It's been a tough year for all of us but the U.S. Postal Service has taken several hard hits and more are anticipated to come with the holiday season. USPS is preparing for more gifts than usual to come through their facilities this year and to be mailed out to loved ones considering many families will be spending the holidays apart.

The USPS is offering several suggestions to make your shipping process this holiday season as stress-free as possible and to ensure your package is delivered on time before Christmas day. Using the post office's online services at USPS.com is highly recommended to avoid the crowds and will allow you to ship from home. Postal customers can do everything online from ordering boxes, printing shipping labels, and requesting package pickup.

Most importantly, in order to make sure packages arrive to their destination before December 25th, the USPS is recommending the following deadlines:

  • For Air/Army Post Office, Fleet Post Office and Diplomatic Post Office addresses in the 093 ZIP Code using Priority Mail and First-Class Mail, send items by Dec. 9.
  • For all other APO/FPO/DPO ZIP Codes, send using Priority Mail and First-Class Mail by Dec. 11.
  • For USPS Retail Ground service to domestic addresses, ship by Dec. 15.
    For APO/FPO/DPO addresses other than the 093 ZIP Code, send using USPS Priority Mail Express by Dec. 18 
  • For domestic addresses sent via First-Class Mail and First-Class packages up to 15.99 ounces ship by Dec. 18
  • For Priority Mail service to domestic addresses send by Dec. 19
  • For Priority Mail Express service to domestic addresses send by Dec. 23
  • For packages sent between Alaska and the Continental U.S ship by Dec. 18 if using First-Class Mail, Dec. 19 for Priority Mail and Dec. 21 for Priority Mail Express.
  • For items being sent between Hawaii and the Continental U.S. send by Dec. 15 for Priority Mail and First-Class Mail and Dec. 21 for Priority Mail Express.