MINNESOTA, USA — New service changes within the United States Postal Service could impact when mail and other items reach your door.
Starting Oct. 1, the USPS says service standards for First Class Mail and periodicals like magazines will go into effect.
While the postal service says most FCM and periodical mail won't be affected by the changes, items traveling farther distances are expected to take longer to deliver.
The USPS says FCM that would previously take three days to deliver could now take up to five days to land in your mailbox. However, FCM traveling within a three hour drive between the original sender and recipient is still expected to take two days or less.
According to a Fact Sheet from the USPS, the changes are part of the organization's "Delivering for America" 10-year plan, where "the Postal Service expects to meet or exceed its published delivery standards across all product classes 95 percent of the time, improving operational efficiency and precision, service reliability, and generation of efficiencies that help ensure affordable postage rates."
Ahead of the changes, Wells Fargo customers were notified of possible service delays. In an email, the bank said revisions to USPS First Class Mail service could result "in a delivery window of up to five days."
At the same time, shoppers who prefer to order online or send gifts through the mail should expect to see a slight increase in shipping costs startig this weekend and lasting through the holiday season.
Depending on how much the package weighs, you could pay 75 cents to $3 more.
And even though we're barely into fall, experts recommend getting an early jump on your holiday shopping and shipping.
University of Minnesota Carlson School of Management Professor Dr. Karen Donohue says manufacturers are playing catchup after COVID-19 caused shutdowns. Combined with labor shortages at warehouses and trucking companies, it's leading to unprecedented delays.