Before mailing a letter to Santa, make sure it’s addressed to the right North Pole. There are two famous North Poles: the Geographic North Pole which is the northernmost point of the earth, and the small town of North Pole, Alaska.
Southeast of Fairbanks, Alaska, North Pole has a population of about 2,200 people. Here, it’s Christmas year-round with the famous Santa Claus House, rustic landscapes, and dog sledding activities.
Unlike the Geographic North Pole which is right in the middle of the Arctic Circle, North Pole and Fairbanks, Alaska are outside of it, making the weather a little less severe for all who live and visit.
North Pole Industries
North Pole has a small-but-mighty economy. This might be due to Santa Claus’s three year run on the North Pole city council, or its proximity to Fairbanks.
Mainly due to tourism, North Pole’s largest industries are retail, public administration, and construction. The Santa Claus House has had millions of visitors since it’s opening in 1952, where it was originally a general store. Since many retail locations are open year-round, so is the North Pole tourism industry. People fly in from across the world to visit this winter wonderland and perhaps catch a glimpse of the northern lights.
North Pole is also within commuting distance to Fairbanks. With 32,000+ people, Fairbanks is Alaska’s third-largest city and is only a 13-mile drive from North Pole.
Most Direct Flight
The city of North Pole is in the middle of Alaska, also known as Interior Alaska. Because of this, shipments of any kind, whether it’s construction equipment or Santa’s letters, would be flown into the Fairbanks airport first. Due to its proximity to Fairbanks, North Pole is mainly accessible by highway 2, the main road from Fairbanks to North Pole.
Getting to North Pole, Alaska
Even well-paved roads sometimes aren’t accessible. In fact, it’s usually not the snow that Alaskan’s worry about, it’s the ice. Rain and ice can create something called the "Icepocalypse." Ice storms can completely shut off cities from connecting roads, including Fairbanks, for several months depending on the severity. Snowplows and other equipment that the Alaskan government usually uses to clear the streets don’t work on thick sheets of ice.
Although North Pole, Alaska isn’t as remote as its geographic counterpart, it can still be a challenge to get there depending on the time of year. Alaska Air Forwarding utilizes many transportation services and decades-built connections to make sure your cargo gets where it needs to go, even to Santa Claus himself!