Postal Service Mail Carrier Salary

To become a Postal Service Mail Carrier you have good reading and memory skills. To discover if this career is for you, take one of our quizzes.

Postal Service workers, particularly clerks, regularly interact with customers. As a result, they must be courteous and tactful and provide good client service. The median salary for postal workers in 2010 was $53,090. Since mail is delivered six days a week, many postal workers must work on Saturdays.

Postal Service Mail Carrier Salary

  • Average Salary: $53,000
  • Expected Lifetime Earnings: $2,248,000

Postal Service Mail Carrier – Education

Postal Service mail carriers are not required to have followed any specific post-secondary education, but to become a successful carrier they must command specific skills such as a perfect command of English. Applicants for the position of Postal Service carriers need to be at least 18 years of age, have a high school or GED test diploma, and they are required to be U.S. citizens (though those holding permanent residency status may qualify as well). Take our career test if you want to see if this job fits your character.

All applicants for these jobs must take and pass an exam that will assess accuracy and speed at checking numbers and names as well as their ability to deal with and memorize the procedures of mail distribution. Interested applicants may contact their favorite post office or preferred mail processing center to learn when these assessments are given.

When they pass the exam, and if they are accepted, applicants are required to have an extensive background check, and they must pass a drug test and a demanding physical exam. Candidates must demonstrate that they are capable of lifting and handling heavy sacks with mail, and carriers who run driving shifts are required to have a safe and perfect driving record and receive passing grades on road tests. New Postal Service carriers usually receive on-the-job training as well, but this usually takes less than a month, and those carriers who are doing mail rounds may at first do their work accompanied by an experienced worker.

Postal Service Mail Carrier – The Job

Postal Service mail carriers prepare, deliver, and collect different sorts of mail. They usually have assigned routes with daily schedules. Sometimes they deliver mail on foot, then again by vehicle or on foot, all depending on the area of their assigned routes. Postal Service mail carriers must deliver mail in any type of weather, and they are required to conduct and behave themselves in an efficient and professional manner. A fundamental basic knowledge of and familiarity with the local geography is absolutely required, and extensive knowledge of regulations, basic postal laws, and products is a necessity as well.


The duties of a Postal Service mail carrier include the preparation of all mail that needs to be delivered along a specific route. They must efficiently process collected mail and ensure it will be sent out timely and in accordance with postal guidelines. They must take care that undeliverable mail will be returned and properly handled. The job of postal service mail carrier is physically pretty demanding that includes sorting mail and carrying it to its proper destination.

Mail comes in all sorts of sizes, from letters and cards to big parcels, and Postal Service carriers who have a walking route, usually spend a lot of their shift walking or standing, and if they have a driving route, they often are required to sit long shifts in their vehicles. Their work routine includes also often loading and unloading packages or crates filled with collected or to be delivered mail that may weigh over 60 pounds.

Their duties include as well collecting C.O.D. fees, signatures, or postage dues, and customers sometimes need stamps, package pickup, or some other postal service, and there are quite a few areas where all this is part of the postal carrier’s duties.

Important skills

Postal Service workers, and clerks in particular, will interact with clients on a regular basis. Hence, they need to be tactful and courteous, and provide optimal customer service. Postal Service carriers are required to be able to walk or stand for longer periods of time, they need to have the capacity to carry and lift heavy parcels and mail bags, so their physical strength must be perfect

Job outlook and pay

The professional outlook for these professionals is stable. Due to internet developments, the volume of mail is expected to decline. On the other hand, deliveries of online purchased goods is expected to increase exponentially. In 2014, the average pay for a U.S. Postal Service mail carrier was around $16.80 per hour, and hourly compensation lies in a range between $14.60 and $24.80, depending on the city and experience level.

There are workers in this professional field that do not receive benefits, but almost half of all Postal Service workers have medical coverage and dental plans. The 2014 median earnings for Postal Service carriers was around $53,000 on yearly basis.