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How To Get Your New iPad Early From Fedex



I finally got my shipping notification from Apple today saying they shipped my new iPad 3rd gen and found that thankfully they shipped it using FedEx. I’m glad to learn they used FedEx because the company will let you hold your shipment at the nearest distribution center so you can pick it up when it’s convenient for you.

UPDATE: See below for further details.

For people who want to get their iPad out of the box as early as possible or for those who work and can’t wait at home, this might be the best way to get your pre-ordered iPad. Here’s how I set up holding my shipment at the FedEx facility so I can pick it up early Friday morning.

If you use this option, you can get your new iPad first thing in the morning, instead of waiting until 3 PM, when most shipments need to be delivered by.

When you receive your shipping notification email from Apple, click the button that says “Track Shipment” which will take you to the FedEx site.


Now find the link that reads “Hold at FedEx” Location about a third of the way down the page.


Once you do, follow the screen prompts to hold your package at the FedEx shipping center near you and they will. One of the screens lets you select your location. In my area there was only one option. Check where that location is. It may not be worth it if the location isn’t within a short drive.

If you don’t want to do this online, you can call FedEx at 1.800.463.3339.

You can go get your new iPad after the shipping center opens, 7:00 AM 9:00 AM for me. I wouldn’t be surprised if there will be a requirement from Apple that FedEx hold them till after 8:00 AM since that’s when Apple opens their stores. Some locations may not open until 9 AM, so make sure you double-check.

UPDATE: I just received a call from my local FedEx facility. They received the information about my request to hold the iPad at my local warehouse and contacted me to tell me that it will be ready to pick up at 9:00 AM instead of at 7:00 AM when the rest of the warehouse opens. It is not yet there, but will be Friday morning. She was very nice and FedEx impressed me. I didn’t have to call them, they called me.

She also stated that many others were doing the same thing and I should expect a crowd. I am going to still arrive before 9:00 but she warned that due to the large shipment of iPads coming into their center, she expects their plane to be late making the driver late to the warehouse.

Once you get yours, run by the local Apple store or other retail locations where people must stand in line to buy them and laugh at the people in line. Great nerd fun!

ipad retina display



  1. Sean Riley

    03/14/2012 at 1:17 pm

    Interestingly that option isn’t available to me online and when I called they said they couldn’t do it for the Apple shipments, but thought that possibly once it actually shipped on Thursday that I’d be able to change it.

    • Sean Riley

      03/15/2012 at 1:50 pm

      Alright just to close my own loop on this one. I was able to put the hold shipment on it once the shipping status changed this morning. I spoke with the general FedEx help line and they indicated that the location I designated could have it for me by 6-7 p.m. tomorrow, not ideal as I’ll be home from work before then. I was about the cancel the hold, but decided to call my local FedEx people first and they confirmed that they could have it to my designated FedEx location by 9 a.m. no problem. I’ll find out who was telling the truth tomorrow morning I guess.

  2. violajack

    03/14/2012 at 2:17 pm

    Careful, when I tried to do this, it said it would be available for pick-up the next business day following the estimated delivery date.  A phone call confirmed that it wouldn’t be ready for pick up until Saturday.  I had them undo it and I will just work from home on Friday.  

  3. Apesix

    03/14/2012 at 8:58 pm

    I had the exact same experience as Sean Riley.  I called FedEx and they told me that Apple does not allow this option for their shipments of any kind.  The FedEx rep said I would have to call Apple and have them forward instructions to FedEx to hold the package at a FedEx location.

  4. Dustin Newton

    03/15/2012 at 6:34 am

    “Hold at FedEx location not available for this shipment” listed on mine. Be careful, when I have tried this trick in the past, I have ALWAYS been told that they can’t hold it until they have made one delivery attempt, so you wouldn’t be able to pick it up until the next day.

  5. Sas

    03/15/2012 at 7:12 am

    Once your package is changed to “In Transit” you should be able to do hold shipment.  Not sure if it’s available for all locations though.  At first it was not an option for me, but it is today after it changed to “in transit.”  However, if I go through the steps it says they will try to make it available for pick up “the next business day after delivery is scheduled.”  I am just going to pre-sign from the link in the Apple confirmation email.

  6. Giftboy25

    03/15/2012 at 11:10 am

    “If your shipment is eligible, FedEx Express will attempt to have your shipment available for pickup by the next business day after the estimated delivery date.”

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