How did my package get to NJ?

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How did my package get to NJ?

Postby pumpers » Wed Jul 19, 2017 9:47 am

Monday I ordered some stuff from Colorado with free shipping. It was 13 pounds with a box at least 1 ft in size, so I assume for free shipping it did not go by air. See the attached on-line tracking I copied from my laptop screen - it went from what I presume are UPS facilities in Commerce City CO (next to Denver) to Secaucus NJ in 27 hours (I assume all times are local).
New Picture (1).jpg

It went "UPS SurePost" which means UPS delivers to my local post office, and USPS takes it to my house. I figure UPS will give it to my P.O today or tomorrow, so I might get it Thursday or Friday. Friday is the scheduled delivery, which would be 4-day shipping, which to me sounds sort of standard for ground shipping for something from Colorado.

Is there any chance at all that went by rail? That 27 hours seems very fast even by truck! I know UPS is a big intermodal customer, but I would think even high priority intermodal is much slower than that...
Any experts on intermodal vs. truck out there?
Thanks, Jim S
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Re: How did my package get to NJ?

Postby SecaucusJunction » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:06 am

No chance it went by rail with that time frame. I would probably think it travelled by air for at least part of the trip.
I think it may be possible that NJ Transit might not be the perfect, infallible organization that most people assume it is.
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Re: How did my package get to NJ?

Postby R&DB » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:32 am

Jim.
It possibly went by air. Shortest distance by road is 1776 miles and calculated driving time is about 27 hours, so ground is also possible. Secaucus UPS does not have rail. If by rail it would go to Oak Island and have to be unloaded onto truck to get to Secaucus. Rail is unlikely due to the trans-loads. (truck-train-truck) UPS Commerce City also does not have a rail facility. (Although there is rail adjacent to the site.) Air would also require trans-loads. (truck-plane-truck)

So the highest probability is ground with multiple drivers and maybe tractors.
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Re: How did my package get to NJ?

Postby pumpers » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:47 am

Does the "calculated" 27 hours (if using Google maps for example) assume the speed limit, assuming no traffic jams. As we all now trucks and everyone else often go 5-10 mph or more faster on interstates.

More seriously, assuming a package did go UPS ground via intermodal from Colorado to NJ, how long would it take, not counting the extra day or two for local delivery? And maybe another 1/2 day from pickup at the vendor until it gets on a train...

Jim S

EDIT; There must be some funny business in those numbers in the charts - there is no way you get from Boulder to Commerce City in 9 minutes. More like 4 times that
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Re: How did my package get to NJ?

Postby R&DB » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:58 am

UPS Commerce City is a few blocks off I-70, UPS Secaucus is just off exit 16E NJ Turnpike (I-95). So interstate all the way.
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Re: How did my package get to NJ?

Postby carajul » Fri Jul 21, 2017 1:23 pm

You know it goes by rail when it takes friggin forever (5-7 business days) to make it across the country.
And UPS 'surepost' oh lord. Half the time it doesn't make it at all.
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Re: How did my package get to NJ?

Postby NYSW2300 » Sat Jul 22, 2017 10:30 am

R&DB wrote:Jim.
It possibly went by air. Shortest distance by road is 1776 miles and calculated driving time is about 27 hours, so ground is also possible. Secaucus UPS does not have rail. If by rail it would go to Oak Island and have to be unloaded onto truck to get to Secaucus. Rail is unlikely due to the trans-loads. (truck-train-truck) UPS Commerce City also does not have a rail facility. (Although there is rail adjacent to the site.) Air would also require trans-loads. (truck-plane-truck)

So the highest probability is ground with multiple drivers and maybe tractors.


NS Croxton takes in UPS and Croxton is in Secaucus. Oak Island doesn't have an Intermodal ramp.
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Re: How did my package get to NJ?

Postby R&DB » Sat Jul 22, 2017 4:36 pm

nysw2300,
I stand corrected about Oak Island. However the transload time still would be significant. An entire train of doublestack at each end and the package in question is in a container that is last loaded and first unloaded is highly unlikely. I stall say truck.

JIm, Did you get your package on Friday?
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Re: How did my package get to NJ?

Postby New Haven 1 » Sun Jul 23, 2017 7:55 am

Your package definitely went by air during part of its journey. What a lot of folks don't know is that businesses get very special rates for shipping from package carriers just like they do from railroads and trucking companies. While I cannot divulge the info, my employer has such an arrangement through a shipping managing company that specializes in this. Businesses can literally air ship packages for only a fraction of what you would pay if you went online, or, went into your local UPS, Fed Ex etc. location for a rock bottom ground shipment! Yes, I have seen rates and have used my company's service. That is how they can offer free shipping as it costs them so little that it essentially has a negligible effect on their bottom line.
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Re: How did my package get to NJ?

Postby carajul » Tue Aug 08, 2017 12:34 pm

I remember back in the mid-1990s on all the UPS pick up boxes it had "overnight anywhere $5" for letters. Shipping a letter now overnight will cost you approx $40-$50.

Yes, certain companies that are hi volume shippers and organizations (such as AAA and Realtors) get discounts, some small some huge.

Walk into a UPS Store and see the reactions on people's faces when they get quoted shipping prices. Mild heart attacks are common!

Fedex also offers a service where they will put your letter on the next plane out of the nearest airport. Requires an FBI bg check. Send it to Europe that has set me back $1,000.
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