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Types of Delivery Services

Different types of delivery service operate to meet different delivery needs. Typically, the faster a service guarantees the delivery of the package, the more it costs. Some services are only available within a single city, while others are intended to cover longer distances. The following are the most common types of delivery services.

Same-day delivery

Same-day delivery services guarantee that your package is delivered during the same business day that it is received by the service. Typically the business day, with guaranteed delivery, ends at about three p.m. These services deliver within the city limits. Packages are typically carried by couriers on bicycles or motorcycles so only smaller packages are appropriate for shipping via this method. Secure shipping is a single-day service in which a single handler comes to your location, picks up a package and drives directly to the drop-off location. Your parcel is the only parcel handled during the time that the handler is working for you. This is used for packages of great value. Armored car services are a great example of secure delivery.

Overnight deliveries

Overnight deliveries are handled by major parcel services through delivery hubs. The package is carried by truck to a hub, where it is sorted onto another truck that carries it to its final destination the following business day. These are typically nationwide and well-known delivery service providers, including the United States Postal Service.

Special delivery services

Special delivery services, like singing telegrams and personal delivery carriers, work on a case-by-case basis to perform special tasks. These services are listed in your local yellow pages with party planners or under delivery services, depending on their specialty.

Standard-shipping deliveries

Standard shipping uses traditional airmail, train services and truck methods to move your parcel from your location to the package's final destination. These services typically take three to five business days in adjacent states and five to seven days when shipping across the country. This is the least expensive, but most time-consuming method of delivery.

Select the delivery service that is right for you based on how soon your package needs to arrive at its final location, how much it costs to ship it and how secure you want your shipment to stay.