Is there mail delivery on Columbus Day? The federal holiday falls on Monday, October 12, this year, and many people are wondering if the post office will be open for business or if postal workers have the day off.
Although most retail stores, restaurants, car dealerships, and movie theaters will be open on Columbus Day, the U.S. Postal Service will be closed all day. That means you won’t be able to drop off a package, buy stamps, or check your post office box. There’s no mail delivery, either — letter carriers have the day off on Monday, so both business and residential mail will not be delivered until Tuesday.
— U.S. Postal Service (@USPS) October 8, 2015
If you have an urgent package to mail out on Monday, you will need to head over to your local United Parcel Service (UPS) or Federal Express (FedEx) office. Both delivery companies will be open for business on Columbus Day and will be delivering packages according to their regular schedule.
According to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM), there are 10 federal holidays observed every year, with federal offices like the U.S. Post Office, Internal Revenue Service, and Social Security closed for the day. If the holiday falls on a Saturday, federal employees will get Friday off, and if it falls on a Sunday, the paid day off will be Monday.
Three federal holidays remain in 2015 — Veterans’ Day (November 11), Thanksgiving Day (November 26), and Christmas Day (December 25). The 2016 federal holidays calendar has already been released, with the first day off falling on Friday, January 1, 2016 — otherwise known as New Year’s Day.
Here’s the lineup of 2016 federal holidays so you will know when the post office and other government offices will be closed in the coming year.
- Friday, January 1 – New Year’s Day
- Monday, January 18 – Martin Luther King, Jr. birthday
- Monday, February 15 – Presidents Day
- Monday, May 30 – Memorial Day
- Monday, July 4 – Independence Day
- Monday, September 5 – Labor Day
- Monday, October 10 – Columbus Day
- Friday, November 11 – Veterans’ Day
- Thursday, November 24 – Thanksgiving Day
- Monday, December 26 – Christmas Day
Of note: Christmas falls on a Sunday (December 25) in 2016. The OPM states that for most federal employees, Monday, December 26, will be “treated as a holiday for pay and leave purposes.”
Although it is an official federal holiday, not every state in the nation will be celebrating Columbus Day on Monday. The holiday has been observed by the U.S. Government since 1968, but there are several states that don’t observe the holiday at all, and two states — California and Texas — that don’t consider it a paid holiday for government workers.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the U.S. states that don’t recognize Columbus Day as a holiday include Hawaii, Alaska, Oregon, and South Dakota. For most of these states, it’s business as usual with schools and public offices open. In addition, Iowa and Nevada do not celebrate Columbus Day as an official holiday, but the governors of the two states is authorized by statute to proclaim the day every year.
Indigenous People’s Day pic.twitter.com/FXFaGbAMct
— James Morrison (@JamesPMorrison) October 10, 2015
Some cities will be celebrating “Indigenous Peoples’ Day” on Columbus Day. The Huffington Post reports that both Seattle and Minneapolis passed resolutions last year that allows for the recognition of indigenous communities.
” ‘Indigenous Peoples’ Day’ is part of an effort to recognize the marginalization of indigenous groups, who were already here when Christopher Columbus discovered the Americas and were nearly wiped out afterwards.”
Whether you are celebrating Columbus Day, Indigenous Peoples’ Day, or not celebrating anything other than a much-needed day off, not everything will be closed on Monday. Despite the closure of government offices in many states, many retail stores like Walmart, Target, and Macy’s will be open for business on Monday. Restaurants, movie theaters, some banks, and the stock market will be open, as well.
[Image: Justin Sullivan / Getty Images]