Calling the six-days-per-week mail delivery business model “no longer sustainable,” the U.S. Postal Service announced Wednesday it will eliminate Saturday delivery of mail by Aug. 1.
The plan to change delivery from six days a week to five would only affect first-class mail. Packages, mail-order medicines, priority and express mail would still be delivered on Saturdays, and local post offices will remain open for business Saturdays.
Wilton resident Nevine Michaels told Patch Wednesday afternoon that she is fine with the change.
"It's a good idea. I don't need to get any mail on Saturdays," she told Patch. "If [the U.S. Postal Service] is not in good shape then I think it's a good way to reduce costs."
Michaels, who is a circulation assistant at Wilton Library added that for those residents that might be affected—like those that utilize mail-order prescription services—need to be organized in order to adjust to the new schedule.
"If you know that there's no more Saturday delivery then you have to make arrangements prior [so that you get your mail on time]."
Cathy Murullo, who also works at Wilton Library, said that it will be a bit of an inconvenience for her.
"This bothers me because I always put mail in my mailbox and then put up the red flag so that it gets picked up," she said. "But if this prevents stamps from going up, then that overrides [the inconvenience.]"
According to the U.S. Postal Service, the reasons are continued economic struggles and the increasing use of the Internet for communications and bill paying by consumers. The U.S. Postal Service is also the only federal agency required to pre-fund health benefits for retirees, and those costs are escalating quickly.
“Our current business model of delivering mail six days a week is no longer sustainable. We must change in order to remain an integral part of the American community for decades to come.”
Saturday is the lightest mail delivery day by volume and many businesses are closed on Saturdays, according to the U.S. Postal Service. However, many residents receive print magazines and ads on Saturdays in the mail that may be shifted to another day.
A Rasmussen poll on mail delivery in 2012 showed “Three-out-of-four Americans (75%) would prefer the U.S. Postal Service cut mail delivery to five days a week rather than receive government subsidies to cover ongoing losses.”
A USA Today/Gallup poll in 2010 found the majority of U.S. residents surveyed were ok with eliminating Saturday delivery. The March 2010 telephone survey of 999 adults revealed people age 55 and older were more likely than younger people to have used the mail to pay a bill or send a letter in the past two weeks.
Speak out: How will this change affect you? Will you miss getting mail on Saturdays?