First Class Mail vs. Standard Mail

Getting your piece mailed is the final step—and it helps to prepare. The postage option you choose will depend on your format and the number of people on your mailing list. For advice on Direct Mail piece design, postage, or cost-saving tips, visit your local Post Office™ and ask to speak with someone in Mailing Requirements or Bulk/Business Mail Entry.

There are two ways to send your direct mailings—First Class Mail or Standard Mail. Use this table to get an idea of when and how to use these postage types:

When and How to Use Postage
Postage TypeWhen to use itHow to use it
First-Class Mail®If your mailing is small (less than a few hundred)
If you don’t mail often (less than once a month)
For keeping it simple—just apply the postage and take it to the Post Office™
To do a quick direct mail test of a new offer with a few hundred pieces
With postage stamps to give your Direct Mailing extra attention – buy stamps online or at your local Post Office
With your own postage meter
Standard Mail™
If your mailings are large (more than a few hundred)
If you mail often (once monthly or more)
You want to pay the lowest possible prices for postage
Apply for a permit, a convenient way to pay for bulk postage, at your local Post Office. Learn more about getting a permit

 Sort mail according to mailing requirements
Pay for postage with:
pre-cancelled stamps
- meters - find out more about meters
- permit imprints (impressions signifying postage already paid) for your mailings – Learn more   about permit imprints