eLivermore.com - By Bill Nale

 

Mailing DVDs and CDs with 1 Stamp
By Bill Nale

Back to: eLivermore.com Home Page

Synopsis:  This web page provides information on mailing a DVD or CD with 1 Stamp,
and gives the weight of various media and packing materials for mailing DVDs, CDs, and other media.


Contents
of this
Page

Weight Summary    The most common searches to this page ask for the weight
Postal Rates Summary    Summary of postal rates as they apply here.
The Problem    Getting the lowest cost solution for mailing a CD or DVD
The CD or DVD    The product itself is most of the weight
The Case    Paper sleeve, jewel case, etc.  Cost, weight, disk protection, presentation.
The Package    The mailing package.  Cost, weight, and disk protection.
Putting it all together    Cost and weight comparisons
Recommendation    Recommended solutions for mailing
Additional Disks    What if I want to mail multiple disks?
Weighing your Package    Weight can vary.  Check before mailing.
Protecting your CD or DVD   
Green Solution     Reduce, reuse, recycle.
Alternatives     What about the retail mailing boxes?
Disclaimer & feedback  
About This Page

    Why did I write this page.

Note: This page was updated on 1/29/12 for the new postage rates that went into effect on 1/22/2012.



The one stamp solution
(See Note -
possible 20 cent adder for "rigid")

DVD, sleeve, clasp envelope, and Stamp.
Total cost for sleeve, envelope & postage:  56 to 66 cents
The stamp is 45 cents of that.

The deluxe version
Slim DVD case with printed insert.
This case will hold 2 DVDs, but only one is included here.
Total cost for DVD case, envelope & postage: $2.50 to $2.73
Postage is $2.12 of that.  Weight is 3.5 oz.
The heavy weight matte photo paper used for the insert would add another 22 cents
The blank DVD will run you another 22 to 40 cents in both cases.
* Note that if the DVD is considered "Rigid", it will add 20 cents to the postage.  Some postal clerks will think it is "rigid", some will not.
I have never had one returned for that reason.

Questions Answered on this web page:

How much does a CD weigh?
What is the Cheapest way to mail a CD?
How many stamps to mail a CD?
How much does a VHS tape weigh?
How much does an audio cassette tape weigh?
How much does a DVD weigh?
What is the Cheapest way to mail a DVD?
How many stamps to mail a DVD?
How much does a mini-DVD weigh
How much does a mini-DV tape weigh?

Weight Summary

I have added this weight summary near the beginning as many searches to this page are asking for the weight.

Item Weight Comments

   Media

   
CD or DVD 0.58oz Ranges from 0.55 to 0.58 across brands that I have weighed.  Thickness is about 0.0575"
Mini CD or DVD 0.244oz Weighed 100 at 24.4 oz.  I did not weigh mini-DVDs, but they should be about the same as CDs.
Mini-DV tape alone 0.65 oz Tape commonly used in digital camcorders.
Mini-DV tape in case 1.2 oz Standard clear plastic case, including label card.  Full factory wrapped tape in case weighs the same.
VHS Tape alone 6.9 oz Weight will vary among tape types.  This is only the VHS tape, without any cardboard or plastic case
VHS Tape in cardboard case 7.4 oz Includes the standard cardboard case, which weighs about 0.5oz
Audio Cassette alone 1.43 oz 90 minute audio cassette.
Audio Cassette in plastic case 2.8 oz 90 minute audio cassette with a standard clear plastic case and card stock liner note.

   CD/DVD Cases

   
Sleeve 0.11 oz Basic paper or plastic sleeve.  Some may weigh a bit more.
Jewel Case (Slim) 1.5 oz Slim version of the CD Jewel case.  Weight with no printed material.
Jewel Case (Standard) 2.5 oz Standard CD Jewel case. Weight with no printed material.
DVD case (Slim) 2.37 oz Weight with no printed material.
DVD case (Standard) 2.62 oz Weight with no printed material.  Multi-disk cases with hinged plastic inserts will weigh more.

