Proper postage aids delivery for holidays

By Marlena Hartz: CNJ staff writer

Worried that your Christmas presents won’t make it for the holiday? Here are some postal guidelines that may help:

Mail options:
— Express Mail: This option guarantees overnight delivery to most areas, but in some areas, expect mail to arrive within two days.
— Priority Mail: Mail should arrive within two to three days.
— Parcel Post: This is the least expensive way to send mail. But it is also the slowest. Mail could arrive within five days to two weeks. If you choose this route, to be safe mail packages by Dec. 9.

To ensure delivery of holiday cards and packages at military addresses overseas, the U.S. Postal Service suggests these mailing dates:
— The recommended date for Parcel Post has expired.
— The recommended date for Space Available Mail (in which parcels are paid at parcel post rates and transported first domestically by surface and then overseas destinations on a space-available basis) is Nov. 27.
— The recommended date for Parcel Airlift Mail is Dec. 4 for most military addresses, and Dec. 2 for APO/FPO ZIP 093.
— The recommended date for priority mail is Dec. 11 for most military addresses, and Dec. 4 for APO/FPO ZIP 093.
— The recommended date for first-class mail letters or cards is Dec. 11 for most military addresses, and Dec. 4 for APO/FPO ZIP 093.

To ensure timely and safe delivery of packages, Clovis postal worker Mary Sue Stone recommends:
— Send packages early.
— Include your address and the recipient’s address inside packages as well as outside. This ensures postal workers will have a correct mailing address should the mail’s container be damaged.
— Wrap packages securely. You may want to wrap contents inside a plastic bag for protection. Also, make sure contents of packages don’t shift easily.
— Use sturdy tape to secure packages.
— Fill out any necessary forms. For instance, if mail is being sent to a military installation, it must be accompanied by a customs form, which is available at the postal office.

Source: Clovis postal workers