Canada Post To Continue Program Of Free Delivery To Deployed Troops During 2010 Holiday Season

Canada Post announced today that it will continue to provide free delivery of letters and parcels from family and friends to Canadian troops deployed in Afghanistan and elsewhere overseas during the upcoming holiday season. This will be the 5th consecutive year that Canada Post has offered this service. Last year more than 25,000 parcels were forwarded to our Canadian troops an increase of 23 per cent over the previous year.

"Receiving mail from loved ones during the holiday season matters and we are proud to do our part to recognize and support our deployed troops and their families of the Canadian Forces serving our country overseas," said Rob Merrifield, Minister of State responsible for Canada Post.

Stewart Bacon, president and CEO of Canada Post, said, "Our employees take pride in supporting our troops and their families. For the last four years, we've helped to connect our troops with their friends and loved ones during the holiday season."

Canada Post will accept regular parcels free of charge to designated Canadian Forces Bases overseas from October 18, 2010 until January 7, 2011. Lettermail weighing up to 500 grams to deployed troops can be sent free of charge until December 31, 2011.

"As I am sure you are aware, the holiday season is a particularly difficult time of the year to be away from family and friends, but the support by Canada Post and its employees helps ease this separation," said General Christopher Thurrott. "On behalf of the Canadian Forces and the Department of National Defence, I wish to extend to Canada Post our fullest appreciation for again supporting our efforts around the world."

With capacity limitations on military aircraft carrying supplies and munitions to deployed forces, this offer is restricted to family and friends of the deployed service men and women serving overseas in war zones. That includes members of the Canadian Forces serving in Afghanistan, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Sinai and Jerusalem. Troops serving on any of the deployed Her Majesty's Canadian Ships are also included in the offer.

In order to ensure the proper customs declaration forms and addressing information are provided, parcels and letters should be deposited at one of Canada Post's more than 6,600 full-service retail outlets across the country. Items dropped in a Street Letter Box are at risk of being returned to sender or considered undeliverable if they do not contain proper documentation or addressing information.

Parcels and letters must be addressed to a specific soldier, and include rank and mission information. They must also be directed to the appropriate ship and/or Canadian Forces Base. Once delivered to the designated Military Base, the Canadian Forces Postal Service will take charge of the items and ensure their delivery overseas. Senders can purchase additional options for their parcels, such as coverage for loss or damage and signature.

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