   Packaging

   
Clasp Envelope (#55) 0.323 oz Standard 6x9 inch (#55) "Clasp Envelope" readily available at many stores.
Bubble Envelope (#0) 0.62 oz 6x9 inch Bubble pack envelope (#0), readily available at many stores.

The weight was obtained my weighting multiple items (5 to 20) at once to increase the accuracy.  An inexpensive digital scale was used, with +/- 0.1oz accuracy claimed.  Note that the weight will vary across brands and styles.


US Postal Service Postage Rates for first class mail
Provided here for reference.  Go to the Post Office Web site for complete information
On April 17, 2011 the postal rates increased.  The extra ounce rate went from 17 to 20 cents.  Those increases are reflected here.

Note that the new rates are quite odd as they would apply to mailing CDs and DVDs.
    A Letter that is rigid is only subject to a $0.20 adder.
    A Large Envelope, for which you pay more, cannot be rigid.
       If it is, you pay Package 1st class rates.

Package weight Postage Stamps
Letters (max thickness is 1/4 inch, max weight is 3.5 oz.)
Up to 1 ounce 0.45 1  44 cent stamp
Up to 2 ounces 0.65 1  44 cent stamp plus  1  20 cent stamp
Up to 3 ounces 0.85 1  44 cent stamp plus  2  20 cent stamps
Up to 3.5 ounces 1.05 1  44 cent stamp plus  3  20 cent stamps
20 cent nonmachinable surcharge applies if one or more nonmachineable characteristics apply
Large Envelopes - Flats  (Max thickness 3/4 inch)
Up to 1 ounce 0.90 2  44 cent stamps
Up to 2 ounces 1.10 Add 1 20 cent stamp to 1 ounce rate
Up to 3 ounces 1.30 Add 2 20 cent stamps to 1 ounce rate
Up to 4 ounces 1.50 Add 3 20 cent stamps to 1 ounce rate
Up to 5 ounces 1.70 Add 4 20 cent stamps to 1 ounce rate
Up to 6 ounces 1.90 Add 5 20 cent stamps to 1 ounce rate
Up to 7 ounces 2.10 Add 6 20 cent stamps to 1 ounce rate
Packages  (Must use if it cannot qualify as a letter and is rigid)
Up to 1 ounce 1.95  
Up to 2 ounces 1.95  
Up to 3 ounces 1.95  
Up to 4 ounces 2:12 Add 1 17 cent stamps to 3 ounce rate
Up to 5 ounces 2.29 Add 2 17 cent stamps to 3 ounce rate
Up to 6 ounces 2.46 Add 3 17 cent stamps to 3 ounce rate
Up to 7 ounces 2.63 Add 4 17 cent stamps to 3 ounce rate

Other Postal Requirements

You must add 20 cents to the first class postage if the package is non-machineable.
   This could be Rigid, non-uniform thickness, address parallel to the shorter dimension, has a clasp, string, etc.
   A square package is non-machineable!!.  Must be rectangular.  Length divided by height must be at least 1.3, and not more than 2.5.

You must use the Large Envelope classification if it is:
   Greater than 3.5 oz.
   Length greater than 11.5" or height greater than 6.125"
   Greater than 1/4 inch thick (OK for a disk in a sleeve, but the DVD case exceeds this)

You must use the Package Rate instead of Large Envelope if it is:
   Rigid, non-rectangular, or not uniformly thick.
   Note that the DVD case falls into this category.

There is also a "nonmachinable" surcharge for letters that fall into any of several criteria, which includes having a clasp for closure.  It is not entirely clear if there is an issue if the clasp itself is not used, and is covered up by the flap.  I assume that this is not an issue, and have never had a problem with this, even when having the local post office determine the charge.  If you are concerned about this you can use a "Catalog" envelope instead, which does not have the clasp.

One Stamp Solution Caveats

Note that if the DVD is considered "Rigid", it will add 20 cents to the postage.  Some postal clerks will think it is "rigid", some will not.
I have never had one returned for that reason when mailing with one stamp.
I did have one returned for weight, indicating that it was over 1 ounce.  When I took it to the post office, they weighed it as exactly one ounce, on two different scales.  However, they charged me an extra 17 cents anyway, as the clerk considered it to be rigid (a 20 cent adder) but let me off with an extra 17 cents, as that is what it said on the return slip.  Small favors!!

