UPDATE: Amazon has extended its free shipping deadline to Dec.19 for delivery by Christmas.
Holiday shipping deadlines are fast approaching if you want your gifts to reach their destinations on time. If you're sending something via the U.S. Postal Service and want it to reach its destination by Christmas, note these deadlines (for shipping within the U.S.):
- Parcel Post, Dec. 15
- Letters and cards, Dec. 20
- Priority Mail, Dec. 21
- Express Mail, Dec. 22
Check www.usps.com for shipping deadlines to other countries and military addresses.
- FedEx Ground, Dec. 16
- FedEx Home Delivery, Dec. 19
- FedEx Express (fastest), Dec. 24
- UPS Ground, Dec. 22
- UPS 2nd Day Air, Dec. 22 for packages processed today and labeled for delivery on Saturday, Dec. 24 (otherwise delivered Dec. 27).
- UPS Next Day Air, Dec 23 for packages processed Dec. 23 and labeled for delivery on Saturday, Dec. 24 (otherwise delivered Dec. 27).
If you're planning to do some of your holiday shopping online from some of the big-name retailers out there, you might want to check their specific deadlines for ordering if you want your packages to arrive on time.
Some deadlines for standard shipping by Dec. 24 include this Friday, Dec. 16, for Sears and Target; Dec. 19 for Amazon and JC Penny; and Dec. 20 for Apple, Best Buy, and Toys R Us. Click here for more shipping deadlines.
Ship for free:
You can also stay on budget by taking advantage of free shipping offers, many of which are listed at FreeShipping.org. The site also sponsors Free Shipping Day—this Friday, Dec. 16—one of the last opportunities for online shoppers to get free shipping from popular retailers for delivery by Dec. 24. Merchants who have signed on include the Apple Online Store, Bed Bath & Beyond, Cabela's, eBags, Kohl's, Lands' End, REI, Zales, and Ghirardelli and Godiva, among many others.
Also, some stores let you order online and pickup your purchase in the store that same day. For other savvy holiday shopping tips see our holiday-shopping section online, which includes advice such as How to save big on electronics and 5 Tips to keeping holiday spending in check.