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Does the USPS Offer Airmail Labels?  
 

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Posted 06/07/2011   5:03 pm  Show Profile Check Nells250's eBay Listings Bookmark this topic Add Nells250 to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
Hi all

I was wondering if the USPS offers AIR MAIL labels like they used to. I have been sending postcards overseas, and I notice that a LOT of the once I get back have foreign labels. The other day, after asking a clerk to hand cancel some cards for me, I noticed she used a rubber stamp to add AIR MAIL to the cards.

I didn't think we had to mark mail AIR MAIL anymore. Do we? The USPS website doesn't list any ait mail labels. Is it worth asking a clerk about it?

JD
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Posted 06/07/2011   10:42 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add wt1 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I think the rubber stamps have more or less replaced the old stick on or pressure sensitive "Air Mail" labels. According to the USPS web site there are PS-19A and PS-19B labels that say "Air Mail" but I suspect they are pretty much obsolete in deference to the rubber stamps.

A USPS clerk would probably be able to confirm for you the so-called "requirement" of using the marking "Air Mail" anymore, but I suspect it is a quick way for the post office to sort domestic versus international mail and simply helps streamline the process.

Someone else may be able to chime in with more detailed information. Actually, it is probably buried somewhere in the USPS web site, but the international mail regulations are so cumbersome to go through, I haven't been able to pull out a clear response to your specific question.
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Posted 06/07/2011   11:42 pm  Show Profile Check Battlestamps's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Battlestamps to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The USPS has the labels, but they can be difficult to obtain. I've tried ordering them from the USPS via the website, but it wasn't a viable option last time I've tried. My local post office actually ran out of them recently and hasn't been able to order more. I like to use them on international mail as it makes it more "official" looking at like wt1 said, makes it easier for postal workers to sort. I've resorted to writing it by hand with a red sharpie, but might have to visit Staples and get a hand stamp made if the post office cannot get any labels. I haven't tried calling the USPS to see if I can get the labels that way, but I should try. I need customs forms anyway and I feel bad for taking all the ones from my local post office.
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Posted 06/08/2011   6:47 pm  Show Profile Check Nells250's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Nells250 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks for the info so far. Today, with my car in the shop, I walked up to my local PO (which I never go to due to rude staff) and I asked a clerk. She said NO, such a label is not required on postcards going overseas. I got the impression I shouldn't bother asking any more questions...
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Posted 06/08/2011   6:50 pm  Show Profile Check smauggie's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add smauggie to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
It is true, though. The only international mail service offered by the US is by air.
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Posted 06/08/2011   9:38 pm  Show Profile Check tomiseksj's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add tomiseksj to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I got these a few months ago.

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Posted 06/08/2011   10:04 pm  Show Profile Check Battlestamps's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Battlestamps to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Yep, those are the labels I like to use. There's a bigger version too, but I haven't seen those in awhile. There use to be ones that were yellow too if I recall correctly and before that there were white, red and blue labels you had to lick.

I found out long ago, just ask for what you want without telling them what you want it for. I always make sure to do this when asking for priority and express mail stamps to be used on larger international shipments. I also try to have everything stamped and ready before giving it to a clerk as to prevent anything from going amiss such as printing out a meter faster than you can say "I want to use stamps". Again, I've said it before and say it again, try the smallest post office you can find. My local one room, one postal worker post office's service is top notch. I have not had any problems and he even stocks all the commemoratives that come out.

As for the labels, I would recommend them for use outside of the U.S. While it's true all mail leaves here via air mail, what happens when it reaches another country could be another story. I also handstamp everything First Class as many countries have multiple classes of mail and it could be classified accidently as another which could slow delivery.
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Posted 06/09/2011   4:30 pm  Show Profile Check Nells250's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Nells250 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
More good tips!
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Posted 12/03/2011   1:07 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add wt1 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I thought I'd re-visit this thread and provide an interesting update. Today (12/03/2011) I visited a small post office in a neighboring town and happened to see these so-called "Air Mail" labels sitting on top of the clerk's many forms. I asked if I could have one, and she handed me a dozen or more strips of five (5) labels as shown below.

Although these are also defined as Label 19B, they are different than the ones previously scanned, as this is an older version with a different layout dating back 14 years ago -- to April 1997! I suppose I could get more of these labels had I asked, so I just thought I'd point out they are still available at some post offices, it's just that they may not be all that easy to get.

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Posted 12/03/2011   1:54 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Londonbus1 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
wt1,

Any chance of a spare strip ?
I'll pay the postage and any other costs.

Hope you don't mind me asking.

Londonbus1
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Posted 12/03/2011   1:54 pm  Show Profile Check tomiseksj's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add tomiseksj to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Like wt1, I got my labels at a small post office.

Yesterday I was at my main post office getting hand cancels on a letter to the UK. The clerk used an "Air Mail" hand stamp on the cover and then realized he had placed it directly beneath the label 19B that I had put on the envelope.
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Posted 12/03/2011   2:05 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add wt1 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
LB1: E-mail me your address and I'll be glad to send a strip to you.
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Posted 12/03/2011   8:52 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add PoStat4evR to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I am still using these, as my PO found a few in a drawer.


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Posted 12/03/2011   9:09 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add wt1 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks for posting. I don't think I've ever seen that yellow Label 19-B before.
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Posted 12/04/2011   4:04 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add PoStat4evR to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I know this is a bit off topic, but several years ago, while rumaging through an estate sale, I came across these three rubber stamps, that someone had saved for (what looks like) a lot of years. I use these on most of my overseas mail. My theory is that if I can't
get free labels, I may as well have fun with it...


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Posted 12/04/2011   7:41 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add fredcdobbs to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I found these reproduction labels last week at the local antique mall, I have no idea who made them. For two bucks I could not pass em up, so I will be using these on my outgoing mail.
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