Some documents need to be rolled and placed in tube containers when being shipped to avoid getting damaged. Mailing documents like charts, art, blueprints, maps, and other items have a higher risk of getting destroyed when they are sent flat. Mailing tubes require different handling than a flat parcel. Here’s how to ship important documents in a tube.
Gently roll the document and insert it in an appropriately sized tube. It’s a good idea to place an extra delivery and return addresses inside the tube before you seal it. This will allow the Post Office to identify it and mail it if the label on the outside of the tube comes off.
Seal the document tube’s two ends with plastic caps. Secure the caps to the tube by sealing it with packaging tape.
Address a mailing label with the recipient’s address and place it in the middle of the length of the tube. Wrap the label around the tube, but ensure that the label doesn’t overlap itself and obscure the address.
Add a return address on the mailing label or place close to the end cap, to the left of the address label. Alternatively, print or type the address in legible handwriting, with a dark pen or permanent marker near the center of the tube. Make sure the address can be read from arm’s length. Place a piece of clear tape over the labels to prevent the text on the label from smearing when exposed to moisture.
Take the document tube to the Post Office to be weighed and/or stamped. Place stamps near the right end cap. Mail the tube via First-Class mail if the tube is under 13 ounces.
Mail the tube via Priority mail if the tube exceeds 13 ounces. Add “Priority Mail” stickers to the tube. Place them to the right of the address or to the left of the postage.
Add additional services, if preferred, to the delivery options, such as insurance, delivery confirmation, or signature required.