The FINANCIAL — UPS expects to deliver more than 630 million packages between Black Friday and New Year’s Eve, an increase of more than 10 percent over holiday deliveries last year. This UPS peak holiday shipping period includes an additional shipping day before Christmas versus 2014.
The company plans to deliver about 36 million packages on Tuesday, Dec. 22, up from 35 million last year, and double the normal daily average of 18 million deliveries. Consumers’ preference for ecommerce, coupled with the industry’s most often selected delivery solutions have driven UPS’s peak volume to all-time highs. The company tallied about 17 million deliveries on its peak delivery day just 10 years ago, according to UPS.
Since Christmas falls on Friday this year UPS plans for high daily residential delivery volume throughout the week. The company expects to make a record number of deliveries to residential addresses during the holiday period, up to 60 percent of all package deliveries, versus an average of 45 percent on a full-year basis.
“Consumer preference for online commerce is driving tremendous growth opportunities for UPS,” said Alan Gershenhorn, Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer. “Our integrated air and ground delivery network, extensive status and visibility systems and a broad portfolio of shipping solutions position UPS to best manage increasing demand driven by online commerce.
“Beyond new processing facilities, automation and routing technology to increase capacity, we’ve implemented easy-to-use mobile and web-based technology that helps consumers to track progress and customize their delivery so they can plan when and where they receive packages,” he continued.
When the peak shipping season is in full swing, the company expects 20 million consumers to have registered for the UPS My Choice® service. UPS My Choice allows members to receive text or email alerts about their deliveries. The service can reduce not-at-home delivery attempts since preferences can be set to re-direct the package to a nearby UPS Access Point® location.
Consumers are rapidly adopting the UPS Access Point service. UPS My Choice households have redirected hundreds of thousands of deliveries to these alternate locations. About 90 percent of existing UPS Access Point locations have processed a UPS My Choice package redirected from the consumer’s original delivery address. The UPS Access Point network is expanding to more than 100 cities throughout the United States. By December, UPS expects to have 8,000 U.S. locations at The UPS Store or other neighborhood businesses, including local dry cleaners, drug stores and coffee shops.
UPS Access Point locations have desirable evening and weekend hours to accommodate package pickup according to a consumer’s busy schedule. They provide a secure location for consumers to retrieve their delivery if they are unable to receive their package at home, or if they live in a multi-tenant building that does not provide package collection as part of concierge services. Consumers can also drop off their returns at UPS Access Point locations.
“We are providing consumers with industry leading choice, control and convenience by expanding the UPS My Choice and UPS Access Point networks – and UPS will have 22,000 Access Point locations worldwide by year-end,” said Gershenhorn.
Updated technology continues to drive efficiency and automated sorting capacity to handle the holiday increase. UPS will have deployed ORION, the company’s sophisticated route optimization system to more than 70 percent of U.S. routes for peak 2015, up from 45 percent a year ago.
UPS, in August 2015, acquired Coyote Logistics to establish a leading position in the truckload transportation market. Coyote enables UPS to further leverage industry-leading technology to arrange contract transportation and increase back haul utilization during the busy peak season.
“UPS has dedicated people around the world that are ready to ensure ecommerce, multichannel and traditional shoppers are served on time during the holidays,” Gershenhorn added. “We are ready to help our customers take full advantage of the holiday season.”