USPS just introduced stunning new holiday stamps – Best Life

From Christmas cards to Christmas gifts, the last few months of the year are the busiest time for the postal system. The US Postal Service (USPS) normally processes over 425 million pieces of mail every day, but this increases significantly once the holiday season begins. Last year, between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve, the agency accepted more than 13.2 billion letters, cards, flats, and packages for delivery. As we get closer to the holiday season of 2022, the Postal Service is already making some important upgrades for customers. Read on to find out what the USPS is planning for the holiday.

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A woman enters a United States Postal Service (USPS) post office in Long Island City on August 17, 2020 in the Queens borough of New York City.

Americans are already aware of a change happening to their Christmas mail, and it’s not a festive one. Back in August, the Postal Service announced that it had filed a notice with the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) about plans to temporarily raise prices for the 2022 holiday season. The PRC has since approved the rate adjustment — so your shipping rates could rise to anywhere from 25 cents to $6.50 per package starting Oct. 2, “depending on the weight of the package and the distance it has to travel.” The Washington Post explained.

The increased rates will remain in effect through January 22 and are consistent with temporary holiday rate increases implemented by the USPS in 2020 and 2021. These additional costs will “help cover additional processing costs to ensure a successful peak season,” the agency explained in its press release.

But while you might have to pay a little more, the postal service is now unveiling a big upgrade for your holiday mail.

usps new christmas stamp art of virgin and child

Your holiday mail could be decorated anew this year. The USPS issued a press release on September 22 notifying customers of a new Christmas stamp. During a dedication ceremony at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Massachusetts, the agency unveiled its new “Virgin and Child” Christmas Forever stamp. The stamp features the famous 16th-century oil painting of the same name.

“I am honored to represent the Postal Service as we dedicate a Christmas stamp featuring one of the most venerated images in the world – the Virgin Mary holding her little child, Jesus.” Jenny Utterbach, the postal service’s vice president of organizational development, said at the inauguration. “It’s a beautiful piece of art that has a special meaning at this time of year. I choose my Christmas cards carefully, sign them with love or best wishes and maybe write a personal note inside. Christmas cards are a special way to get in touch with family and friends. The stamp on the envelope is also significant.”

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New Forever Hanukkah Stamp from the USPS

This isn’t the only new holiday stamp the USPS has unveiled for the 2022 season. The agency introduced three more prints this month, including one for Hanukkah and one for Kwanzaa. The art of the Hanukkah stamp “features an original tapestry” that has been “hand-colored, appliquéd and quilted to form an abstract image of a Hanukkah, the nine-branched candelabra used only at Hanukkah,” the Postal Service explains.

The Kwanzaa stamp design “shows two children—a girl and a boy—standing before them along with a kinara (candlestick) and the seven lighted candles (mishumaa saba),” says the USPS. “They are dressed in robes resembling spiritual garments. A light blue circle behind the children’s heads represents wholeness and unites the figures, and a mosaic motif frames the background.”

The third is a stamp featuring artwork of four “quirky” Christmas elves “preparing treats and toys for giving Christmas presents,” according to the USPS. All four new “Forever” stamps are sold on the Postal Service’s website in sheets of 20 for $12, and the “Virgin and Child” and “Holy Elves” stamps are available to order now. However, the Kwanzaa and Hanukkah stamps are pre-order only and will be available on October 13th and 20th respectively.

A USPS (United States Parcel Service) mail truck and postman make a delivery.

The preparation for the Christmas season is currently at the forefront of the postal service’s considerations. According to a Sept. 12 press release, the agency is “actively hiring [an] an additional 28,000 seasonal workers” to cover the increase in mail delivery during the holiday season. The USPS said that includes another 1,000 truck drivers across the country, as well as mail carriers and processing team members.

“Successful delivery for the holiday season is a cornerstone of our 10-year plan, Delivering for America,” said Postmaster General Louis DeJoy said in a statement.Thanks to the 655,000 women and men of the postal service, recent investments and improvements in operational precision, we are poised to be the most used delivery provider this holiday season.” USPS just introduced stunning new holiday stamps – Best Life

Sarah Y. Kim

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