Why is Monday before Tuesday

The phenomenon of "no mail on Mondays"


Does your mailbox always stay empty on Mondays? Don't see a postman in your street on Mondays? We clarify the matter.

► For years, German citizens have asked themselves whether Deutsche Post generally no longer delivers letters on Mondays. This impression is deceptive, says Deutsche Post, and makes the following arguments.


Monday is the day of the week with the least amount of letters

In June 2010, Deutsche Post started a pilot test for the first time to reduce the number of mail items on Mondays. It was then that unaddressed advertising mail was no longer delivered on Mondays. According to Deutsche Post, this saves costs.

Post later switched to no longer delivering addressed advertising letters, so-called dialogue mail, on Mondays. For Dialogpost delivery times of up to 4 working days apply; In return, the senders benefit from cheaper postage.

In July 2019, Post Manager Frank Appel stated in an interview with the Bonner General-Anzeiger that the volume of shipments on Mondays only accounts for 2 percent of the weekly volume (source).

Strange: two years earlier, the monthly shipment volume was said to have made up 6 percent. A decrease to 2 percent would be a drop of more than 50 percent. The Paketda editorial team thinks this is unrealistic. More on this in this report.


Corporate customers do not send mail on Saturdays

Deutsche Post often brings up this argument when newspaper editors report on the phenomenon of “no mail on Mondays”. For example to the Rheinische Post in this article from September 2017. Post press spokesman Achim Gaht told the newspaper, "that on Mondays only the mail that is thrown in on Saturdays is delivered - and that is almost exclusively private mail." Because many companies don't work on Saturdays, they don't send mail on Saturdays either. As a result, mail from corporate customers is often delivered on Friday or on Tuesday of the next week.


Advertising mail with reduced postage does not arrive on Mondays

The already mentioned pilot test from summer 2010 was brought into regular operation at the beginning of 2011. Since then, advertising mail with discounted postage (e.g. Infopost and direct mail) has for the most part no longer been delivered on Mondays. With this measure, Deutsche Post claims to be able to utilize its transport network more evenly.

The result: In August 2015, the volume of letters on Mondays fell to 5 percent, as postal spokeswoman Britta Töllner explained at waz.de. Letter post that is franked with regular postage is, according to Deutsche Post, regularly delivered on Mondays and is not affected by this saving measure.


Delivery districts are designed differently on Mondays

Because there is so little letter post on Mondays, Swiss Post is amalgamating some delivery districts. A single postman is then responsible, for example, for a delivery area that is otherwise served by 2 postmen. The postman therefore takes a different route than usual and does not come by the customer at the usual time. This can give the impression that no postman comes by at all on Mondays, said Post press spokesman Achim Gahr of the Rheinische Post.


Paketda has tested

In August 2019, the Paketda editorial team tested Monday delivery for three weeks. The delivery rates on Mondays fluctuated between 71 and 93 percent. The detailed result can be found in the article Test: Is there really no mail delivered on Mondays?


How to find out if your postman works on Mondays

Send yourself two postcards or letters to your own address, which you put in a post box on Friday and Saturday (before the emptying time).

  • The postcard sent on Friday would have to be delivered on Saturday or on Monday at the latest.
  • The postcard sent on Saturday would have to be delivered on Monday or Tuesday at the latest.

► By sending two test consignments, you rule out unforeseen delivery delays such as traffic jams, staff shortages, etc. At least one of the two test mailings must be delivered on Monday. If this is not the case, there is a reasonable suspicion that no mail will be delivered on Mondays.

To be on the safe side, you can repeat the test the following week. If the result remains negative, you can inform the Federal Network Agency, as the postal supervisory authority, of the poor delivery quality. More on this in our complaints guide.


Inexpensive self-help: stickers for the mailbox

An unconventional tip from the Paketda editorial team: Put a sticker on your mailbox with the text "Test household runtime measurement". The sticker should look rather small and inconspicuous. Templates as PDF here.

There are some market research institutes that regularly send test letters to measure their transport times (details at Paketda.de). For this purpose, private individuals provide their home addresses. The test households are not allowed to identify themselves to postal employees under any circumstances, so that there is no preferential delivery to these households.

You can now turn the tables and pretend you are a selected test household! If your postman recognizes the connection with the transit time measurement based on the sticker, it could be that your address will be delivered more reliably in the future.

There is no guarantee that this unconventional approach will be effective. On the one hand, it assumes that the postman knows how to interpret the term "test household runtime measurement". On the other hand, the postman must be willing and able to improve the quality of delivery. In some situations the postman cannot influence the delivery quality at all, for example if there is a high level of sick leave or if the mail volume is so large that the delivery route cannot be completed.



Investigation by the Federal Network Agency

The Federal Network Agency is the supervisory authority of Deutsche Post AG. A test of the Monday delivery is mentioned in the network agency's 2018 annual report (here as PDF).

The Federal Network Agency sent 240 test letters on Fridays and Saturdays to check delivery on Saturday and Monday. In the evaluation, the authority writes:

One of the main results of the - not representative - measurement is that a large number of letters were also delivered on Mondays. However, the E + 1 rate of items posted on a Friday and delivered on a Saturday was, at over 95 percent, significantly better than the E + 1 rate of items posted on a Saturday and delivered on Mondays (only 74.5 percent).

The technical term E + 1 describes the delivery of letters one day after they have been sent. The statutory requirement is that Deutsche Post deliver 80 percent of all domestic letters on average one day after they have been sent.

Because the Federal Network Agency's test was not carried out in a representative manner for Germany as a whole, and also not for the entire year, the E + 1 Monday rate of 74.5 percent is not objectionable.

If you, as a consumer, want to complain to the Federal Network Agency about missing Monday mail, you can use the Paketda letter generator.




Your questions on the subject of no mail on Mondays - why is that?