How old do you have to be to work at USPS

How Old Do You Have to Be to Work at USPS?

The United States Postal Service is actively hiring for full time, part time and seasonal employment. They offer a variety of challenging and rewarding opportunities nationwide with over 2,000 job functions that provide room for growth and promotion. 

The positions we have listed in this post are recruited the most, which makes them the best opportunities for employment with USPS right now. Openings are announced on a rolling basis throughout the year.

To get an entry-level job at USPS (United Parcel Service) as a Mail Handler Assistant, PSE Mail Processing Clerk, City Carrier Assistant, Rural Carrier Associate, Assistant Rural Carrier, or PSE Sales & Services/Distribution Associate, you must be at least 18 years old at the time of appointment or 16 years old with a high school diploma. 

Applicants must also be a United States citizen, permanent resident, or citizen of American Samoa or other U.S. territory.

USPS is an excellent workplace for self-motivated individuals who enjoy independence and measurable goals with the added satisfaction of serving our communities.

Teen Jobs at USPS and Age Requirements

Mail Handler Assistant  (Hourly)

Mail Handler Assistants load, unload and move mail and packages. They also perform other duties incidental to the movement and processing of mail. If you enjoy staying active in a team environment that emphasizes safety and ergonomics this could be a great fit for you.

Job duties include:

  • Loading, lifting and carrying moderate to heavy mail from trucks and sorting equipment
  • Separate outgoing bulk mail and load onto mail trucks for distribution
  • Operate machinery and carry mail to distribution area
  • May perform a variety of duties such as rewrapping damaged parcels and weighing mail

You must be at least 18 years old (or 16 with a diploma or GED)  to work as a Mail Handler Assistant at USPS. 

PSE Mail Processing Clerk (Hourly)

PSE Mail Processing Clerks perform a variety of clerk duties required to process mail using automated mail processing equipment or manual methods of sorting and distribution. 

Job duties include:

  • Sort outgoing and/or incoming mail using automated equipment
  • Ensure all necessary support equipment and materials are organized for sorting
  • Provide services at public window for non-financial transactions
  • Lifting or carrying moderate to heavy mail and packages and prolonged standing

To work as a PSE Mail Processing Clerk at USPS, you must be at least 18 years old (16 with a diploma or GED). 

City Carrier Assistant  (Hourly)

City Carrier Assistants deliver and collect mail on foot or by vehicle in a city area. They also maintain good relations with customers and have a general familiarity with postal laws, regulations, and products for the area. 

As a CCA, you provide a critical service to your community by ensuring mail delivery during weekdays, weekends and holidays with opportunities for career promotion. This position is ideal for candidates that enjoy staying active outdoors with occasional customer service interactions.

Job duties include:

  • Sort, lift and push moderate to heavy loads of mail and packages to prepare for delivery
  • Deliver mail along your assigned route
  • Pick up or collect mail from customers
  • Collect postage due for charge on delivery or other services
  • Work indoors and outdoors in all weather: rain, snow, cold and heat

You must be at least 18 years old (or 16 with a diploma or GED)  to work as a City Carrier Assistant at USPS. 

Rural Carrier Associate (Hourly)

Rural Carrier Associates deliver and collect packages along routes in rural areas during weekdays, weekends and holidays. They also provide a variety of services to customers along your assigned route, and may be required to use a personal vehicle if a postal vehicle is not provided. 

As an RCA, you may be eligible to receive health benefits and promotion to a career opportunity. This position is ideal for candidates that enjoy staying active and working independently outdoors with occasional customer service interactions.

Job duties include:

  • Sort, lift and push moderate to heavy loads of mail and packages to prepare for delivery
  • Deliver mail along your assigned route
  • Pick up or collect mail from customers
  • Sell stamps, stamped paper and money orders or other services
  • Work indoors and outdoors in all weather: rain, snow, cold and heat

To work as a Rural Carrier Associate at USPS, you must be at least 18 years old (16 with a diploma or GED). 

Assistant Rural Carrier (Hourly)

Assistant Rural Carriers deliver and collect packages along routes in rural areas. They also provide a variety of services to customers along the assigned route and may be required to provide their own personal vehicle. 

As an ARC, you may opt to provide service to your community on weekends and holidays or up to seven days each week; whichever suits your lifestyle. If you enjoy working outdoors, while keeping your week free, this may be a great fit for you.

