USPS, 7 Days a Week: Package Delivery Ramped Up for Holidays
It's now almost a 24/7 postal service. For the holidays, the U.S. Postal Service will be delivering packages seven days a week, USPS says.
The postal service's Thursday announcement comes a day after Americans learned Amazon plans to deliver some packages via taxi, a service that does run 24/7. Fortune also hypothesized that the USPS made this move in order to compete with UPS and FedEx. (UPS and FedEx also employ the USPS for aspects of their delivery services.)
However, responding to the assertion that competition prompted the daily delivery, the USPS had a one-line response.
"The decision to deliver seven days a week is an operational one based on our own increased package volumes," a USPS spokeswoman writes in an email to Target Marketing.
In the release, USPS cites projected "double-digit package volume growth" as its reason for providing daily package delivery from Nov. 17 to Christmas Day in major cities and "high-volume areas."
During that time, the USPS expects to deliver 450 to 470 million packages, for a projected 12 percent increase, the release announces. Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe says this is "crunch time" for the USPS—a crunch that is being enhanced by growth in e-commerce purchases.
"During the holidays, no carrier makes more deliveries to more places than the Postal Service," he says. "And this year, we're raising the bar with enhanced tracking and Sunday delivery."
The one allusion the USPS release does make to UPS and FedEx is that both increased their shipping prices, while the postal service reduced some of its prices for businesses and frequent shippers. In addition, the USPS didn't raise rates in January.
Overall, package delivery revenues are up for USPS by 10 percent, even as First Class mail volumes drop, Mickey D. Barnett recently told Congress. Barnett was testifying in hopes of retaining his seat as chairman of the USPS Board of Governors.
USPS also outlines its holiday shipping deadlines:
For expected delivery of holiday mail and packages by Christmas, the Postal Service recommends keeping the following mailing and shipping deadlines in mind:
Dec. 2—First Class mail international/Priority Mail international
Dec. 10—Priority Mail Express International
Dec. 15—Standard Post
Dec. 17—Global Express Guaranteed
Dec. 20—First Class mail/Priority Mail (domestic)
Dec. 23—Priority Mail Express (domestic)
How much will marketers employ this 7-day-a-week package delivery option?
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