Rain, sleet or Santa: Postal packages still have a chance

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, December 21, 2004

All over town the lines are getting longer. People are scrambling to send last minute packages in the hopes they will be safely under the tree by Saturday. So how likely is it that these special expressions of holiday spirit will arrive on time? It all depends.

Patty Thomas, Postmaster for Demopolis Post Office, said things would be crazy for them all week starting with Monday.

“Today is probably going to be one of our busiest days,” Thomas said Monday morning. “It normally is. The Monday before Christmas and the rest of the week are usually busy.”

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Thomas said the post office would be sending packages right up to the last minute. She said if people could get their gifts out by early Friday they may be okay.

“You can use our Express service as late as Christmas Eve and get some packages there,” Thomas said. “A lot of them can go through the system and be there the next day.”

Thomas said it all depended on where the package was going as to whether or not it would be there on time. She said it is always a risk.

“Many of the packages sent through the Express Service will get there on time,” Thomas said. “But there are some that will still take two days. It just depends on where they are going.”

Thomas said the best way to avoid holiday worries was to take care of shipping before the holiday rush.

“Of course, it is always better to play it safe and not wait until the last minute,” Thomas said. “That way you will know that it will be there eon time and people won’t be left waiting for their Christmas presents.”

As for UPS, the only gifts that will make their destinations from this point on will do so as if they were coming from Santa himself…through the air.

Darla Brown, of the UPS Store in Demopolis, said air delivery is the only way to guarantee their packages will arrive by Christmas Day.

“Right now air is the only way we can guarantee them,” Brown said. “We have already stopped that on the ground delivery so if they want it there by Christmas now it will have to be done by air.

Thursday will be the last day UPS packages will be able to make their destination. UPS will offer three-day delivery Tuesday, two-day delivery Wednesday and overnight on Thursday.

Brown agreed the best way to make sure a package gets there on time is to send it early.

“We would tell people sooner is better than later,” Brown said. “They probably should have been sent last week really. It is always better to get it taken care of early.”