The holidays are fast approaching and with it, the annual rush to send cards and presents.  Millions made their way to post offices and mailing centers across the country on Monday.  In fact, Fed Ex called it, their "busiest day in history."  The company expects to move 19 million packages in just 24 hours.  Many consumers are trying to get a jump start on their holiday shipping. "Do it now, do it now," said Brenda Oxenham. "Because the last minute just gets people short tempered and not happy.  And lose that Christmas spirit feeling so it's fun to get it started early."

The major reason for the rise in shipping has to do with the growth of online shopping.  Experts forecast a growth in web shopping by 17% this holiday season. The convenience is what attracts Oxenham. "Feet up, glass of wine, punch in those little  numbers into the computer," she said.

Fed Ex is not the only carrier that's extremely busy.  The United States Postal Service is already seeing huge numbers.  To help ease the stress, some are opening this Sunday to offer their customers another day to ship.  The Palm Desert Hovley Lane office is the only one in the Coachella Valley who will open their doors on Sunday. "It's the need for business we have to, we have to give it to our customers, give them what they're paying for, and we do it day in and day out," said operating manager of the Hovley location Frank Lemos.

The post office's willingness to give its customers more options is not going unnoticed. "I think it's wonderful," said Gail Marovitz.  "I think it's a great service."

Here are some important dates to make sure you get your presents to their location by Christmas:
-Fed Ex Ground: December 17

-Fed Ex Express: December 22

-USPS Parcel Post: December 14

-USPS First Class: December 20

-USPS Priority: December 21

Some other tips when sending packages: