We LOVE the season of giving, so it'll sound shocking when we tell you that you shouldn't reward your mailman for their hard work!

And believe me, it's really hard for me to say.  Do you remember the story about the Boise mailman who wore a tuxedo on his last day and was so loved that more than 100 people on his route wrote him a personal thank you letter? I used to watch football with Harry every Sunday at Player's Pub since we are both part of the Boise Browns Backer's club (and yes, I'm aware that means most of the games we watched together, they lost.)  He was one of the hardest working mailmen in the Treasure Valley and even would grow out his beard to look more like Santa as he delivered holiday packages every December.

Knowing Harry makes it really hard for me to say this...DO NOT tip your mailman or give them a gift card this Christmas. Because postal carriers are federal employees, they have to follow the Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the Executive Branch.  That's the wordy way of saying they're never allowed to accept cash, check or gift cards that can be exchanged for cash from the people along their routes.

If you love your postal carrier as much as the people on Harry's route loved him, that's a huge bummer.  The good news is there's a loophole that allows you to thank them! They're are allowed to accept small gifts worth less than $20 (but can't receive more than $50 of those in a year.)

So what does your postal carrier want? Thought Co recommends the following:

  • Goodies like coffee, donuts or cookies
  • Plaques or trophies
  • Food, candy or fruit that they can share with their fellow postal workers