Mail Services Guidelines

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Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Hours of Operation       
  3. Mail Services Responsibilities
  4. Customer Responsibilities
  5. Restrictions, Junk Mail and Dangerous Goods
  6. Pick Up and Delivery Schedule
  7. Charges      
  8. Basic Preparation
  9. Inter University Transit System (IUTS)
  10. Canada Post Special Services
  11. Couriers
  12. Helpful Hints





The University of Guelph Mail Services is a centralized mail service established to assist University Departments.

The following guide has been prepared as a source of basic information to help you make the most efficient and economical use of University of Guelph’s Mail Services. These guidelines should eliminate unnecessary returns, delays, or excessive postage charges on outgoing mail.

These guidelines include some Canada Post Regulations, including their Priority Courier Regulations, and the University’s procedures for the smooth, effective operation of the mail system.

Your cooperation on the following these guidelines will contribute to the operating efficiency of the mail system.

Please contact Mail Services for additional information on Postal Rates, Regulations and questions regarding mailing services at (519)824-4120 x52264.

Hours of Operation

Mail Services is located in Room 020 University Centre and serves the University Community from 8:00 A.M. to 11:30 AM and Noon to 3:00 P.M., Monday to Friday, with the exception of statutory holidays.

Mail Services Responsibilities

The following are the responsibilities of Mail Services:

  • To provide a centralized cost effective and efficient distribution system for official University of Guelph Mail.
  • To provide information, advice and training to clients of Mail Services
  • To act as an intermediary service for University departments with the Ontario Universities Inter University Transit Systems (IUTS)
  • To ensure compliance with the laws, regulations and rate structure of Canada Post.

Customer Responsibilities

The following are the responsibilities of the customer:

  • To ensure department staff are aware of and abide by the guidelines in this document
  • To notify Mail Services of changes in location, office hours, and personnel, including the names of visiting professors, to ensure mail is delivered accurately
  • To secure mail into bundles not larger than 4” high with two elastic bands, one across the width and one across the length of the bundled envelopes. Include in each bundle the proper Account Card.
  • In order to facilitate mail pick up, please notify Mail Services at least one day prior to pick up, if your volume of mail is unusually large.

Restrictions, Junk Mail and Dangerous Goods

The internal distribution of external commercial or business advertising matter, give-aways and/or promotional material are not allowed unless received directly from Canada Post, properly addressed to individuals and/or departments.

Should you receive unwanted, unsolicited mail, often referred to as junk mail, it is recommended you return it to the sender and demand to have your name removed from future mailings. Inter Department and outgoing mail will be processed and distributed only if it pertains to official University of Guelph activities. Official mail may include promotional material distributed on behalf of University of Guelph departments.

Mail Services assumes the good faith and integrity of University personnel in that University mail will be used for matters on official business only. However, as a courtesy, Mail Services will pick-up and forward to Canada Post personal mail provided the appropriate postage is affixed and the mail is bundled separately.

The University mail system must not be used for chain letters, distributing unauthorized advertising, or non official university documents.

Dangerous Goods

Items classified as dangerous goods cannot be handled or mailed by Mail Services and/or Canada Post. For information please contact Kevin Ecott, (519)824-4120 x52264 for procedures regarding the transport of dangerous goods.

6. Pick Up and Delivery Schedule

Mail is collected and delivered throughout the campus on a regular basis.

Departments wanting mail processed the same day and who have missed the mail pickup may bring their mail to the Mailroom before 1:30pm. This will ensure that the mail will reach Canada Post the same day.

7. Charges

As University departments exercise control over their mailing activities, the cost of postage and special services for outgoing mail is charged back to the customer through the Financial Reporting System (FRS).

Mail charges will be posted in FRS. The billing cut-off date will be the 28th of each month. Charges in FRS will include the postage costs plus the non-rebatable portion of HST. All postal rates are subject to the Harmonized Sales Tax (HST).

A University Department Account Card from Mail Services identifying the G.L. Account must accompany each bundle. The expense code for postage and special services is 64311. These Account Cards will be the method of identifying where costs are allocated.

