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Hard To Believe, But FedEx Actually Did Better This Holiday Season

Delivery tracking firm ShipMatrix says on-time performance at FedEx was up this holiday season, though UPS had an off year.

Hard To Believe, But FedEx Actually Did Better This Holiday Season
[Photo: Flickr user Josh Hallett]

Despite widespread criticism, FedEx appears to have had better on-time performance this holiday season than in either of the past two years, according to delivery tracking firm ShipMatrix.

The carrier had come under fire for breaking delivery guarantees, particularly after bad weather swept much of the South last week, including around FedEx's Memphis hub.

"Yay #fedex you did such a great job not delivering my packages on time," tweeted one customer on Christmas, using the then-trending hashtag #FedExFail. "My kids thank you for getting far less presents."

But overall, according to ShipMatrix, which manages package tracking for thousands of shippers and uses their data to provide aggregate on-time performance ratings, FedEx met one-day, two-day, and three-day guarantees 97.8% of the time this holiday season, compared to 97.3% in the 2014 season and 95.4% in 2013.

UPS, on the other hand, did better last year, according to ShipMatrix: It had a 95.5% on-time rate this year, compared to 98.1% last year and 93.9% in 2013, when the services also saw weather-related issues. The ShipMatrix data covers each year's holiday season from Cyber Monday through Christmas. ShipMatrix says UPS improved its performance after Cyber Monday week, averaging about 97% on-time rates later in the season.

"The majority of their problems were in the first week of the month," says ShipMatrix research analyst Mark D'Amico.

Of course, consumers likely mind delays more when they cause packages to arrive after the Christmas holiday—something some Twitter users pointed out could also be avoided by ordering gifts earlier in the season.

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