Workers at FedEx Corp. (Memphis, Tenn.) companies are making plans to handle about 8.5 million packages on their busiest day of the holiday season, about 400,000 more than last year's busiest day.
"Economic growth continues on a healthy and sustainable pace with recent indicators suggesting that the holiday season will be solid," says FedEx economist Gene Huang. "Improving trends in merchandise sales, business orders, the services sector and employment in the U.S. remain in place, and this bodes well for holiday sales."
According to research firm eMarketer, online retail sales are expected to grow 22% in the final three months of 2005, to roughly $26 billion. "With consumers spending more time online, e-commerce will likely drive more holiday activity this season than in the past," Huang says.
The 8.5 million packages expected to move through the FedEx Ground and FedEx Express networks Dec. 12 represent a 40% increase from the average daily volume of 6 million. Forces of more than 250,000 employees and contractors, 674 planes and 70,000 vehicles will work to make holiday wishes come true.
The virtual world will also be buzzing during the holidays, with www.fedex.com expected to process a daily average of 3.5 million to 4 million online tracking requests during peak season.
Since July, FedEx Express and FedEx Ground operations have been helping companies around the world with the process of stocking shelves with many of this season's most popular gifts. Pre-holiday activity at FedEx Freight this year extended to October.
FedEx Ground is now seeing higher daily volumes from its customers while helping thousands of online and catalog retailers take advantage of the FedEx Home Delivery and FedEx SmartPost services.
In addition to serving its business-to-business and business-to-consumer customers, FedEx will offer individuals access to its shipping networks through more than 50,000 retail locations nationwide. More than 1,300 FedEx Kinko's stores across the United States--many open 24 hours a day, seven days a week--will offer a full range of FedEx Express and FedEx Ground shipping options as well as pack-and-ship services.
Early birds may ship by Dec. 16 and count on FedEx Ground to deliver their gifts before Christmas, but last-minute shoppers need not worry. Packages can be delivered before Christmas when shipped via FedEx Express by Dec. 22, 2005.
Source: FedEx Corp.