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The 2020 holiday season is unlike any that’s come before it due to COVID-19. Shopping has been difficult all year with wildly fluctuating stock from retailers along with unpredictable shipping and fulfillment. Even if it’s harder than ever to make certain your orders appear at your doorstep in time, Christmas is still coming at the end of this month, regardless.
Amazon is one of the best online hubs to shop for last-minute gifts. The safest way to ensure your Amazon gifts arrive on time this year is to keep an eye out for the “Arrives before Christmas” line just above the “Add to Cart” button. It’s a reassurance specific to your location, so long as you’re signed in to your Amazon account while browsing — you don’t need to be an Amazon Prime member.
Below is last year’s timetable for Amazon Prime holiday shipping deadlines. While you shouldn’t rely on it for accurate 2020 arrival dates, it should give you an idea of when it might be time to call it quits and send a gift card instead.
- December 22: Last day for free two-day delivery on tens of millions of items.
- December 23: Last day for free one-day delivery on over ten million items.
- December 24: Last day for free same-day delivery (in select areas, on qualifying orders over $35. Learn more). Also the last day for free two-hour delivery with Prime Now (in select areas. Learn more).
If you’re strapped for time, consider shipping gifts directly to the recipient. Amazon offers a gift-wrapping service for most products sold on the site. Gift wrapping includes a box, decorative ribbon, and a printed card with a note. Prices for this service vary based on the size of the item — you can see how much it’ll cost you at checkout.
It should go without saying, but you shouldn’t procrastinate. Shipping estimates are only getting later and later, with some products are already flagged as arriving after Christmas. During the holiday season, Prime subscribers shouldn’t count on two-day shipping either. Many products, which would otherwise be eligible at any other time during the year, may not ship as quickly, due to a number of factors. For instance, some products are low in stock, or back-ordered, and may not be fulfilled before the end of the year.
You can always check out this chart for more information about Amazon Prime shipping benefits. If you have yet to become one, consider signing up for a free 30-day trial of Amazon Prime to get your gifts on time.
Head straight to Amazon to shop for holiday gifts now.
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