USPS announces holiday shipping schedule

With only 42 days left until Christmas, the U.S. Postal Service has released its holiday shipping schedule.

According to Hillsboro postmaster Becky Larsen, the dates are not deadlines, but instead are guidelines so that customers can make sure packages and cards are delivered in time for Christmas.

If normal holiday conditions prevail, though, the chances are good that letters and packages sent shortly after the suggested dates will still make it to their destinations before Dec. 25, she said.

The busiest mailing day is expected to be Dec. 17, according to USPS, and the busiest delivery day is likely Dec. 19 for cards and letters and Dec. 20 for packages.

Domestic mail dates include:

? First-class mail, Dec. 20; priority mail, Dec. 21; priority mail express, Dec. 23 and standard post, Dec. 14.

Military mail dates include:

? APO/FPO AE Zip code 090-092 for priority mail, Dec. 17; first-class and priority mail, both Dec. 10; parcel airlift mail (PAL)2, Dec. 3; space available mail (SAM)3, Nov. 26; and standard post, Nov. 12.

? APO/FPO AE Zip Code 093 for priority mail, not available; first-class and priority mail, both Dec. 3; parcel airlift mail (PAL)2, Dec. 3; space available mail (SAM)3, Nov. 26; and standard post, Nov. 12.

? APO/FPO AE Zip Code 094-098 for priority mail, Dec. 17; first-class and priority mail, both Dec. 10; parcel airlift mail (PAL)2, Dec. 3; space available mail (SAM)3, Nov. 26; and standard post, Nov. 12.

? APO/FPO AE Zip Code 340 for priority mail, Dec. 17; first-class and priority mail, both Dec. 3; parcel airlift mail (PAL)2, Dec. 3; space available mail (SAM)3, Nov. 26; and standard post, Nov. 12.

? APO/FPO AE Zip Code 093 for priority mail, Dec. 17; first-class and priority mail, both Dec. 10; parcel airlift mail (PAL)2, Dec. 3; space available mail (SAM)3, Nov. 26; and standard post, Nov. 12.

International mail dates include:

? Africa: global express guaranteed, Dec. 17; priority mail express international, Dec 10; priority mail international, Dec. 2; and first-class package international service, Dec. 2.

? Asia/Pacific Rim: global express guaranteed, Dec. 16; priority mail express international, Dec 14; priority mail international, Dec. 9; and first-class package international service, Dec. 9.

? Australia/New Zealand: global express guaranteed, Dec. 16; priority mail express international, Dec. 14; priority mail international, Dec. 9; and first-class package international service, Dec. 9.

? Canada: global express guaranteed, Dec. 19; priority mail express international, Dec 16; priority mail international, Dec. 12; and first-class package international service, Dec. 9.

? Caribbean: global express guaranteed, Dec. 18; priority mail express international, Dec 14; priority mail international, Dec. 12; and first-class package international service, Dec. 9.

? Central and South America: global express guaranteed, Dec. 18; priority mail express international, Dec 10; priority mail international, Dec. 2; and first-class package international service, Dec. 2.

? Mexico: global express guaranteed, Dec. 18; priority mail express international, Dec 14; priority mail international, Dec. 11; and first-class package international service, Dec. 9.

? Europe: global express guaranteed, Dec. 18; priority mail express international, Dec 14; priority mail international, Dec. 12; and first-class package international service, Dec. 9.

? Middle East: global express guaranteed, Dec. 16; priority mail express international, Dec 14; priority mail international, Dec. 12; and first-class package international service, Dec. 9.

In addition to schedules at military, domestic or international locations, USPS reminds everyone that Dec. 14 is the last day to send priority packages via air transportation. The last day to send letters, flats and small packages via air is Dec. 16, and the last day sending express mail service items (any shape) is Dec. 17.

For more information, call the U.S. Post Office in Hillsboro at 620-947-3631 or 800-275-8777. The USPS office is at 201 N. Main, Hillsboro.

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