Special Report

States With The Most Post Offices Per Person

The U.S. Postal Service is facing what could become an existential threat in the coming years. It typically operates at a loss in the era of electronic communications.

The situation worsened after 2006, when a Republican-controlled Congress passed a law requiring the semi-independent government agency to prefund future retiree health benefits. The move cost the agency as much as $5.8 billion annually through 2016, reported educational site ThoughtCo.

Though the USPS generates enough revenue to cover its operating expenses, its pension and health care liability pushed the agency in the red every year since 2007, according to Washington D.C. think tank Brookings. The USPS has lost nearly over $70 billion in this period of time. (Postal services are among the industries that will shrink the most over the next decade.)

The institution in charge of a time-honored public service that is older than the country itself — the first post office was established in Philadelphia in 1775 — is now planning to shed 50,000 positions, under the direction of controversial Postmaster General Louis DeJoy. The USPS plans other steep cuts and reductions to services in an effort to trim $160 billion in predicted losses over the next decade. The cuts include closing many locations.

To find the states with the most post offices per capita, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed USPS post offices by states. States are ranked by the number of post offices per 100,000 people. State population data came from the Census Bureau’s 2020 American Community Survey.

Access to postal service varies widely among the 50 states, from between 2 post offices per 100,000 residents in Florida, the country’s third most-populous state, to 43 offices per 100,000 people in Vermont, the country’s second-smallest state by population. (On a somewhat different note, here are cities where postal workers get attacked by dogs most often.)

Smaller, rural states like Maine and the Dakotas tend to have more post offices for every 100,000 residents because their populations are more spread out, requiring more postal access points. Two exceptions to this are Rhode Island and Delaware, whose residents are served by fewer post offices than seven of the 10 most populous states. Rhode Island has nearly 5 post offices per 100,000 residents, while New York has nearly 8 per 100,000.

Here are the states with the most post offices.

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