Posted: Dec 17, 2012 4:06 PM by Chris Welty
Updated: Dec 18, 2012 10:04 AM
It's the last week before Christmas, and today is considered the busiest shipping day of the year for the United States Post Office.
The deadline has passed for regular package shipping, but if you use priority or express mail, the deadline is December 22nd.
This year, the post office is expecting record numbers.
"I normally mail a little earlier, but one of my pictures was cropped a little off."
Every year, Donna Olivier mails more than 150 Christmas cards to family and friends. This year, she's mailing a little later.
"Everyone is going to get it. Most of my family is close so, within two to three days."
This year more than 18 billion pieces of mail is expected to go through the system, a 20 percent increase over last year.
"Big lines in the lobby, big delivery times, putting extra personnel on board to accommodate the need. You'll see our carriers on the street making sure all the packages get delivered timely," said Post Master Anthony Grandolfo.
One of the goals at the post office is to make sure everyone gets in and out of line within five minutes.
"Make sure your packages don't have anything fragile, liquid, perishable, or potentially hazardous. Make sure it's sealed properly, we do have people in the lobby assisting with questions on mailing needs."
The holiday rush is also helping to offset a 5.2 billion dollar third quarter loss.
"At this time of year, it is our time to shine. We get new business this time of year because we're able to provide the services they are looking for," said Grandolfo.