More than 700 million pieces of mail are sorted and delivered by the Postal Service each delivery day. And military base mail rooms sort through 50,000 to 100,000 letters per week. So how does each piece get from point A to point B? And more so, to your recruit or service member?
The journey of a recruit letter starts with the first step – mailing your letter through the United States Postal Service. From that point, your letter transitions from the local post office, to a central distribution center, to the USPS Office located by the military base, to the base mailroom, and finally to your recruit.
WOW! It seems like a long journey for a letter, but once you understand the process, you will have peace of mind your recruit is receiving each letter.
The USPS uses various machines and technology to expedite mail sorting, but the most effective feature is called the Intelligent Mail® barcode (IMb). The IMb barcode turns your address into a funny bar code that allows the post office to scan and monitor the status of your letter.
The IMb allows for faster delivery – if the USPS sorting machine can’t read the handwritten or even typed addresses, the letter will be sorted manually, delaying delivery. Plus, IMb barcodes are automatically sorted as first-class mail, decreasing delivery time even more.
How can military families use IMb barcodes?
LetterTrac.com’s technology uses the IMb bar codes to help military families track letters to and from their recruits/service members. Families can order pre-addressed IMb labels before their recruit ships, or while they are at bootcamp. Labels are delivered to recruits 3x per week.
How does LetterTrac work?
- Families create LetterTrac IMb barcode labels for themselves and recruit.
- LetterTrac generates the IMb barcode and applies it to each label.
- Addresses are printed according to the USPS font/size standards so they can be read by the sorting machine.
- Email alerts are sent to the sender (family member) each time a bar code is scanned and ultimately delivered.
Families and friends will know real-time when a letter was mailed from their recruit and the expected delivery date. LetterTrac.com labels provide a sense of relief to the recruit knowing their families ‘knows’ a letter has been sent.
Read all of our FAQs and learn more about LetterTrac.com.
Are LetterTrac and Intelligent Mail® barcode safe and secure?
Yes. The USPS uses bar code technology on all letters, which allows them to track the delivery status – the same technology used with USPS Informed Delivery.
LetterTrac processes the address through a secure server when creating the IMb labels. Each label is assigned a unique bar code – there are 14 unique labels per sheet. The tracking labels, mailed to the family or recruit, apply them to an envelope and sends them like any other letter.
LetterTrac.com labels never expire and can be used to send letters to any U.S. address, including military facilities.
What mailing supplies can I send my recruit?
LetterTrac.com offers a variety of mailing supplies – stamps, envelopes, stationary, and even moleskin.
Save by ordering the Family Pack:
- 28 Family Labels
- 14 Recruit Labels
- 1 book of stamps
- 14 Envelopes
- 14 branch specific writing stationary
- 11 pieces of moleskin