Updated for the January 27, 2019 USPS postage increases.

Bound Printed Matter bulk mail is for catalogs and other bound printed material. It is particularly economical for pieces that weigh more than the 16-ounce limit for Marketing Mail.

Postage Saver software makes postal bulk mailing easy Here's what this page covers:
red dotWhat are the postage rates?
red dotHow many pieces do I need?
red dotWhat are the size and weight limits?
red dotHow do I pay the postage?
red dotWhat software do I need?

Bound Printed Matter postage rates are based on size, weight and distance. Pieces weighing less than one pound are charged a minimum one-pound rate. That means that Marketing Mail is often less expensive than Bound Printed Matter for pieces weighing less than one pound. The basic content requirements for Bound Printed Matter are:
  • It must be securely bound by staples, spiral binding, glue, stitching or similar permanent fastenings. Loose-leaf binders and other temporary fastenings don't comply.
  • The pages must be at least 90% covered with printing. Handwriting or typewriting do not comply.
  • It must not be personal correspondence.
  • It can't be blank printed forms, like stationery.
Bound Printed Matter is charged and processed as either flat-sized or parcel-sized. There is no letter-sized or postcard-sized pricing for Bound Printed Matter.

What are the postage rates for Bound Printed Matter bulk mail?

How much will I save?
The postage rate for Bound Printed Matter depends on how many pieces you are mailing, the size and weight of the mail piece, and the distance it must travel. For mailings of 300 pieces or more, there are discounts for taking your mailing to a major sorting facility.

There's a pretty good chance that you'll pay several different postage rates on different pieces in the same mailing, depending on where the pieces are going.

Unlike Marketing Mail, nonprofits do not get lower postage rates for Bound Printed Matter.

You can use our Bound Printed Matter postage rate calculator to find the rates available for your mailing.

Bound Printed Matter Bulk Mail Postage Rate Calculator

Rates updated for USPS changes effective January 27, 2019.

Make the following selections to find the rates available for your Bound Printed Matter mailing:

How many pieces are in your mailing:
up to 299  300 or more

Mail Size:
flat - up to 12" x 15" x ¾", whether in an envelope or not.
parcel - larger than flat in any direction, or not flexible.
(Bound Printed Matter smaller than flat-sized is charged as flats.)

Enter Weight in Ounces:  
 Weight must be 20 ounces or less for barcoded pieces,
 or 240 ounces (15 pounds) or less for nonbarcoded pieces.

If you already have the list you want to mail to, we recommend you download a free trial copy of our Postage $aver bulk mail preparation software and run your list through it. It will figure out the exact postage you'd pay for mailing that specific list, and let you try various options.

For flat-sized mailings, download our Postage $aver Pro software. For parcels, download our Postage $aver for Parcels software.
Postage Saver software makes preparing Bound Printed Matter easy

How many pieces do I need for Bound Printed Matter bulk mail rates?

There is no minimum quantity for Bound Printed Matter mailings. However, mailings of 300 pieces or more get better pricing.

You don't need to send a certain number of pieces to any particular zip code or part of the country, etc., as long as all of your mail is going to addresses within the United States (which can include military addresses, Puerto Rico and U.S. possessions). There are also no monthly or yearly quantity requirements.

What are the size and weight limits for Bound Printed Matter bulk mail?

The weight limit for Bound Printed Matter bulk mail depends on whether the piece is barcoded or not.
  • Bound Printed Matter flats that are barcoded may not weigh more than 20 ounces.

  • Bound Printed Matter parcels and nonbarcoded flats may not weigh more than 240 ounces (15 pounds).
Pieces may not measure more than 108 inches in length and girth combined.

How do I pay the postage?

Bulk Mail Indicia
if you buy a permit imprint authorization, you can print an "indicia" box like this on your mail instead of putting a stamp on each piece. That saves a lot of work.

Here's what goes in an indicia box.
The only way to pay your postage for Bound Printed Matter bulk mail is to maintain an account at the post office. You just print a "postage paid" box, called an "indicia", on your mail pieces, instead of using stamps or a postage meter. Then, each time you bring in a mailing, USPS will verify your postage calculations and then make sure you have enough in your account to pay for your mailing.

To use an indicia on your mail, you must buy a "permit imprint authorization", which you can do when you apply for your mailing permit. There is a $235 one-time charge for the authorization. If you have an authorization that you have been using for another class of mail, you do not have to purchase an separate authorization for Bound Printed Matter.

Since the indicia is not really actual postage, you can design it as part of the printing on your mail piece, just like your return address. You don't need any special software to print an indicia.

Unlike other types of bulk mail, you cannot use stamps or a meter for Bound Printed Matter bulk mail.

What software do I need to prepare Bound Printed Matter?

Since Bound Printed Matter postage is charged by zones, USPS has special sorting and paperwork requirements.

For flat-sized Bound Printed Matter mailings, our Postage $aver Pro software does the required sorting and prepares the paperwork automatically.

For parcel-sized Bound Printed Matter mailings, our Postage $aver for Parcels software does the required sorting, prepares the required paperwork, print USPS tracking labels and automatically creates and uploads the required tracking file.


Postage Saver Low-Cost Software for Postal Bulk Mail
Postage Saver for Parcels makes shipping bulk parcels easy