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Whether you’re strategizing your Black Friday shopping plans or worrying about mailing out your holiday greeting cards on time, it’s important to know your shipping options with the post office well in advance. So, is the Post Office open on Christmas Eve?
We’ve got the scoop on postal service holiday hours, shipping cutoff dates, and anything else you should be aware of going into the busiest shopping days and craziest shipping time of the year.
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1. Is there mail on Christmas Eve?
Yes, the U.S. Postal Service collects and delivers mail on Christmas Eve, unless Dec. 24 falls on a Sunday. Operating days for the USPS are Monday through Saturday, anyway; they’re closed every Sunday.
Mail in the blue collection boxes will be picked up on Christmas Eve. However, the Postal Service recommends you drop off your packages before noon on Dec. 24, even if there are later times posted on the collection box. If you need to ship something out after the noon cutoff time, visit your local post office.
2. What are the Post Office hours on Christmas Eve?
While there is USPS delivery Christmas Eve, your local post office hours may be limited. For example, a downtown Chicago post office probably won’t have the same hours as the post office in rural Sumpter, Oregon.
Most post office locations are open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. However, local postal service holiday hours may vary. You can check the hours for the post office near you with the Find USPS Location tool. Hours are also typically posted on the post office doors and in the lobby.
3. What holidays is the Post Office closed?
The U.S. Post Office observes 11 federal holidays each year, meaning there is no regular mail or package delivery on these days:
- New Year’s Day
- Martin Luther King Jr. birthday
- Presidents’ Day
- Memorial Day
- Juneteenth National Independence Day
- Independence Day
- Labor Day
- Columbus Day
- Veterans Day
- Thanksgiving Day
- Christmas Day
When a holiday falls on a Sunday (like Christmas does in 2022), post offices remain closed on Monday and resume services on Tuesday.
Related: Need something last-minute? We found several stores open Christmas Day.
4. Does the Post Office deliver on Christmas?
No, the post office doesn’t deliver on Christmas, so if you need to ship packages, be sure you meet the USPS holiday cutoff dates for Christmas Eve delivery (see Tip 5). Although the U.S. Postal Service offers you almost a two-week window prior to the holiday, it’s always best to send out your packages as early as possible to hopefully avoid any last-minute snafus.
5. What are the holiday shipping dates for 2022?
Like UPS and FedEx, the U.S. Postal Service has cutoff dates for shipping holiday gifts and cards in time for Christmas. For the lower 48 states:
- First-Class Mail Dec. 17
- USPS Retail Ground Dec. 17
- Priority Mail Dec. 19
- Priority Mail Express Dec. 23
Alaska and Hawaii have unique holiday and shipping deadlines:
- USPS Retail Ground Dec. 2 (Alaska only)
- First Class Mail Dec. 17
- Priority Mail Dec. 17
- Priority Mail Express Dec. 21
USPS retail ground service is not available in Hawaii.
6. How can I ensure on-time Christmas delivery?
To ensure your holiday gifts and cards make it to their recipient in time for Christmas, adhere to the USPS holiday shipping dates. If possible, sending your packages out a few days prior to the deadlines can give some you breathing room. Here are a few other tips for on-time holiday delivery:
- Clearly label your packages before you arrive at the post office.
- Select a faster shipping method the closer you get to the cut-off date.
- Choose a shipping method that includes tracking.
If you just don’t have enough time, you can always schedule a digital holiday gift for delivery on Christmas.