Shipping Knowledge

2023 Peak Season Surcharges for Major Carriers in Canada

Peak season is a double-edged sword. On one side, it promises immense sales potential; on the other, there are the logistical challenges of managing increased order volumes. To navigate this period efficiently, businesses must be well-informed about the peak season surcharges introduced by major carriers. Let’s dive deep into what these surcharges entail and how UUCargo can be your secret weapon in managing them effectively.

What are peak season surcharges?

Peak season surcharges are extra fees carriers charge during their busiest months, usually October through December or January.

As people shop for the holidays and take advantage of great Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals, carriers have to manage increased volume—which increases the cost of labor, transportation, and supplies. Adding surcharges helps them keep up with demand while maintaining high standards of service. Surcharges are generally flat fees, and they vary based on carrier and shipping volume.

We’ve compiled the shipping surcharges of Canada Post, UPS, FedEx, Canpar and GLS for 2023 into a single source of truth.

Canada Post Surcharges

Effective Day: Between Monday, October 30, 2023, and Sunday, January 14, 2024.

UPS Surcharges

Some UPS services have implemented demand surcharges for businesses that ship high volumes during peak season, as well as surcharges for packages that are oversized or require special handling.

Effective Day: Between October 29, 2023, and January 13, 2024.

Standard and Express CA to US

Air Services CA to US

Shipments originating from China Mainland, Hong Kong SAR and Macau SAR to CA

FedEx Surcharges

FedEx calculates peak season surcharges based on shipping volume, with higher surcharges for packages with special handling requirements.

Effective Day: Between October 02, 2023, and January 13, 2024

FedEx Express Intra-Canada

FedEx Ground Intra-Canada and International

FedEx International

Canpar Surcharges

Effective September 29, 2023, Canpar Express will be implementing a Peak Season Tire Delivery Fee of $20 per piece. This commodity-specific fee will be applied in combination with existing Extra Care fees that are generally applicable. This seasonal surcharge will remain in effect until January 15, 2024.

2024 Rate Adjustments: FedEx and UPS

As we discuss the intricacies of peak season surcharges, it’s also crucial to note the forthcoming changes in standard shipping rates from major carriers. Both FedEx and UPS have announced an annual average rate increase of 5.9% for 2024, signaling a trend that businesses need to be aware of for their long-term shipping strategies.

FedEx’s 2024 Rate Increase

Starting January 1, 2024, FedEx will implement a 5.9% average rate increase across various services, including FedEx Express, FedEx Ground, and FedEx Home Delivery. This adjustment reflects the ongoing trend of carriers revising their pricing structures to align with market conditions and operational costs. Businesses leveraging FedEx for their shipping needs should plan accordingly to accommodate these changes in their budgeting and pricing strategies.

UPS Matches the Trend

Not to be outdone, UPS has also declared a 5.9% average rate increase for its services, effective December 26, 2023. This adjustment encompasses UPS Ground, UPS Air, and international services. What’s notable here is the timing; UPS’s rate increase kicks in a week earlier than FedEx’s. Additionally, this increase is concurrent with adjustments to their holiday season demand surcharges, making it all the more important for businesses to stay vigilant and adapt their shipping strategies accordingly.

Strategies to Mitigate Peak Season Surcharges

1. Evaluate Carrier Options

Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Explore and compare different carriers, including smaller local options that might offer competitive rates without peak season surcharges.

2. Negotiate with Carriers

If you have a high shipping volume, use this as leverage to negotiate better rates with carriers. Building a good relationship with your account manager can pay off, especially during peak season.

3. Leverage UUCargo’s Shipping Platform

With UUCargo, you can access a wide range of carriers, including cost-effective alternatives that might not be on your radar. Our platform allows you to easily compare rates and services, ensuring you make the most informed decision for your shipping needs.

Find the Cheapest Rates

Compare all major couriers and get the best rate and service options at highly discounted rates

Navigating Peak Season with UUCargo

The peak season surge is inevitable, but with the right strategies and tools, you can navigate it seamlessly. By understanding the surcharges from major carriers and exploring all your options with UUCargo, you’re positioning your business for success. Remember, it’s not just about finding the cheapest option; it’s about finding the most reliable and efficient shipping solution that meets your customers’ expectations. Trust UUCargo to be your partner in this journey, providing you with comprehensive shipping solutions that cater to your business’s unique needs.
Don’t let peak season surcharges catch you off guard. Connect with UUCargo and discover how we can transform your shipping strategy, ensuring cost-effectiveness and customer satisfaction. Visit our website, give us a call at (604) 998-1888, or email us at Our dedicated team is ready to assist you in making this peak season your best one yet!

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