Putting a bow on a record breaking season for delivery services

- It was another record breaking year as hundreds of millions of packages passed through the hands of delivery services this holiday season. 

Inside the district headquarters of the United States Postal Service in downtown Minneapolis, cards and packages shuffled through the building as they were sorted into different bins and sent on their merry way. 

Amazon, among others, will be out until midnight on Christmas Eve to make sure that every last package arrives at online shoppers’ doorsteps. 

Brenda Brown has worked for the USPS for more than 20 years and says at times the amount of mail can be overwhelming, though this is the time of the year that they train for.

“Everybody’s working like little elves and getting it done," Brown said. 

On Monday alone, the Minnesota and western Wisconsin district delivered 820,000 packages. 

“Nationwide we are expecting to deliver over 850 million packages, which is more than a 10 percent increase than last year,” Darla Swanson, the USPS spokeswoman said. 

At Amazon Prime fulfillment centers across the nation, employees are working in over-drive to get packages delivered on time. There are prime centers in more than 30 cities, including one in the Twin Cities, that offered same day delivery. 

Both Amazon and UPS have allowed seasonal workers to drive their own cars to ensure all deliveries make it to their destinations. Online shopping has driven demand over the last few years as Christmas lists are now just a click away. 

“Close to 90 percent of my gifts were bought online,” said Kate Walton, an online shopper from Chanhassen.

Online shopping doesn’t come without a few risks, however, with Walton reporting numerous package mix-ups in her neighborhood this year.

“When you pay for a package and you pay for a service, you’re expecting it to arrive at your home and not someone else’s,” she said. 

Walton is still waiting for a few things to arrive Saturday.

The USPS has offered procrastinators one last chance--the postal service will still guarantee delivery by Christmas if a priority express envelope or box is stamped by Friday.

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