Canada Post holiday mail deadlines fast approaching

Canada Post holiday mail deadlines are fast approaching.

If you want to get that parcel, letter or card to family members and friends outside of the province and around the world, you'd better get it in the mail soon or it may not get there on time.

Costs and distance determine the deadlines for mailing and shipping cards and gifts.

Within Canada

Canada Post offers the following guidelines for mail within Canada:

For holiday cards:

> Local delivery, send by Dec. 21
> Within province, send by Dec. 18
> Outside of the province, send by Dec. 17

Holiday package deadlines differ by type of delivery method.

> For Priority mail, send by Dec. 23
> Xpresspost: Dec. 22
> Regular Parcel: Dec. 11

A good guideline for parcels sent at regular rates is nine - 10 business days for delivery outside of the province.

Because of the busy holiday season, Canada Post adds extra time.

Canada Post can guarantee next day delivery on Priority and Xpresspost packages sent locally and regionally (national for Priority).

Deliveries will be done on Christmas Eve until 6 p.m. There is no mail service Dec. 25.

Outside of the country

For mail outside of the country, cards or letters need to be sent by Dec. 7 in order to arrive by Christmas day.

Except ones going to the United States, where you have until Dec. 14.

Packages to the U.S. need to be mailed a few days earlier than those that are destined for Canadian addresses:

> Expedited parcel: Dec. 9
> Xpresspost: Dec. 16
> Priority: Dec. 22

If you wanted to send letters and cards to Africa, you've already missed that deadline. It was Nov. 23.

If you are willing to pay for it, mail to Europe can still get there on time if you mail it before Dec. 21.

If you really leave it to the last minute, check with a courier.

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