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ZIP Code

The ZIP Code is a geographic identifier of areas within the United States and its territories for purposes of expediting mail distribution by the U.S. Postal Service. It is five or nine numeric digits. The ZIP Code structure divides the U.S. into ten large groups of states. The leftmost digit identifies one of these groups. The next two digits identify a smaller geographic area within the large group. The two rightmost digits identify a local delivery area. In the nine-digit ZIP Code, the four digits that follow the hyphen further subdivide the delivery area. The two leftmost digits identify a sector which may consist of several large buildings, blocks or groups of streets. The rightmost digits divide the sector into segments such as a street, a block, a floor of a building, or a cluster of mailboxes.

The USPS Domestics Mail Manual includes information on the use of the new 11-digit zip code. Available From

    U.S Postal Service
    Washington, DC 20260

    New Orders
    Superintendent of Documents
    P.O. Box 371954
    Pittsburgh, PA 15250-7954