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FedEx

Reviewed by ConsumerSearch
FedEx

Most reliable overnight delivery

Pros
  • Guaranteed on-time delivery of air shipments
  • Detailed online tracking
  • Same-day service (but expensive)
  • Free boxes
Cons
  • No delivery to post office boxes or military post offices
  • Separate pick-ups depending on services

FedEx is included in reviews at Consumer Reports where the price and speed of delivery of identical packages are compared with those shipped with competing companies, at in reviews at Unishippers.com and the Georgia Tech Logistics Department. BloggingStocks.com and Associated Content also provide detailed comparisons but shipments are not tested in either review.

Reviewers say that although FedEx is a bit pricier than the USPS, it may be the best option when packages must be there early. That's because FedEx offers two early morning overnight delivery options in addition to standard overnight service and some expensive same-day services. What's more, all air deliveries, including two- and three-day shipping, are guaranteed. Express Mail from the U.S. Postal Service, on the other hand, is the only guaranteed service that the USPS provides. FedEx competes heavily with UPS and prices are very similar, but generally slightly lower at FedEx. Some customers complain, though, that pick-up service gets complicated when you use more than one service with FedEx. Express, Ground and Home Delivery shipments are each picked up separately by different drivers.

Our Sources

1. ConsumerReports.org

Editors of Consumer Reports compare three shipping companies for efficiency and price. Especially interesting is the comparison of overnight services from FedEx, UPS and the U.S. Postal Service.

Review: Overnight Shipping: FedEx vs. UPS vs. the Postal Service, Editors of Consumer Reports, Dec. 2008

2. Georgia Tech Supply Chain Logistics Institute

Georgia Tech students send packages to five international destinations via UPS, FedEx, DHL and USPS. Obscure locations are chosen for the test, and results are compared. Unfortunately, none of the services excelled at delivering to all five of the destinations.

Review: The Great Package Race, 2008, Logistics Department at Georgia Tech, Updated Dec. 16, 2008

3. Unishippers.com

This study compares the reliability of early morning next-day delivery between FedEx, DHL and UPS. Over 14,000 packages are delivered in 20 cities. DHL and UPS finish ahead of FedEx, but FedEx leads in the South. It should be noted that DHL is the exclusive sponsor of this study and it was neither sponsored nor endorsed by FedEx or UPS.

Review: U.S. Domestic 10:30am Delivery Performance Study, Ken Rubin, 2006

4. BloggingStocks.com

Both FedEx and UPS are compared thoroughly in this article. The author, Kevin Shult, says that FedEx controls the skies with three times the air fleet of UPS and that, in general, FedEx is the better bargain of the two.

Review: UPS vs. FedEx: Battle of the Brands, Kevin Shult, Apr. 9, 2007

5. AssociatedContent.com

The author of this article explains that although FedEx is generally more expensive than the USPS and DHL, it does provide the best tracking as well as fast delivery. FedEx also offers free boxes to customers.

Review: Comparison of Shipping/Mailing Services: USPS, UPS, DHL, FedEx, Z. Perry, Aug. 8, 2006

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