SAN DIEGO — An unprecedented crush of mail stalled holiday deliveries and stretched an already struggling U.S. Postal Service thin in 2020. That’s left some San Diegans understandably wary of counting on their parcels getting delivered on time this season.
But officials say they expect things to run more smoothly this time around — even despite the ongoing supply chain issues plaguing the U.S.
“Between Thanksgiving and New Years Day, which is what we term our holiday season, we’re expecting 25 billion letters, cards and packages to come through our system,” Stephen Doherty, a USPS spokesperson, told the Associated Press this month.
“We’ve been preparing for this holiday since the last holiday season ended. So, we’ve got everything in place. … We have the trucks, we have the personnel, we have the rolling stock and equipment to move the mail. We shouldn’t be impacted by the supply chain. We’ll get everything delivered.”
“Last year was a wake-up call for us,” Doherty added. “This year we know what to expect.”
Other major mail carriers, like FedEx and UPS, say they’re fully prepared for the year’s major wave of deliveries, too.
Here’s when you should get your presents in the mail so the people you care about can unwrap them by Christmas Day:
If you’re shipping with the U.S. Postal Service, cutoff dates for getting packages delivered by Dec. 25 are:
- Dec. 15 for Retail Ground Service
- Dec. 17 for First-Class Mail Service
- Dec. 18 for Priority Mail Service
- Dec. 23 Priority Mail Express Service
More details, including information on Alaska and Hawaii (which differ from San Diego and the rest of the contiguous U.S.) and international shipping, are available on the USPS website.
If you’re shipping with UPS, cutoff dates for getting packages delivered by Dec. 25 are:
- Varies for Ground service — use this calculator
- Dec. 21 for 3 Day Select
- Dec. 22 for 2nd Day Air Services
- Dec. 23 for Next Day Air Services
If you’re shipping with FedEx, cutoff dates for getting packages delivered by Dec. 25 are:
- Dec. 9 (with some exceptions) via FedEx SmartPost
- Dec. 15 for both FedEx Ground and Home Delivery
- Dec. 21 for Express Saver
- Dec. 22 for 2Day Services
- Dec. 23 for Overnight Services
FedEx also provides a more detailed breakdown online.