Earlier this summer, USPS proposed slowing down a portion of First-Class Mail volume in order to cut costs. Now, USPS is officially moving forward with the plan, which will take effect on October 1st.
How Much Will Mail Delivery Slow Down?
Currently, the delivery standard for all First-Class Mail is 1-3 days. Beginning in October, however, USPS will increase the standard to a 1-5 day benchmark. Therefore, mail delivery is set to slow down about a day or two, on average.
Customers should note that the impending slowdown will only affect about 40% of First-Class Mail volume. According to a notice USPS published in the Federal Register, about 61% of First-Class Mail will remain at its current delivery standard of 1-3 days.
Mail Slowdown is Part of the 10-Year Plan to Turn Finances Around
The coming mail slowdown is a key part of the agency’s 10-year plan to achieve financial sustainability. Currently, the majority of First-Class Mail is carried throughout the country via air transportation. To lower costs, USPS will divert roughly 40% of mail volume away from air transportation, and to its ground network instead. While this will reduce costs for overall First-Class Mail volume (in theory), it will slow down mail delivery timeframes, in turn.
In July, the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) warned USPS executives that slowing down mail wouldn’t necessarily improve finances. Still, USPS is moving forward with the strategy, anyway…and beginning October 1st, the American public will start experiencing the effects.