If you plan on finishing your Christmas shopping online or sending a package to loved ones across the country -- here's a look at the important dates you need to know.
Free Shipping Day
We had Black Friday and Cyber Monday, arguably the third most important shopping holiday is "Free Shipping Day," falling on Dec. 18. This is traditionally the day when many retailers offer free shipping with no minimums to entice consumers to finally cross everything off their Christmas lists. Delivery is usually guaranteed for Christmas Eve, ensuring presents arrive just in time.
Wednesday is the deadline for free shipping on Amazon for non-Prime members. Amazon Prime members can enjoy free two-hour delivery on Christmas Eve as late as 9:30 p.m. local time, giving new meaning to the phrase "last-minute shopping."
United States Postal Service
Today is the recommended last day for sending anything through standard post via the United States Postal Service if you're counting on a delivery before December 25.
Dec. 19 is the deadline for first class mail. This includes single piece envelopes, such as Christmas cards, and small packages weighing up to 13 ounces.
Dec. 21 is the last day for sending domestic packages via the flat rate box options offered by the USPS. Depending on where the package is being sent, USPS says it could arrive in one, two or three business days.
Those who procrastinate have a saving grace in priority mail express. The deadline for guaranteed overnight delivery to most domestic locations is Dec. 23.
If you're using FedEx, Wednesday, Dec. 16 should be on your calendar. It's the last recommended day for sending packages via FedEx ground and home delivery.
FedEx will offer two-day shipping with a Dec. 22 deadline and overnight shipping for those who want to send their packages on Dec. 23.
Friday, Dec. 18 is the last day for three day pickup and delivery service through UPS if you want your package to arrive before Dec. 25.
Monday, Dec. 21 is the final day for two day pickup and delivery service. Any three day packages will arrive after Christmas.
Last minute packages can be picked up on Dec. 23 for overnight delivery.
Last Minute Alternatives
Want peace of mind your gift will arrive? If Postmates is available in your delivery city, you can hire someone to pick up the gift and make sure it's safely delivered to the recipient.
For those times when you're really in a pinch: Remember that many retailers allow you to purchase gift cards that can be delivered to the recipient via email.