The reality of the U.S. Postal Services being reliable, honest, and trustworthy is so last century.
I had this perspective recently reinforced when my daughter sent me a Mother’s Day card from Oklahoma. Because she wanted to ensure she had the correct postage, she went into the local post office and they placed a first-class metered strip on it. In the “olden days,” this would have meant the card would have arrived in two to three business days and without additional postage owed. In today’s world, a week after she mailed the card, a notice showed up in my mailbox indicating I owed money for a “parcel.”
I asked my daughter to send a picture of her receipt and went into the post office to find out what was going on. The clerk was in the back for a considerable length of time. When he came out he also carried a special measuring instrument to demonstrate that the envelope was too thick and this post office considered it a parcel rather than an envelope. In putting the envelope through this measuring device, it didn’t just fall through, but required a light tap to push it through, so close enough that it would have required taking time to measure the envelope to determine its “parcel-ness.”
The Oklahoma Post Office told my daughter she had paid in full for mailing the card to me. Reputable vendors would honor that, not charge an additional $2.79 above the $1.15 already paid. I wasn’t expecting my Mother’s Day card to be held for ransom by the Battle Ground USPS.
I don’t know what to recommend to people who want to send out wedding invitations, graduation invitations, or other envelopes that may be thicker and/or heavier than normal. While you may feel you’re covered because you go to the local post office, who knows what the recipient’s post office will think.