I have also had a clerk weigh one as over 1 ounce recently.  Must have been the return address label.  I had weighed it as 1.0 ounces.  I hand write the return address label now (it is that close).

Consider yourself warned.

1st Class postage rates over the years:

Date

1 oz rate

Additional oz

7/1/1863

3 cents (half oz)

 

10/1/1883

2 cents (half oz)

 

7/1/1885

2 cents

 

11/2/1917

3 cents

 

7/1/1919

2 cents

 

7/6/1932

3 cents

 

8/1/1958

4 cents

 

1/7/1963

5 cents

 

1/7/1968

6 cents

 

5/16/1971

8 cents

 

3/2/1974

10 cents

 

12/31/1975

13 cents

11 cents

5/29/1978

15 cents

13 cents

3/22/1981

18 cents

17 cents

11/1/1981

20 cents

17 cents

2/17/1985

22 cents

17 cents

4/3/1988

25 cents

20 cents

2/3/1991

29 cents

23 cents

1/1/1995

32 cents

23 cents

1/10/1999

33 cents

22 cents

1/7/2001

34 cents

21 cents

7/1/2001

37 cents

23 cents

6/30/2002

37 cents

23 cents

1/8/2006

39 cents

24 cents

5/14/2007

41 cents

17 cents

5/12/2008

42 cents

17 cents

5/11/2009

44 cents

17 cents

4/17/2011

44 cents

20 cents

1/22/2012

45 cents

20 cents

 


The Problem

You have made a DVD of the your vacation with the kids, and you want to inflict it on ...er...share it with the relatives.
and / or:
You have taken far too many photos of your kid's sports team, and want to put them on CD-R or DVD-R and mail them to the team members.

If you are not careful, the cost of mailing will far exceed the cost of making the disks.
If you are doing just a few, this is not an issue, but if you are doing very many, it can add up.

After trying several mailing options I came across a method that requires only 1 stamp, with a total packaging and mailing cost of just over 50 cents.  So far I have had no problems.

The method consists of a 6" x 9" clasp envelope, a paper or plastic disk sleeve, the CD or DVD itself, and a stamp.
Weight:  exactly 1 ounce.

The key to keeping the cost down is using items which are a standard size and manufactured in very high volume.  The 6x9 clasp envelope meets this requirement.
Note:  Do not seal the envelope with the clasp.  Use the gummed adhesive on the envelope and cover the clasp.


The CD or DVD
The CD or DVD itself is most of the one ounce solution, weighing 0.58oz.  I use the white printable CDs if I want a nice label.  That is the only type I buy anymore, as they are now inexpensive.  Paper labels are not advisable for long term reliability, and add to the cost and weight.  CDs and DVDs with a white printable surface are readily available, and at good prices if you check around.  Ink Jet Printers which will print on CDs and DVDs can be had for $99 or less.  They also work as regular paper / photo printers, so you are not getting a special printer just for CDs.  One printer does all.  Epson makes several models, and HP also has at least one model.

I determined the weight by weighing 20 disks at a time.  I used three different disk brands and had a range from 0.55 to 0.58 oz per disk.  The highest was the white printable disks.

DVD brand is a matter of personal choice.  Name brands can be had very cheaply.  Costco has Sony DVD-R 100 packs, with printable white surface for $29.99.  You will find printable disks cheaper on sale at other places, but once in a while Costco has a 2 for 1 coupon, making it a great deal, if you want 200 disks.  You do pay sales tax on the pre-coupon price, however, as it is a "manufacturer's coupon".

Disk Type Cost Weight Comments
DVD 22 to 40 cents 0.58oz I use DVD-R rather than DVD+R as there are many DVD players that will not play the +R disks.
CD 10 to 30 cents 0.58oz  
Mini CD or DVD   0.244oz Mini DVDs are used in some camcorders.  Mini CDs and DVDs are more expensive than full size.

The cost for Ink for printing the labels is very difficult to estimate, but can be significant if you do full coverage in color.  Similar to a 4x6 print if you cover the entire disk.  I often put a photo on the left or bottom and some text on the rest, leaving most of the disk white.  This saves ink.


