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November 08, 2022

Get Ready for Shipping With These 2022 Holiday Shipping Deadlines

Preparing packages before the holiday shipping deadlinesThe ongoing COVID-19 pandemic continues to disrupt supply chain networks and impact how people shop during the holiday season, especially when it comes to holiday shipping deadlines. This comes after a failure in the just-in-time inventory system, unprecedented demand for products, rising inflation, and increased freight charges. 

Before the pandemic, supply chain networks mainly focused on delivering goods to customers as quickly and conveniently as possible. This made it easier to outsource some aspects of the supply chain and cut storage and other related overhead costs. As such, supply chains were highly rigid, meaning that any form of disruption could affect multiple parts of the chain.

The COVID-19 pandemic in itself exerted too much pressure on global supply chains. The just-in-time model that was widely used in the eCommerce industry became a thing of the past as companies sought quick solutions. 

The after-effects on the economy have also been visible. For example, the Global Supply Chain Pressure Index continued to rise throughout 2021 and reached an all-time high in the same year. The index is based on shipping costs in the United States, Europe, and Asia, with an additional focus on purchased stocks, delivery times, and backlogs. 

Given the never-seen-before global freight rates in 2021, there was a decline in shopping activity. This led to a drop in delivery volumes. However, as people become more accustomed to life in the post-pandemic era, there are indications that shoppers are beginning to develop pre-pandemic behaviors by shopping close to the actual holiday dates.

This guide breaks down the shipping deadlines for USPS, UPS, and FedEx to ensure that you don't get caught up in the holiday craze and that your mail is delivered before December 25th. 

Breakdown of USPS 2022 Holiday Shipping Deadlines

As the holiday season approaches, the United States Postal Service (USPS) has been setting up measures to avoid past mishaps that have caused delivery delays and service suspensions in the past. The organization typically experiences more mail between November and January than any other time, and the 2022 holiday season is no different.

Some of these measures have evolved around revising the holiday delivery deadlines. This is to ensure that mail reaches friends and family by December 25th in time for Christmas, although early delivery is not guaranteed. The USPS has also invested in 137 additional package processing machines to handle the mail load and hired more than 41,000 part-time employees on a full-time basis. Also, it is planning to hire 28,000 more workers for the season.

Domestic Shipping to the US Contiguous 48

The USPS has listed the following deadlines for customers who want their mail to arrive before December 25th.

Note: The following holiday shipping deadlines are for the continental United States zone.

USPS Retail Ground® Service: Saturday, December 17th

First-Class Mail® Service: Saturday, December 17th

Priority Mail® Service: Monday, December 19th

Priority Mail Express® Service: Friday, December 23rd

US Shipments to the Non-Contiguous States

USPS has also set the following shipping deadlines for Alaska and Hawaii.

Alaska

USPS Retail Ground™: Friday, December 2nd

First Class Mail®: Saturday, December 17th

Priority Mail®: Saturday, December 17th

Priority Mail Express®: Wednesday, December 21st

Hawaii

USPS Retail Ground™: N/A

First Class Mail®: Saturday, December 17th

Priority Mail®: Saturday, December 17th

Priority Mail Express®: Wednesday, December 21st

Peak Surcharges

USPS will be charging between $0.75 to $6.50 per package weekly.

UPS 2022 Holiday Shipping Deadlines

Customers reciving packages on time because of adherence to holiday shipping deadlinesAs shoppers become more familiar with life after COVID-19, they are beginning to develop pre-pandemic behaviors by shopping close to the actual holiday dates. Nevertheless, the United Parcel Service (UPS) expects a slower rise in mail volumes for the year's last quarter compared to Quarter 3. This is because the company's largest customer, Amazon, will be delivering its own orders.

Domestic Shipping to the US

The following domestic shipping deadlines are based on UPS's schedule for the 2022 holiday season.

UPS® Ground: Check here for a custom quote.

UPS 3 Day Select®: Monday, December 19th

UPS Next Day Air® Services: Thursday, December 22nd

UPS 2nd Day Air® Services: Wednesday, December 21st

Peak Surcharges

UPS will be charging between 1.25 to $7.00 per package weekly.

FedEx 2022 Holiday Shipping Deadlines

FedEx has been undergoing an economic slowdown in 2022, leading to the company withdrawing its annual financial forecast. The company has also been cutting costs following a 16% loss for the 2022 financial year. Most of these cost-cutting measures have focused on reducing the workforce and shutting down some of the company's office locations. 

As it stands, FedEx currently works with 6,000 independent contractors to handle mail delivery on behalf of the company. Some of them feel let down by the company after last year's projected surge in customer orders failed to materialize, which might affect business this coming holiday.

Furthermore, as more people grapple with the financial after-effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, FedEx expects a decline in customer orders. This comes after the organization sent out an internal memo citing lower mail volume forecasts for the coming holiday season. The following are FedEx's shipping deadlines for domestic packages.

Domestic Shipping to the US

FedEx Same Day: Friday, December 23rd

FedEx Ground® Economy: Thursday, December 8th

FedEx Home® Delivery: Wednesday, December 14th

FedEx Express Saver®: Tuesday, December 20th

FedEx Ground®: Wednesday, December 14th

FedEx 2Day® Services Wednesday, December 21st

Peak Surcharges

The Peak Surcharge for FedEx Ground® Economy Package Services are:

  • $1.50 per package if you post between October 31st and November 31st
  • $2.50 per package if you post between November 28th and December 11th
  • $1.50 per package if you post between December 12th and January 15th

Take a Proactive Approach to Holiday Shipping Deadlines This Holiday Season

As the holiday season approaches, you're probably feeling the pressure. Research already shows that 77% of modern shoppers wait until the last minute to make that long-awaited order. This nature puts unbelievable pressure on retailers to fulfill customer demands within the required timeline. With this guide, we hope you can make the necessary arrangements to be on the safe side.

Nevertheless, we all know that things don't always go as planned. Unexpected issues might arise, which can limit your ability to meet the deadlines. As such, it is essential that you communicate with your clients regarding the final delivery date so that they can also remain proactive. Timely communication is vital since it can help you avoid customer dissatisfaction and the dreaded overnight delivery bill.

Unlike last year, shipping companies are more prepared for any surges in customer orders this Christmas. USPS has acquired more package processing machines and is planning to hire tens of thousands of workers to handle the mail load. UPS is working in conjunction with Amazon, whereas FedEx is already revising its forecasts to ensure that it effectively handles any issues that might arise.

Still, it is essential to note that FedEx has been undergoing some financial challenges that will probably affect supply chains this coming Christmas. This makes it vital for you to communicate any expected delays in time with your customers. Take note of the relevant dates and any additional information that the company may release between now and December so that you can have seamless delivery of your products.

If you have any concerns regarding these holiday shipping deadlines, you can contact Eniture Technology, and we'll help you maneuver the holiday season.

About Eniture Technology

Eniture Technology specializes in helping e-Commerce merchants grow by providing useful information, digital marketing services, off-the-shelf apps that solve common problems, and custom programming services. Please contact us if you need help growing your online business or implementing the concepts presented in this blog post.

Interested in learning more? Check out our free guide, A Beginner's Guide To E-Commerce Shipping and subscribe to our blog!

A Beginner's Guide To E-Commerce Shipping

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