Sending overseas? Send it soon. - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Sending overseas? Send it soon.

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November 10, 2005

Albany- The hustle and bustle at the Albany Post Office will soon pick up as holiday gifts are sent. To ensure your gift gets to a soldier before Christmas, the deadlines start this weekend.

"As of next week you could mail something over there parcel post," said Ron Bradley, Albany Post Master.

Parcel post will get it there cheapest, but it also takes the most time. If you don't mind paying a little more, you can send boxes or letters priority mail until the first of December.

"As it gets closer to Christmas, all the post offices in the country are going to be inundated with mail, so why wait until the last minute to throw your piece of mail into the hat," said Bradley.

There are some things you shouldn't do when it comes to shipping overseas.

"If you put it into a cardboard box to mail it that has for example, Clorox or battery acid displayed on the outside, we cannot accept that," said Bradley.

"You can't send anything pertaining to alcohol or pornography, Playboy books, or any type of propaganda like that," said Darlene Edwards, Family Readiness Unit.

You may want to send items your presents unwrapped. "My suggestion would be not to wrap them, because like I said we don't know how they're checking packages, but we do know packages are being checked," said Edwards.

It will take some time for your gift to arrive, so consider the shelf life of what you send.

"We're trying to get things together. His family and I are fixing to start baking and sending things, but when you do that you need to make sure it's non perishable things that will hold up for a good while," said Edwards.

It takes at least three to four weeks for letters and boxes to get to military personnel, so if you're planning to send cookies or something of that nature, you may want to think twice. If you have your package or letters at the post office by December 5th it should get there on time, if you mail it first class.

There is no express delivery to Iraq, so that's why packages and letter need to be sent sooner. For dates on when you need to send care packages, you can check the postal service web site at www.usps.com.

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