Is the 1/4" limitation for individual items or for combined items? Thanks!

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This conversation is no longer open for comments or replies and is no longer visible to community members. The community moderator provided the following reason for archiving: The information in this post is no longer true (1/4" rule has been replaced with the 6 page rule) and could be confusing to new sponsors.

Is the 1/4" thickness guideline for individual items or everything combined (if I'm sending multiple goodies at once!)? For example...can I send two booklets of stickers that are 1/8" each, plus coloring sheets & a letter? Or does everything together need to be less than 1/4?"

(I know some people lay everything out in a folder to spread out the thickness, but I was unclear about the guideline!)

Thanks for your help! Getting ready to send off some birthday surprises to our little girl & want to make sure they go through! :)

Connie
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C Sanders

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Posted 4 years ago

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Sally

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Everything together has to be no more than 1/4".
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Adam

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Hi Connie! Your little girl will be so excited to get those birthday surprises from you! :) Thank you for making her birthday so special! As Sally mentioned, the 1/4" thickness guideline is for everything combined instead of individual items. You can send multiple items as long as the total thickness is 1/4" or less. I sometimes push the limits on that...like, every single time :)

What I do if I have a few different items and I want to spread them out is put them in Ziploc bags or wrap them in plastic wrap and tape them to a piece of card stock or something like that to keep them from shifting and overlapping. You can send a deck of cards like this, for example. Then, I put everything into a 9" x 12" envelope and send it to Compassion with a label on it for that child.

By the way, if you're going to be sending a lot of stickers and things like that you might want to think about getting some small labels and making preprinted labels for your kids. I have some small 1/2" x 1-3/4" labels with my kids' name, child number, and my sponsor number on them. It speeds up the preparation and I think it makes their things look nicer too. Also, welcome to this community! You're an awesome sponsor! :)
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C Sanders

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Thank you, and thanks for all of the great tips! Sounds like you're a great sponsor, too! :) I love the opportunity to establish relationships with our kids!
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Teresa Dawn

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I was told by Compassion it was per item, not the entire package.  Personally, I have sent packages that were 2-3 inches thick as they included several items for several children combined into one.  They went though no problem.  I have also sent packages for individual children that were about an inch thick with seperate items and they went through too but they could have been easily seperated, which  Compassion did say that if they cannot flatten the package into something less than 1/4inch they will seperate the items into more than one of their envelopes and send seperately, so the child may not receive them in one mailing.  (That being said, my envelopes were only 4x6 so maybe they could have been sent together side-by-side... when Compassion put them into their larger official envelopes.  )
It was probably a year ago I was told that though, so things maybe have changed since then and I'd wait for Compassion's official answer before trying

Here is a response I found from Compassion Staff to another individual posted last year too: "We have those guidelines because Compassion classifies items we send through customs as documents, and so we have to follow those size limits. The staff in our USA office have a tool they use to test the thickness and size of the items we receive to ensure they fit the 1/4" rule. Sometimes we are able to cut them down to be smaller or re package the items in separate envelopes so that they fit and we can ensure it will reach your child. If sponsor's send items that exceed these requirements, we certainly do everything we can in our office to make it acceptable for sending to your child. However, if they exceed the size requirements and there is not a way to cut your item down or split them up into separate packaging, we unfortunately will not be able to send it."
(Edited)
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newsponsor

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I was recently told by Compassion that there is no limit for the individual envelope thickness. 1/4" rule only applies to each item inside of the envelope.
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Teresa Dawn

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Adam, not necessarily :) I have sent one child more than one item that was at the 1/4 inch mark.  Was over for that child, but COmpassion told me it was fine because they could seperate it into two different envelopes when they got it.  If it was one item that couldn't be seperated then it would be a problem.  (That was the response).  Basically same answer as newsponsor got! :) But that was a year ago I got my response. i haven't sent such a large packet in awhile because it costs so much to ship it.  I have 52 kids now with my correspondents haha! And 21 of those are with the COmpassion office in the USA so that's international postage for me.
(Edited)
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Adam

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Oh, I'm sorry y'all, it sounds like I was wrong then. I didn't know Compassion would repackage things for us. I guess I can stop feeling guilty if I go over the limit a little bit then, lol! That's really awesome that you help and encourage so many kids, Teresa. God bless you for doing that. Thank you both for correcting me.
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Teresa Dawn

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I think they have official Compassion Envelopes they mail it all in, so they repackage it anyways.  But it might have changed recently for all I know.  With so many kids I usually stick with writing online letters now, other than Christmas cards and the occassional other letter.  I write to them a couple times a month so I'd be able to pay my financial sponsorships with postage alone if I sent a package every time LOL
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C Sanders

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Thank you so much, Teresa!
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C Sanders

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Thank you for your help, everyone! I love hearing about how much sponsors care about their kids. Not 100% sure of the final answer on this question, but it sounds like maybe the guideline is actually per item. Either way, I love that the Compassion team works so hard to get our letters & gifts to our children. I'm really grateful. Thanks for jumping in to try to help me sort this one out! Praying my little girl will feel really loved on her birthday:)
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Teresa Dawn

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yw :) Hopefully Compassion will answer one way or the other soon.  I know they changed a few things so I'd be curious to know if it's still the case or not... even if I can't sent packages often, I'd like to know for when people ask me.

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