BOZEMAN, Mont. - FedEx called the Monday two weeks before Christmas its busiest shipping day of the year. In Bozeman, a local UPS store said they were feeling the rush, as folks hurried in to ship presents on time.
"Are these all going to one place, or separate?" asked a UPS worker, as Mike and Carole Dowd loaded presents onto the counter. "All together," Mr. Dowd said.
Many people like the Dowds are shipping off presents to loved ones for Christmas.
"Toys for the grandkids in Virginia," Mike said, about the nature and destination of the gifts.
They want to make sure those gifts arrive in time to make it under the tree. "Don't want to be late," he said.
So they came into the UPS Store two weeks ahead of Christmas, on one of the busiest shipping days of the year.
"With Christmas being on a Tuesday this year, everything needs to be there by Friday. So you're losing actually four days" said Tracy Asbell, owner of the Bozeman UPS Store.
He said because Christmas is in a tough weekday spot, and it can take six days to ship to locations like the east coast- people are sending gifts as soon as they're buying them.
"People are spending all weekend shopping, and then they're coming in on Mondays trying to get everything out," he said.
By noon Monday, their outgoing shipments area was filled with dozens of boxes, waiting to get picked up. Asbell said by the end of Monday, he expected there'd to be over 200.
"This one will be there, looks like Thursday or Friday," Asbell said, as he rang up orders for customer Karen Leech.
Leech said she made a few trips to the UPS Store over the course of the day, to ship boxes to both the east and west coasts.
"Here I am for my second trip- and I have another box to take home" she said. When asked when she'd make her third trip, she said "probably today."
Asbell and his employees rushed around, prepared all the boxes. But he said for them, the busiest time may be yet to come.
"Next Monday is what the UPS stores normally call 'Black Monday,'" he said. "It will be quite busy, we'll have 20 to 30 people standing in line."
In-store customers weren't the only factors to the a busy day. Asbell said a lot of people did online shopping over the weekend, and those orders all processed Monday.
He said on an average day, UPS logs around 12 million packages into their system worldwide.
In the weeks before Christmas, he said that number jumps to 17 million.