Sending out gifts? US Postal Service sets holiday mailing, shipping deadlines

The U.S. Postal Service recommends mailing cards and packages early to ensure they arrive in time for Christmas. (Cheryl Burke photo)

MOREHEAD CITY — The U.S. Postal Service has announced the 2021 Christmas mailing and shipping deadlines for domestic, international and military services. Customers are encouraged to ship early, whenever possible.

To ensure timely delivery of cards, letters and packages within the U.S. by Saturday, Dec. 25, the postal service recommends customers ship their items by the following dates:

  • Wednesday, Dec. 15: retail ground deliveries.
  • Saturday, Dec. 18: First-Class Mail.
  • Sunday, Dec. 19: Priority Mail.
  • Thursday, Dec. 23: Priority Mail Express.

The Postal Service recommends that cards and packages be sent to military Air/Army Post Office/Fleet Post Office/Diplomatic Post Office addresses overseas by the following dates:

  • Thursday, Dec. 9: First Class Mail and Priority Mail Service for all APO/FPO/DPO zip codes.
  • Thursday, Dec. 16: Priority Mail Express Military Service, with the exception of zip 093, which is not applicable.

Complete details on mailing and shipping services, including international and military, can be found at

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