More Mail on Saturday? There's a Reason for That!

If you think your mailbox is fuller on Saturdays than it used to be, it’s not your imagination.

During the past year, the U.S. Postal Service made operational challenges that cause some letters to be delivered on Saturday even though they don't have to be delivered until the following week.

“When feasible, based on local operating conditions, the Postal Service advances Standard Mail [letters] scheduled for Monday and Tuesdaydelivery into a processing window that enables delivery on Saturday, which is generally the lightest delivery day of the week,” the USPS told the Postal Regulatory Commission yesterday (PDF, page 5).

“This practice balances the processing and delivery workload for Monday, which is generally the heaviest delivery day of the week.” Postal officials were responding to a question about how they managed to improve on-time delivery for Standard Mail during FY2016.

Last year, the Postal Service delivered more than 55 billion Standard letters, which generally are mass solicitations sent by businesses and other organizations. (The growing category is often called junk mail --but not by the Postal Service.) Standard letters have lower postage rates than do First Class letters, partly because First Class enjoys more expedited delivery.