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Holiday mailing deadlines quickly approaching as US Postal Service reaches peak activity

Posted at 12:45 PM, Dec 11, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-11 13:47:56-05

Holiday shipping deadlines are quickly approaching. One of the first priority mail and first-class mail military deadlines is Tuesday, Dec. 11. if you’re sending mail to someone serving in the military overseas.

“Mountains of packages, a sea of packages really high up. Every day you’re going to see that [post offices are] loaded with those,” Sean Hargadon said. 

Hargadon, a spokesperson for USPS, said customers might also notice mail carriers out earlier in the morning and later in the day —they’re hustlin' and bustlin’ trying to deliver the expected 16 billion pieces of mail —including 900 million packages going through the US Postal Service's mailing system this time of year.

“We prepare for this time of year all year long pretty much. So, it might look like a lot of chaos, but it’s very well organized,” Bob Prahl, senior plant manager, said. 

One of the most important letters that might need mailing is the one going to the North Pole, and Hargadon said he and the postal service elves know just how to make sure it gets there without a hitch.

“Write your letter to Santa, put on the outside of the envelope the north pole, then take that envelope and put it inside a letter with a stamp and mail that to the Milwaukee post office,” Hargadon said. 

Here are the shipping deadlines for the USPS and Amazon to make it by Christmas Eve:

  • Dec. 14: Last day to ship via USPS Retail Ground
  • Dec. 17: Last day for standard Amazon shipping
  • Dec. 20: Last day to use Priority Mail Service and First-class Mail Service
  • Dec. 22: Last day to use Priority Mail Express Service and Amazon Prime free two-day shipping
  • Dec. 23: Last day for Amazon Prime free one-day shipping
  • Dec. 24: Last day for Amazon Prime free same-day delivery