Ship early whenever possible: USPS announces holiday mailing and shipping deadlines


MILWAUKEE — The U.S. Postal Service have announced the 2016 holiday mailing and shipping deadlines for domestic and international destinations as customers begin to prepare for the busy shopping and shipping season. Customers are encouraged to ship early.

According to a press release, to ensure timely delivery of cards, letters and packages within the United States by December 25th, the Postal Service recommends that customers ship their items by the following dates:

Mail-by Dates — Domestic Services

  • 15 – USPS Retail Ground
    Ground service for less-than-urgent deliveries and oversized packages.
  • 20 – First-Class Mail
    Service for standard-sized, single-piece envelopes and small packages weighing up to 13 ounces with delivery in 3 business days or less.
  • 21 – Priority Mail
    Domestic service in 1, 2 or 3 business days based on where the package is mailed and where it’s being sent, variety of flat-rate options.
  • 23 – Priority Mail Express
    Fastest domestic service, guaranteed overnight scheduled delivery to most locations. Some restrictions and exceptions apply. Please note, Priority Mail Express postage refund eligibility is adjusted for shipments mailed between Dec. 22 and Dec. 25.

Complete details on Mailing and Shipping services can be found on

Mail-by Dates — International Services
Customers mailing internationally during the holidays are advised to review the chart below for specific deadlines based on the locations they are mailing to and the service they are using. When mailing and shipping internationally, customers must also follow necessary customs guidelines. Visit the International Shipping page on for more information.

International Mail Addressed To Global Express Guaranteed (GXG)*** Priority Mail Express International (PMEI) Priority Mail International (PMI) First-Class Package International Service (FCPIS)
Africa Dec 20 Dec 08 Dec 01 Dec 01
Asia/Pacific Rim Dec 20 Dec 15 Dec 08 Dec 08
Australia/New Zealand Dec 20 Dec 15 Dec 08 Dec 08
Canada Dec 22 Dec 17 Dec 10 Dec 08
Caribbean Dec 22 Dec 15 Dec 10 Dec 08
Central & South America Dec 21 Dec 10 Dec 01 Dec 01
Mexico Dec 21 Dec 15 Dec 08 Dec 08
Europe Dec 21 Dec 15 Dec 10 Dec 08
Middle East Dec 19 Dec 15 Dec 10 Dec 08

***Notes: 1) Cutoff date does not take into account time needed for customs clearance. 2) Should allocate extra transit day(s) for delivery outside major cities.

Mail-by Dates (Military)

The Postal Service is committed to ensuring those serving in the nation’s armed forces and diplomatic service receive their presents, care packages and cards in time for the holidays. Complete military mailing deadlines to APO/FPO/DPO (Air/Army Post Office, Fleet Post Office and Diplomatic Post Office) destinations worldwide, as well as tips and guidelines, can be found at:

Shipping Supplies

As an added convenience, the Postal Service offers a wide variety of shipping supplies in multiple sizes at local Post Offices and online at Some supplies, such as Priority Mail products, can also be delivered to the sender free of charge by going to

Customers may also ship using their own materials. As a reminder, all packages weighing more than 13 ounces and bearing only stamps as postage cannot be deposited in collection boxes or given to letter carriers. These packages must be presented to a Postal Service employee at a retail window counter.

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

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s