Mailing Envelopes

The United States Postal Service (USPS) establishes regulations for the mailing of business and personal correspondence. The Domestic Mail Manual provides a comprehensive list of business mailing requirements including bar coding, graphic restrictions, acceptable areas to place the address, and mandatory unprinted zones. Order the manual or view the latest envelope design requirements online at usps.com. While there, read or sign up for Deliver magazine, the leading online resource for mail marketing strategies brought to you by the USPS.

The envelope mailability template is a convenient guide to the proper ratio of a mail piece's length to height. It shows the minimum size of an acceptable mailing piece and the dimensions that are subject to a surcharge for first or third-class pieces weighing up to one ounce. The USPS requires a height-to-length ratio to fall between 1 to 1.3 and 1 to 2.5. Mailing pieces that are outside these ratios will be subject to a surcharge. On this template, a standard envelope will have an upper right corner that falls within the shaded area.

To Avoid a Surcharge

  • Minimum of 3.5 x 5 inches
  • Maximum of 6.125 x 11.5 inches
  • Maximum thickness is .25 inches
  • Aspect ratio (length divided by height) falls¬†between 1.3 and 2.5

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