Royal Mail has announced that around 33,000 temporary jobs will be available this year over the Christmas period – over 10,000 more than its usual seasonal average.
The postal service typically employs between 15,000 and 23,000 extra staff between October and January to help sort the additional Christmas volumes of parcels, cards and letters.
Royal Mail says that such a high number of workers is needed this year because of elevated parcel volumes due to an increase in online shopping caused by the coronavirus crisis.
More than 13,000 mail centre sorting posts are available in England, around 1400 posts in Scotland, 700 posts in Wales and 500 posts in Northern Ireland.
The seasonal workers will support more than 115,000 permanent postmen and women who sort and deliver the mail all year round.
Additional workers will also be required for Royal Mail’s new Covid-19 testing kit collection team.
Royal Mail has been recruiting festive temporary workers since the Second World War.
Sally Ashford, Royal Mail chief HR officer, said: “During these unprecedented times we believe it is critical that Royal Mail continues to deliver.
“We want to do our best to deliver Christmas for our customers and support the effort on the pandemic.
“This helps the whole country to celebrate and stay safe during these difficult times.”