WASHINGTON — Many consumers are in a sprint to the finish in terms of getting their holiday gifts and greetings in the mail. This week is expected to be the busiest week of the holiday mailing and shipping season for the Postal Service. The agency expects to process and deliver nearly 3 billion pieces of mail, which includes packages, this week alone. In the two weeks leading up to Christmas, Dec. 10-23, the Postal Service expects to deliver nearly 200 million packages each week.
Overall, the Postal Service anticipates delivering nearly 15 billion total pieces of mail and more than 900 million packages between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day — for a total of nearly 16 billion joyful mail and package deliveries this holiday season.
The Postal Service already delivers packages on Sundays in most major cities and, to handle the surge in holiday volume, the agency is expanding its Sunday delivery operations in select high package volume locations. USPS expects to deliver more than 8 million packages each Sunday in December. Mail carriers will also deliver Priority Mail Express packages on Christmas Day in select locations.
Wrap it Up and Put a Bow on it From Home
It’s predicted that today will be the busiest day for online postal consumers. Nearly 400,000 customers will visit usps.com for help shipping that special holiday gift. It’s expected that nearly 5 million consumers will take advantage of convenient online services, like Click-N-Ship, to order free Priority Mail boxes, print shipping labels, purchase postage and request free next-day Package Pickup. And unlike many brick-and-mortar stores, usps.com is always open.
2018 Holiday Shipping Deadlines
The Postal Service recommends using the following mailing and shipping deadlines*:
· Dec. 18 – APO/FPO/DPO (except ZIP Code 093) USPS Priority Mail Express
· Dec. 20 – First-Class Mail (including greeting cards)
· Dec. 20 – First-class Packages (up to 15.99 ounces)
· Dec. 20 – Hawaii to mainland Priority Mail and First-Class Mail
· Dec. 20 – Priority Mail
· Dec. 20 – Alaska to mainland Priority Mail and First-Class Mail
· Dec. 22 – Alaska to mainland Priority Mail Express
· Dec. 22 – Hawaii to mainland Priority Mail Express
· Dec. 22 – Priority Mail Express