The Case
The choice of case will depend on the final product.  The table below lists several options.

Case Cost (sale to standard price) Weight * Disk Protection Uses
Sleeve $0.03 to $0.10 0.11 oz Scratch protection.  No mechanical support Basic protection of the disk.
Jewel Case (Slim) $0.10 to $0.18 1.5 oz Some mechanical support, but jewel case is more fragile than the disk. Not much fancier than the sleeve
Jewel Case (Standard) $0.10 to $0.18 2.5 oz Same as slim jewel case, but even more prone to breaking. Useful to add artwork or a book.
DVD case (Slim) $0.30 to $0.50 2.37 oz Very good disk protection.  Flexibility makes it durable Good presentation & storage
DVD case (Standard) $0.30 to $0.70 2.62 oz Very good disk protection.  Flexibility makes it durable Good presentation & storage

* The weight was obtained my weighting multiple items (5 to 20) at once to increase the accuracy.  An inexpensive digital scale was used, with +/- 0.1oz accuracy claimed.  Note that the weight will vary across brands and styles.
Costs include both a good sale or online price (the left number), and a standard price that you might expect at a store (the right number).

The Sleeve

If your goal is to get the disk sent cheaply, nothing beats the plastic or paper sleeve.  It is cheap and provides basic scratch protection to the disk.  It does not provide mechanical support, but that is generally not required.  I use these when sending photo disks or home videos to the relatives, or any time I need to send a disk that does not require a case, or have a "product" feel.  The home videos that I send are stored in a multi-disk zippered case by the relatives, so no DVD case is necessary.  That makes the sleeve reusable.  The weight of 0.11 oz was measured by weighing 20 of them, getting a reading of 2.2 oz.  I use the plastic ones.  The paper sleeves sometimes weigh a bit more, which could go over the 1 ounce, although I have some that are 0.10 oz.. which is less than the plastic ones.


Sleeve

Jewel cases

Jewel cases do provide a little bit better presentation to the person receiving the disk.  However, they are much more fragile than the disk itself.  You are much more likely to have the recipient receive a broken jewel case than a damaged disk.  For this reason it is recommended that a bubble mailer be used with a jewel case.  Full size jewel cases do allow for paper inserts, including ones that can be read from the edge (spine).  Installing this is a somewhat time consuming operation, however, as it involves taking jewel case apart.  Jewel cases come in both the standard size (the mainstay of music CDs) and slim.  The slim ones are generally a little less fragile but have no capability for artwork.  I rarely use CD jewel cases for mailing.  The main reason for mailing a jewel case is if you are sending a product, such as a music CD, that came in a jewel case.
 


Full Size Jewel Case

Slim Jewel Case

DVD Cases

DVD cases provide a very good presentation, if you are going for a "product" feel.  Made from a much more flexible plastic than jewel cases, they are also very durable and will survive mailing very well.  They generally come with a clear plastic slip cover to insert a slightly trimmed 8.5 x 11 sheet with artwork which wraps around the case.  I use these for the DVDs that I make of my kids sports teams.  I put a team photo and a list of the players on the cover, and label the spine (edge) so that it can be read when stored on a shelf with other DVDs.  It makes a very nice, and inexpensive, memento for the kids.  Most of the time I don't need to mail them, as I give them out at the end of season party.  I generally use the slim cases, as they still provide an adequate spine label.  My favorite is a dual DVD slim case that sells for 40 cents ($7.99 for 20) at Frys made by Meritline.  These have come in very handy when I produced a DVD-ROM of photos (no, they would not fit on a CD) and another team parent produced a team video.  Both fit in the one slim case, with artwork.  This particular case puts one disk on each side, eliminating the spot often used for a booklet or advertisements on commercial movies.  Other cases have an additional hinged plastic piece for additional disk(s), but that type adds weight.  The full size DVD case has a pretty standard thickness of about 0.6", while slim DVD cases vary in thickness.


Full Size DVD Case

Slim DVD Case


Bottom to top: Full DVD case, slim DVD case, Full Jewel case, Slim jewel case.


