Peak Season is officially upon us, and it’s easy to get overwhelmed. Make the most of your planning efforts with our helpful holiday shipping resources below, and if you’re starting to feel like shipping stress is stealing your holiday cheer, just reach out to your friendly Unishippers support team for help.
Get it there by Dec. 24 with these recommended deadlines
- UPS® Ground: Check ups.com/ctc for the most up-to-date transit times.
- UPS 3 Day Select®: Tuesday, Dec. 21
- UPS 2nd Day Air® services: Wednesday, Dec. 22
- UPS Next Day Air® services: Thursday, Dec. 23 with a UPS On-Call Pickup®, a UPS Smart Pickup®, another prearranged, scheduled pickup, or by dropping off at The UPS Store® or other Authorized Service Location.
Holiday service alerts
Don’t be taken by surprise with weather delays, natural disasters and other holiday-related service issues. Check out our Service Alerts page before booking to make sure shipments stay on track.
UPS® and freight carrier holiday schedules
Knowing your carriers’ year-end schedules can be the difference between just-in-time or stuck shipments. Factoring in pickup windows and days with limited operating hours will increase your success of a successful pickup and delivery. Here are a few more tips for managing the holiday calendar:
- Christmas is on Saturday, meaning many businesses will observe (and be closed on) Friday, with some also extending their closures to Thursday to account for Christmas Eve. Plan your shipping cutoff times accordingly to ensure customers are receiving their orders before the longer-than-usual weekend.
- Work ahead of your usual fulfillment timelines to ensure you’re on schedule for pickups early in the day and always list your true close time to give carriers the widest available pickup window.
- Setting realistic expectations of cutoff times, transit times and delays for your customers now will go a long way to creating happy, repeat business in the new year.
Holiday rates and surcharges
Fuller trucks lead to higher costs — an effect you’ve undoubtedly felt throughout the year. And while you can’t control the premium on capacity, you can avoid unnecessary fees while arming yourself with understanding of the ones that will affect you.
As of November 19, the following UPS Peak Surcharges may* apply:
- Packages that require Additional Handling and Large Packages for all U.S. domestic, U.S. import and U.S. export shipments
- Certain UPS Air Residential UPS Ground Residential and UPS SurePost® packages for all U.S. domestic shipments
- International shipments from all origins to all destinations
New UPS® website updates
UPS recently updated its website, and a few helpful resources have a new home. Be sure to update your bookmarks for the following:
- UPS Service Guarantee page
- Peak/Demand Surcharges page
- Check out the most recent list here (Updated Nov. 19, 2021)
Opt for expedited services
Being short on time doesn’t necessarily mean you’re short on options. Many LTL carriers in our portfolio offer shorter transit times and some guaranteed services are still available. And while UPS has reinstated some service guarantees, it’s best to keep up to date with the status of all guarantees on the UPS website.
Have a last-minute need? Learn more about overnight services for freight and how to use last-minute parcel shipping without breaking the bank.
Easily protect your shipments
We always recommend safeguarding your investments, but even if you normally leave it to chance, this holiday season isn’t the time to skimp on the security of your shipments. Perfecting your parcel packaging technique is the first step, but check out the other ways you can make a big difference in your peace of mind (and bottom line):
Practical tips for holiday parcel shipping
From selecting the perfect packaging materials, to avoiding additional handling charges, setting customer expectations and planning for returns, the ins and outs of holiday parcel shipping are enough to make anyone be a little bah-humbug! Luckily, we’ve compiled some tips to make a big impact on your small package peak shipping operations:
Resources for year-end freight shipping
The year may be winding down but the complexity of holiday freight shipping is really ramping up, when combined with the ongoing challenges of the past year-plus. Take solace: Our freight shipping resources are designed to help you survive the cold weather and a hot peak shipping season: