Commonly Asked Questions

Can I send packages to my SPO before the Fall semester starts?

Yes, be sure to have your full name (first and last) on the ship to address and include your SPO#, if known. If at all possible wait to send large items, like furniture, until you arrive on campus.  There is limited space to store larger items in the Mail Center when the semester starts in the Fall.

When can I pick up my package?

Packages arrive at Luther at different times in the morning, depending on the carrier. Packages are scanned in and at that moment an email is sent to notify you that a package has arrived.  The Mail Center window is open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM until further notice.

How long are packages held at the Mail Center?

The Mail Center will hold student packages for 15 days.

Packages not claimed after 15 days will be forwarded to the student’s home address (when possible) or Returned to Sender.¬† It is the student’s responsibility to pick up their packages in a timely manner or to contact the Luther Mail Center to make other arrangements.

Will the Mail Center hold my packages over break?

Yes!  The 15-day holding period for packages will be extended over breaks, J-Term, and the month before classes start in the Fall.

I am off campus and sent a package to the Mail Center by mistake!

The Post Office will forward First Class and Priority mail and packages free of charge.¬† Most packages sent via UPS or Fedex cannot be forwarded.¬† In addition, most other postage services provided by the USPS, such as Lightweight or Parcel Select (Free shipping from Amazon, for example.), are not eligible for forwarding.¬† Packages not eligible for forwarding can be returned to sender at the student’s request.¬† The Mail Center can also facilitate a Return on behalf of the student.¬† Simply send a return label to mailcenter@luther.edu and we’ll do the rest.¬† If a package cannot be forwarded and you need it mailed to you, the student is responsible for any new postage.

How long will the Mail Center hold my mail?

Students attending in-person classes will have their mail held at the Mail Center for the entire academic year.  Students who are studying abroad or attending another off-campus program will have their mail forwarded accordingly.  If you are off-campus but would like your mail held, please contact the Luther Mail Center.

Can I send money to another person’s SPO or mail drop on campus?

USPS does not prohibit sending cash by mail; however, we request that students do not send cash through campus mail/SPO whenever possible.

Can I have a friend sign for and pickup my package?

Yes, you will need to email the Mail Center to give us permission to release your mail or packages to another person–no phone calls.¬† Please provide the full name of that person and how long they will be picking up your mail for.¬† The person you designate in your email will need to show their student ID and sign their name for the package.

How much does it cost to mail something?

First Class stamps cost 63¬Ę for a rectangular letter up to 1 ounce, it is 24¬Ę for each additional ounce up to a max of 3.5 oz.¬† Anything beyond 3.5oz is a package.¬† Package mailing costs can vary depending on how fast you want it to arrive, how large the package is (girth), and how much something weighs in pounds.¬† Stop by the Mail Center with your package, boxed, tapped and ready to ship and we can give you several options on the different products offered.

What is my SPO# or my combination?

Information can be found on norsehub.luther.edu

How do I open my SPO box?

Using your combination you found on norsehub.luther.edu complete the following steps:

  1. Turn LEFT FOUR times stopping on the first number.
  2. Turn RIGHT ONCE and then go past the second number and back around stopping on the second number in your combination.
  3. Turn LEFT and stop on the last number in your combination, don’t go past it.
  4. LAST STEP holding the knob turn RIGHT very-slightly while pulling on the knob and the door should open.

If needed ask for help at the window when the Mail Center is open and we can help you practice opening your box.

Check out our video help for opening your SPO box.

How do I address a letter or package for mailing?

Navigate to our help guides.  Stop by the Mail Center if there are any further questions.

What is my Luther College mailing address?

Your Full Name
Your SPO#
Luther College
700 College Dr
Decorah, IA  52101-1045

I am leaving campus or need my mail forwarded to an off-campus address, how do I tell the Mail Center?

Please fill out this online form.

Does the Mail Center sell USPS Forever Stamps?

You can purchase USPS Forever Stamps, letter or postcard stamps, from the Mail Center.  We accept cash or check, no cards.  You can charge your student account while it is active (August 10th through April 30th).

What is the Luther College mailing address for sending mail to my child?

Recipient’s Full Name
SPO box number (not room number, if you are unsure omit that information)
Luther College
700 College Dr
Decorah, IA  52101-1045

I sent a package to my child, how will they be notified of¬† the package’s arrival?

Mail is picked up at the local post office and other vendors bring packages later in the morning and afternoon.  Upon arrival packages are scanned into our TRAC system that will then notify the recipient by email that a package is at the Mail Center, ready for pickup.  Normal letter mail is put into their SPO box-there is no notification for letters and other mail that is put in their SPO box unless that item has a barcode that can be scanned.

Does my child sign for their package?

Mail Center staff will sign for the initial delivery from the carrier to the college and then scan it into our tracking system (TRAC). An email will be sent to the recipient on their Luther College email. When they arrive at the Mail Center window they will be asked to show their student IDs and sign for the package.

How long are packages held at the Mail Center?

The Mail Center will hold packages for 15 days.¬† Packages not claimed after 15 days will be forwarded to the student’s home address (when possible) or Returned to Sender.¬† Packages that cannot be forwarded or returned will be disposed of or donated locally.¬† It is the student’s responsibility¬†to pick up their packages in a timely manner or to contact the Luther Mail Center to make other arrangements.

Faculty and staff, please be sure to include your building and/or department name in your Luther College address when receiving mail. Omitting that information can slow down the processing of incoming mail for delivery by the courier.

Can I send out personal mail and packages using the US Mail or UPS?

Yes, we offer many of the same services that the post office down town offers, except for money orders and registered mail. If you need a letter sent by Registered Mail you will need to take that down to the Decorah post office for processing.

What is the postage cost to send by Commercial Mail (bulk rate mailing)?

The United State Postal Service offers discounts on postage costs if we do the task of pre-sorting the mail by delivery entry points (not zip codes) for them.¬†There is a tool at the USPS site (USPS Calculator) to give you a way to estimate the cost to ship your mailing by a presort discount rate–either Media Mail (formally called 3rd-Class mail or Postal Soft by some) or First-Class Presort.¬†Contact the Document Center staff for questions about using that website’s tool.

What is the fastest way to send something?

We are able to overnight envelopes, flats, and packages.  Overnighting an item will greatly increase the shipping costs. USPS offers a flat rate envelopes for $17.50; whatever fits that envelope will ship. FedEx and UPS charges more for that service, at this time, however sending larger items that will not fit into a USPS Flat-Rate Overnight envelope is can be cheaper by UPS.

What is the cheapest way to send this package/mail?

Mailing costs can vary depending on how fast you want it to arrive, how large the package is (girth), and how much something weighs in pounds. Typically UPS ground is the cheapest way to ship any package from business to business.  Flat Rate boxes are usually best for items that weigh quite a bit, generally speaking though placing your item in a standard shipping box and shipping it by USPS Priority Mail or by UPS Ground is going to be less expensive than the Flat Rate box. Stop by the Mail Center with your package, boxed, tapped and ready to ship.  We can give you several options on the different products offered.

Does the Mail Center sell stamps?

USPS Forever Stamps are available for purchase at the Mail Center. Cash, check, or department/staff/faculty accounts can be charged through a CBORD number or employee number.¬†No debit or credit cards.¬†You must have an active account to be able to charge your department’s or personal account through the CBORD system.