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For the first 4kg , the postage = $ 4 * 3 =  $12

As Dhamini postage was $18, so he paid $18- $12= $6 for the remaining   for his postage. This would be considered as 3 steps of 500g at $2 per step of 500g.

So, all in all, the smallest possible weight for Dhamini’s package was   

4000g + 1000g + 1g = 5001 g. 

Note: 1000g is 2 steps of 500g, so the minimum weight for the 3rd step must be 1g.

 

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