UPS’ peak season brings increased workload, 4 million packages daily

UPS’ peak season brings increased workload, 4 million packages daily

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - At UPS, two words signal the most important time of the year. Those two words: “Peak Season."

Though those words aren’t the sound of Jingle Bells, for UPS employee Darrius Williams, it is the sound of Christmas.

He’s just 20-years-old and is already an unloading supervisor.

“We sort packages," Williams said. "They come off the planes, and my employees and us, we unload them. It’s very important for us to unload them and sort them because we have a lot of different areas and different places, cities, states, that these packages go, and the unload is the main part of that.”

After sorting, packages make their way to the belt, where they’re sorted by size and zip code and headed for another plane or to your front door.

During peak season, employees like Williams work even harder making sure communication and execution are just right.

Supervisor Darrius Williams uses his radio to communicate with other employees in the UPS unloading wing.
Supervisor Darrius Williams uses his radio to communicate with other employees in the UPS unloading wing. (Source: Courtesy: WAVE 3 News)

Peak season is a big job. Around the holidays, UPS’ halls are decked with packages, four million per day to be exact. That’s two million more than on an average day.

All that extra cardboard forces the company to stock up on staff. In 2019, they plan to hire up to 2,600 extra workers to get the job done.

Packages are loaded on assembly belts at UPS headquarters in Louisville, where they are then re-sorted by size and zip code.
Packages are loaded on assembly belts at UPS headquarters in Louisville, where they are then re-sorted by size and zip code. (Source: Courtesy: WAVE 3 News)

“There’s all those thoughts of, ‘Okay, it’s going to be a heavier volume we got to be ready to go,’" UPS spokeswoman Michelle Polk said. "But at the end of the day, it’s about being ready for our customers and making sure those packages get delivered, because we’re delivering Christmas.”

It’s a responsibility that comes every year and a challenge Williams said his team is ready for.

“We want to treat every package like it’s our own," Williams said. "So getting them in and out and getting them to our customers when they need to be there, especially during peak season, is very important.”

UPS officials say the last day to ship your holiday packages is December 23rd. They encourage people to ship their items as quickly as possible to avoid any late-arriving gifts.

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