When I was a kid growing up in the Bronx, the local merchants paid to decorate the main commercial drag for Christmas. Every year, the decorations seemed to go up a little earlier. Now, it’s the first week of August and I’m already thinking about Christmas thanks to a little courier price war going on in the States.
The Christmas Courier Price War Already Started
FedEx announced in early August it will not charge customers extra fees for most home deliveries during the coming shopping season. The announcement put rival UPS in its cross hairs. Back in June, UPS announced an extra fee for orders placed around big shopping dates Thanksgiving and Christmas.
It makes sense, considering UPS handles 19 million packages on a normal day. That volume spikes to 30 million packages a day in the holiday shopping season. Consequently, the company has to pay for more trucks and seasonal workers, and passes the charge to retailers and eCommerce sellers.
Does a Dollar Make a Difference?
Then FedEx announced it wouldn’t charge fees for the holidays. In this courier price war, FedEx wants to take some of that volume off the hands of UPS. Reuters reports UPS is the world’s largest courier company.
But what’s at stake and will it make a difference to your business?
UPS will add a surcharge of up to 97 cents for two-day air services to residential addresses from December 17 to December 23.
Additionally, UPS will charge an extra 27 cents per package on ground service homed deliveries made from November 19 to December 2 and between December 17 and December 23.
Simplify Your Shipping
It does seem strange to be writing about the Christmas holiday season. On the other hand, the period from Thanksgiving to December 25 is crucial to the health of many businesses.
If you rely on that season to stay in the black, keep your eye on the courier price war. Take advantage of the competition and keep your options open. Finally, consider integrating your inventory management with a shipping solution such as ShipStation to help with order fulfillment.
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