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If you’re not already thinking about holiday shopping, now’s the time to start (yes, we know it’s only September).

Because of COVID-19’s impact on some shipping times, sending and receiving packages might inevitably be delayed this year, which means early holiday shopping will be crucial.

Whether you’ve already started making your (shopping) list and checking it twice, these shipping deadlines from FedEx and UPS as well as popular retailers that offer fast shipping, will be helpful as we enter into gift-buying season — especially if you’re more of a last-minute shopper.

2020 Holiday Shipping Deadlines to Know:

Remember to send your gifts or place your online orders by the below dates in order for recipients to receive them before December 25.


  • December 9: FedEx Smart Post

  • December 15: FedEx Home Delivery, FedEx Ground

  • December 16: FedEx Ground Shipping

  • December 19: FedEx Express Saver Shipping

  • December 21: FedEx Express Saver, Three-Day Freight

  • December 22: FedEx Two-Day, FedEx Two-Day Freight

  • December 23: FedEx Standard Overnight, FedEx Priority Overnight, FedEx Extra Hours, FedEx One-Day Freight

  • December 25: FedEx SameDay, FedEx SameDay City Priority, FedEx SameDay City Direct


  • December 13: UPS Ground Shipping

  • December 19: UPS Three-Day Shipping

  • December 23: UPS Next-Day Air Service

While we’ll continue to update this list of the best retailers for last-minute shopping as we get closer to December, here are some of the stores that are already offering fast and affordable shipping.

The Best Sites for Last-Minute Shopping:

  • Amazon: With an annual $119 Amazon Prime Membership, two-day shipping is always free for Prime-eligible products. And in some cities, including Philadelphia, Dallas, Orlando and Phoenix, customers can get Prime-eligible delivery in five hours of less if order is placed before 5 p.m. Just be sure the item is marked as “today” or “overnight.”

  • ASOS: For only $19 per year, you can sign up for ASOS Premier Delivery, which includes unlimited express shipping for all orders with a minimum spend of $15 per order.

  • Madewell: For Madewell Insiders, shipping is always free and expedited shipping is $15. When you hit Madewell Star or Madewell Icon status, expedited shipping is always free.

  • Net-A-Porter: As part of its standard shipping, Net-A-Porter offers $10 three-day delivery for orders placed Monday through Friday.

  • Nordstrom: Two-day shipping at Nordstrom is only $12, and if you’re in the NYC area, you’re eligible for $20 same-day delivery.

  • Shopbop: For orders placed before 7 p.m. CT, you can receive free three-day shipping at Shopbop. And upgrading to two-day shipping is only $10.

  • Target: You can try out Target’s same-day delivery service for groceries and other essentials, or receive free two-day shipping on orders of $35 or more when you use your RedCard.

  • Walmart: Thanks to Walmart’s new subscription service called Walmart+, you can receive free unlimited delivery (same-day delivery or a selected delivery window) for $12.95 per month or $98 annually.

If you liked this story, you might like to read about this shopping hack that will get your free one-day on certain brands.

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