October 24, 2022   Dave Lewis


With hurricane Ian safely departed from our shores, Postal performance continued to decline last week.  First-Class letters were delivered on time only 88% of the time.  Performance on First-Class Letters has been in decline for five straight weeks now.  The average time to deliver a letter was 3.44 days, a meaningful deviation from the YTD average of 3.0 days.  First-Class flats are even worse, with just over 84% arriving on time.  Flats have been performing poorly for three of the last four weeks.  Average delivery time was 3.48 days, again worse than YTD.

Even Marketing Mail letters looked worse with 95.9% on time, the worst performance since May, against a very generous standard.  Marketing Mail Flats appeared terrible – with only 85.8% delivered on time, the worst performance of the year, so far.  It may be competition from political mail – we’re not sure.  We’d love to blame lingering effect from Ian, but the worst performance has been from the Central Area, where there have been no natural disasters of which we are aware. 

At a state level, First-Class letters destined for addresses in Missouri took, on average, 5.05 days to deliver – slower than Guam.  Illinois and Montana both beat Guam, but not by much.  For First-Class flats, California, Washington state, and Minnesota brought up the rear.

SnailWorks subscribers can dig down to the three-digit level, to be sure service is OK where they are mailing – and, of course, track their own mail.

These figures are based on observing just the mail we are tracking – it is not all the mail in the system, but it is based on a sample of more than 84,000,000 pieces in the week, so it’s a good sample.  I will add that service performance issues can be transitory – today’s kind of crummy report may be better next week.  And there is nothing in any of the data to suggest any kind of imminent delivery melt down a-la-winter 20/21.  So, let’s all take a breath and await next week.

Oct 24