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Holiday Shipping Deadlines for Christmas 2013

Here are the United States Postal Service deadlines for Military Mail, First Class Mail, Priority Mail and Priority Mail Express if you want your goods to arrive before Christmas.

Santa wants your packages delivered on time.
Santa wants your packages delivered on time.

With Christmas rapidly approaching, Southland residents flocked to post offices and other parcel-service outposts Monday on what is traditionally the busiest shipping day of the year for people trying to get gifts in the mail in time for holiday delivery.

The U.S. Postal Service expected more than 6 million customers to come through its doors across the country as part of the holiday rush, and another 6 million to skip the lines and go online at USPS.com, according to spokesman Richard Maher.

"If you do come into a post office, make sure you have everything ready to go as much as possible. Have your boxes sealed up, completely addressed," Maher said at the U.S. Postal Service's Airport Station near the Los Angeles International Airport. "... If you're ready to go, we can get you in and out faster."

A long line of people with packages was waiting at the station's door as soon as it opened, Maher said.

While it may be the most popular shipping day, Monday is not the last day for mailing letters and packages in time for a holiday arrival. Deadlines for various delivery methods area:

-- Tuesday for Military Service;

-- Friday for First Class Mail;

-- Saturday for Priority Mail; and

-- Dec. 23 for Priority Mail Express.

Post offices will be open nationwide on Christmas Eve, Dec. 24, and New Year's Eve, Dec. 31. On those days, most post offices will close at noon. Offices will be closed Dec. 25 and Jan. 1. Only Priority Mail Express will be delivered on Christmas Day and New Year's Day.

For more information, visit USPS.com.

- City News Service

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