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What Does Expedited Shipping Mean?

Buzzle Staff
Expedited shipping is the process wherein items are shipped to customers at a faster rate than usual (on customer request). Here we explain what expedited shipping means.
Quick Tip
Expedited shipping is one of the many multiple shipping options provided by companies so that the clients get their goods faster. According to reliable surveys, oftentimes, more than 25% of customers use expedited shipping. It is also one of the ways to increase e-commerce sales.
When a product is ordered online or via phone, it is delivered via cargo ships. The range of goods that are delivered in this fashion includes clothes, furniture, books, home décor, and many more. These goods are shipped to the stated destination, after which they undergo the process of unloading and labeling, along with other formalities.
Delivery salesmen then deliver the product to the concerned party. Generally, this procedure requires 3 to 10 days depending upon the product. However, in case you need the item to be delivered urgently, there are multiple shipping options, one of them being expedited shipping.
'To expedite' ideally in English means 'to speed up'. This process can be carried on at a faster rate, in case you need the product immediately. Read the paragraphs below to understand the process and how fast is the process of expedited shipping.

An Overview

  • Expedited shipping generally takes 3 days, at the most, for most of the products.
  • The goods that are to be shipped soon are handled separately by different staff.
  • Every company has a different agenda of handling expedited services.
  • One of the most well-known courier and logistics company, the UPS (United Parcel Service) has been handling delivery of goods for more than a century. Most of their goods take no more than 3 days for quick delivery.
  • When a customer chooses the expedited service, his order does not go through the customary process. The concerned product is ordered immediately, and the shipment is loaded promptly, along with other similar expedited service products, after which they are all shipped to the required destination.
  • If the order does not reach the customer on time, he can directly place a complaint to the company and have his product shipped again.


  • You must be wondering how fast expedited shipping occurs. Well, most companies have almost the same time frame.
  • FedEx is one of the prime shipping firms that has a number of expedited services. Some of them are FedEx Standard Overnight, FedEx First Overnight, FedEx Same Day delivery, FedEx Priority Overnight, etc.
  • FedEx Express also offers shipping services, like Saturday pickup and delivery.
  • Regular ground shipping in FedEx requires between 1 to5 days.
  • For expedited services, however, depending on the package, the delivery takes 1 to 3 days. Rates vary as per the package too.

U.S. Postal Service (USPS)

  • This service is for quick postal delivery, and mostly has express shipping.
  • Express shipping is one of the quickest methods to deliver mails faster.
  • The service promises delivery overnight to almost all areas.
  • Priority shipping is another component of the USPS expedited shipping services, which promises delivery with a couple of days.
  • Express shipping mostly takes a day; however, for international packages, the time frame can go up to 4 days.

United Parcel Service (UPS)

  • Like FedEx, UPS has a variety of expedited shipping services as well.
  • Some of them are 2nd Day Air, 2nd Day Air A.M., UPS 3-Day Select, Express Critical service, Next Day Air, and Next Day Air Early A.M.
  • All these services are much faster than the usual ground service.
  • Its Worldwide Expedited service program offers very quick international services as well.
  • It offers value-added services, like delivery notification and pickup and deliver option.
  • The delivery takes between 1 to 3 days, whatever the service may be.


  • Expedited shipping varies with companies, such as Ebay, Amazon, etc.
  • They set their own rules and time frames for product delivery.
  • Depending on your products, your time frame will vary. For example, books will take a comparatively lesser time frame than furniture.
  • The company will charge you the rates accordingly. Generally, domestic delivery takes around 3 to 5 days.
  • For most vendor sites, expedited shipping just means shipping sooner than the standard time.
  • Sometimes, some of the vendors even offer expedited shipping for free, in order to stay on top in the market and boost e-commerce.
Thus, expedited shipping is a beneficial, guaranteed process for emergency shipments. A word of caution though―use the service only when essential. Every company guarantees prompt delivery of course, but if you are not in a hurry, you can prefer the ground service. If you need urgent delivery, companies are always on a high trying to conjure new expedited shipping services.