Letter carriers (NOC 1512)

About this job

Letter carriers:

  • sort and deliver mail, record delivery of registered mail and collect money for cash-on-delivery parcels
  • work for the Canada Post Corporation
Common job titles
  • carrier, priority post / special delivery
  • mail collector / deliverer / worker
  • postal service collector / deliverer
  • carrier, priority post / special delivery
  • mail collector / deliverer / worker
  • postal service collector / deliverer

Duties

Letter carriers perform some or all of the following duties:

  • organize mail by address and load into mailbag
  • deliver and collect letters, small parcels and other printed material along established routes
  • deliver special delivery and express mail
  • collect signatures and payment for cash-on-delivery service
  • record delivery of registered mail
  • leave notices that items could not be delivered and the location where they can be picked up
  • return undeliverable mail to postal station

Work environment

Letter carriers work in an outdoor environment, where they are exposed to various weather conditions and seasonal weather patterns. A small number of mail carriers may have modified routes that allow them to work inside.

Regardless of weather and traffic conditions, these individuals are required to walk for most of their shift. Some Letter carriers operate a postal truck, but are still required to walk to make their deliveries. Rural positions may mean using one’s own vehicle to deliver and collect mail, in which case Canada Post's vehicle requirements must be met and insurance costs may be covered by Canada Post.

In addition to handling heavy mail bags (up to 50 lbs), individuals are required to carry satchels (up to 35 lbs each) loaded with mail from door to door.

Letter carriers work Monday through Friday, though the hours they work can vary depending on their route.

Associated risks include being bitten by dogs while delivering mail, so letter carriers are trained to protect themselves against aggressive dogs and, if requested, are provided with pepper spray. Individuals also have the right to refuse delivery if they feel unsafe.

The most common types of injuries sustained by letter carriers result from slips and falls on mossy, icy and snowy sidewalks, and poorly maintained steps and walkways.

Career paths and resources

Career paths

Many letter carriers start out as temporary and/or on-call workers, and eventually progress into permanent full-time positions.

Progression to supervisory positions is possible with additional training or experience.

Additional resources

Additional resources are not currently available for this career.