TN 24 (05-05)

GN 02605.915 Foreign Postal Zone Numbers

A. Introduction

As in the United States, many foreign postal systems rely on postal zone numbers as a means of sorting mail for speedy delivery. Except as indicated below, show foreign postal zone numbers only if available from the file or if provided by the beneficiary.

B. Description of the Belgium Postal Zone Number System

The Belgium postal zone number system is composed of a four digit number which is shown before every locality having a post office.

The “Liste Des Numeros Postaux” (List of Postal Numbers) is issued by the Belgian postal authorities and is housed in the OIO Library. This directory contains the zone number for each postal office in Belguim. Operating personnel should make an effort to locate the postal zone number from the Belgian Postal Directory for all material concerning Belgium. If the correct number is uncertain do not show any number.

C. Description of the Canadian Postal Code

The Canadian Postal Code consists of six alphabetical (A) and numerical (N) characters as follows:

  • ANA NAN where “A” represents a letter of the alphabet and “N” represents a number. There is always a space between the first three characters and the last three characters.

Postal codes are listed in the Canadian postal directories which are divided by geographic region and province. All efforts should be made to locate the correct postal code for all awards and changes of address. However, do not show a code if the correct one cannot be found. The postal code must be shown as the only entry on the last line of address followed by the consular code:

  • John Doe

    23 Poole St.

    Norval ON Canada

    L0P 1K0 953

NOTE: When preparing computer input always underline the alphabetical characters in the postal code so that the SSADARS operators and ODO keyers will not key a numerical character in error. For example, the code in the above address would be shown as L , P , and K .

D. Description of the German Postal Code

1. Background

German postal codes are five digits, possibly prefixed by "DE-" (for Deutschland, formerly just "D"). Prior to 1991 (the union of DDR and the Bundesrepublik), the prefixes for the 4-digit codes were "D-" (for the Federal Republic (West)), and "DDR-" (for the Democratic Republic (East)). Then, in the united Federal Republic, the prefixes were "O-" (for East) and "W-" (for West), to distinguish the conflicting 4-digit postcodes of East and West. Then on July 1, 1993, a new comprehensive Germany-wide 5-digit system took effect and all the German addresses in all the databases in the world had to be converted.

2. Country Prefix D- or De-

The country prefix (D- or DE-) is not used for internal mail, and should no longer be used for mail to Germany; therefore, always omit the prefix in German addresses.

3. Cities, Towns, Villages, and Hamlets

Under the German Postal System each city, town, village, and hamlet is given a 5-digit postal code which must be shown in all correspondence. The number is placed in front of the city, town, village, or hamlet to which the correspondence is addressed.

4. Postal Number not Provided

When the postal number is not provided by the beneficiary or claimant, it will be obtained by reference to the “Das Postleitzahlen” which is housed in the OIO library. The individual preparing the letter or input form will be responsible for indicating the correct zone number.

E. Description of the Italian Postal Zone System

Under the Italian Postal Zone system each city is assigned a five digit serial number which must be shown on all correspondence. The number is placed in front of the city to which the correspondence is addressed.

The “Testo Unico Del Codice Di Avviamento Postale” which is issued by the Italian postal authorities and is housed in the OIO Library contains the postal zone numbers for each city. Operating personnel should make an effort to locate the postal zone number from the Italian Postal Directory for all material concerning Italy. If the correct number is uncertain do not show any number.

F. Description of the Mexican Postal Zone Number System

The Mexican Postal Zone number system is composed of a five digit number. The postal zone number should be the first entry on the next to the last line of address and should only be shown if available from the file or if provided by the beneficiary.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Under no circumstances should the Mexican postal zone number be shown anywhere on the last line of address. Checks which are sent to Mexico are airmailed by the U.S. postal authorities. If the Mexican postal zone numbers were entered on the last line of the address the check would be misrouted as the Mexican postal zone number would be interpreted as a U.S. ZIP code.

G. Description of the Philippine Postal Zone System

1. General Information

Under the Philippine postal zone system each post office is assigned a four digit number which is shown after the name of the province. The first two digits represent the province and the last two represent the Post Office within the province. The postal zone number should not be shown on the same line as “Philippines.” If this occurs, place the province's name and the postal zone number in a separate line of address.

2. Philippine Postal Directory

Operating personnel will locate the postal zone number from the Philippine Postal Directory for all material concerning the Philippines. If the correct postal zone number cannot be determined, do not show any number.

H. Description of the Swiss Postal Zone Number System

1. General Information

The Swiss postal zone number system is composed of a four digit number which is shown before every locality having a post office.

2. Verzeichnis Der Postleitzahlen

The “Verzeichnis Der Postleitzahlen” (Directory of Postal Zone Numbers), which was issued by the Swiss Postal Office Department and is housed in the OIO Library, contains the zone number for each post office in Switzerland and Liechtenstein. Smaller towns which have no post office are not included in the directory. Operating personnel should make an effort to locate the postal zone number for all material concerning Switzerland and Liechtenstein. If the correct number is uncertain, do not show any number.

I. Description of Former Federal Republic Of Yugoslavia Postal System

The country names for the former Federal Republic of Yugoslavia are as follows:

Serbia and Montenegro
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Croatia
Macedonia
Slovenia

1. Spanish (Spain-Modern Sort) Bosnia, Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, Sarajevo, Belgrade

‘Bosnia and Herzegovina’ and ‘Serbia and Montenegro’ require a 5 digit postal code before the city. The postal code for Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina is 71000. The postal code for Belgrade, Serbia and Montenegro is 11000.

2. Slovenia and Ljubljana

Slovenia requires a 4 digit postal code. The postal code for Ljubljana, Slovenia is 1000.

3. Croatia and Macedonia

Postal codes are recommended but not required for Croatia or Macedonia. Postal codes for Macedonia are 4 digits in length. The postal code for Skopje, Macedonia is 1000. The postal code for Zagreb, Croatia is 10000. Operating personnel should make an effort to locate the postal zone number for Croatia and Macedonia. If the correct number is uncertain, do not show any number.


To Link to this section - Use this URL:
http://policy.ssa.gov/poms.nsf/lnx/0202605915
GN 02605.915 - Foreign Postal Zone Numbers - 05/05/2005
Batch run: 01/27/2009
Rev:05/05/2005