The holiday season is a time of joy, laughter and cheer, right? For some of us (you know who you are!) there's a twinge of dread. Shipping packages is just one of the challenges. Uncle Gino is impossible to shop for. Cousin Jenny is living in Singapore of all places! The shopping mall parking lot during the holiday season lot is like a nightmarish journey into the Matrix. And, it's great that Amazon will ship directly to our friends or family, but that's so impersonal.
On top of that, not only do we have to find gifts, but also wrap, pack, dig up addresses, label and ship them...and do it all in time to arrive before December 25th. Who has time for that?
Here are 5 Tips on Shipping Packages This Holiday Season
1. The Post Office (USPS) is almost always the least cost. But, lines during the holiday season are out the door and onto the sidewalk. You can avoid the long lines by visiting your local postal center to ship your packages safely and enjoy more beach time.
2. The closer you get to Christmas, the lower the chances of on-time delivery. There are some great lower-cost options for shipping packages, but the carriers get overwhelmed. Leave at least 4-5 days lead time or your package could arrive on Dec 27th!
3. Last-minute shipping can double or triple the cost. If you wait until the last day for inexpensive USPS Priority Mail 2-3 day shipping (which is Dec 20th this year), you'll end up paying UPS or FedEx for 2-day or overnight. Prepare for sticker shock. Even a small package can cost $40-$100 to ship!
4. Poorly packed packages can be damaged. The average package gets dropped from a height of 6 feet several times before it arrives. Getting compensated by the shipper for damaged packages can take several weeks and hours of your time. This holiday season take time to pack it right, or get an expert to do it.
5. Skip the brown paper wrapper. The post office prefers that you *not* wrap your packages in paper. It can get caught in machines. Use a cardboard box and tape with strong packing tape.
5 Ways a Postal Center like Beach Mailbox and Gifts Can Help
1. Postal centers keep a box or pack for every size gift: Don't try to pack it at home! We offer custom packing so bring in your items and we'll fit it to the right box for the right cost. We love to re-use and recycle, so we keep lightly used boxes and packing material handy, which saves the planet and saves you money.
2. Wrap it in cheer: Not everyone is good with scissors and tape. Take advantage of our gift wrapping services. We will make your gift look gorgeous, and get there in tact, so you will look good!
3. Shipping options: Heavier items going to the Mid-West or East Coast often ship for less through UPS. If you go to the US post office, you'll actually pay more. We recommend FedEx for high-value items for their reliability and quick service. And for international DHL is is quick, secure and reliable. Take your package to the place that gives you choices.
4. Tracking numbers are like the Santa radar. Every year NORAD (The North American Aerospace Defense Command) tracks Santa's path on Christmas Eve. With tracking numbers, you can easily check online to see where your package is along the way. Postal centers will send you an email so you can just click to check on your package.
5. Let us keep track of your addresses. When we ship, we enter your recipients addresses in our database. That means next year, getting your package there by Christmas will be a snap!
Visit us at 864 Grand Ave, San Diego, CA or get more info online at www.beachmailbox.com. Feel free to call us at 858-272-8877 if you have questions about holiday shipping, gift wrapping, and other services.
Happy Holidays from your friends at Beach Mailbox and Gifts! :)