In these challenging times, reducing the cost of delivery operations — one of the Postal Service’s largest expenses — could save millions. One option the Postal Service is considering is to discontinue Saturday city and rural delivery and collection services.

Saturday is said to be one of the lowest mail volume days. It’s also a day when many businesses are closed. The September/October 2009 digital issue of Mailing Systems Technology included a survey of managers working in the mailing industry. Of those surveyed, 98 percent said changing to 5-day delivery would not require a change in staffing. The survey results also indicated that most managers surveyed (81 percent) preferred Saturday as the day of the week that the Postal Service would stop delivering mail. An additional 62 percent of the managers surveyed felt that once implemented, there should be no exceptions to 5-day deliveries such as for holiday weeks or high-volume mailing periods.

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Gallup also conducted polls on ways to help the Postal Service solve its financial problems. They found that 66 percent of Americans supported reducing mail delivery days from 6 to 5 days, and 66 percent also supported reducing the number of days the Post Office is open from 6 to 5 days.

The Postal Service is currently studying the reduction of mail delivery from 6 days to 5 days. Should the Postal Service consider eliminating delivery, collections, retail, and remittance services only for delivery units with low mail volume? Should the Postal Service eliminate these services for all delivery units nationwide?

This blog is hosted by the OIG's Delivery directorate.

Comments (65)

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  • anon

    Thats a great idea Mr Zip

    Nov 02, 2009
  • anon

    big know it all has never delivered mail in the dark. the lights aren't bright enough, the rural carriers in their car cannot see either. you can't see the mailbox, nor the number. and this is even more dangerous for the carrier! WAIT--- that's what the usps wants! downsize the workforce by killing off the carriers!

    Nov 02, 2009
  • anon

    If I'm serving a 8.5 hours route. If go 5 days, it will increase my office hours....about 1.5 hours daily. So, it will be 10 hours work everyday. TEN HOURS WORK!!!!!!

    Nov 02, 2009
  • anon

    5-day delivery is not only a mistake ... it is a sellout. Management is on a roller-coaster mentality. After years of bonus, bonus, bonus ... now they preach cut-cut and eliminate-eliminate. That's a shame, because the USPS has the potential to engage the 21st Century with innovation and stamina.

    Nov 02, 2009
  • anon

    I can not believe the Postal Service would even consider eliminating Saturday delivery!! Wake up people!! We need to be generating revenue!! Go to your address bar....type in Mypostoffice.com. or Mypo.com Where does it take you??? To USPS.com, WOW. We need to be utilizing the internet, not competeting against it. Customers should be going to thier electronic mailboxes to receive thier ads from Macy's, WalMart local grocery ads and the such. We should be collecting revenue from the retailers for these services. Customers wanting a copy of the sale paper or catalog in thier mailbox weekly....click here. This service could be expanded to online ordering. Order your Prada tee shirt from Saxs 5th Ave and have it shipped Priority Mail....Directly from MyPostOffice.com!!....The possibilities are endless, USPS search engine....we could be another GOOGLE!!....Let's get the revenue rolling with pay-per-click revenues!!.....let's wake up!!

    Nov 02, 2009
  • anon

    Who said saturday mail delivery is a light day? I havent seen it. In the postal service for over 6 years now and sat seems to be one of the busyist days of the week, except for mondays. Wow just think every monday would be like a day after the holiday if implemented, not to mention the customer service and business we would lose. A lot of people don't realize that sat are a big day when carriers get to see and speak with thier customers, eliminating this would lose vital contact with the customer its self. Banks and other business have expanded services to bring in more customers, while we are trying to shrink it. Some banks are now open seven days a week, so if a customer recieves a check on sat, they can deposit that day or on sunday. And believe me, we do deliver a lot of checks on sat, along with packages and time sensitive bulk mail. As for managers agreeing with going to 5 days, they are puppets and just doing what they are told.

    Nov 02, 2009
  • anon

    I suggest no city, rural or contract delivery on Saturdays. I would ensure collection boxes are collected on Saturdays. I would also ensure boxes at Post Offices are put out on Saturdays, thus, those that want Saturday Delivery would need to get a PO Box at a Post Offices. This would generate an increase in revenue through the increase in box rentals across the country.

