Holiday shipping, safe and secure

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Now that the holiday shopping season is in full swing, local shipping companies are shifting into high gear to make sure they deliver your packages on time and safely.

Sending your packages to the right place is key. Whether you're shipping to yourself or someone else, you need to  think carefully about where you or they are during the day.

Pinpointing when the package will be delivered is getting easier than ever with online tracking services. Those services include email or text updates to your computer or mobile device, telling you the location of your package as it ships.  

If the person you're shipping to works during the day, it can be tough for you and them to decide whether to ship to the home and run the risk of someone taking it, or ship to the workplace and run the risk of the package getting lost in the shuffle.

Terry Werner is a shipping expert. He runs a FedEx Customer Shipping Center in Castleton and says if the recipient will be at home, ground shipping is a good option.  "Arrange with a neighbor," Werner recommends, if you're not going to be home for delivery, and not comfortable leaving your package on the porch.

There is a third option if you use FedEx - holding your package for pickup at a shipping counter.

December 17 is the last day to ship via ground, with December 21 is the last day to ship with most companies if you want your package there by Christmas Eve.