Massive Volume Causing USPS Shipping Delays
A historically unprecedented volume of packages is straining the U.S. Postal Service this holiday season.
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, many Americans have opted to do all of their Christmas shopping online, putting unexpected pressure on all major characters, particularly the USPS.
FedEx and UPS have announced cutoffs for deliveries from some retailers, sending even more packages to the already inundated Postal Service.
The result has been unpredictable delays across the country. According to several photos and reports from employees, many USPS processing locations are overwhelmed with package and mail backlogs. Many employees are reporting large amounts of overtime.
In an interview in the Washington Post, an anonymous Philadelphia USPS mail carrier said, “I don’t think anyone, including the post office itself, knows just how bad delays are.”
As carriers like FedEx and UPS route their excess to USPS, causing major delays, e-commerce sales are up 33% compared to this time last year.
Even first-class mail, like bills and letters, is being affected by the slowdown. According to the same Washington Post article, The Postal Service told Congress during the last week of November that only 78.9% of first class mail was delivered on time. USPS’ goal is for 96% of mail to be delivered on time.
As we rapidly approach the holidays, it seems as if any package might be subject to unpredictable delays. We have also already passed one of the deadlines for shipping through FedEx and UPS for guaranteed arrival by Christmas - deadlines that might be inaccurate in the face of these erratic delays.
It’s also important to emphasize that tracking information coming from USPS may be completely inaccurate. Some packages are receiving false tracking updates, and others are receiving no tracking updates at all.
We've been tracking #uspsdelays on Instagram and finding other individuals and small businesses being affected these delays.
We found several similar posts to this one. What they have in common is that they ask their customers for patience and understanding.
And here we'd like to take the opportunity to ask for patience and understanding from all Snap Supply customers, whether they are buying from us or elsewhere. These are difficult and unprecedented times.
We wish you a safe, healthy, and happy holiday!
Here is some additional reading for more information regarding the USPS slowdown: