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Your Complete Guide to Holiday Shipping Deadlines for 2022 (Updating)


If you shopped during December last year, you probably remember everything being out of stock … and everything taking FOREVER to ship. In fact, you may have been burned by pandemic-related shipping delays to the point where gifts arrived too late for the holidays. The good news is, we’re unlikely to encounter the same chaos we did last year. But retailers still have shipping-cutoffs.

Retailers are starting to confirm their 2022 holiday shipping deadlines. And we’ve also rounded up some last-ditch options for all you procrastinators out there. Missed the deadlines below? There’s still hope, thanks to same-day delivery, offered by some retailers for an extra fee.

Our guide to shipping deadlines and free shipping deadlines will help you get your packages on time. Note that there may be some variation — a retailer may have different deadlines for bulky or customized items, for example. We’ve also seen retailers increasingly offer item-by-item shipping dates, rather than uniform shipping cutoffs. So you might not see your specific delivery-date estimates until after you add items to your cart.

How Long is Standard Shipping?

In general, standard shipping takes three to five business days. However, that does NOT include processing time (the time it takes a retailer to pull your item, box it up and send it off). So don’t think for a moment an item ordered exactly five days before Dec. 24 will arrive on time. Retailers need a little lead time (often a day or two, best-case scenario) to ready your order for shipping.

What is Expedited Shipping?

Expedited shipping generally refers to options faster than standard. Depending on the retailer and which shipping company it’s using, this can refer to “express,” “overnight” and “two-day”options. You can often expect to pay an extra fee.

Willing to pay extra for expediting shipping? That might not even be an option this year. We are seeing some major retailers label items with “expedited shipping not available.” So even if you’re willing to pay an upcharge, retailers might not be able to provide speedier shipping options this year.

Store Shipping Deadlines 2022

This year, Christmas Eve (Dec. 24) falls on a Saturday. If you live in an apartment where the package-delivery room is closed on weekends, keep that in mind and build in some extra time.

These deadlines apply to the contiguous United States ONLY.

We’ll be updating this list as more retailers announce their shipping deadlines. In past years, we’ve seen some retailers push back their original deadlines to give shoppers more time, so check back.

Retailer Standard Shipping Expedited Options (Fees May Apply)
Amazon Dec. 23 for one-day delivery (Prime members) on select items. Dec. 16 for non-Prime members ordering over $25. Order by Dec. 24 for AmazonFresh grocery delivery.
American Girl Dec. 12 for Standard. Dec. 2 for create-your-own-doll services. Dec. 20 for Expedited.
Barnes and Noble Dec. 17 at noon EST for Standard. Dec. 19 for Express; Dec. 20 for Expedited. Dec. 24 at NOON for in-store-pickup.
Bass Pro Shops Dec. 14 for Standard. Dec. 21 at 4 p.m. EST for Two-Day; Dec. 23 at 4 p.m. EST for Overnight.
Bath & Body Works Dec. 16 for Standard. Dec. 21 for Expedited.
Bed Bath & Beyond Dec. 19. for Standard. Dec. 21 for Expedited; Dec. 22 for Express.
Best Buy See estimated arrival date for each product at checkout. See estimated arrival date for each product at checkout. Same-day pickup available through Dec. 24.
Cabela’s Dec. 14 for Standard. Dec. 21 at 4 p.m. EST for Two-Day; Dec. 23 at 4 p.m. EST for Overnight.
Dell Dec. 14 for Standard. Dec. 21 for Next-Day.
Dick’s Sporting Goods TBD TBD
Dillard’s TBD TBD
Disney Store Dec. 17 for Standard. Dec. 15 for personalized gifts. Dec. 20 for 2-Day Express. Dec. 21 for Next-Day Express.
Harry & David Dec. 18 for Standard. Dec. 20 for 3-Day Express; Dec. 21 for 2-Day Express; Dec. 22 for Overnight.
H&M Dec. 14 for free Standard. No longer available.
Home Depot View estimated delivery date in cart. View estimated delivery date in cart.
JOANN Dec. 14 for Standard. Dec. 19 for Express.
Kohl’s TBD TBD
LEGO Dec. 16 for Standard. Dec. 20 for Express.
L.L. Bean Dec. 18 at midnight ET for free shipping (with $50 purchase); Dec. 2 if monogrammed. Dec. 18
Lowe’s Dec. 16 for Standard (free with $45 order) Not available for all products.
Macy’s Dec. 21 at 5 p.m. ET for standard (free with qualifying purchase) within continental U.S. Dec. 22 for Express; Dec. 24 (10 a.m. local time) for same-day delivery (available only in select markets).
Michaels Dec. 16 at 12 p.m. CT for Standard (free on orders of $49+) Dec. 21 at 12 p.m. CT for Second-Day; Dec. 24 at 1 p.m. CT for same-day delivery.
Pottery Barn Dec. 18 at 10 p.m. PT for standard. Dec. 17 at 4 p.m. PT for monogramming. Dec. 21 for next-day. Dec. 20 at 11 p.m. PT for monogramming rush delivery.
Sam’s Club Dec. 18 for Ground; Dec. 8 for freight. Dec. 23 or 24 at 12 p.m. local time for same-day ($12 for Club members)
Sephora Dec. 20 at 6 a.m. ET for Standard. Dec. 21 at 9 a.m. ET for Flash 2-Day Shipping. Dec. 22 at 6 a.m. ET for Flash 1-Day Shipping.
Shutterfly Dec. 15 for Economy. Dec. 16 for Standard. Dec. 17 for Expedited; Dec. 18 for Rush; Dec. 19 for Super Rush.
Snapfish Dec. 13 for Lowest-Price Shipping; Dec. 14 for Ground. Dec. 18 for Expedited; Dec. 19 for Rush.
Target Dec. 21 at noon CST for free 2-day shipping on orders over $35. May vary by item and ZIP code. Same-day delivery available, but slots may be limited on Dec. 24.
UGG Dec. 16 at 11:59 p.m. PST. Dec. 19 by 11:59 p.m. PST for Expedited; Dec. 22 by 11:59 PST for Next-Day.
Ulta TBD. Last year, was Dec. 14 at 11:59 p.m. CT for free Standard (on orders over $35). TBD. Last year, was Dec. 20 at noon CT for expedited; Dec. 21 for premium.
Walmart Dec. 19 for Free 2-Day shipping. Check delivery estimate for each item at checkout. Same-day delivery available with 6 p.m. cutoff (availability may be limited on Christmas Eve).
World Market Dec. 13 at 11:59 PST for Ground (most items). Dec. 8 at 11:59 p.m. PST for furniture and rugs. Dec. 20 at 12 p.m. PST for 2nd Day; Dec. 21 at 12 p.m. PST for overnight. Not available for rugs and furniture.

