WASHINGTON — The U.S. Postal Service exceeded its holiday delivery projections this season, delivering approximately 524 million packages in December — an 18 percent increase over last year.
On Dec. 22 alone, the Postal Service delivered more than 28 million packages. This marked the most packages delivered in a single day in the organization’s history. The package delivery record was set while also delivering approximately 463 million pieces of mail.
Improving tracking and reliability for customers was a key factor in preparing for holiday delivery demand. In advance of the holidays, the Postal Service also lowered some prices for businesses and frequent shippers.
“The volume this holiday season demonstrates that retailers and consumers increasingly are turning to the Postal Service to deliver their packages,” said Postmaster General and Chief Executive Officer Patrick Donahoe. “We know how much our customers count on us to make sure cards, letters and gifts make it home, and I’m proud that we delivered on our promise.”
In preparation for the holiday package volume, the Postal Service enhanced its network and made adjustments to mail processing and delivery operations, including delivering packages seven days a week beginning late November. More than 20 million packages were delivered on the five Sundays prior to Christmas to keep the mail moving and networks clear. An additional 118,000 packages were delivered Christmas Day.
“The dedication and resolve of our employees is commendable,” Donahoe said. “They adapted and delivered heavier-than-ever volumes of packages. They worked extremely hard, many of them braving harsh weather. I’m honored by the commitment they demonstrated this holiday season.”
The Postal Service is continuing to anticipate holiday volume through January as consumers use the mail to return holiday gifts. Merchants and retailers can take advantage of several return services, including Priority Mail Returns Service, to help customers make their returns easier. Consumers with gifts to return can pack items in Priority Mail packaging, which comes with insurance and tracking, and is available free at Post Offices or online.
The Postal Service receives no tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.
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