UPS: Shop early, ship early, get packages delivered early

Published: Nov. 26, 2021 at 3:30 PM EST|Updated: Nov. 26, 2021 at 6:50 PM EST
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Shop early, ship early – that’s what companies like UPS are urging this holiday season.

While many of us are guilty at some point of waiting until the last minute to shop for gifts, many shipping companies are hoping you reconsider, especially this year.

“The global supply chain bottlenecks have been a challenge for us all, but the good news is UPS is ready to deliver,” said Nakeya Shelton, President of Enterprise Sales for UPS.

A UPS spokesperson said since January 2020, the company has delivered 95% of all packages on time. It is a trend it’s hoping to continue as shoppers hit the stores and go online for gifts.

“We actually ordered most of our things online already,” said Audrey Coleburn, a shopper. “So, we’re pretty much done.”

Coleburn said her family typically waits a bit longer to buy gifts, but 2021 was different.

“We were a little worried things wouldn’t get to people on time,” she added.

Shop early and ship early is the message from UPS and many other shipping companies. For Christine Lu, she’s also changed her ways over the last few years.

“I purchase directly from the online and then have it shipped there directly to the address,” Lu said. “I rarely buy it, have it sent to me, handle it, package it and then take it to the post office - it’s just cutting that step out.”

Shipping companies are making sure to get their deadlines out there as well.

  • UPS (more dates here) (domestic)
    • 3-Day Select: Dec. 21
    • 2nd Day Air: Dec. 22
    • Next Day Air: Dec. 23
  • USPS (more dates here) (excludes Alaska & Hawaii)
    • USPS Retail Ground Service: Dec. 15
    • First-Class Mail Service: Dec. 17
    • Priority Mail Service: Dec. 18
    • Priority Mail Express Service: Dec. 23
  • FedEx (more dates here) (domestic)
    • FedEx Ground Economy: Dec. 9
    • FedEx Freight Economy: Dec. 9
    • FedEx Ground Contiguous US: Dec. 15
    • FedEx Freight Priority/Direct: Dec. 15
    • FedEx Express Saver & 3Day Freight: Dec. 21
    • FedEx 2Day Freight & 2Day/2Day AM: Dec. 22
    • FedEx Same Day: Dec. 24
  • DHL Express
    • DHL Express Worldwide: Dec. 22
    • DHL Economy Select: Dec. 19

However, to get those gifts on your doorstep in time, these companies also need your help.

UPS, like many others, is hiring seasonal employees. Per a spokesperson, you could land a job in roughly 30 minutes.

“Over a 1/3 of our US domestic employee base actually started as season hires,” Shelton said. “So, what we look at as a seasonal opportunity, many, many, many of our employees have been able to reap the benefit of a long-term career trajectory.”

Lu remembers being a seasonal employee elsewhere during the holiday rush.

“Oh, it’s exciting and stressful,” she said. “You’re constantly busy, but it’s like a frenzy of energy that is both exciting and can be stressful.”

Shipping companies are asking customers to check their websites for the latest information on deadlines and tracking information.

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