USPS ‘full steam ahead’ to deliver Christmas packages on time

The United States Postal Service hired over 35,000 seasonal employees to help process and deliver holiday items

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – If you think you had a busy day at work, imagine delivering packages on the busiest mailing day of the year and you might feel differently.

Local post offices are scrambling with last-minute customers mailing Christmas letters and packages.

If you still have gifts to send to family and friends this Christmas, the United States Postal Service (USPS) can help but time is running out.

“If you’re gonna mail and you want to make sure it gets there by the holiday, then your best bet is shipping it priority mail express, even if it’s just Christmas cards,” said David Van Allen, regional USPS spokesperson.

Nationwide, more people sent packages this holiday season than hand-delivered them.

“Nationally, we’ve seen 16 billion pieces of mail go through the system and of that, 750 million of them have been packages. That’s about a 12 percent increase nationally,” Van Allen said.

USPS hired over 35,000 seasonal employees to help process and deliver holiday cards and packages this year.

Van Allen said it’s been hectic.

“The last week and a half, we’ve seen double the volume of parcels we usually see when it’s not the holiday.”

For some, mailing holiday items last minute isn’t a big deal.

“As long as it’s before the new year, I figure better late than never,” Kelly Vargin said.

Luckily, the regional Postal Service said they haven’t had any instances of lost or damaged items this holiday season.

“Packages have been moving like they should, we’re fully staffed and we’re going full steam ahead to make sure that every parcel of holiday cheer gets delivered on time,” Van Allen said.

The shipping deadline to have packages and cards delivered to their destination by Christmas is 5 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 23, as long as they’re sent by priority express shipping.