Looking at the December calendar, you might be tempted to think there's plenty of time for your packages to make Santa's sleigh for on-time delivery of your thoughtfully selected gifts to friends and relatives far (far) away.
But have you checked the price of shipping by air?
"Ground is way-cheaper," responds Bruce Temby, owner of The UPS Store on East Michigan Avenue near Cottage Inn Pizza. Tomorrow is anticipated to be one of his busiest days of the year. "By Tuesday," he adds, "people are resigned to pay big bucks." This will be true regardless of the carrier they choose.
Unlike moving items by air, ground service is sensitive to distance. The same package that could be delivered tomorrow in Toledo likely wouldn't make it to Los Angeles before late next week. You should also anticipate adding another day or two for transit this time of year.
As a full service location, The UPS Store continues to pack customer items for shipment. But it's best to have those items in by noon if you want to be assured that they'll go out that day. Store employees can provide advice on maximum size, weight, and configuration specifications. Mr Temby also notes that UPS is making two pickups per day from his store as part of its holiday routine.
What if you can't make the ground shipment deadline?
Don't panic. Even by air, you have options. "UPS 3 Day Select" comes with a three business day delivery commitment. There are also two choices here for second-day, and three alternatives for next-day delivery.
Or you could skip all of the above and ship after Christmas. Although he obviously has an interest in providing customers with service now and is staffed-up for this, Bruce Temby says that January is his second-busiest month of the year. Not just for returns, but for shipment of Christmas gifts. Sometimes these customers are procrastinators. Often as not, however, they are people who've "waited to shop so they can get better deals."
Are distant loved ones on your list this year? When will you be completing your list for Santa and planning to ship?
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