The deadline to get holiday presents shipped out to military service members around the world is now a little more than two months away.
The U-S Postal Service says making sure the men and women in uniform, as well as diplomatic personnel, receive their gifts, cards and care packages is a priority for them. The USPS also offers a mailing rate discount for packages that are going to those in the Armed Forces serving abroad. The Postal Service has created a Military Care Kit based on the items most requested by military families which consists of various sized flat rate boxes, mailing tape, labels and appropriate forms.
You can find more information about the rates, example and mailing deadlines below in the following press release from the USPS:
Ensuring those serving in the nation’s armed forces and diplomatic service receive their presents, care packages and cards in time for the holidays is a priority for the U.S. Postal Service and for friends and family members of military and diplomatic personnel serving their country around the world.
To send packages to loved ones serving in the military abroad, the Postal Service offers a discounted price of $16.75 on its largest Priority Mail Flat Rate Box. The price includes a $2 per box discount for mail sent to APO/FPO/DPO (Air/Army Post Office/Fleet Post Office/Diplomatic Post Office) destinations worldwide.
Priority Mail Flat Rate Boxes are available at no cost at local Post Offices and online at shop.usps.com. Postage, labels and customs forms can be printed online anytime using Click-N-Ship at usps.com/ship.
To ensure timely delivery of holiday wishes by Dec. 25, the Postal Service recommends that cards and packages be sent to military APO/FPO/DPO addresses overseas no later than the mailing dates listed below.
Use the Military Care Kit to Send Presents and Care Packages
The Postal Service has created a free Military Care Kit based on the items most frequently requested by military families. The kit contains:
Two Priority Mail APO/FPO/DPO Flat Rate Boxes
Two Priority Mail Medium Flat Rate Boxes
Priority Mail tape
Priority Mail address labels
Appropriate customs forms
To order the kit, call 800-610-8734. Guidelines for packing, addressing and shipping items to U.S. troops can be found at usps.com/ship/apo-fpo-dpo.htm. To order Flat-Rate Boxes featuring the “America Supports You” logo, go to usps.com/freeboxes.
Addressing the Package
Write the service member’s full name
Include the unit and APO/FPO/DPO address with the 9-digit ZIP Code (if one is assigned). For example:
Army/Air Post Office (APO)
PFC JOHN DOE
PSC 3 BOX 4120
APO AE 09021
Fleet Post Office (FPO)
SEAMAN JOSEPH SMITH
UNIT 100100 BOX 4120
FPO AP 96691
Diplomatic Post Office (DPO)
UNIT 8400 BOX 0000
DPO AE 09498-0048
Do not write the country name where the service member is stationed in the address
Include a return address
Inside the box, include the service member’s name and address as well as the sender’s name and address on an index card in case the shipping label gets damaged in transit
Domestic mailing deadlines are as follows:
USPS Retail Ground – Dec 15
First-Class Mail – Dec 20
Priority Mail – Dec 21
Priority Mail Express – Dec 23