Last-Minute Rush on Post Office's Busiest Day

By Julie Tam
|  Tuesday, Dec 21, 2010  |  Updated 9:13 AM CDT
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Standing in Line for the Year's Busiest Shipping Day

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Holiday shippers are rushing to mail their last-minute packages in Post Offices across the nation.

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Standing in Line for the Year's Busiest Shipping Day

Time is running out for people to mail cards and packages by Christmas.
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If you still have Christmas cards or presents to mail, you better hurry up!

Christmas is just five days away, and lines at the post office are getting long. It's the busiest day of the year for post offices across North Texas and the rest of the country.

From gifts for the great-grandkids in Oklahoma to a laptop and toys for loved ones in Florida, people rushed in to make an important deadline: Monday was the last day to send mail first-class and know it will arrive in time for Christmas.

"If they wait 'til tomorrow, get busy, we recommend that they use three-day Priority Mail," Rosco Timberlake, U.S. Postal Service spokesman, said. "If they get busy still, and it's Wednesday or Thursday before they get started, we highly suggest they use Express Mail."

Even though a sign inside the Main Post Office in Dallas says the Express Mail cut-off time is Friday at 7:30 p.m., if you wait until then, your package may not make it in time for Christmas.

The USPS expects to handle 800 million pieces of mail Monday, 40 percent more than an average day.

The amount of mail coming through the Dallas area has dropped slightly since this time last year, but the lines are still long.

Karl Chiao, of Dallas, had 70 Christmas cards to mail, but first he needed stamps.

"This is the third post office I've been to. The first two, the machines were out, and the lines were extremely long," he said.

Thursday is the UPS deadline to get packages delivered on time.

UPS predicts its busiest delivery day will be Christmas Eve, with an estimated 24 million shipments.

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