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The U.S. Postal Service is raising shipping prices. They’ve also given us shipping deadlines for the holidays.

It looks to be another odd year for holiday celebrations. The biggest question likely on most minds is, do we make merry in person or virtually? No matter your plans, the Postal Service is ready to do its part to handle your special holiday greetings and gifts. But we also need you to do your part, and that is to make sure you get those packages and good wishes to your Post Office location on time.

New Pricing

There are plenty of holiday- and winter- themed stamps available to adorn your greeting cards this year. You can find them in our online Postal Store or at any one of our more than 34,000 Post Office locations. As a reminder, on Aug. 29, the cost of a First-Class Forever stamp increased three cents, from 55 cents to 58 cents. There are also temporary price increases in place through Dec. 26, 12:01 a.m., Central time for both retail and business customers for some of our more popular shipping products, which also includes military shipping — Priority Mail Express (PME), Priority Mail (PM), First-Class Package Service (FCPS), Parcel Select, USPS Retail Ground, and Parcel Return Service. International products are unaffected. These temporary rates will keep the Postal Service competitive while providing the agency with the revenue to cover extra costs in anticipation of peak-season volume surges similar to levels experienced in 2020.

Temporary pricing increases for Priority Mail, Priority Mail Express, Parcel Select Ground and USPS Retail Ground, and First-Class Package Service are as follows:

  • PM and PME Flat Rate Boxes and Envelopes – $0.75
  • Zones 1-4, 0-10 lbs.  – $0.25
  • Zones 5-9, 0-10 lbs. –  $0.75
  • Zones 1-4, 11-20 lbs. – $1.50
  • Zones 5-9, 11-20lbs. – $3.00
  • Zones 1-4, 21-70 lbs. – $2.50
  • Zones 5-9, 21-70 lbs. – $5.00
  • First-Class Package Service – $0.30

A zone pricing calculator is can be found online. A complete list of business products and prices is also available online.

The temporary adjustment is part of “Delivering for America,” the Postal Service’s 10-year plan for achieving financial sustainability and service excellence, which calls for appropriate pricing initiatives. Even with the temporary increase, the Postal Service has some of the lowest mail postage rates in the industrialized world and continues to offer great values in shipping.

2021 Holiday Shipping Deadlines

The Postal Service recommends the following mailing and shipping deadlines for expected delivery by Dec. 25 to domestic addresses and APO/FPO/DPO (Air/Army Post Office/Fleet Post Office/Diplomatic Post Office) addresses*:

  • Nov. 6   — APO/FPO/DPO (all ZIP Codes) USPS Retail Ground service
  • Dec. 9   — APO/FPO/DPO (all ZIP Codes) Priority Mail and First-Class Mail
  • Dec. 15 — USPS Retail Ground service
  • Dec. 16 — APO/FPO/DPO (except ZIP Code 093) USPS Priority Mail Express Military service
  • Dec. 17 — First-Class Mail service (including greeting cards)
  • Dec. 17 — First-class packages (up to 15.99 ounces)
  • Dec. 18 — Priority Mail service
  • Dec. 23 — Priority Mail Express* service

Alaska

  • Dec. 18 — Alaska to/from Continental U.S.– First-Class Mail
  • Dec. 18 — Alaska to/from Continental U.S.– Priority Mail
  • Dec. 21 — Alaska to/from Continental U.S.– Priority Mail Express

Hawaii

  • Dec. 17 — Hawaii to/from mainland–Priority Mail and First-Class Mail
  • Dec. 21 — Hawaii to/from mainland–Priority Mail Express

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