USPS Delivery Schedule: When Does USPS Stop Delivering?

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USPS is a national name when it comes to mailing services. Their mail carriers work extremely hard to make sure our mail packages reach us on time.

But they have specific working hours as well that they need to follow. They cannot leave a package exceptionally late at night or very early in the morning.

In this article, we’re going to know more about when does USPS stop delivering. Check it out below!

The First Step To Getting Your Mail: Out For Delivery

Mailed packages are significant to us. Whether we send something or receive it, mailed packages help people transport items without physically accompanying them. 

They allow us to send gifts to the family for Christmas or receive important legal documents. And most of the time, it’s USPS that delivers our mail to us.

Expecting an important mail can be thrilling. The wait for the mailman to drop by the door seems never-ending. 

With USPS, you may not know at precisely what time of the day your mailman will drop by. But it is indeed possible to know what day you should expect the mail to reach you.

This is done through a simple process called tracking. When tracking a mail through USPS, you will see several terms that indicate the current stage of the mailing process your package is in. 

One of the last stages of this process is called ‘Out for Delivery.’ Now, what does out for delivery mean?

Out for delivery means that your mail is on the way to its destination, and it has left your nearest local post office. 

This term appears when a mail carrier picks up our package from the post office. Usually, when out for delivery, packages arrive on the same day as they were picked up for delivery or a day after.

Therefore, when you see ‘Out for Delivery’ on your tracking status, we may safely say that you can start expecting your mail within the next day. From here, the waiting part gets more intense!

USPS Rules About When To Stop Delivering

Like every organization, USPS has some strict rules about when the mailmen should stop their mail delivery for the day. 

According to their destination, the mails are usually sorted out very early in the morning at local USPS facilities. 

Each mail carrier is assigned mails and packages that fall under their designated route, and they have to finish delivering them by that day.

The time for USPS mail carriers to work is 8 AM to 5 PM on weekdays. Therefore, if it’s a weekday, you can expect the USPS rep to reach your mailbox with the mails by 5 PM. 

If it’s a Saturday, delivery can start a bit later than usual in the morning. Nonetheless, a USPS mail carrier is expected to finish their deliveries by no later than 5 PM.

If they cannot finish delivering their batch in one day (in exceptional cases), they can resume it the next day. 

Hence, by the books, USPS stops delivering by 5 PM. If you were expecting a mail on a specific day but didn’t get it by 5’o clock, it is better to assume it’ll arrive the next day. 

Although a mail carrier can indeed arrive after 5 PM of the day, we recommend- you do not wait any longer. 

This is because it differs from mail carrier to mail carrier whether they will go overtime or not. So, it is better not to get your hopes high.

USPS Exceptions For Delivery Stopping Time

Waiting for an important mail to arrive is something we all do. Sometimes we even want to make sure that we are present at the scene when the mail comes, instead of having it left by the door. 

To wait by knowing the expected time is better than waiting the whole day endlessly without a clue.

So, when exactly does USPS stop delivering so that you don’t have to expect them to arrive at your door anymore? Even though we said the rule is to stop by 5 PM, the reality with USPS mail carriers is different. 

Many carriers are known to go overtime on their shift to ensure a package reaches its destination on the due date.

Below are some situations in which your package might arrive later than 5 PM:


The delay in delivery often happens when a mail carrier has a larger number of mails than usual. 

On average, every day, a post office usually receives 50,000 mails that they divide among their mailmen according to its destination area. 

But sometimes, they tend to get fewer or more mail packages than usual. These days are called light days and heavy days.

On a light day, mails to be dispatched can be as less as 30,000. But on a heavy day, the number can be as high as 70,000. 

This is when mail carriers get overloaded and have to go overtime to ensure all their mails for the day reach their destination. It can take them around 6 to 7 PM to finish their duty on these days.

Holiday Season

The holiday season for mailing services is a time they are at the peak of their business. During this time, USPS people are so busy and loaded with packages that they even hire extra support staff in many places. 

These staffs share the responsibility of making sure that every package reaches its recipient on the designated date.

However, despite all this effort, it still becomes impossible in many locations to finish delivering all mails by 5 PM during holidays. 

But to make sure customers don’t receive bad service, USPS delivers mail during Christmas days for as long as 10 PM. 

So, don’t be surprised if a USPS truck drops by your house during dinnertime in December. Receive the package with gratitude since the mail carriers are also working hard overtime to deliver your parcel securely. 


Sometimes, your mail carrier may cover a large quantity of area alongside yours. This happens mostly in rural towns and some suburbs. 

In this case, there might be only one mail carrier for several smaller locations. As a result, it might take time for your mailman to reach you and sometimes arrive after 5 PM.

Therefore, these are the cases in which you might receive a mail a bit later than usual. These are all exceptional situations. We recommend that you still go by the books and wait for a mail till no longer than 5 PM for your benefit.

Special Deliveries

Weekends are a special case for USPS. On Saturdays, even though they deliver just like other days, delivery time that day is a bit laid off. 

USPS mail carriers generally start their day at a later time on weekends compared to weekdays. It could be from around 9 to 10 AM. As a result, they might stop delivering at a later time as well, even though they try not to. 

Sundays are especially special for USPS. On Sundays, they do not deliver any regular mails. This day of the week is reserved for unique kinds of mails only. 

Those are- Amazon packages and Priority Mail from USPS. That’s right! Sundays are a unique day for USPS, and they only deliver packages from Amazon and Priority Mail Express.

Hence, if you ordered something from Amazon, expect it at your doorstep on a Sunday. This is a division that helps USPS release the load on other days and spread the work evenly. 

Therefore, Sundays are kind of Amazon Day for USPS! How fun is that? You can get all your exciting products on the weekend.

On the other hand, Priority Mail Express is a true priority for USPS. If you were scheduled to receive a Priority Mail in a maximum of two days, USPS would make sure you do so. 

Even if it’s a Sunday, they don’t care as they consider priority mails to be the most important category of mails for USPS.

If you are scheduled to get a priority mail on the weekend, it’s safe to expect it by the early morning. It’s unusual to receive the parcel in the afternoon. 

But as long as you receive the package within that day, it should be fine. But if you don’t get a priority mail on your scheduled day, make sure to call USPS and ask for its status. 

Final Words

Waiting for mail delivery for a whole day is not very smart. Many people learn this the hard way after waiting for a mail as late as 10 PM. 

The dreading wait often makes us wonder, “When does USPS stop delivering?” That’s why general knowledge about postal services can often be helpful.

In this article, we tried to cover how USPS deliveries work. The mail carriers usually deliver mail packets till 5 PM. But in exceptional cases, the time may vary. 

Hence, it’s always better not to get too impatient with deliveries as USPS always makes sure they reach the recipient as soon as possible.

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