With Christmas just 18 days away, USPS is preparing for its very own “super bowl” in the holiday shipping season. Here is what consumers can expect during the next two and a half weeks.
During an interview with News on 6, Supervisor Customer Service Support at USPS reveals that the mail service has brought in more staff to help with the overload. This includes clerks and carriers. However, despite the additional support, the service is planning for a major holiday surge over the next few days.
However, while there is a bigger workload, USPS officials state they are ready for the surge. Stobaugh shares, “You always want to make sure that you get ahead of the game. As long as the customers mail by our recommended deadlines, they should be perfectly fine.”
The current deadlines in December are as follows:
- The 17th: The deadline for all first-class cards and packages.
- The 18th: The deadline for priority mail service items.
- The 23rd: The deadline for all priority mail express items.
The USPS Anticipates Between 850 Million and 950 Million Packages Will be Delivered During the 2021 Holidays
In a press release over the weekend, USPS announced it is anticipating between 850 million and 950 million packages are going to be delivered during the 2021 holiday season. The total number of letters, cards, and packages that are in processing and delivery between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day is estimating to be over 12 billion.
The USPS announced its 2021 holiday peak season preparation included the conversion of 63,000 pre-career employees into career positions and onboarding over more than 185,000 employees since the beginning of the fiscal years.
The service then revealed that the backfilling of the 63,000 pre-career employees and the national drive to add an additional 40,000 seasonal hires. There was also leasing of 13 million square feet of additional space across more than 100 locations. Which includes more than 50 annexes with multiyear leases to address year-round space constraints due to parcel growth. And the installation of new processing equipment to accommodate higher volumes reflecting customers’ delivery needs.
“Between April and November, the Postal Service installed 112 new package sorting machines,” USPS states. “Reflecting part of the $40 billion of planned investments under the 10-year Delivering for America plan.”
In addition to the sorting machines, more than 50 package systems that are capable to handle larger packages are being deployed as well. “Altogether, the new investments give the Postal Service the capability to process an additional 4.5 million packages each day.”
USPS goes on to add that it generally receives no tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.