“You know how it is – first year away from home, you make that extra effort to feel connected to the family. To your friends. To everyone back home,” Raye said. “Last year, I really went overboard – only to have my packages full of presents arrive late or in poor condition. What a disappointment! Here are five holiday package shipping mistakes I will never make again!”
#1: Waiting until the last minute.
While the Post Office & other shipping providers give holiday shipping cut off dates each and every year, you really don’t want to wait until the last minute to get those boxes in the mail. Storms happen, trucks crash, and other factors can cause deliveries to be delayed. Give yourself the grace of a little extra time so your packages aren’t late.
#2: Using recycled shipping boxes.
I thought I could help the planet by reusing Amazon boxes to mail my gifts. But these boxes just didn’t do the job. When heavy boxes were stacked on top of one gift I sent (which of course was both fragile and one of a kind) my recycled box collapsed under the weight. The gift was ruined. Now I only use new cardboard shipping boxes to mail my packages.
#3: Skimping on packing materials.
Did you know that the items inside your packages can move around quite a bit while they’re being transported? It turns out that packing materials are much more important than I understood. You really want to cushion, protect, and keep your gifts from moving around inside the boxes as much as possible. If you don’t have the foam and packing peanuts and other packing materials on hand, go to your local pack and ship store and have them do it. You can cut your breakage rates by a lot simply by using enough of the right packing materials.
#4: Trusting your memory for addresses.
My Grandmother has lived in the same house for my entire life. Of course I know her address – or so I thought. Turns out a few years ago, the community updated addresses for 911 purposes. Grandma’s address is completely different than what I remember. Luckily it is a small town and my gift still got to her, but who wants to take that chance?
#5: Not insuring packages.
I never really thought about insurance, but after sending my little sister a phone that never arrived, you better believe I insure everything now. Even if they don’t get their gift, you can get your money back and repurchase that item. Yes, there will be a delay but you won’t have a total expensive disappointment.
All of that being said: I learned I love sending packages to my family at the holidays. It was so much fun getting the tissue paper and presents and whatnot into the boxes. They loved opening up a package full of ribbons and bows and yummy treats. It’s a lot of fun to send packages at the holidays. If you’re having any difficulty getting the mailing part handled properly, go to the local shipping store. For a few dollars they will absolutely help you out so everyone’s holiday can be both merry and bright.