Postal Service Mail Carrier Career

post-office-500Postal carriers, also known as postal service workers, deliver mail and packages to residents in certain neighborhoods and parts of a city. They collect the mail left out by residents and sort that mail back in the post office.

These workers are also responsible for sorting all mail received to ensure that it reaches the right address. They typically pick up deliveries in the morning at the post office, but they may also make frequent stops back at the post office during the day.

Postal Service Mail Carrier Career Snapshot

All postal workers will either work inside or outside based on job title. Postal carriers deliver mail on foot or by vehicle, depending on the city. Many have a small truck or van that they carry mail in, and they can park that vehicle nearby to easily access all deliveries without carrying all those packages with them. They typically work set hours for a total of 40 hours per week.

Further details on a career as a postal service mail carrier are listed below (statistics from the May 2015 Bureau of Labor Statistics and Onet Online):


is the average yearly salary for postal service workers.


decline in employment between 2014 and 2024.


have a High school diploma or equivalent; 15% have less than a High school diploma.

Postal Service Mail Carrier Education

The United States Post Office requires that all postal carriers have either a high school diploma or a GED. Anyone applying for one of these jobs must also pass a written test designed by the government that determines if the applicant is a good fit for the job based on their responses.

Postal Service Mail Carrier Job Duties

Postal workers stop by the post office earn morning to pick up deliveries, but they then sort those packages based on where each one goes before setting off on a route. They may deliver mail to PO boxes, homes and commercial buildings in town. Postal workers may need to collect signatures before handing over certain packages, and they also pick up outgoing mail and take it back to the post office.

Postal Service Mail Carrier Salaries

Postal workers receive a median pay of $56,790 a year according to May 2015 reports. The lowest 10% of all postal carriers earn more than $59,000 a year, and the bottom 10% earn $32,620 a year. Carriers making the most generally have more experience and spent years working and delivering mail in the same city.

Postal Service Mail Carrier Job Outlook

The expected outlook for postal carriers is low. This job field will drop by 28% by 2024, which means that the field will lose more than 130,000 jobs. This decline relates to the closings of post offices around the country and the popularity of the internet. More people now print and ship items from home or send emails instead of using postal services.

Postal Service Mail Carrier Skills & Traits

Mail Carrier Skill Set:Required Abilities:Tools Used by Mail Carriers:Typical Work Activities:
• Active Listening
• Critical Thinking
• Social Perceptiveness
• Speaking
• Information Ordering
• Near Vision
• Arm-Hand Steadiness
• Category Flexibility
• Oral Comprehension
• Portable barcode scanners
• Small trucks
• Handheld computers
• Postal vehicle tire chains
• Operating vehicles
• Performing Physical Activities
• Handling Moving Objects
• Getting Information
• Working with the Public

Related Careers

Delivery Truck Drivers

High School Diploma or Equivalent

Retail Sales Workers

No Formal Education Required

Postal Service Clerks

High School Diploma or Equivalent

What Do Related Careers Pay?