Mailing holiday packages with care

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The United States Postal Service logo is seen on a mailbox outside a post office in Los Angeles, California, August 17, 2020. – The United States Postal Service is popularly known for delivering mail despite snow, rain or heat, but it faces a new foe in President Donald Trump. Ahead of the November 3 elections in which millions of voters are expected to cast ballots by mail due to the coronavirus, Trump has leveled an unprecedented attack at the USPS, opposing efforts to give the cash-strapped agency more money as part of a big new virus-related stimulus package, even as changes there have caused delays in mail delivery. (Photo by Robyn Beck / AFP) (Photo by ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images)

COLORADO SPRINGS– Twelve billion cards, letters, packages, etc. are delivered annually during the holiday season, and the U.S. Postal Service has tips to help get gifts to their appropriate location swiftly and safely.

“The Postal Service is making it easier to ship packages to family and friends this season,” said Customer Relations Coordinator Linda Neill. “Proper addressing and proper packaging will help us give every gift the service it deserves.” 

Neill plans to host a session demonstrating the preparation of packages for all seasons as well as will offer timely shipping tips and advice on Wednesday, Dec. 15 starting at 10:00 a.m. at the Colorado Springs Post Office at 201 E. Pikes Peak Avenue.

“Now is the time to mail your holiday greetings and packages to make sure they reach their intended destination in time for holiday gatherings and celebrations,” said Postmaster General Louis DeJoy. “This will be the busiest week of mailing and shipping across the nation, but there is a spirit of excitement throughout the organization and our entire team is working around the clock to deliver the holidays for the nation.”

The following are a few helpful packing tips shared by the U.S. Postal Service:

  • Select a durable box to protect the contents. Priority Mail and Priority Mail Express boxes are free at local Post Office locations.
  • Do NOT reuse boxes — they weaken in the shipping process.
  • Cushion items with bubble wrap, newspaper, or “foam peanuts” so they do not shift during transit.
  • Wrap each item separately when packing more than one item in the same box.
  • Remove batteries from electronic devices and wrap separately.
  • Close and shake the box to see if there is enough cushioning. If items are shifting, add more cushioning.
  • Mark packages “Fragile” in large print on the outside of the box when shipping materials that might be more likely to break.
  • When re-using a box make sure previous labels and markings are covered before mailing.
  • Mark “Perishable” on packages that contain food or other items that can spoil.
  • Place an extra address label with the delivery and return address inside the package. This ensures the safe return of an item that could not be delivered should the outside label become damaged or fall off.
  • Always use tape designed for sealing shipping boxes.
  • Do not use string, cellophane and masking tape to seal packages. 

2021 Holiday Shipping Deadlines

  • Dec. 9 – Overseas Military Mail
  • Dec. 17 – First-Class Mail (greetings cards and letters)
  • Dec. 18 – Priority Mail
  • Dec. 23 – Priority Mail Express 

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