Need to get a package to Poughkeepsie by Monday!
December 28, 2010 8:29 PM   Subscribe

Deadline for overnighting a package?

I have to get a small package with a CD from Manhattan, New York City, to Poughkeepsie, New York by Monday January 3rd at the latest.

When is the latest I can overnight it to get it there by the deadline and is FedEx the way to go here?

How do weekends and holidays apply to this? I have never overnighted anything in my life. thank you.
posted by DMelanogaster to Society & Culture (13 answers total)
Fedex and UPS can do this. Overnight usually means if you get it there before their closing time, they'll have it at the destination by the end of the next *business* day. Sometimes you can pay extra for Saturday delivery, but I doubt you can get that on January 1. Try to ship it by Thursday night to be completely safe. Friday night should work too. Call or stop in and ask - they'll know the answer and be happy to help.
posted by fritley at 8:45 PM on December 28, 2010

You can call 1-800-GO-FEDEX or use the FedEx website to get rates and transit times. From everything I understand, Friday is the last day for dropoff for delivery Monday, since most FedEx facilities will be closed on Jan 1. FedEx does not usually deliver or pick up packages on Sundays at all. Watch out for stuff closing early on Friday as well, though this may not be such a problem in Manhattan. I work at a FedEx location, and we're closing early on Friday and are not open at all on Saturday.

I agree that Thursday would be ideal. Stuff happens; this gives you an extra day just in case. (Address written down wrong, acct number written down wrong, envelope given to wrong courier... these things are quite rare but they do happen from time to time.)

I have no idea as to UPS or any other carrier.
posted by ZeroDivides at 8:49 PM on December 28, 2010

Another thing I thought of - I recently had a good experience shipping a very awkward and highly-valued piece of equipment from a "UPS Store". They were very helpful and expert at packing stuff. It was affordable too. I see there are at least three of them on the island. If you just walk in with your CD, they will even be able to box it for you.
posted by fritley at 8:50 PM on December 28, 2010

The "latest" depends upon how much you are willing to pay. If you really need to send it Sunday to get there Monday, you'd need to drive to an airport and get it on an airline cargo service. If you can send it Thursday or Friday, then, yes, use FedEx, UPS, or USPS, just call around to get the information.
posted by ClaudiaCenter at 8:52 PM on December 28, 2010

Use the shipping calculators at and and They'll guarantee a delivery date based on the drop off date you supply. As for days off, it's hard to drop off or receive a package on one of those days. UPS is off 12/31, while FedEx and USPS are open. All are closed 1/1. (According to their web sites.)

I'd say the absolute latest to ship would be the afternoon of 12/31 if you ship with FedEx or USPS. (The USPS does have Express Mail that will deliver on Sundays and holidays. Not surprisingly, it costs more -- not sure exactly how much. Not sure how it works either.)

My personal preference is FedEx Express for overnight and 2-day shipments. Whichever you choose, you can just take your package to a retail location (Post Office, UPS Store or UPS Service Center, Fed Ex Office or Fed Ex Service Center) and get it taken care of there. Or you can print a label from their web site and drop it off with a driver or at a retail location or at a drop off box (check the pick up times before you drop it off). (Also note that FedEx Express is different from FedEx Ground if you choose to give the package to a driver.)
posted by aloysius on the mixing boards at 9:07 PM on December 28, 2010

If it is just a CD and the CD can be duplicated, I would make three copies. One, I would keep and store in a safe place in case anything goes wrong. It is best to already have the copy than to have to make one under duress if it comes to that. The second I would send by FedEx on Friday. The third, depending on how important it is that it gets there and the CD is safe, I would send also by UPS. Cannot hurt to send both carriers as a $20 insurance policy on it getting there. Finally, if all else fails, you can take a train yourself to Poughkeepsie and hand deliver. The last train from Grand Central that can get you to Poughkeepsie by 5:00 (actually 4:32) ;eaves Grand Central at 2:50. If you send the package for morning delivery and it does not get there by noonish, and it is REALLY important the CD gets there, head to GC. Train before that leaves at 1:50. Here is a schedule.
posted by AugustWest at 9:28 PM on December 28, 2010

For "Absolutely gotta be there" service I'd opt for Fedex. On more than one occasion, this year alone, UPS has missed delivery deadlines both for packages I shipped and packages I was expecting. And in one case on a package I shipped home to myself while I was in LA. What made it all the more infuriating is that they noted the shipping exception THE NIGHT I shipped that package, so they could have made an exception and still gotten the package to me on time but chose not to.

I've never had that happen with Fedex. As a matter of fact, I've had Fedex go above on beyond to make sure a package arrived on time.
posted by FlamingBore at 9:52 PM on December 28, 2010

I work for an online business and will say that shipping Overnight, near a holiday, near a weekend, in the same state via UPS can be a bag of hurt.

And it doesn't have to be a major banks are closed holiday. Arbor day throws a wrench in the system.

Checking UPS.Com's shipping calculator, I'm showing that if the package is picked up on Friday at 9pm, it will be delivered by Monday morning at 10:30 am if you use Next Day Air and cost you between 20-60 bucks (Depends if you want to send it saver, early am, or regular NDA).

If you move pick up to Thursday at 9pm, UPS says it's guaranteed to arrive on Monday if you ship via Ground or 2nd Day Air and cost you between 8 and 18 bucks.

I can't tell you how it works with FedEx, other than we attempted to use them for a short time and went right back to UPS. Better the devil you know, I guess. I'm not in NYC however, so ymmv.
posted by aristan at 12:34 AM on December 29, 2010

Fwiw, many courier services in the NYC area will give you same day service to Poughkeepsie, with a noon cutoff. Here's Hudson Valley Courier.

This will be expensive but reliable.
posted by jenkinsEar at 3:38 AM on December 29, 2010

The locations at the airports are usually open the latest, FWIW. I've dropped off things at 10pm and had them where they needed to be 12 hours later. But if you are going to an airport, you might as well go to Poughkeepsie.
posted by gjc at 4:23 AM on December 29, 2010

I agree that Thursday would be ideal. Stuff happens; this gives you an extra day just in case.

Also because there are backlogs in delivery right now given the airport shutdowns and closed roads here in NYC and the rest of the Northeast this week.
posted by Jahaza at 7:10 AM on December 29, 2010

In my experience, FedEx overnight delivery will arrive by noon the next day if it is delivered to a FedEx office by closing - usually 8 or 9pm. For a holiday weekend delivery, this means get it there by Friday December 31st by closing time to be delivered on Monday January 3rd.

However, I don't think any company will 100% guarantee on-time delivery. If it absolutely has to be there by Monday and you won't finish until Sunday and money is no object, then I recommend a courier service.
posted by muddgirl at 7:53 AM on December 29, 2010

Response by poster: Mission accomplished by sending out Thursday night via FedEx Express. thank you!
posted by DMelanogaster at 5:28 PM on January 4, 2011

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