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Yule Be Merrier If Mail Is Sent Early

November 20, 1987

With the holiday season just around the corner, local postmasters are urging mailers to "think ahead" and send packages and cards early to ensure their timely arrival.

But what is early?

According to Postal Service spokesman Mike Cannone, one can no longer expect parcels traveling by ship to arrive before Christmas, since the suggested deadline of Nov. 16 has passed.

"All parcels traveling overseas should now be sent by airmail to guarantee delivery by the holidays," San Diego County mail processing manager Dave Misner said.

Cannone suggests sending overseas airmail packages and letters no later than the first week of December.

Overseas airmail parcels will arrive in an average of seven days, four times more quickly than they would by ship, which requires a travel time of six to eight weeks, Cannone said.

Delivery standards for domestic mail do not change during the holidays, Misner said. All first-class letters and packages traveling from coast to coast can be expected to arrive in three days, barring flight delays and cancellations because of poor weather conditions.

"We have the same delivery standards during the Christmas rush as we do during the rest of the year, even though our daily volume climbs to about 11 million pieces, up from 8 million pieces a day," Misner said.

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