Bound Printed Matter bulk mail is designed for mailing catalogs and other bulk material that weigh more than the one pound limit for Marketing Mail bulk mail.

Bound Printed Matter postage is priced by size, weight and distance. Pieces that weigh less than one pound are priced at the one pound price, so it usually costs less to use Marketing Mail for mail 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.
  • It's called "printed" matter, so 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 must be either flat sized or parcel sized. Bound Printed Matter cannot be letter sized or postcard sized.

This page is about Bound Printed Matter flat sized mailings. We will soon post information about Bound Printed Matter parcels.

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

How much will I save?

Make sure you know whether your mail piece is a letter, a flat, or a parcel. That is determined by the size of the piece, not by what it contains.

For example, a 9 x 12 envelope containing a letter is considered a "flat" because of its size, while a 5 x 8 card is considered a "letter", even though most of us would call it a postcard. For full information on the categories, see Letters vs. Flats.


The postage price for Bound Printed Matter bulk mail depends on the size and weight of the mail piece, and the distance to its delivery facility. There are also 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 prices for Bound Printed Matter.

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

Bound Printed Matter Bulk Mail Postage Price Calculator


Prices updated for USPS changes effective 1/22/17.


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

Mail Size: flat - up to 12" x 15" x ¾"
Larger or not flexible? Please see our parcels help page.
Bound Printed Matter cannot be letter sized or postcard sized.

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

Mailed At: What are these?


If you already have the list you want to mail to, we recommend you download a free demo copy of our Postage Saver bulk mail 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.

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

To get Bound Printed Matter bulk mail pricing, you need to send at least 300 pieces of mail at one time. Unlike Marketing Mail, there is not a lower minimum for heavier pieces.

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 bulk mail may not weigh more than 20 ounces if it is barcoded.

  • Bound Printed Matter bulk mail may not weigh more than 240 ounces (15 pounds) if it is not barcoded.
The longer side of each piece must be no more than 15 inches long. The shorter side must be no more than 12 inches long. The piece can be no more than 3/4" thick.

Pieces that are larger, or that aren't flexible enough to go through postal sorting equipment, may be able to be sent as Bound Printed Matter parcels, which is a very economical service for parcels. See our help page on saving money on bulk parcels.

Bound Printed Matter may not be letter sized or postcard sized.

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! For details on what goes in the box, click here.
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 $215 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.

How do I get started with Bound Printed Matter bulk mail?

To learn how to get started and to prepare your first mailing with Bound Printed Matter bulk mail, see our Getting Started with Postal Bulk Mail page.