Carrier Shipping Deadlines

Shipping a gift yourself? Make sure you’ve marked your calendar with shipping deadlines for FedEx, USPS and UPS.

FedEx Holiday Shipping Deadlines

Here are your deadlines for the most common shipping services within the contiguous U.S. See FedEx’s full list of deadlines for the 2022 season.

  • Dec. 14: FedEx Ground deadline.
  • Dec. 20: FedEx Express Saver, FedEx three-day freight.
  • Dec. 21: FedEx two-day, FedEx one-day freight.
  • Options exist at the VERY last-minute, too:
chart showing FedEx holiday shipping deadlines for 2022
Image: FedEx.com

UPS Holiday Shipping Deadlines

See all of UPS’s shipping deadlines for the 2022 holiday season.

  • Ground: UPS isn’t providing a cutoff for ground shipping — you’ll need to get an estimate via UPS’s website, and that estimate will vary depending on where you are and where you’re shipping to.
  • Dec. 20: UPS 3 Day Select.
  • Dec. 21: UPS 2nd Day Air.
  • Dec. 22: UPS Next Day Air.

USPS Holiday Shipping Deadlines

See the full list of the U.S. Postal Service’s holiday shipping deadlines for 2022.

  • Dec. 17: USPS Retail Ground.
  • Dec. 17: First-Class Mail.
  • Dec. 19: Priority Mail.
  • Dec. 23: Priority Mail Express.

Buy Online, Pick Up in Store Options

If you’re shopping at the last minute but don’t want to shop inside a store, store pickup is a great option. These days, most major retailers offer in-store and curbside pickup options. Each store will have its own polices, but in general, the way it works is: Purchase a product from a store’s site, wait for the retailer to let you know when your item is ready, and go pick it up. Many retailers offer these services same-day, though most will have daily cutoffs. So if you’re shopping at the VERY last minute, make sure it’s not too late to pick up your order before Dec. 25.

The key here is whether or not your item is in stock. If it is, you can generally pick it up a lot sooner — sometimes within hours. Some stores do offer ship-to-store, but this process can take days.

These are just some of the major retailers offering store-pickup options in 2022:

• Apple
• Barnes & Noble
• Bed Bath & Beyond
• Best Buy
• Bloomingdale’s
• CVS
• Dick’s Sporting Goods
• DSW
• Gap
• GameStop
• Home Depot
• JCPenney
• Kmart
• Kohl’s
• Lowe’s
• Macy’s
• Nordstrom
• Office Depot
• PetSmart
• Sam’s Club
• Sears
• Staples
• Target
• Urban Outfitters
• Walgreens
• Walmart
• World Market

Can’t pick up your order yourself? Most stores let you designate a pickup person who can retrieve your items for you.

