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The United States Postal Service (USPS) will be preparing to deliver over 900 million packages this holiday season between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day.

For packages alone, this is a 50 million package increase from last year. In combination with the nearly 15 billion pieces of mail they expect to deliver, that's 16 billion deliveries expected for the holiday season.

Due to the increase in packages, the Postal Service will be expanding Sunday delivery operations in select locations during the holidays. More than 5 million packages are expected to be delivered each Sunday in December.

Priority Mail Express packages will also be delivered for an additional fee in select locations.

If you intend on being one of the 16 billion mail and package senders this holiday season, here are some tips to make sure your packages and mail cards have the best opportunity to arrive on time.

For an expected delivery by December 25, visit the post office no later than:

  • December, 11 – Priority Mail and First-Class Mail
  • December, 14 – USPS Retail Ground
  • December, 18 - Army Post Office/Fleet Post Office/Diplomatic Post Office USPS Priority Mail Express
  • December, 20 – First-Class mail (including greeting cards
  • December, 20 – First-Class packages (up to 15.99 ounces)
  • December, 20 – Priority Mail
  • December, 22 – Priority Mail Express

Sending a gift to someone in the military?

The USPS offers a discounted price of $17.40 on Priority Mail Flat Rate Boxes if you want to send a package to loved serving in the military.

Deliveries expected by the numbers:

  • 5 million packages delivered each Sunday in December
  • 200 million packages delivered per week beginning December 10.
  • 3 billion pieces of First-Class Mail, including greeting cards, will be processed and delivered from December 17 to 23.

USPS online guests by the numbers:

  • 8 million consumers expected to visit USPS.com on December 17
  • 105 million consumers expected to visit the website between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day
  • 400,000 consumers expected to use the Click-N-Ship feature and other online services on December 17