as to work Sat. just so there is no overtime pay required. And its not the P.O. that doesn't want to do away with Saturday deliveries, its the business population that is requiring the Sat. deliveries. Its a shame that people don't know that in 82 the government gave all the P.O. buildings, equipment etc, to the P.O. and stopped paying subsidies to the P.O. thats when the rates started going up as the the P.O. has to pay its own way and as the cost of living goes up, so does the postal rates.
Ron

Louisville, KY

#18 May 21, 2008
With the increase cost in fuel wouldn't it make since to stop Satuday delivery. I know that there are pro's and con's to doing this but at this stage wouldn't saving millions of gallons of fuel a year outway all of the con's.
REBG

Olmito, TX

#19 Sep 15, 2008
my husband works for the post office, he is a mail carrier. They work 5 days a week on a rotating schedule. The only time you get overtime is if they are short handed that day or they are asked to come in on their day off. Everyone has Sundays off expect for those who have to make special deliviers on Sunday. There has been talk about making delieveries (first class mail and junk mail, Monday through Friday. What about the packages? They should still be delievered but have the part-time workers do that on Saturdays and Sundays. The post office could save money, not only that, the full time employees could spend the weekends home with their family. My husband comes home from 9-10 hour workdays and he come home in a bad mood, because they were short handed. They are trying to cut overtime for the postmen, but they are having problems with people not making it to work for what ever reason. I think they are overworked. Let's make it a Monday-Friday work week. Save on GAS, for both the U.S. Post Office and their employees, less stressed workers, happier families (for me it would be. Part-timers would then fill in the gaps,during the weekend for special deliveries.
Husband was told tha in two years the U.S. Post Office would be bankrupt? Is that true? My husband thinks it's not true, but who knows with the economy.
Get your facts

Watertown, CT

#20 Oct 1, 2008
anywhere town wrote:
Lets cut out all of the subsidies that the USPS receives and make them stand on their our two feet. USPS would have to raise rates so high UPS and Fed-X would be dirt cheap. I throw away 90% of what comes to my house any way. Talk about green, a a forest could be saved by not sending so much **** to my house.
The Postal Service gets ZERO in subsidies. ZERO NOTHING All it costs is the price of postage. IF you do not use the Postal Service it cost you NOTHING ZERO
Get your facts

Watertown, CT

#21 Oct 1, 2008
Ron wrote:
With the increase cost in fuel wouldn't it make since to stop Satuday delivery. I know that there are pro's and con's to doing this but at this stage wouldn't saving millions of gallons of fuel a year outway all of the con's.
The Board Of Governors AND the pathetic UNIONS will NOT let the Postal Service make this ALL important move.

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