7 On Your Side:Holiday Shipping 101 - KLTV.com-Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

12/18/06-Tyler

7 On Your Side:Holiday Shipping 101

It's the most wonderful time of the year and the most critical to get those gifts to out-of-towners by the 25th.

"My sister in Massachusetts and all her family. My nephew in Albuquerque, NM. My niece in Minneapolis," says Ginger Pratt listing the people and places her gifts are going to.

Pratt's gifts, like thousands of others, were sent in boxes.

The common mistakes people make sending packages in a box: "They'll use the wrong type of tape, flimsy boxes, they'll use string to try to wrap things with," says Tyler Postmaster Fred Arrambidez.

When boxing your items up start with good packaging tape. Tom Piwonka with FedEx in Tyler tells us which ones to avoid.

"Scotch tape. Packing twine is not very good, it'll get caught up in our sort systems. Duct tape is not good to use. It's got an adhesive that sometimes starts sticking to things and pulls things off of packages. Masking tape is not as good as clear packing tape," says Piwonka.

Then there's bubble wrap. Not only should it surround the inside walls of the box, but individuals items may need extra protection too.

"Like glass frames, for example, you want to package the glass separate from the frame so it doesn't get broken in transit," Arrambidez suggests.

When addressing the box, the recipient's address goes on the label and you should also mark it on the box itself.

Piwonka adds, "Then for an added measure if you put something in there indicating who it's going to inside the box, we can always open it up should the package get misplaced."

By mailing her packages Monday, Ginger's gifts should arrive on time.  But her loved ones may have to wait on the Christmas cards.

"No I don't have them ready yet," Pratt admits.

When is the drop dead date to send gifts to arrive by Christmas?

If you didn't send first class mail--like Christmas cards--by Monday the 18th, it's not going to arrive by the 25th.

But there are other options at the post office. The deadline for Priority Mail is Wednesday. For Express Mail, the deadline is Friday.

For overnight shipping we checked FedEx. You have until this Thursday to send packages if you use their Standard Overnight delivery or 2Day with Saturday Delivery. If you use Priority Overnight with Saturday Delivery, the deadline is this Friday.

Christine Nelson reporting. cnelson@kltv.com

 

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