Job duties include:

  • Sort, lift and push moderate to heavy loads of mail and packages to prepare for delivery
  • Deliver mail along your assigned route
  • Pick up or collect mail from customers
  • Work indoors and outdoors in all weather: rain, snow, cold and heat

To work as an Assistant Rural Carrier at USPS, you must be at least 18 years old (16 with a diploma or GED). 

PSE Sales & Services/Distribution Associate (Hourly)

PSE Sales & Service/Distribution Associates at USPS perform a variety of sales and customer support services. The job primarily involves providing services to customers over the counter at postal branches. 

Job duties include:

  • Greet and interact with customers, offer assistance with products, sales and promotions, and provide a good customer experience
  • Handle and process customer purchases and returns of products and services
  • Perform passport duties
  • Maintain appearance of retail lobby by setting up and arranging displays that are presentable to customers
  • Prolonged standing while interacting with customers

To work as a PSE Sales & Service/Distribution Associate at USPS, you must be at least 18 years old (16 with a diploma or GED). 

Can a 15 Year Old Work at USPS?

No 15-year-olds can’t work at USPS.  The minimum age to work at USPS is 16. We have a page on our website specifically for 15-year-olds that you can view for other options.

Can a 16 Year Old Work at USPS? 

Yes. 16-year-olds can work at USPS if they have already earned their high school diploma or GED. We do have a page on our website specifically for 16-year-olds that you can view for other job options.

How Much Does USPS Pay Part-Time Workers?

The hourly earnings for employees at USPS vary because of state and city minimum wage laws. However, we can give you a general idea of what the hourly pay is for each position.

In addition to competitive basic pay rates and regular salary increases -- depending on the type of job held -- most USPS employees also receive overtime pay, night shift differential, and Sunday premium pay.

Mail Handler Assistant (Hourly)

Mail Handler Assistants at the US Post Office earn between $16 and $31 per hour, depending on route and location. The average wage for this position is $19.50 per hour.

PSE Mail Processing Clerk (Hourly)

PSE Mail Processing Clerks at USPS usually earn somewhere between $16 and $35 per hour. The average rate for this position is $18.50 per hour.

City Carrier Assistant  (Hourly)

City Carrier Assistants at USPS earn between $18 and $38 per hour, depending on route and geographic location. The average wage for City Carrier Assistants is $19.50 per hour. 

Rural Carrier Associate (Hourly)

Rural Carrier Associates at USPS earn between $36,000 and $52,000 annually. The rate depends on the route and if you use your own vehicle. The average wage for Rural Carrier Associates is $22 per hour.

Assistant Rural Carrier (Hourly)

Assistant Rural Carriers at USPS earn between $30,000 and $45,000 annually. The rate depends on the route and if you use your own vehicle. The average wage for Rural Carrier Associates is $20 per hour.

PSE Sales & Services/Distribution Associate (Hourly)

PSE Sales & Service/Distribution Associates at USPS earn between $16 and $30 per hour. The average wage for this position is $18 per hour.

How Much Experience Do You Need to Work at USPS?

USPS is an entry-level friendly company, and they do hire teen workers. You can apply for a position without any experience and get hired.  

What Should You Wear to a Job Interview at USPS?

When you show up for your interview at USPS, you will want to be dressed in business casual attire. Consider something like a buttoned-down shirt with nice slacks or jeans and dress shoes. 

USPS Interview Questions

The possible questions in a job interview are endless, and it always depends on the interviewer. But, there are some common questions that they do often ask. 

Why do you want to work at USPS?

Why are they asking?  

Transportation and mail companies like USPS do not rely on entry-level teen workers. This is a unique choice for a first-time job, and they want to know why you are interested in working for them. USPS is open to hiring entry-level teen workers, and they offer a ton of opportunities for advancement.

What’s the ideal answer?

There is no wrong answer to this question. Whatever your reason is for applying at USPS, tell them! Maybe you have a friend that works there or you are intrigued by the rate of pay, perks, and benefits. Whatever your reason is for applying at USPS, just be specific and honest with your answer.

Why should we hire you?

Why are they asking?  

If a manager asks you this question, they are trying to get you to sell yourself. They are wanting to find out how well you can communicate, while being positive and professional. You may not have any previous work experience, but you can still have relevant job skills like verbal and written communication, time-management, driving and understanding directions, etc...

