address validation

The verification and correction of postal addresses to help ensure parcels are rated accurately and delivered on time. See Address Validation.

API environments

The APIs provide a Production environment and a separate Sandbox environment. See API Environments.


Army Post Office. See also DPO and FPO. For APO cutoff times, see the Cutoff Times FAQ. For customs requirements, see the Domestic Customs Form FAQ.


Automated Package Verification. APV is a USPS® program that verifies that postage is accurate and applies adjustments if necessary. See USPS Automated Package Verification.

auto refill

Automatic replenishment of a PB Postage Account by a pre-defined amount whenever the balance falls below a pre-defined threshold. See When does auto refill trigger?

base URL

The common prefix in the URLs for a set of API operations, such as for the Ecommerce API operations. The Sandbox and Production environments have different base URLs. See API Environments.


See Cross-Border Delivery Service.


Also called CN 22, this is a single-ply customs form that can be attached directly to a parcel. See the table in this FAQ.

Consolidation Center

A CBDS Hub. Merchants who use CBDS ship their parcels to CBDS Hubs, also called Consolidation Centers, where Pitney Bowes ensures compliance before shipping the parcels to their international destinations. For a list of hubs, see CBDS Hubs.


Also called CP 72, this is either a multi-ply or single-ply customs form, depending on the destination. See the table in this FAQ.

Cross-Border Delivery Service

The PB Cross-Border Delivery Service (CBDS) ships both internationally and domestically and ensures parcels comply with international regulations. See Pitney Bowes Cross-Border Delivery Service (CBDS).

cubic pricing

Rates based on parcel size and shipping distance instead of on parcel weight. See What is USPS cubic pricing?

delivery line

The portion of the address that includes any of the following: street name, street number, apartment number, PO BOX, secondary address, urbanization name. This is also called the delivery address line.

delivery point

A 2-digit number used by USPS in combination with the 9-digit ZIP code to identify a deliverable address. You can find more information on delivery points at the Wikipedia Delivery Point page.


Owner of an account that gives access to the Pitney Bowes Ecommerce APIs. See Developer Account.

dimensional (DIM) weight pricing

Applies to parcels that are large and relatively light for their sizes. Rates are based on volume and a volumetric divisor. See What is USPS dimensional weight pricing?


Diplomatic Post Office. See also APO and FPO. For DPO cutoff times, see the Cutoff Times FAQ. For customs requirements, see the Domestic Customs Form FAQ.


Fleet Post Office. See also APO and DPO. For FPO cutoff times, see the Cutoff Times FAQ. For customs requirements, see the Domestic Customs Form FAQ.


Girth is a parcel measurement calculated by the following equation:

girth = 2 * ( height + width )

See also: How is girth calculated? and Entering Dimensions.

Harmonized System code

A tariff-classification number for a commodity based on the six-digit Harmonized System (HS). Most countries use the six-digit HS codes as the basis for their tariff classifications and add additional digits for more detail. To retrieve a predicted HS code, use the Predict HS Code API.

HS code

See Harmonized System code.


Intelligent Mail barcode. A barcode used by USPS to sort and track letters and flats. See What is an IMb?


Intelligent Mail package barcode. A barcode used by USPS to track a parcel. See What is an IMpb?

Importation costs

For a CBDS Shipment, the duties and taxes charged at a destination country’s border. Importation costs might also include a disbursement fee. See CBDS Invoices.

induction postal code

The postal code where a shipment or shipments are tendered to a carrier. This can be different from the Sender’s address.

last line

The city, state, and postal code portion of an address.


An end-of-day document that combines all the days shipments on a single form or electronic record, depending on the carrier. See Create a Manifest.


A shipper within the Pitney Bowes system. When you print a label through the APIs, you do so on behalf of a merchant. See Merchants.

military addresses

See APO, DPO, and FPO.


A standard for token-based authentication and authorization. The Pitney Bowes Ecommerce APIs use OAuth to identify and authenticate the developer account making an API request. See Generate an OAuth Token.

PB Delivery and PB Returns

Provides postpaid shipping for deliveries and returns. See Create a PB Delivery Label and Create a PB Returns Label.

PB Expedited

Provides domestic and international shipping through USPS®. See Create a PB Expedited Delivery Label and Create a PB Expedited Returns Label.

PB Facilities

Hubs used when shipping for PB Delivery, Returns, and Fulfillment. For a list of hubs, For a list of PB Facilities, see


Identifiers used when shipping with Pitney Bowes to specify the merchant and shipment facilities. See PB IDs.

PB Postage Account

The account used to pay shipping costs. Both developers and merchants can have PB Postage Accounts. A merchant will have a PB Postage Account if paying for postage directly, as described in Manage Merchant Accounts. For FAQs on PB Postage Accounts, see Payments FAQs.

Production environment

Prints labels for real-world shipments. See API Environments and Production Environment.

QR code

A two-dimensional barcode used to print a shipping label. See QR Code.


Adding funds to a PB Postage Account through either the Refill API or the Merchant Portal. See How do I fill my PB Postage Account with funds?

Sandbox environment

Prints test labels. See API Environments and Sandbox Environment.

soft pack

A flexible package that adheres and conforms to the item being packaged. See How are rates calculated for USPS soft packs?

transportation cost

For a CBDS Shipment, the international shipping charges and any accessorial charges. See CBDS Invoices.