Do you need to ship a package to American Samoa, or a flat to Puerto Rico? You’re in luck—Endicia makes sending mail to these destinations, and all U.S. territories, simple and efficient.
The USPS services all U.S. territories, and all mail sent to these territories from the Contiguous United States can be sent with Domestic Mail. While the mail classes might be the same, there are a few differences between mailing to a U.S. territory versus a U.S. state that you will want to be familiar with.
Address standards for U.S. territories are similar to those for U.S. states but may vary. For example, Puerto Rico uses a unique identifier called an urbanización. The urbanización is a section of a city or town, roughly the equivalent of a borough or neighborhood; you might see this abbreviated as URB. Additionally, some territories may use non-English terminology for roads, PO boxes, and streets. Be sure to use the local terminally and refrain from translating into English. Though this may seem like a lot to think about, Endicia takes the worry away with built-in address cleansing powered by the USPS database.
Like the 50 U.S. states, each territory has its own two-letter code to meet the USPS addressing and mailing standards:
AS – American Samoa
GU – Guam
MP – Northern Mariana Islands
PR – Puerto Rico
VI – Virgin Islands
UM – U.S. Minor Outlying Islands
While these territories are part of the United States, the rules regarding customs forms varies. Generally, you will not need Customs Forms for shipments to Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, but you will need them for other U.S. territories. Luckily, Endicia takes the guesswork out of the shipping process. When printing a shipping label, Endicia will automatically display an alert when a Custom Form is required. Endicia allows you to fill out a Customs Form digitally by entering a few pieces of information about your shipment—most of the information is already provided for you.
Keep in mind that shipment times to destinations outside of the contiguous United States may be longer than those for typical Domestic delivery. For example, a Priority Mail package, though not guaranteed, may take 3 days to reach the Virgin Islands, while it would have taken 2 days to reach a destination in the U.S. mainland. Though delivery times may be slightly longer, you will still be able to track your package throughout its journey, just as you would any USPS Domestic package.