With the holiday season approaching, Canada Post is cautioning Canadians to expect long lines at the post office.
The Crown corporation said that it is experiencing “an unprecedented number of transactions” at post offices across the country, as more and more Canadians drop of parcels for shipping or purchase stamps for greeting cards heading into a holiday season unlike any other.
“As well, a growing number of small businesses are bringing in packaged orders to be shipped to their customers,” Canada Post said in a release.
However, the “rapid spike” in activity at the post office – along with the need to maintain COVID-19 safety measures – has led to long line-ups.
“Post office employees understand the importance of each item and are working hard to serve customers as quickly and safely as possible,” reads the release.
“It’s important to note that some transactions are more complex, such as international parcels, and therefore take longer to process.”
Canada Post is asking customers to mask up and keep their distance from others in line, as well as offering a few tips to help reduce wait times.
That includes purchasing a flat rate box from any post office and ship up to 5 kilograms anywhere in Canada. These boxes can be dropped off at a post office or in any red street letter box.
However, if using your own box, make sure its properly packaged and clearly addressed before heading to the post office.
For international items, fill out customs forms online at canadapost.ca before dropping off your package.
Canada Post has also hired more than 4,000 workers and added more than 1,000 vehicles to its fleet to help meet demand this holiday season.
In many communities, Canada Post is delivering on weekends, has added more parcel pickup locations and has extended hours at some post offices.
However, the company said that even with these additional resources, customers may experience delays.