BY ASHLEY THOMAS
Post offices nationwide will be open Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve this holiday season, but be sure to pack your patience along with your packages before heading to your local office.
United States Postal Service (USPS) officials say it takes extra hours and staffing to make sure everything is delivered on time, which can mean longer lines and wait times for customers.
“This is traditionally our busiest time of the year and our employees are prepared to brighten the holidays,” Enola C. Rice, a Central Florida spokesperson for the USPS told the Daytona Times. “We enjoy delivering holiday cheer and helping our customers stay connected to loved ones and friends.”
Danielle Tyler and George Hawkins were spotted at the post office on Bill France Boulevard and said they have no complaints about the speed of the service. “We’re sending packages to family in North Carolina,” Hawkins told the Times. “We’re fine. I’m not worried about it not making it there on time.”
Monday marked the busiest day of the year for USPS with more than 600 million pieces of mail expected to be processed.
Shipment still available
Hawkins and Tyler were at the post office Tuesday evening, giving their mail a full week to make its way north. However, the deadline for most mail is winding down. For all the procrastinators who didn’t get to a post office last week, there’s still time to make sure those gifts get to the grandkids in time. Cards and packages mailed by this weekend will still arrive by Christmas.
In order to make sure your package or letter arrives on time, first-class mail must be postmarked by Dec. 20, priority mail must be postmarked by Dec. 21 and the express deadline is Dec. 23. If you plan on mailing to APO/FPO or International addresses, the deadline has already passed.
The postal service offers a few tips to make sure your package makes it to its destination in time:
•Make sure to use the full, proper address. If there is a direction for the street, include it.
•Double check the zip code by asking the person or using usps.com
•Take any batteries out of electronics to avoid accidental flagging of packages.
•Don’t use boxes with other addresses or bar codes on them.
•Write down the address on the inside as well, in case the outside address gets weathered or becomes unreadable.
For the most up-to-date holiday information call 800-275-8777 or visit www.usps.com.