The Packaging

There are two major packaging alternatives, listed in the table below.

Packaging Cost (sale to standard price) Weight * Disk Protection Uses
Clasp or Catalog Envelope $0.08 to $0.11 0.323 oz Adequate protection Mailing disks with sleeves or DVD cases
Bubble Envelope $0.32 to $0.60 0.62 oz Better impact protection.
Not much better flex protection
Mailing jewel cases
Mailing Video Tapes

* The weight was obtained by weighting multiple items (5 to 10) at once and dividing by the quantity.  An inexpensive digital scale was used, with +/- 0.1oz accuracy claimed.  Note that the weight will vary between brands and styles.
Costs include both a good sale or online price (the left number), and a standard price that you might expect at a store (the right number).

#55 Clasp Envelope

I am using a #55 (6" x 9") Clasp Envelope, which is made from 28 lb brown kraft paper.  I do not use the clasp when sealing, however, as that is more likely to get caught in post office equipment.  The envelopes are available without the clasp for a slightly higher price.  They are called "Catalog envelopes" and are harder to find, although office supply stores carry them.  I had originally gone to an office supply store in search of cheap bubble mailers that I had originally started using for VHS video tapes, and continued to use for DVDs.  When I saw how cheap and light the clasp envelopes were ($7.99 for 100) I was sold   There is not a great deal of mechanical support for the disk, but this does not appear to be a problem.  I originally added a piece of poster board folded around the CD sleeve for mechanical support, but quit doing that when I ran out of scrap poster board, and realized that I could save 23 cents (at the time) of postage by leaving it out.  I have since noted that NetFlix does not use any kind of mechanical support either, which helped to validate the approach.

The clasp envelope is probably not the best thing for a plastic jewel case due to their fragile nature, but I rarely mail them.  It is also probably not good for a video tape.  The clasp envelope works very well for much more flexible DVD cases, however.

Clasp envelope vs. Catalog envelope.  The difference is that the Catalog envelope does not include the metal clasp, which is not necessary for this purpose.  The Catalog envelope is probably preferred because the lack of a clasp lowers the weight very slightly (I have not weighed it), and it is theoretically possible that the clasp could be a source of damage to the disk.  The Catalog envelopes are used in far lower quantities than Clasp envelopes, which means that they are harder to find, and more expensive (3 to 4 cents more each).  If you buy the 100 pack of Clasp envelopes, you may also have other uses for them.  Many stores sell the clasp envelopes very cheaply in 20 or 25 packs also.

Note:  Officially a Clasp qualifies a letter as nonmachinable according to post office standards.  This is because a clasp can get hung up on sorting equipment.  Presumably there is no issue if you do not use the clasp, as it is then covered by the gummed flap.  This is not specifically stated in the postal standards, however.  The catalog envelope avoids this issue completely, but they are more expensive and harder to fine.  The nonmachineable surcharge is 20 cents for Letters.  So DO NOT USE THE CLASP.

 

#0 Bubble Mailer 

These provide a lot of protection, but not a great deal of flex protection. They are surprisingly light weight, but not light enough to stay within an ounce with a CD or DVD.  The bubble mailer is probably best for mailing a CD Jewel case, as the bubble pack provides enough additional protection to the somewhat fragile jewel case.  They are also good for video tapes.  The #0 size is perfect for a CD jewel case or VHS tape (although a tight fit, and it may not work in all brands of envelopes).  They work well for a DVD case also, but the clasp envelope is much cheaper for that purpose.  The extra protection provided by the bubble pack is probably unnecessary for the already flexible DVD case.

Note that the Bubble Mailer would generally exceed the 1/4 inch limit for the Letter category.


Putting it all together

The table below shows all combinations of packaging and cases.

