Shipping deadlines and common mistakes

Don't Waste Your Money

No matter how far in advance you plan, most of us will be rushing at the last minute to ship our Christmas gifts.

The good news is that you still have many options for delivery. However, if you miss the ground shipping deadline, expect to pay a lot more than you expected to for expedited shipping.

Postal Service Deadlines

    -The 2013 deadline for the Postal Service's Priority Mail is Saturday, Dec. 21.

    -Express Mail is Monday, Dec. 23.

FedEx Deadlines

   -FedEx Ground is Tuesday, Dec. 17.

   -FedEx Overnight is Monday, Dec. 23.

UPS Deadlines

UPS is roughly the same as FedEex:

    -UPS Ground by Dec. 17.

    -UPS 2nd Day Air is Dec. 21. It will arrive on Dec. 24.

    -UPS Next Day Air is Monday, Dec. 23.

You can always request a package to be delivered to the UPS or FedEx office, for you to pick up.

If you are ordering online, Amazon's free shipping deadline is Friday, Dec. 17.

Common Mistakes Can Trip You Up

But before you ship off that package you should know about some common mistakes people make that can keep the mailman from doing his job.

 The website The Consumerist has the following suggestions:

    -Never guess a zip code: No zip code is better than a wrong one.

    -Do not recycle old boxes: They can split apart in transit.

    -Use an official Post Office or FedEx Box if you can: FedEx won't charge you for the box if you ship with them.    

    -And place the recipient's address: inside the package as well as outside, in case the label falls off.

That way it gets there safely, and you don't waste your money.

Don't Waste Your Money is a registered trademark of the EW Scripps Co.

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