So I was just in the process of trying to ship some marketing materials to Japan, hoping to reach offices in Tokyo in time for Semicon Japan. I dropped them off with the shipping department on Friday. Now, for those of you that haven't shipped overnight to Japan -- there is no overnight to Japan. Basically, the fastest you can get it there is two-day. All well and good.
Well, in this case, the shipping department selected UPS, but here's the funny part -- UPS offers two tiers of international shipping: UPS Worldwide Saver and UPS Worldwide Expedited. Now, if you were really, really wanting it to get there fast, which would you choose based on the name of the service?
Contrast that with Fed Ex. From slowest to fastest, their services are: FedEx International Economy, FedEx International Priority, and FedEx International Next Flight (which is basically, call them and they will get it there ASAP).
Bottom line: Don't choose UPS Worldwide Expedited expecting it to get there fast. In this case, FedEx wins in marketing and semantics -- I only wish that we'd used them instead. I think I press to switch all of my shipments to FedEx.