    Nov 02, 2009
  • anon

    Try this on for size! I have written to my Congressman and Senators and the pmg. Under my plan the PO continues to operate 6 days a week, but we actually go to a 3-day delivery with each carrier being responsible for 2 routes on which he would alternate days on and half of the people would get M-W-F and the others Tu-Thur-S. Your reach a point on any route where no matter how light the volume a carrier can only cover a certain amount of ground. There would at the very least a 40% reduction in manpower, Vehicles and fuel costs. On this system it would require 6 carriers to cover 10 routes, and 5 vehicles instead of 10. The public, given the choice of losing the USPS or switching to 3 day delivery, could be brought over to our side,

    Nov 02, 2009
  • anon

    If Congress approves a 5 day delivery, an idea worth considering is having carriers work four 10 hour days with non-scheduled days as such. Carrier “A” - Sat, Sun, Mon Carrier “B” - Sat, Sun, Tue Carrier “C” – Sat, Sun, Wed Carrier “D” – Sat, Sun, Thu Swing Carrier, Sat, Sun, Fri (Work “A” on Mon, “B” on Tue, “C” on Wed and “D” on Thu) This would reduce daily overtime if mail volumes are heavy due to 5 delivery days per week or have routes adjusted accordingly.

    Nov 02, 2009
  • anon

    Let's see what kind of fireworks this will bring... I remember long ago my first day of orientation, which by the way has not changed a bit as recent as two years ago. The speakers asked the group of 60 + - a first question. "What is it that the Post Office Operations don't like the most?" A number of inductee's replied various answers that were acknowledged as accurate, however the correct answer was as follows.. "The POST OFFICE does not like change". We don't like things to change". "this is the most important aspect of your job at the USPS, to keep things the same." With that, here's something to think about. According to the USPS, they are a 24 Hour Clock Operation. What about delivery during other hours? I mean, MVS operates during Tour 1, 2, and 3. Why not deliver mail at night??? Is this simply crazy? It's not like the LLV's don't have flashers. It's not like they don't have interior lights? It's not like there aren't headlamps that provide ample light for delivery personnel like coal miners use? It's not like the mail needs to be delivered during the daylight hours? I do know there is much less traffic during hours 2300- 1930. There are literally no children out and about. Is someone going to rob the mailman of the mail? As a previous business owner, and Operations Manager in a highly personnel risk exposure field, my primary role was to execute the projects. However, it really ended up as a responsibility of reducing the liabilities to personnel, equipment, and property. Therefore, environmental factors, interference by other parties in activity areas (traffic/personnel/equipment/noise-debris-etc. all our affected operations. Similar to carriers executing their duties. How much accountable mail is delivered every day anyway? Surely somebody could make these deliveries during the day if necessary? Crazy idea? Mmmmmmmmmmmmhhhhhhhh Oh, and Saturday's, heck yeah!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Nov 02, 2009
  • anon
    Ben

    5 days would rock

    Nov 02, 2009
  • anon

    The USPs (notice the diminishing service) needs to cut out it's reckless spending that does not help getting mail delivered. As a carrier I perform meaningless tasks every day so someone at a higher level can have a report to read. For example I have to count the mail pieces missent to my route by DPS. For months I have consistently had over 100 a day. Why is the problem not getting fixed? I have been delivering mail for 24 years; now I will receive 22 hours of training before I can drive a LLV. There are many other examples of where money is wasted, or spent for no reason but to create paper for someone sitting in an office to look at. As a good career employee I have no sympathy fot the management that has gotten us into this mess; only for the hard working carriers, clerks, postmasters, mailhandlers, and truck drivers that keep the SERVICE going in spite of higher level mismanagement.

    Nov 01, 2009
  • anon

    But also read my posts on the other thread about offering PO Boxes in lieu of delivery to those that live closest to post offices. That might not save as much money as 5 day delivery, but it will save a lot in delivery expenses.

    Nov 01, 2009
  • anon

    I don't see there being an alternative to 5 day delivery, if anything it is the best option. Almost everybody I have talked to about it has no issue with it. But leave the option open to deliver first class mail to PO Boxes 6 days for those that do need that 6th day of mail. It would then make PO Box service a true "premium service", and that would justify paying for the box rental.

    Nov 01, 2009
  • anon

    changing to 5 day wouldnt require staffing changes? how would that possibly be true, at least 50,000 people would have to be either excessed or layed off. and talk about 5 day all you want but its not going to happen any time soon, instead how about telling potter to think about something outside the box, instead of just telling congress we have to do this! get a good idea and stop pounding 5 day delivery acting like its the end all be all answer. not only that but congress isnt too keen on postal math, that says in your numbers you could save 3.5 million while normal math users see about half of that being saved. think outside the box, we are moving into a new generation of postal users, 5 day delivery will just ensure we wont be here in the future.

    Oct 31, 2009

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