Please contact Mail Services, (519)824-4120 52264 for Account Cards. Lost Cards must be reported to Mail Services immediately.

Requests for new Account Cards to identify separate (additional) accounts will not be provided unless the volume of mail to be charged exceeds 500 pieces per semester. Customers who do not meet the minimum quantity per semester may be charged the minimum fee for 500 pieces.

8. Basic Preparation

To help Mail Services operate effectively and efficiently, mail must be properly prepared by the sending department.

Preparation includes:

  • All envelopes must have a University of Guelph return address identifying the sending department
  • Flaps on unsealed envelopes must be overlapped
  • All mail must be pre-sorted into separate bundles as follows:
  • Each bundle with the exception of Inter Department and IUTS mail must be securely banded with two elastic bands, one across the width and one across the length of the bundled envelopes, with the Account Card captured on top.
  • mail that does not meet the above will be returned to the sender.

8.1     Inter Department Mail

Inter department envelopes are available from our current stationery supplier. These envelopes are designed to be used repeatedly.

Addressing information for inter department mail must include full department name, not initials, and a specific person’s name, if applicable.

These envelopes can only be used for Inter department mail and not for Inter University Transit System (IUTS) or Canada Post.

8.1.1.  Bulk Inter Department and Student Mail

Often the need to use address labels or to insert department flyers, circulars, announcements, etc. can be eliminated. Please contact Mail Services, (519)824-4120 x 52264 for advice.

All addressed bulk mailings, 50 or more similar pieces, must be pre-sorted and bundled by department.

Student bulk mailings are to be sorted and bundled by building number and then by student box number.

8.2 External Mail

Departments sending official University mail to addresses off campus are responsible for the proper preparation of all lettermail and parcels.

The following guidelines and appendices should eliminate unnecessary returns, delays, or excessive postage charges on outgoing mail.

8.2.1. External Addressing

Each piece of mail must clearly identify the name of the originating department in the top left hand corner of the envelope, under the University of Guelph logo. This will ensure that undeliverable mail can be returned to the sender.

All mail must be properly addressed. The recipient’s name, agency or company, street address or P.O. Box, city, province or state, country and postal code or zip code is required. The postal code must always appear last on the envelope and must reflect the proper address. No other information should be placed below the postal code.

Do not abbreviate international addresses, with the exception of the U.S.A. Use the complete spelling of a foreign city and country.


8.2.2. Enclosures

Mail must be enclosed in an appropriate envelope or parcel.

Items must be properly packed and safe to handle.

Restrictions apply to the mailing of certain items to foreign countries. Please contact Mail Services, (519)824-4120 x 52264, for information regarding restrictions and advice on how to package fragile or unusual material. Envelopes

  • Standard envelopes are available from our current stationery supplier.
  • Window envelopes must be matched with the insert to ensure the entire address will show through the window, even when the insert slides inside the envelope.
  • Mail Services will seal external mail envelopes. To facilitate this, the customers are asked to “fan” the flaps. “Fanning” is overlapping unsealed flaps.
  • Mail must also be faced so that all pieces are readable within a bundle without turning the envelopes. Parcels

All parcels must be packed securely. The recipient’s addressing information must be clearly printed in the centre of the parcel (on both sides) and the originating department in the top left hand corner.

Items classified as dangerous goods cannot be handled or mailed by Mail Services and/or Canada Post.

It is advisable to show the address of the sender and of the addressee inside the parcel and identified on the items as much as possible.

8.2.3. Lettermail Rates

Refer to APPENDIX C for POSTAL RATES – CANADA, UNITED STATES and INTERNATIONAL (OTHER COUNTRIES). Please note: these rates do not include HST which will be added and charged back as detailed in Section 7.0. Contact Mail Services, (519)824-4120 x52264 for assistance on additional rates and classifications not included in this appendix. Bulk Mail Rates

Departments mailing large volumes of printed matter may qualify for volume discount rates. Material must be identical in weight and size and total more than 1000 pieces per mailing. Contact Mail Services, (519)824-4120 x52264 for details.

