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You Must Mail Your Packages By This Date If You Want Them To Arrive By Christmas

The USPS has released expected delivery dates for the month of December.


Thanks to supply chain shortages and the reopening of many brick and mortar stores, shopping for the holiday season this year might prove to be more stressful than usual.

Bloomberg | Getty Images

Of course part of this stress comes from not knowing if packages will be delivered on time, especially when sending gifts to family and loved ones.

Thankfully, the USPS has released estimated shipping deadlines to assure that packages are delivered on or by holiday dates — but it’s looking like you’ll need to send your packages earlier than normal.

The following are the dates packages must be mailed by to be delivered by December 25:

  • Dec. 9 — APO/FPO/DPO (all ZIP Codes) Priority Mail and First-Class Mail
  • Dec. 15 — USPS Retail Ground service
  • Dec. 16 — APO/FPO/DPO (except ZIP Code 093) USPS Priority Mail Express Military service
  • Dec. 17 — First-Class Mail service (including greeting cards)
  • Dec. 17 — First-Class packages (up to 15.99 ounces)
  • Dec. 18 — Priority Mail service
  • Dec. 23 — Priority Mail Express* service

Alaska to/from Continental U.S.

  • Dec. 18 — First-Class Mail
  • Dec. 18 — Priority Mail
  • Dec. 21 — Priority Mail Express

Hawaii to/from mainland

  • Dec. 17 — Priority Mail and First-Class Mail
  • Dec. 21 — Priority Mail Express

The USPS noted that the dates serve as guidelines and expected arrival dates but that they are not guaranteed.

“It's anticipated that between 850 million and 950 million packages will be delivered for the holidays,” the organization said in a statement. “The total number of letters, cards and packages processed and delivered is estimated to be more than 12 billion.”

The USPS will also be extending Sunday mail services starting November 28 in areas with high package volumes, though Sunday service is already offered in most major cities.

To help with the seasonal rush and demand, USPS will also be leasing an estimated 7.5 million square feet of space and hiring more than 40,000 seasonal workers.

It’s estimated that the week of December 13-18 will be the busiest week of the season for mailing, shipping and deliveries, with mail traffic expected to increase starting the week of December 6.

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