Holiday Shipping FAQ's

Holiday Shipping Update

Due to delays with USPS that will most heavily impede Media Mail shipments, we strongly recommend that our customers opt for USPS Priority Mail or UPS Ground shipping.

Media Mail is still available, but we cannot guarantee packages shipped by Media Mail will arrive in time for the holidays (or even that they will arrive at all).  Regrettably, we are not able to refund or replace delayed or missing Media Mail packages.



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► Is on-time delivery by USPS Priority / UPS Ground guaranteed?  

No, on-time delivery is not guaranteed by UPS or USPS. 


►Can a customer still choose USPS Media Mail ?

Yes - if they don't care when the package arrives.   Media Mail is a subsidized rate that carries the lowest priority of any USPS service.    USPS does not even publish estimates for holiday delivery.   Actual delivery times vary wildly depending on volume of other services on any given route or region. 


► Get your holiday shopping done early.

USPS has announced that shipping times will be much, much slower this holiday season, due to the pandemic. This year is not the time to try to hold out for a potential deal — if there's something topping your shopping list, get it while you can. 

► Expect the unexpected.

When you shop early enough, express shipping methods should not be necessary. Online orders placed before Friday, December 3rd should arrive before Christmas if shipped via Media Mail (although even this is not guaranteed). As the holidays draw closer, the additional few dollars for UPS or USPS Priority Mail are worthwhile in providing peace of mind that your holiday gifts will arrive in time to celebrate.


► When in doubt, gift cards.

And, of course, no matter how bad shipping problems get, you can always wait until the last minute to purchase a gift card online or at one of our Tattered Cover locations. For online orders, we will mail you a physical gift card, but we can also send the gift card number via email when the order is processed (this number can be used to purchase online or in-store).


► Gift messages are great, but they slow down processing and will delay delivery.

As with gift-wrapping requests, gift messages mean we cannot send your order to our distributor for quick, direct fulfillment. This slows processing and delivery time significantly. Keep this in mind when ordering your holiday gifts!


► Triple-check the shipping address on your order before submitting!

Many of our shipping orders are fulfilled directly by our distributor, meaning we cannot verify the shipping address before the package goes out. Avoid confusion and delay by ensuring the accuracy of shipping information.