Case Type Case cost Packaging
Type
Package cost weight
(inc one
 DVD)
Postage Total Cost
Postage, Package, Case (not inc DVD)
Comments
sleeve $0.03 to $0.10 Clasp envelope $0.08 to $0.11 1.0 oz $0.44 $0.56 to $0.66 The One Stamp Solution.  Note possible 20 cent adder for "rigid"
sleeve $0.03 to $0.10 Bubble mailer $0.32 to $0.60 1.3 oz $1.10 $1.45 to $1.80 "Large Envelope" rate due to thickness
Jewel case, slim $0.10 to $0.18 Clasp envelope $0.08 to $0.11 2.4 oz $0.85 $1.03 to $1.14 Not recommended
Jewel case, slim $0.10 to $0.18 Bubble mailer $0.32 to $0.60 2.7 oz $1.95 $2.37 to $2.73 Parcel rate due to thickness & rigidity *
Jewel case, std $0.10 to $0.18 Clasp envelope $0.08 to $0.11 3.4 oz $2.12 $2.30 to $2.41 Not recommended.  Parcel rate due to thickness & rigidity *
Jewel case, std $0.10 to $0.18 Bubble mailer $0.32 to $0.60 3.7 oz $2.12 $2.54 to $2.90 Parcel rate due to thickness & rigidity *
DVD case, slim $0.30 to $0.50 Clasp envelope $0.08 to $0.11 3.3 $2.12 $2.50 to $2.73 Excellent Product feel.  Parcel rate due to thickness & rigidity *
DVD case, slim $0.30 to $0.50 Bubble mailer $0.32 to $0.60 3.6 oz $2.12 $2.74 to $3.22 Parcel rate due to thickness, weight, & rigidity *
DVD case full $0.30 to $0.70 Clasp envelope $0.08 to $0.11 3.5 $2.12 $2.50 to $2.93 Parcel rate due to thickness & rigidity *
DVD case full $0.30 to $0.70 Bubble mailer $0.32 to $0.60 3.8 oz $2.12 $2.74 to $3.42 Parcel rate due to thickness, weight, & rigidity *

*  The rigidity causes the parcel rate to be used instead of the "Large Envelope" rate, costing an additional ~$0.65.  You MIGHT be able to use the "Large Envelope" rate for some of these.

The weight includes one CD or DVD, the case, and the package.  It does not include a printed paper insert for the DVD case or jewel case.
The total cost does NOT include CD/DVD, ink to print on the CD, or the paper for the printed insert.
If you are shipping a movie in its DVD case or a music album in its jewel case, expect some extra weight from the printed material.
Jewel cases are not recommended to be mailed with a clasp envelope due to the fragile nature of the jewel case.


Recommendation

Application Packaging Package & shipping
General mailing of a CD or DVD without any "product" feel to it: Clasp Envelope & sleeve $0.56 to $0.66 *
"Product" feel, with artwork on the case Clasp Envelope & slim DVD case $2.50 to $2.73
If you MUST mail a jewel case (I.E. music album with jewel case) Bubble mailer & jewel case $2.54 to $2.90

So buy a package or box of 6 x 9 Clasp or catalog envelopes, and box of sleeves, and some slim DVD cases (the dual disk cases if you can get them) and you will be ready for almost anything.  If you really need to mail jewel cases, get some bubble mailers also.  They are also handy for a variety of applications.  Do not use the clasp to close the envelope, however.

* Note that the top entry might have a 20 cent adder if considered "rigid"


Additional Disks

Since the disk is most of the ounce, adding another disk will add another ounce in most cases, until the quantity gets to 4 or 5 depending on the exact weights.  Since additional ounces are $0.17 and they can fit in one envelope, this is still cheaper than sending the disks individually.  17 cent stamps are readily available at the post office, including the vending machines.

Disk Quantity Packaging & Case Weight Postage
1 Clasp Envelope & 1 Sleeve 1.0 oz $0.45 *
2 Clasp Envelope & 2 Sleeves 1.7 oz $0.65 *
3 Clasp Envelope & 3 Sleeves 2.4 oz $0.85 *
Above 3 probably exceeds 1/4 inch, so the "large envelope" rates are used.
4 Clasp Envelope & 4 Sleeves 3.1 oz $1.50
5 Clasp Envelope & 5 Sleeves 3.8 oz $1.50
       
