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      Sending, and getting Christmas cards and packages on time

      If you're mailing overseas, December 3rd is a big deadline date. It's not too early to think about shipping packages in the States, too

      With a month to go before Christmas, the Postal Service has some reminders on deadlines to make sure your packages and your Christmas cards get there on time.

      Postal spokesperson Maureen Marion says December 3rd is the 'safe' ship-by date, for overseas and military (APO-FPO) addresses. Christmas cards should be in the mail by December 20th, and the 21st is the last 'safe' day for Priority Mail.

      The busiest mailing day for Central NY is expected to be December 17th. Last year, 1.7 million pieces of mail were processed locally on the busiest day (usually the Monday before the last weekend before Christmas).

      The Postal Service has been saying it's losing business, but the growth in on-line purchases, which have to be shipped from businesses, is up 20% and growing. 365 million packages were shipped last year alone in the holiday season.

      For more details on shipping deadlines and more, you can check the USPS website. And, don't forget to buy Forever stamps before January 27th, when the cost of mailing a first class letter and postcards goes up a penny.