Halloween is still more than a month away, but it’s time to start thinking about getting cards, letters and packages to your overseas service member in time for Christmas or Hanukkah.
The first recommended deadline is Nov. 12, if you want to send it the slowest way — parcel post — according to Naval Supply Systems Command postal policy division officials. The services work to coordinate the dates with the Military Postal Service Agency.
If you want your package to arrive before the start of Hanukkah on Nov. 27, send it 28 days earlier — by Oct. 15.
The following are deadlines recommended by military postal officials for sending to APO/FPO/DPO AE zips. Remember to subtract 28 days from each deadline to get it there before Hanukkah.
First-class mail (letters, cards and priority mail): Dec. 10; Dec. 3 for items going to Afghanistan and other contingency areas
Parcel Airlift Mail: Dec. 3
Space Available Mail: Nov. 26
Express Military Mail: Dec. 17 (Check with your local post office to see if it is available to your location. It is not available for contingency locations.)
Officials advise that the nine-digit ZIP code format should be used for all military FPO/APO mail to ensure delivery.