1 Clasp Envelope & 1 slim DVD case 3.3 oz $2.12
2 Clasp Envelope & 1 slim DVD case (holds 2 disks) 3.9 oz $2.12

* Possible 20 cent adder if considered "rigid"


Weighing your package

Weights can vary across vendor and style, so you should always weight your package, or take it to the post office.  I have used an inexpensive digital scale and an extremely cheap mechanical letter scale that has turned out to be amazingly accurate.  I have also taken my one ounce combo to the post office and weighed it on their much more impressive looking scale, with the same result:  exactly one ounce.  Finally, when I had a postal clerk weigh it on their scale behind the counter, it came out so exactly to the ounce that she had the neighboring clerk weigh it also, with the same result.  The clasp envelopes that I am using are made from 28lb kraft paper which is the typical weight.


Protecting your CD or DVD

Everything that I ship is replaceable.  If the CD or DVD gets damaged in shipment, I can just burn another one.  I have never had one damaged, however.  Even using the clasp envelope and sleeve, it is probably more likely that the CD or DVD will be bad for some other reason such as incompatibilities of particular disks than from shipping damage.

Still, if you are shipping your $24.99 movie to a friend to watch - or more to the point you sending THEIR $24.99 movie back to them - you may want to take appropriate caution.

I do not subscribe to NetFlix, but I have seen and handled one of their mailers.  They weight in at about 0.8 oz including the disk, and do not have mechanical support.  I'm sure they have taken great care to design their package for minimum damage, but they do not seem to include a stiffener at all.  If anything their envelope would likely supply less mechanical protection than the clasp envelope.


Green Solution

Green solutions are in priority order:  Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle.
This method of shipping is very low on material usage.  The sleeve is reusable, and the envelope is recyclable.  It also uses materials already available in high volume production.


Alternatives

Many CD and DVD mailing solutions can be found at your local store or online.

The issue with the ones found at the store is price.  CD or DVD mailers tend to be sold in small quantities for a high price.  Often $1.00 or more for a disposable mailer.

Online merchants often have good solutions at a low price.  If you are going to be mailing a lot of CDs or DVDs you may consider them.

The advantage of the clasp envelope solution is that you can buy the materials locally at a very low price, and the envelopes and sleeves can be used for other purposes.


Disclaimer

This information is based on my experiences and does not constitute post office policy in any way.  There is no guarantee that any specific combination of envelope / case / disk will be within 1 ounce.  There is no guarantee that a specific mailing method will not result in damage to a disk.  Please use your own judgment.  Consult the US Post Office for complete regulations.  Postage prices listed are for US domestic service.

Send any comments to webservant@eLivermore.com


 

About eLivermore.com
eLivermore.com is a community service for Livermore, California, and the surrounding cities (Pleasanton, Dublin, San Ramon)
Most of eLivermore.com is material of local interest. 
This and one other page (unit conversions) are of interest to a wider audience.
More information about eLivermore.com is available here.

About This Page

I decided to write this page after researching an inexpensive way to mail DVD videos of my kids to the relatives.  Yes, they do actually like receiving them, and not just for use as coasters.

Initially I was sending VHS tapes in a #0 Bubble Envelope.  That was heavy and expensive, but probably still the best solution for VHS.
Around 2003, when making DVDs had become very practical, I re-issued the entire set in DVD, providing the grandparents a small zipper case which replaced a drawer full of VHS tapes.  This was timed as an 80th birthday present for my mother-in-law, along with a DVD player.  When shipping new "episodes" the search went on for an inexpensive solution. 

I searched the web for solutions and came up pretty much empty.  There was one page about using surplus bubble pack and cutting up a paper grocery bag, then putting the whole thing together with tape. That didn't seem very practical, and would certainly be over one ounce.  After also finding the retail solutions expensive and heavy, I searched the local office supply store and came up with the one stamp solution.

I started writing up this page with just the one stamp solution, but then got completely carried away.  This page is the result.  I hope you find it useful.  Feedback always welcome.

Bill Nale
eLivermore.com

 

12/6/06
Update: 7/8/08 (to indicate that rigid Large Envelopes must use Parcel rate)
   ---other updates due to postage increases.
Update 1/29/2012 due to postal rate increase