8.3 U.S.A. and International Mail

All mail forwarded outside Canada falls under international rates and regulations which vary widely from country to country. Rates and types of services available are too numerous and complex to list.  Please contact Mail Services, (519)824-4120 x52264 to determine the proper rates, classification, and obtain the documents which may be required for customs declaration.

Failure to comply with the regulations can result in additional expenses and delays.

8.3.1. Custom Requirements

Letter mail and parcels going out of the country via Canada Post require appropriate Custom Documents completed by the sender. Exceptions are letters containing correspondence and Printed Papers that are known not to be dutiable. Mail Services, (519)824-4120 x52264 will provide you with the forms, and clarification of the regulations if required.

8.4 Business Reply Mail

A Department wishing to have mail returned, i.e. surveys, invitations, etc. in a postage paid envelope should use Business Reply Mail.

Business Reply mail is a contractual agreement with Canada Post and requires a permit number and business reply indicia issued by Canada Post. The permit is available for use by the department through Mail Services. As Canada Post is very strict on the enforcement of the format, do not design Business Reply mail pieces without contacting Mail Services, (519)824-4120 x52264.

9. Inter University Transit System (IUTS)

Operating under the Ontario Council of Universities, the IUTS provides a secure and reliable daily distribution service among Ontario Universities and other agencies pertaining to library books, small packages, teaching, research material and official University mail with no postage required. IUTS is a weekly delivery service.

10. Canada Post Special Services

Reference Websites:

Postal Code Look Up at: Canada Post
Yellow Pages Address Search at: canada411

Mail Services provides the following Canada Post services:

10.1 Registered

Registered Mail is an  optional service to Lettermail items. The mailer upon request to Mail Services will be provided with a proof of mailing and a signature is obtained from the addressee, or the addressee’s representative, before delivery is completed. Registered items are processed through the regular Lettermail stream.


XPRESSPOST is time sensitive service with a built in confirmation option which allows the customer to verify the delivery status of the item by calling a toll free number. This service provides a guaranteed speed (1 business day local, 2-3 business days between Canadian urban centres). Available for documents and packages, XPRESSPOST replaces domestic Special Delivery/Special Letter, Counter Expedited parcels and Commercial Air parcels service.

10.3 Priority Couriers

This is a guaranteed delivery service for urgent time sensitive items. In most cases items deposited at a postal outlet in any of the following 3 regions (Quebec/Ontario, Western provinces, Atlantic provinces) in Canada will be delivered to the address on the next business day. Across Canada service is generally next business day between most major centres. The Priority Courier Guarantee applies to all Priority Courier Shipments.

10.4 Insurance

Insurance is a service where Canada Post provides compensation for the loss, rifling or damage of mailable items if the requirements of the Indemnity subject are met.

Canada Post provides numerous other special services but are too lengthy to detail in this document. Please contact Mail Services, (519)824-4120 x52264 for details.

11. Couriers

Mail Services does not co-ordinate private couriers, with the exception of Canada Post Priority Courier.

For additional information, contact Purchasing Services, (519)824-4120 x52541, regarding Purolator, Federal Express, etc.

12. Helpful Hints

  • Keep your mail lists up-to-date
  • Canada Post applies a minimum surcharge of $0.13 on letter mail which does not include a postal code
  • Non-standard envelopes cost a premium
  • Letters should be folded in three and put in a standard envelope to get the best first class rate
  • Departments wanting mail processed the same day may bring their mail to the mailroom before 1:30pm
  • It is strongly recommended that persons expecting a courier item provide the sender with their correct name and proper University address (building, department, and very important – room number)
  • Undeliverable (dead letters) are destroyed after 10 days
  • First class Canadian lettermail does not require air mail identifiers under 500 Grams (3/16” thick)
  • Separate bundles: Inter Department, Canada, USA, International, IUTS
  • fan all envelopes to be sealed
  • Seal thick envelopes because the metering machine cannot perform this function
  • Give advance notice to Mail Services for large mailouts of 500 pieces or more so mail tubs can be provided
  • Where possible, use electronic mail
Appendix A
Valley 011 111 -
Foothill 012 112 -
Woodlands 013 113 -
Glacier 014 114 -
Horizon 015 121 -
Grasslands 016 122 -
Homestead 017 123 -
Tundra 018 124 -
Cove 019 131 -
Seaway 020 132 -
Harbour 021 133 -
Schooner 022 134 -
JOHNSTON HALL 031 210 550
MILLS HALL 035 220 -
MAIDS HALL 036 230 -
LAMBTON HALL 051 240 490
WATSON HALL 072 260 20
ADDINGTON 172 270 650
LENNOX-A 173 280 -
LENNOX-C 174 290 -
EAST - - -
Dundas 610 310 -
Lanark 620 320 -
Glengary 1-9 630 330 -
Glengary 10-12 631 330 -
East Town Houses 340 340 800
OVC 010 010 500
Appendix B