Faster Delivery Options

A few stores offer expedited shipping options to their loyalty members — and some offer these perks to everyone who places an order over a certain amount.

Amazon: Amazon Prime ($139 membership fee per year or $14.99 a month) offers free two-day shipping. If you’re in a delivery area for Amazon Prime Now, you’ll get soon-as-one-hour delivery.

ASOS: Sign up for Premier Delivery for $19 a year and get unlimited next-day delivery when you spend at least $50 on your order. Plus, get free express shipping, no minimum.

Best Buy: Best Buy offers free soon-as-next-day shipping on thousands of items if you place a $35 minimum order (that order minimum is waived for Totaltech members). Same-day delivery is also available in some ZIP codes.

Home Depot: You can get free two-day shipping on thousands of home improvement items and free in-store pickup.

ShopRunner: Sign up to ShopRunner for $79 a year, and get one year of two-day shipping free and free returns from thousands of brands. Shipt members get access to ShopRunner for free for a year.

Target: Shoppers receive free two-day shipping on Target.com when placing orders over $35. If you have the Target RedCard, you get free two-day shipping with no minimum. Need your order even sooner? Subscribe to Shipt for $99 a year and get free same-day delivery on Target groceries and thousands of other essentials.

Walmart: Walmart, which already offered free two-day shipping in the U.S. on purchases of at least $35, is now offering free next-day delivery on eligible online orders over $35 from both third-party sellers and the retail giant itself. No membership fee is required.

Even better, Walmart+ members get free next-day or two-day shipping on all orders outside of fresh groceries for NO minimum. They also get free same-day delivery with a $35 order minimum. Membership costs $12.95 per month or $98 per year.

Zappos: Regular customers get free two-day shipping, but become a VIP member and you can get guaranteed next-day delivery, earn points and enjoy fast refunds. Plus, link your Amazon Prime account and get an extra 1 point for every $1 you spend.

Same-Day Delivery

Various retailers offer same-day delivery, either as part of their own memberships or by partnering with delivery services such as Instacart.

Fees for this service vary from retailer to retailer. Here are some examples:

Amazon
Cost: Non-Prime members pay $12.99 per order for same-day delivery in as little as five hours. Prime members get it for free on orders over $35 (otherwise they pay $2.99 per order). Note: Same-day delivery is NOT available on Christmas Day.
Order by: 5 p.m.
Click for a list of eligible Amazon same-day delivery cities.

Bloomingdale’s
Cost: $20 plus standard shipping prices for qualifying items in select cities. Loyalist members get free shipping, so they pay just the $20 fee.
Order by: 12 p.m. If you order later than that, your order will arrive the next day.

Instacart
Cost: The cost varies by which store you order from and what you purchase
Order by: You’ll choose a delivery time slot when you order. Availability of same-day time slot varies, based on demand.

Macy’s
Cost: $15 for items that qualify for orders of $25 or more. $25.95 on other items. See details.
Order by: 12 p.m. local time. For on-time Christmas delivery, you must order by Dec. 24 at 10 a.m. local time.

Postmates
Cost: You can order almost anything for different prices. Recently, they announced a partnership with MAC Cosmetics to deliver their beauty products in only two hours.
Order by:
Anytime; you’ll pick a delivery slot based on what’s available that day.

Target
Cost: They’re partnered with Shipt to offer free same-day delivery on orders of $35 or more. For orders under $35, pay $9.99 per order. Membership costs $99 a year.
Order by: During store hours (varies by location).

Sephora
Cost: $6.95. And there’s no minimum order amount.
Order by: 4 p.m. via Sephora’s site or app. See details.

Walmart
Cost:
$7.95-$9.95 delivery fee for same-day orders of $35+. You can also pay an extra $10 on top of that for Walmart Express delivery and get your order in under two hours. Walmart+ members get free same-day delivery on orders of $35+ and pay just the $10 extra fee for Walmart Express.
Order by: Order by 4 p.m.

Whole Foods (for Amazon Prime members)
Cost: $9.95 (This is a new fee as of 2021). Additional fees apply on one-hour delivery orders.
Order by: Deadline varies by demand. Schedule your delivery time when you place your order.

Free Shipping Day: What It Is and How to Participate

Free Shipping Day typically was a one-day event in mid-December, marking the order deadline for on-time delivery by Dec. 25. It was a great day to finish last-minute holiday shopping, save money on shipping and steer clear of the crowds by shopping online. But in 2019, Free Shipping Day was canceled due to so many retailers running free shipping all year round. It remained cancelled in 2020 and 2021, likely due to shipping complications caused by COVID-19. We don’t expect Free Shipping Day to take place in 2022.

The post Your Complete Guide to Holiday Shipping Deadlines for 2022 (Updating) appeared first on The Real Deal by RetailMeNot.



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