The post office is usually full this time of year, with people mailing out over-sized cards who don’t know how much postage goes on them, with people sending out their extra-large packages to family and friends far and wide, and with people picking up those same sized packages from that same group of family and friends. But in this age of post office issues, of the rise of UPS and FedEx, you would think the last place people would be is in the post office at any time of year. You would be wrong.
In fact, post office traffic is larger this year at Christmas-time than in any time in the past five years, and I can think of at least three reasons for this. 1) Internet giants like amazon.com, bestbuy.com, and barnesandnoble.com offer the cheapest shipping (and often times free shipping) on items sent through the USPS. This, combined with comparable delivery times to UPS and FedEx, serves to keep the post office going strong, at least right now. 2) People still send out Christmas cards like clockwork, and not many take advantage of the usps.com print-your-own-stamps program, so they still line up to send their cards. 3) While shipping boxes and envelopes are found much more cheaply at stores like Target, most people purchase the boxes and envelopes available at the post office because they are in a last-second rush. This combination, this perfect storm, encourages more foot traffic even now, at this time of year, to your local post office, so get there early.