What’s the ideal answer?

Know your strengths. If you get asked this question, tell them how you will benefit their business. They want to hear that you have good verbal communication skills, have a friendly and upbeat demeanor, and can give good customer service. 

Tell them that you are a reliable worker who will show up to work on time for every scheduled shift. And, if you are interested in a long-term career with the company, definitely let them know.

Can you handle the heavy lifting and other physical requirements?

Why are they asking?  

Working at USPS can be physically demanding, especially when you are delivering mail on a route. They are asking you this question to make sure you can handle it.

What’s the ideal answer?

The ideal answer is to be truthful. If you can't handle the physical demands, this isn't the job for you. If you can handle carrying up to 50 pounds regularly with a lot of twisting and bending, then answer yes. 

Benefits of Working at USPS 

Workers at USPS are eligible for a full-slate of benefits and perks. 

  • Health Insurance -- The Postal Service participates in the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) Program, which provides excellent coverage and flexibility, and most of the cost is paid by the Postal Service. There are many plans available, and Employee premium contributions are not subject to most taxes, which makes health insurance even more affordable.
  • Dental and Vision Insurance -- Employees are eligible to participate in the Federal Employees Dental and Vision Insurance Program (FEDVIP). While employees pay the full cost, this group insurance offers excellent coverage at rates made even more affordable because premium contributions are not subject to taxes.
  • Flexible Spending Accounts -- Career employees may participate in the Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) Program after one year of service. Tax-free FSA contributions can be used to cover most out-of-pocket health care and dependent care (daycare expenses).
  • Long-Term Care Insurance -- Employees may enroll in the Federal Long-Term Care Insurance Program (FLTCIP), which insures for the costs of receiving long-term care (e.g., nursing home or assisted living), which typically is not covered by health insurance or Medicare.
  • Retirement -- The federal retirement program provides a defined benefit (pension), as well as disability coverage. Eligibility is determined by your age and number of years of creditable service.
  • Thrift Savings Plan -- Career postal employees may contribute to the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP), which is similar to 401(k) retirement savings plans offered by private sector employers. Employees contribute to TSP on a tax-deferred basis and may receive automatic and matching contributions (up to 5 percent of pay) from the Postal Service.
  • Social Security & Medicare -- Newly hired postal employees are covered under Social Security and Medicare.
  • Life Insurance -- Coverage through the Federal Employees’ Group Life Insurance (FEGLI) Program. The cost of Basic coverage is fully paid by the Postal Service, with the option to purchase additional coverage through payroll deductions.
  • Commuter Program -- This program offers tax-free purchase of public transportation and parking, up to IRS maximums, to reduce out-of-pocket costs for employees who choose to participate.
  • Leave -- Generous annual (vacation) and sick leave – 13 days of annual leave per year for the first 3 years, increasing to 20 days per year after 3 years of service, and to 26 days per year after 15 years of service. In addition, full-time employees earn 4 hours per pay period as insurance against loss of income due to illness or accident. 
  • Holidays -- The Postal Service observes 10 holidays each year.
  • Career Development & Training -- The Postal Service offers a learning environment that reinforces success through training initiatives that allow employees to improve basic operational knowledge and gain leadership skills. 

What it’s Like to Work at USPS

How to Apply at USPS

If you are interested in working at USPS, the ONLY place to apply online is at the USPS website. Job categories include Drivers & Mechanics, Sales & Service, Delivery, and Sorting & Handling. 

The application process is outlined here through a series of videos.

In addition to being at least 18 years of age (or 16 with a diploma or GED) and a US citizen, applicants must also have the ability to pass a criminal background check, drug screening, and medical assessment. 

Be prepared to submit your recent employment history, a safe driving record (if applicable to the position), and your registration with Selective Service.

Step 1: Searching for available USPS jobs in their system known as eCareers --  the only place online where you can apply for USPS Jobs. You can search by keyword, location, or functional group. Jobs are posted daily.

Step 2: Create a profile with the eCareers system and apply for a position you are interested in. Once you apply, expect a confirmation email from USPS.

Step 3: If required, take an assessment test.  This will be noted in the job description. USPS will conduct an employment pre-screen and then reach out to you via email with next steps. Any email received from USPSeServices@geninfo.com or NoReplyNACI@uspis.gov is legitimate and you should respond in a timely manner.

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