Zip Codes

What is Zip codes / Postal Codes

Zip code can be defined as a system used in the united state by the United state postal service(USPS) to enhance the delivery of mail. The word zip is an acronym for Zone Improvement Plan.
zip codes or postal codes are widely used for routing mails, sorting packages and calculating the time and cost of shipping a package and so on. The goal of this post is to help our readers to understand the in-depth details of zip codes and how the zip code is generated.

What is the differences between zip codes and postal codes?

people seems to be confused of this two words, but the truth is that they serve as the same purpose. The only different is that zip code is mainly used in the US while postcode or postal codes are used in other countries. Mind you, not all countries uses zip codes or postal codes.

Zip codes/ postal code format in some countries:
USA: CA 90026 = somewhere in Los Angeles, California
UK: NW2 1QA = somewhere in northwest London, UK
China: 999077 = official postcode for Hong Kong
Japan: 103 = somewhere in Tokyo, Japan

There are four types of ZIP Codes:

Types of Zip Codes

  1. Unique address: Big organisations like Hospitals, universities, Government agencies and businesses that receives a lot of mails uses unique zip codes.
  2. PO Box only
  3. Military
  4. Standard (all other ZIP codes).

Uses of Zip codes/Postal codes

Zip code is very important in top world countries like the United states, Canada, United Kingdom and almost in every Country of the world, zip code is very important in sending mail, delivery/ logistics fraud detection and research demographic decentralization. Below are some major uses of zip/ postal codes:

  1. Mail services: this is the main use of zip codes and postal codes.
  2. Delivery services: used for internal routing of a package.
  3. Statistics: For example, in the United State, there are over 42000 zip codes. Apart from delivery mails, zip codes are also used in gathering statistics.
  4. Marketing(Zip-codes marketing)
  5. Legislative districts
  6. Internet purposes: You will often find zip code under most education or eCommerce website registration page.
  7. Credit card security  codes can also be used for credit card authorization.

Insurance rating. some insurance carriers uses zip codes to determine the rate the customer will receive.

history and five-digit ZIP Codes

A 1963 U.S. Post Office sign featuring Mr. ZIP

A label inside a stamp booklet promoting the ZIP code
File: Swinging Six Zip Code 1967.ogv
Swingin’ Six video used by the post office to promote the ZIP code
The early history and context of postal codes began with postal district/zone numbers. The United States Post Office Department (USPOD) implemented postal zones for many large cities in 1943.[4]

For example:

Mr. John Smith
3256 Epiphenomenal Avenue
Minneapolis 16, Minnesota

click on any state in Nigeria below to see its zip codes 

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