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Post office gearing up for holiday season

Photo by Aaron Paden/ Laurie Sullivan drops a letter into the post box on West Cherokee Street Thursday. More and more people will be mailing letters, postcards and packages leading up to the Christmas holidays.

Photo by Aaron Paden/
Laurie Sullivan drops a letter into the post box on West Cherokee Street Thursday. More and more people will be mailing letters, postcards and packages leading up to the Christmas holidays.

Even while the weather makes it feel like a hot, humid Mississippi summer, the clerks and mail carriers at the U.S. Post Office  are working diligently to get your Christmas postcards and presents delivered on time.

The Postal Service is expecting to deliver about 16 billion postcards and 750 million packages during the holiday season — a projected increase of 12 percent from last year’s volume.

Acting Postmaster Amy Chiovaro with the Brookhaven Post Office didn’t have numbers on hand for Lincoln County, but she did say volume was expected to increase locally as well.

“It gets extremely busy,” she said. “These guys, they work really hard getting stuff out. We try to remember a lot of this is going to be Santa for some kids and Christmas gifts for the family.”

More and more of customers are taking advantage of usps.com as well, Chiovaro said. Dec. 19 will be the busiest mailing and shipping day for holiday packages, letters and cards and the USPS is expecting over 7 million visits to the website on that day. The website allows customers to arrange for shipping and order Priority Mail boxes online without a trip to the post office.

Just a few days later, Dec. 22 is expected to be the busiest delivery day for holiday packages, cards and letters. The Postal Service anticipates nearly 30 million packages will be delivered on the peak delivery day alone.

The biggest push for the local post office will be during the final week leading up to Christmas, but Chiovaro expects that 100 percent of deliveries will be made. “Brookhaven is a wonderful town and we have awesome employees,” Chiovaro said. “We owe a huge thank you to our customers. That’s what keeps us going.”

Nationally, the USPS is hiring more than 35,000 seasonal employees to help process and deliver increased volumes and meet the needs of its customers.

Christmas shipping deadlines

The Postal Service recommends the following mailing and shipping deadlines:

·     Dec. 9     – APO/FPO/DPO Priority Mail & First Class Mail

·     Dec. 15    – USPS Retail Ground

·     Dec. 20    – First Class Mail

·     Dec. 21    – Priority Mail

·     Dec. 23    – Priority Mail Express