Even though Halloween decorations are still fresh on the shelves, retailers are preparing for the biggest e-commerce holiday of the year: Christmas. With that in mind, the Christmas shipping deadlines for USPS have been announced so online merchants can beat Santa this year.
Last year, over a million packages failed to reach their destination in time for Christmas due to the massive surge of online orders. A similar uptick in orders is expected this year as well.
Staying ahead of the curve will help inform your operational process as well as enable you to provide clearer communication to your customers.
USPS Christmas Shipping Deadlines
The USPS Christmas shipping deadlines are different depending on the service you choose, as well as the package’s origin and destination.
USPS Shipping Deadlines For Lower 48 States
|Domestic Mail Class/Product||Cut Off Date|
|First Class Mail||Dec-17|
|Priority Mail||Dec- 18|
|Priority Mail Express*||Dec- 23|
|USPS Retail Ground||Dec- 15|
|DNDC Drop Ship Marketing Mail||Dec- 19|
|DSCF Drop Ship – Marketing Mail||Dec- 21|
|DDU Drop Ship – Marketing Mail||Dec- 22|
*Priority Mail Express postage refund eligibility is adjusted for shipments mailed Dec 22-25
USPS Shipping Deadlines For Other U.S. States And Territories
|First Class Mail||Dec 18|
|Priority Mail||Dec 18|
|Priority Mail Express||Dec 21|
|USPS Retail Ground||Dec 02|
|DNDC Drop Ship||Dec 11|
|From Hawaii To:||First Class & Priority Mail||Priority Mail Express|
|U.S. Mainland||Dec 17||Dec 21|
|Hawaii||Dec 20||Dec 22|
|Guam And Saipan||Dec 10||Dec 17|
|American Samoa||Dec 03||Dec 13|
|Military APOs & FPOs||Dec 03||Dec 13|
|International||Dec 03||Dec 13|
International USPS Shipping Deadlines
|International Mail Addressed To||Global Express Guaranteed® (GXG)||Priority Mail Express International® (PMEI)||Priority Mail International® (PMI)||First-Class Package International Service® (FCPIS)|
|Africa||Dec- 20||Dec- 6||Nov- 29||Nov- 29|
|Asia/Pacific Rim||Dec- 20||Dec- 13||Dec- 6||Dec- 6|
|Australia/New Zealand||Dec- 20||Dec- 13||Dec- 6||Dec- 6|
|Canada||Dec- 22||Dec- 13||Dec- 6||Dec- 6|
|Caribbean||Dec- 21||Dec- 13||Dec- 6||Dec- 6|
|Central & South America||Dec- 20||Dec- 6||Nov- 29||Nov- 29|
|Mexico||Dec- 22||Dec- 13||Dec- 6||Dec- 6|
|Europe||Dec- 21||Dec- 13||Dec- 6||Dec- 6|
|Middle East||Dec- 20||Dec- 13||Dec- 6||Dec- 6|
***GXG Notes: 1) Cutoff date does not take into account time needed for customs clearance. 2) Should allocate extra transit day(s) for delivery outside major cities.
What This Means For Your E-commerce Business
As much as we all want to forget about 2020, there are still aspects that we should remember and learn from. For example, no one is ever going to take toilet paper or paper towels for granted ever again. Consumers also haven’t forgotten what it was like to get their Christmas gifts after Christmas.
With that being said, your customers are likely planning to order earlier than ever before. Letting them know the Christmas shipping deadlines across your website, email communications, social media posts, and other channels allows you to provide helpful and proactive customer service that helps your customers meet their holiday shopping goals.
With customers being aware of their deadlines, they’ll want to order sooner than ever. If you plan on shipping with USPS or other carriers, you will want to leverage their shipment deadlines. You’ll also likely want to consider inventory levels in the coming weeks.
How To Save On USPS Shipping Labels
With an expected increase in sales, e-commerce business owners will need to create more shipping labels. For small businesses, in particular, the cost of shipping during peak season can add up in a hurry.
Luckily, Shippo offers its users discount shipping labels from the USPS year round. These discounts range in size but can climb all the way to 89% of retail prices in certain cases. Utilizing all-in-one shipping solutions such as Shippo is one of many ways e-commerce businesses are prepping for peak season.
To find more information on how to conquer holiday shipping this year, be sure to visit our holiday shipping center.