Christmas mail deadlines loom

Tuesday is the deadline for sending gifts by Air Parcel from the Cayman Islands in time to reach their destinations by Christmas. 

The Cayman Islands Postal Service is reminding residents of deadlines to mail their cards and presents overseas. 

For Canada, the United States, most Caribbean islands, the United Kingdom and Western Europe, the deadline for sending parcels by Air Parcel is Dec. 3. The deadline for all other countries is already past. Surface mail deadlines are also past. 

For an option with tracking and cost saving, Air Parcel is the best, postal authorities say. For instance, a 2-pound package to the U.S. costs $4 and takes two to three weeks to be delivered. Airmail is the most popular posting method and has a delivery time as quick as three days, but it could take up to two weeks, depending on the location. The deadline for airmail to the U.S., Canada, most Caribbean islands, the U.K. and Western Europe is Dec. 10. For all other countries, the deadline is Dec. 4. 

Express Mail Service delivers both tracking and speed, according to Cayman Islands Postal Service. A 2-pound package costs $18 and takes about three to five days to be delivered to the U.S. The deadline for the U.K. and Western Europe, is Dec. 13; for the U.S. and Canada, it is MDec. 16; for all other countries, it is Dec. 11.  

“Please remember there are a number of posting restrictions to various countries,” said Deputy Postmaster General for Operations Melissa Martinez-Ebanks. “In order to comply with international security requirements, any package (letter mail, small packet, parcel and Express Mail Service) weighing more than 16 ounces must be examined by the Cayman Islands Postal Service counter staff. Due to new restrictions, items containing lithium batteries, including cell phones and laptops, cannot be accepted for transport in mail originating from the Cayman Islands,” she explained.  

Ms Martinez-Ebanks also noted that it is a good idea to be aware of prohibited items, which are deemed to be any materials that are hazardous, flammable, combustible or explosive.  

“This includes perfume and alcohol which is 70 percent proof and over. In addition, the Cayman postal service will not accept any ink or toner cartridges that weigh more than 16 ounces, for mail transportation,” she added. 

To ensure mail gets to recipients on time, the postal service reminds customers to post early; fill out a Customs declarations form, particularly if the item is valuable; use white labels only; and write legibly. 


Counter supervisor Joan McField with an on-time Christmas package. – Photo supplied