Canadian Provinces and Territories

Alberta AB Nova Scotia NS
British Columbia BC Ontario ON
Manitoba MB Prince Edward Island PE
New Brunswick NB Quebec QC
Newfoundland NF Saskatchewan SK
North West Territories NT Yukon Territory YT
United States and Outlying Areas
Alabama AL Montana MT
Alaska AK Nebraska NB
Arizona AZ Nevada NV
Arkansas AR New Hampshire NH
California CA New Jersey NJ
Colorado CO New Mexico NM
Connecticut CT New York NY
Delaware DE North Carolina NC
District of Columbia DC North Dakota ND
Florida FL Ohio OH
Georgia GA Oklahoma OK
Guam GU Oregon OR
Hawaii HI Pennsylvania PA
Idaho ID Puerto Rico PR
Illinois IL Rhode Island RI
Indiana IN South Carolina SC
Iowa IA South Dakota SD
Kansas KS Tennesee TN
Kentucky KY Texas TX
Louisiana LA Utah UT
Maine ME Vermont VT
Maryland MD Virgin Islands VI
Massachusetts MA Virginia VA
Michigan MI Wasington WA
Minnesota MN West Virginia WV
Mississippi MS Wisconsin WI
Missouri MO Wyoming WY
Appendix C - Postal Rates
standard letters and postcards up to 30g $0.85
standard letters and postcards 31 to 50g $1.20

other lettermail items (including non-standard/oversize items)

up to 100g $1.80
other lettermail items (including non-standard/oversize items) up to 200g $2.95
other lettermail items (including non-standard/oversize items) 200g to 300g $4.10
other lettermail items (including non-standard/oversize items) 300g to 400g $4.70
other lettermail items (including non-standard/oversize items) 400g to 500g $5.05
CANADA LETTERMAIL SIZES length width thickness
minimum standard letter and postcard size 14cm 9cm 0.18mm
maximum standard letter size 24.5cm 15cm 0.5cm
maximum standard postcard size 23.5cm 12.0cm 0.5cm
maximum oversize letter size 38cm 27cm 2cm


  1. Lettermail exceeding 38 cm in length, 27 cm in width or 2 cm in thickness must be posted at the applicable  Parcel Rate.
  2. Letters or cards paid by postage stamps that do not meet the ratio but are within the maximum standard sizes or that are smaller than the minimum size required for standards lettermail are to be charged at the standard lettermail rate.
Standard letters and postcards up to 30g $1.20
Standard letters and postcards 31 to 50g $1.80
USA letter post sizes Length Width Thickness
minimum standard letter post 14cm 9cm 0.18cm
maximum standard letter post 24.5cm 15cm 5mm
minimum oversize letter post 24.5cm 15cm 5mm
maximum oversize letter post 38cm 27cm 2cm
minimum postcards 14cm 9cm -
maximum postcards 14.8cm 10.5cm -
minimum letter packages 14cm 9cm -
maximum letter packages Greatest Dimensions: length, width or depth 1.05m; length plus girth 2m

Notes: Incentive letter-post rates are available under Agreement, contact Mail Services, (519)824-4120 x52264, for more information.

letters and postcards up to 30g 2.50
letters and postcards 31g to 50g $3.60

Contact Mail Services, (519)824-4120 x 52264 for other rates