Function of the Post Office

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The post office processes mail.
The post office processes mail. (Image: smallest us post office image by Pix by Marti from Fotolia.com)

The U.S. Postal Service is the only organization authorized to deliver mail to personal mailboxes in the United States. It currently competes with private couriers like FedEx or the UPS United Parcel Service, and even Internet email providers. It employs more than 590,000 workers and uses more than 215,000 vehicles to deliver and pick up the mail.

Integrity

The U.S. Postal Service maintains mail integrity because it is the only organization authorized to deliver mail to personal mailboxes. Multiple organizations handling mail would cause conflicts in regulations and protocols between sender and recipient.

Issuing Postage

The Postal Service determines the standard price of postage. It also prints and authorizes all mailing stamps. As the Internet has become more prevalent and there is less mail delivered by hand, and the cost of operations have grown, the cost of postage stamps has increased.

Shipping Mail

The Postal Service ships mail to both domestic and foreign entities. Examples of mailing services include "Express Mail," "Priority Mail," and "First-Class Mail." You can send simple envelopes and large packages. This mail can be insured and sent registered mail to ensure delivery.

Mail Regulation

The Postal Service regulates incoming and outgoing mail. It has a set of guidelines for shipments available in its policies. For example, the USPS has recommendations for packaging mail securely. It also has outlines for formatting addresses. In addition, the USPS can put mail on hold and establish P.O. boxes.

Address Management

The Postal Service processes address changes for when people move. Zip codes are used to divide the country into geographical locations. The Postal Service allows people to look up zip codes via its website.

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