General Question

jca's avatar

When mailing a care package or letter to someone in the military overseas, are the postal rates similar to mailing to a foreign country (in other words, really high)?

Asked by jca (35994points) February 4th, 2011

Someone I work with just sent an email that his son-in-law is stationed in Afghanistan, in the U.S. Army. He requested cards, letters or care packages be sent. I am totally willing and actually looking forward to sending some food items for this soldier. I am wondering, however, how expensive the postal rates could be. I know that to send something to London or other European city it’s mucho dinero. Is mailing something to a military base any cheaper? Or would it be just like sending something to Asia, as far as postal rates?

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11 Answers

JLeslie's avatar

I think if he has an APO address it shouldn’t be very expensive. I can’t remember how it works. I was just on a Q a few days ago with someone stationed in Italy, I’ll see if I can find the thread and forward this question to them.

jerv's avatar

I’m not sure about the ground-pounders, but when I was in teh Navy and sent/received mail from an FPO, it was just like mailing stuff across town as far as cost goes. I imagine that it would be the same for the troops in Afghanistan using an APO. I mean, technically an APO/FPO is part of the US, so you don’t have to worry about international costs.

jaytkay's avatar

US mail to military and diplomatic addresses (APO, FPO and DPO) is domestic mail, not expensive.

Essentially you are mailing to a US address, and the military takes it from there.

seazen's avatar

I’m sending this to a jelly here who’s husband is overseas. She’ll tell you.

BarnacleBill's avatar

There are flat rate boxes that you get from the post office. You can mail as much stuff as you can stuff into the flat rate box to an APO, regardless of weight.

klutzaroo's avatar

The APO stuff, for instance, goes to New York. It then goes where ever. Its not any more expensive than sending anywhere else in the US. One time when I was in the post office I heard some stupid blonde girl saying “But its going to be so expensive to ship stuff to Afghanistan!” because she went and asked how much it was going to cost to send something to the country, not how much it was going to cost to send something to a military person. I then informed her about the military mail system which I was using at that very moment to send a flat rate box (you can pack up to 70 pounds in those and still pay the flat rate) to Iraq. The vapid look never left her face, but she felt better. The main difference is that you need the customs forms.

You can follow the steps to get a military care package kit from the USPS and take it to the office for everyone or just use it yourself. It has everything you need to send lots of stuff over there, customs forms, boxes, tape, everything. Makes sending things easy-peasy!

optimisticpessimist's avatar

Sending to a military address overseas has the same postage rate as sending to an address in the United States. I do not know if it still applies, but when I sent stuff to my deployed spouse, it was slightly cheaper than the usual price to send a flat rate box to a combat zone.

jca's avatar

Thank you for all of the info. I gave you all Good Answers as my way of saying thanks to you all. I just called the USPS and ordered the Military Care Package kit as per @klutzaroo‘s advice!

Seaofclouds's avatar

It depends on how you mail it. Mailing a regular card or letter to an APO address is the regular cost (a stamp).

Mailing packages depends on the box you use and the way in which you ship it. I always used the free flat rate boxes when I mailed stuff to my husband. I could get the large flat rate box, fill it to the brim (and then some sometimes) and it would only cost me $12.50 to mail, regardless of it’s weight up to 70 pounds (as long as I could get it closed without it being too out of shape, some of my boxes looked a little rounded though). The medium sized box was $10.70 and sometimes I would use those as well (when they were out of large boxes).

If you mail something and it’s not in the flat rate boxes, it depends on the weight of the item and if you want to insure it or get delivery confirmation (I had to do this when I mailed my husband his laptop).

Baddreamer27's avatar

When mailing a package if you use USPS then its the same as mailing a package anywhere in the states and depends on the weight of the package itself. If you choose to ship it priority or something then it gets higher. The only suggestion I can make is not to use priority or pay for expedited mail services. Mailing priority or higher only ensures it’s speed to New York, after that it goes into the military mail service and doesnt really speed it up.

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