Here are the range of deadlines for mailing USPS military care packages to deployed soldiers overseas to ensure delivery before Christmas.
Holiday Dates for Military Mail
Military Mail Priority Mail Express Military Service (PMEMS)1 First-Class Mail Letters and Cards Priority Mail Parcel Airlift Mail (PAL)2 Space Available Mail (SAM)3 Retail Ground
Addressed to: APO/FPO/DPO AE ZIPs 090-092 Dec. 18 Dec. 11 Dec. 11 Dec. 4 Nov. 27 Nov. 6
APO/FPO/DPO AE ZIP 093 N/A Dec. 4 Dec. 4 Dec. 4 Nov. 27 Nov. 6
APO/FPO/DPO AE ZIPs 094-098 Dec. 18 Dec. 11 Dec. 11 Dec. 4 Nov. 27 Nov. 6
APO/FPO/DPO AA ZIP 340 Dec. 18 Dec. 11 Dec. 11 Dec. 4 Nov. 27 Nov. 6
APO/FPO/DPO AP ZIPs 962-966 Dec. 18 Dec. 11 Dec. 11 Dec. 4 Nov. 27 Nov. 6
Send no later than these deadline dates and try to ship before these dates.
Holiday Dates for Domestic Mail
Domestic Mail Class/Product Cutoff Date
Standard USPS Retail Ground Dec. 14
First-Class Mail Dec. 20
Priority Mail Dec. 20
Priority Mail Express Dec. 22
*Priority Mail Express postage refund eligibility is adjusted for shipments mailed Dec 22-25
Priority Mail Flat Rate Boxes are offered at a discount price of $13.45 for any shipping to APO/FPO/DPO (Air/Army Post Office, Fleet Post Office, Diplomatic Post Office).
The USPS Post office offers free military care kits which includes:
- 2 Priority Mail APO/FPO flat rate boxes
- 2 Priority Mail Medium flat rate boxes
- Priority Mail tape
- Priority Mail address labels
- Appropriate customs forms
Call 800-610-8734 to order the kit
Can I use Fedex, UPS or DHL to ship to APO addresses?
Unfortunately, only the USPS in conjunction with the Military Postal Service Agency delivers to APO/FPO/DPO addresses. However, there are a couple of solutions that do work with the USPS to ensure final delivery such as Fedex SmartPost and ShipitAPO.
Fedex SmartPost will ship to a USPS location that is closest to its point of destination. Final delivery to the recipient is then handled by the USPS. Pricing can be cheaper than the USPS as well.
ShipitAPO is a unique service that allows shoppers ordering online to ship to any APO/FPO/DPO address. When a company doesn’t allow APO/FPO/DPO shipping people with an account with ShipitAPO can send the package to them who will then in turn ship the package to an APO/FPO/DPO address.
Can my care package to an international service member still get there if I ship after the deadline?
There is a chance but there are no assurances. The only way to guarantee delivery is to send your care package on or before the deadline dates listed.
Is there a way to deliver a package to overseas military after the shipping deadline?
Fedex SmartPost is your best option. By shipping through Fedex they can bypass the multiple touch points within the USPS delivery system plus you can track the delivery status. Contact Fedex to confirm delivery dates. This is not a guaranteed solution but it’s your best chance if you missed the cutoff.
Can I internationally ship an iPad or any electronic device with a lithium battery to an APO/FPO/DPO address?
Click here for tips on sending military care packages overseas.