Time to get shipping

The Postal Service has recommended deadlines for the holiday mailing and shipping season.

The suggestions, released Oct. 7, are for expected delivery by Dec. 25 to domestic, Air/Army Post Office (APO), Fleet Post Office (FPO) and Diplomatic Post Office (DPO) addresses.

Here are the deadlines:

• Nov. 6: APO, FPO and DPO addresses (all ZIP Codes), USPS Retail Ground service
Dec. 9: APO, FPO and DPO (all ZIP Codes), Priority Mail and First-Class Mail services
Dec. 15: USPS Retail Ground Service
Dec. 16: APO, FPO and DPO addresses (except ZIP Code 093), Priority Mail Express Military service
Dec. 17: First-Class Mail, including greeting cards
Dec. 17: First-Class Mail packages (up to 15.99 ounces)
Dec. 18: Priority Mail service
Dec. 23: Priority Mail Express service

The Postal Service expects customer traffic to increase during the week of Dec.6. The period of Dec. 13-18 is predicted to be the season’s busiest for mailing, shipping and delivery.

More than 12.5 million customers are expected to use usps.com on Dec. 19, making it the Postal Service’s busiest day online this holiday season. Nearly 500,000 customers are expected to use the Click-N-Ship feature.

After USPS

The Postal Service wants you to know about the rules that apply to former employees.

After leaving USPS, former employees may accept a new job with any employer. Depending on what their postal duties were, they may be prohibited from interacting with their former postal colleagues for a certain time period.

For example, former employees may not communicate on behalf of their new employer with former postal colleagues on matters that they worked on together involving outside organizations or individuals.

Former employees also must wait two years before communicating with USPS about matters their former subordinates worked on during the employee’s last year of postal employment.

Some former senior managers have a one-year cooling-off period before they may communicate with the Postal Service on behalf of a new employer regarding any matter.

Former employees may work behind the scenes on postal matters on behalf of a new employer, which means that they do not communicate with or appear before USPS while performing their work.

Former employees must not use nonpublic or proprietary Postal Service information in their new positions.

Because the determination of whether post-employment restrictions apply is fact-specific, the USPS Ethics and Legal Compliance team encourages current and former employees to seek guidance by calling 202-268-6346 or sending an email to ethics.help@usps.gov.

Featured creatures

“News Quiz” is a weekly feature that lets you test your knowledge of recent Link stories. The correct answers appear at the end.

1. Fill in the blank: (Blank) designed the Message Monsters stamp pane with original artwork by Elise Gravel

a) Antonio Alcalá
b) Greg Breeding
c) Ethel Kessler
d) Derry Noyes

2 Approximately how many USPS employees are represented by the American Postal Workers Union?

a) More than 200,000
b) More than 300,000
c) More than 400,000
d) More than 500,000

3. True or false: Internal Service Performance Measurement is the Postal Service’s official reporting and recording system.

a) True
b) False

4. When did James H. Bilbray become the 22nd chairman of the USPS Board of Governors?

a) 2015
b) 2006
c) 2017
d) 2018

5. When does the Worldwide Wellness challenge end?

a) Oct. 24
b) Oct. 25
c) Oct. 26
d) Oct. 27

Answers: 1) a. 2) a. 3) a. 4) a. 5) a.

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