Holiday USPS deadlines

Washington, DC - Holiday mailing deadlines are fast approaching, and the United States Postal Service expects to deliver nearly 850 million packages between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day and more than 15 billion total pieces of mail this holiday season. Whether customers shop on Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, Cyber Monday or all three, they can relax knowing packages will arrive at their destination on time for the holidays.

“All signs are that this will be a busy holiday season,” said Matthew Shay, president and chief executive officer of the National Retail Federation.

Almost 60 percent of consumers in the federation’s annual holiday survey said the internet will be their primary shopping destination this year — the first time the online option has topped traditional venues like department stores and discount stores.

Meanwhile, the Deloitte consulting firm predicts online sales will be in the $111 billion-$114 billion range, up 18-21 percent from last year.

Customers planning to ship packages are encouraged to visit a local Post Office no later than the below dates for expected delivery by Dec. 25 to Air/Army Post Office/Fleet Post Office/Diplomatic Post Office and domestic addresses:*

Dec. 11 – Military Priority Mail and First-Class Mail

Dec. 14 – USPS Retail Ground

Dec. 19 – First-Class cards and letters

Dec. 20 – Priority Mail

Dec. 22 – Priority Mail Express

To send packages to loved ones serving in the military and diplomatic posts abroad, the Postal Service offers a discounted price of $17.35 on its largest Priority Mail Flat Rate Box. The price includes a $1.50 per-box discount for mail sent to APO/FPO/DPO destinations worldwide.

To handle the surge in volume, the Postal Service is expanding its Sunday delivery operations in select high package volume locations during the holiday season. More than 6 million packages are expected to be delivered each Sunday in December. Mail carriers will also deliver Priority Mail Express packages on Christmas Day for an additional fee in select locations.

Busiest Week

Customer mailing and shipping traffic is expected to increase beginning Dec. 11, with the week of Dec. 18 to 24 predicted to be the busiest mailing, shipping and delivery week, when nearly 3 billion pieces of First-Class Mail, including greeting cards, will be processed and delivered. The Postal Service expects to deliver nearly 200 million packages per week from Dec. 11 to 24.

Ship Online from Home

The Postal Service’s busiest day online is predicted to be Dec. 18 when more than 7 million customers avoid holiday hassles and visit for help sending special gifts. Millions of customers 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 is always open.

Additional Tips

The Postal Service’s new feature, Informed Delivery, makes tracking packages easy. The tool allows eligible customers to view incoming mail, track packages and reschedule deliveries. Customers can sign-up for free at

The Postal Service offers shipping tips in 10 video “how to” guides. Each video is less than three minutes long and shows customers how to address packages, ship packages and pack a box so items arrive safely.

Additional news and information, including all domestic, international and military mailing, and shipping deadlines, can be found at the Postal Service Holiday Newsroom at

The Postal Service receives no tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.