Addressing & Sending International Mail

The University's volume discounts for outgoing mail save substantial amounts of money for campus departments each year. Contact Mail, Messenger & Distribution Services (MMDS) for complete information on available pricing and services. University compliance with U.S. Postal Service regulations allows MMDS to offer a broad range of options for sending mail internationally. Follow the instructions below when preparing mail for international delivery.

Note: Check the U.S. Postal Service Global Updates regularly for important information on restrictions.

How to Send USPS International Mail

Addressing & Sending International Mail

Last Published: April 19, 2013

The University's volume discounts for outgoing mail save substantial amounts of money for campus departments each year. Contact Mail, Messenger & Distribution Services (MMDS) for complete information on available pricing and services. University compliance with U.S. Postal Service regulations allows MMDS to offer a broad range of options for sending mail internationally. Follow the instructions below when preparing mail for international delivery.

Note: Check the U.S. Postal Service Global Updates regularly for important information on restrictions.

How to Send USPS International Mail

1. Decide which USPS international delivery service you want to use

Available Products:

Global Express Guaranteed 

  • 1-3 days 
  • Track and trace 
  • Money-back delivery guarantee (Note: Some restrictions apply) 
  • Insurance included 
  • Prices start @ $28.50

Express Mail International 

  • 3-5 days 
  • Tracking to major destinations 
  • Service guarantee to Australia, China, Hong Kong, South Korea and Japan 
  • Insurance included 
  • Flat Rate Envelope. $22.00 - $25.00 
  • Prices start @ $22.00

Priority Mail International 

  • 6-10 days 
  • Insurance available 
  • Flat Rate Envelopes for letters. $9.00 - $11.00 
  • Flat Rate Boxes for packages. $23.00 - $37.00 
  • Prices start @ $16.00

First-Class Mail International 

  • Registered Mail™ service available

2. Consider your insurance needs

UCLA MDDS offers standard U.S. Postal Service insurance. For international service, the receiving country will charge the recipient a duty tax.

3. Decide which customs forms you need, if any

A customs form is required for ALL Global Express Guaranteed, Express Mail International, and Priority Mail International (regardless of weight). 

All First-Class International Mail requires a customs form except for items that weigh less than 16 ounces and do not have potentially dutiable contents.

Does UCLA have to process the item if it is a parcel? Yes. UCLA will not inspect the contents, but will make sure the customs form is properly filled out and put its “seal of approval” on the parcel. If it is not “approved” by Mail Services or a live post office official, the USPS will return it to the Sender (after 9/11, policy is that any parcel not metered or approved by a postal official or designee can be considered suspicious and returned).

4. Complete your address labels

When addressing international mail, use these USPS recommendations for destination and return addresses.

Destination address:

Use all capital letters 

Type or legibly write the address in English 

Use no more than five lines, including: 

Addressee's name 

Street address or P.O. box number 

City or town, principal subdivision such as province, state, or county and postal code. (In some countries, the postal code may precede the city or town.) 

Country name

Sample:

MS JOYCE BROWNING
2045 ROYAL ROAD
LONDON WIP 6HQ
ENGLAND

MS JOYCE BROWNING
2045 ROYAL ROAD
06570 ST PAUL
FRANCE

Return address:

Sender's name 

UCLA Department (department) 

Box 951234, 1234 Campus Hall (box and campus address)
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1234 (city, state, ZIP+4 code)

Sample:

Joe Bruin (name)
UCLA Department (department)
Box 951234, 1234 Campus Hall (box and campus address)
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1234 (city, state, ZIP+4 code)

Note: If your item requires a customs form, the return address on your mail and on the customs form must be identical.

5. Prepare your mail

  1. List the following information in the top right corner:

    Delivery service desired
    ID to be recharged
  2. Attach your return address label to the top left corner
  3. Attach your recipient address label in the center
  4. If your item requires a customs form, attach the customs form to the bottom left corner

Sample:

Attach return address label here


Attach customs form here


Attach recipient address label here

Delivery service desired
ID to be recharged

Note: A customs form does not replace your address label.


6. Post your mail

Give your mail to the letter carrier or drop it off at Mail, Messenger & Distribution Services by 3 p.m.

7. Check your mail charges

Charges are uploaded to the MMDS website on a daily basis. You can search by individual ID or by FS Department Code for a complete listing of all charges. Statements are mailed on request, only.