McClatchy Washington Bureau
USPS to Move More Packages by Truck Instead of Plane
[Stay on top of transportation news: Get TTNews in your inbox.] Some packages may soon take more time to arrive, the U.S. Postal Service said.
Starting May 1, the standard time for about one-third of first-class packages will be one to two days longer. The change is expected to have the biggest impact on deliveries traveling long distances, such as those going from coast to coast, USPS said on its website.
The change impacts first-class packages, which are meant to be small and lightweight.
Another 4% of those packages will be “upgraded from a three-day to two-day service standard,” officials said in an April 18 news release. There won’t be a change in delivery times for the other 64% of the deliveries.
Officials said the new “standards will enable additional package volume to be transported by surface transportation, which is more reliable and affordable compared to air transportation.”
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Also in its announcement, USPS said some shipping times could get faster. The change will cut one delivery day from goods being transported by ground through priority mail, an option that offers customers tracking on items with standardized, flat-rate packaging sent within the contiguous United States.
“The extra day was temporarily put in place in April 2020 to account for ongoing global supply chain, transportation and employee availability challenges across our network posed by the COVID-19 pandemic,” officials said in their news release. “Given the continued high demand on the overall air network, the Postal Service is retaining the extra day at this time for priority mail transported via air until the reliability of our key providers improves.”
USPS suggests people plan ahead and send first-class packages early, especially if they are traveling far or need to arrive by a certain date. Officials on their website also reassured customers that the changes won’t impact most packages.
“In fact, these new standards mean your packages will be delivered more reliably and consistently than they have been in previous years,” the Postal Service said.
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