Think Your Holidays are Busy?
Come Check out FedEx!
Guest blogger Renee Lauriano – a Pack and Ship expert from the FedEx Office center in Manhattan – shares some of her advice for getting through the busiest shopping and shipping time of the year. Don’t miss her colorful and creative shipping tip at the bottom!
The holidays are an incredibly busy time of year for everyone. From family get-togethers and office Christmas parties to marathon shopping expeditions, there’s always something going on. Things at my center are round-the-clock busy too.
In fact, today is the busiest day of the year for the entire FedEx company. Our forecasters expect that tonight we’ll move 13 million packages all over the world. Normally it would be about 7.5 million. A lot of those packages come in for shipping through FedEx Office centers like mine, and this time of year I get to spend a lot of time helping customers pick out the right shipping supplies for their fragile gifts, and giving points on the best way to ensure holiday packages arrive safely and securely. So today – on our busiest day of the year – I’m taking time out to share my best tips for holiday packing and shipping with you!
No matter what you’re shipping, the same basic rules apply:
Ship early and avoid the lines
- December 17th is the last day to ship FedEx Ground – the most cost-effective shipping option we offer.
- December 23rd is the last day to ship FedEx Express for overnight delivery before Christmas.
Choose the right supplies and pack it like a pro
- Get your gift ready to be packaged by determining if it’s sturdy or fragile. Does it having moving parts, protruding angles or small pieces? Wrap the item securely and square off any odd angles (like mug handles) to make them less fragile during shipment.
- Select your shipping box using only those with flaps intact. Do not reuse boxes if at all possible. If reusing a box, make sure there are no holes, tears or corner dents, and remove any old labels. Consider placing the box within another box for additional protection when shipping fragile items like vases or glass ornaments. Make sure your box is large enough to put adequate padding around the gift inside.
- Cushion the gift or inner box using just the right amount of padding material – like bubble wrap, foam "peanuts,” densely packed shredded paper or foam pads. Avoid newspaper, as it is heavy and adds extra weight to the shipment. You’ll know you have the right amount of cushioning protecting your gift by closing up the box and giving it a light shake. Hear anything move around? If you do – add more cushioning!
- Seal the seams of the box on all sides using tape designed for packing, not duct or masking tape. Do not wrap the outer box with paper or string, which can get caught in automated processing equipment.
- Label the box inside and out. Position the address label squarely on the largest surface, and provide complete sender and recipient addresses, including a 24-hour phone number and ZIP code. Put both the sender and recipient’s address and 24-hour phone numbers inside the box as well.
If you’re thinking about shipping cookies or other homemade treats this holiday season, check out Kellie’s post last week with tips on how to make sure your cookies don’t crumble in transit!
And here’s a quick idea on making the inside of shipping boxes more festive during the holiday season while still cushioning your gifts. Put a bunch of brightly colored paper or even used wrapping paper through a shredder. The shredded paper makes beautiful filler for the boxes, works great in gift bags instead of tissue paper – or even as confetti on New Year’s Eve!