CHEEKTOWAGA, N.Y. -- It's the most wonderful time of the year. It's also the busiest for the U.S. Postal Service.
Long lines greeted customers at the Cayuga Road Post Office in Cheektowaga Monday. It's anticipated to be the busiest shipping day of the year for the Postal Service. Workload is expected to quadruple for the Postal Service here in Western New York. Normally, it would receive around 400,000 letters and packages but on the busiest day of the year, it's more like one and a half million.
"We're ready," said U.S.P.S. Spokesperson Karen Mazurkiewicz. "We have extra people, extra trucks, and we're hitting those blue collection boxes a couple times a day so we can make sure we can get things in the system and out."
Although letter sending is expected to be down this season, the Postal Service is seeing a 20% increase in packages, due mainly because of online shopping.
But if you haven't mailed your holiday cards or packages yet, there's still time.
Here are some key dates to remember if you want your letter or package to arrive by Christmas:
Dec. 20 First-Class Mail
Dec. 21 Priority Mail
Dec. 22 Express Mail
And there's also some ways to avoid lines at local post offices.
"On our website you can look at prices and get a good idea what shipping options are still available for Christmas delivery. You can even print postage and give that package to your carrier and save a trip," said Mazurkiewicz.
Many post offices also offer extended hours. The Cayuga branch is open Monday through Friday – 7 a.m. to midnight, Saturday – 9 a.m. to 11 p.m., and Sunday – 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
For more information and hours for a post office near you visit