Kadena post office unloads the sleigh Published Nov. 17, 2021 By Airman 1st Class Yosselin Perla 18th Wing Public Affairs KADENA AIR BASE, Japan -- With the holiday season quickly approaching, the Kadena post office is working hard to ensure everyone receives holiday mail in a timely manner. “We are processing about 4,500 parcels a day compared to the standard 2,000 parcels due to the holidays,” explained Senior Master Sgt. Gabrielle Sablan, 718th Force Support Squadron postal operations superintendent. “The post office staff is working 12 hour days to process mail through Japanese airlines and bi-monthly charter flights. Starting in December, there will be weekly charter flights.” The post office recently upgraded to a handheld processing system, streamlining the sorting and notification process. “It used to take us almost a whole day to process one full truck of mail,” stated Master Sgt. William Taylor, 18th FSS postmaster. “Now we are processing that within three to four hours with the new handheld systems.” Sablan stressed that customers should make an effort to pick up packages as soon as they receive an email notification, rather than waiting for three or four packages to arrive. This can prevent delays caused by package build up and lack of storage space. The postal staff recommends customers complete their shopping as soon as possible to ensure personal mail comes in time for the holidays, as well as their fellow Team Kadena members' packages. Another prudent method for timely packages is to check which shipping methods online retailers use prior to purchasing an item. “Give yourself enough time for your packages to arrive,” Sablan said. “It takes about 15 days for mail to be delivered if it’s coming by air, and up to six weeks if it’s coming by boat.” Sablan went on to encourage patrons to shop local and consider what they are ordering prior to shopping through online retailers, especially when it comes to heavier items in order to decrease damaged packages. “We work extremely hard to get your mail on time and available for you to pick up,” Sablan emphasized. “The average shelf life at the post office from the time it arrives to the time the customer picks it up is 19 hours. We are here to take care of you and if you have any questions or need assistance, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.” The post office can be reached at 634-4458, firstname.lastname@example.org or at their customer service window Monday through Friday 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.