Will Shipping issues affect holiday shopping?

Victoria McIntyre

Everywhere in the nation is experiencing delivery delays which is normal this time of year, but not to this scale. According to CNBC, global trade took a large hit due to Covid-19 and is now back but with many shortcomings. They said there is a shortage of shipping containers, warehouse capacity, congestion at ports, and not enough truck drivers. 

There are shipping containers that are getting stuck on ships for days or weeks at a time. The containers cannot come off the ships until there is space in warehouses. There is no space in warehouses until the current shipping containers there are moved by truck drivers. Truck drivers are in low supply right now with the conditions of their jobs being less desirable.

Truck drivers are on the road for long periods of time. They have to leave their families, their homes, and home cooked meals.  Truck drivers are typically more inclined to health risks. This is caused by lack of sleep, not many healthy meals, and little to no relaxation time. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, truck drivers cannot drive after 60/70 hours on duty in seven out of eight consecutive days. A driver can restart a seven out of eight consecutive day period after taking 34 or more consecutive hours off duty.

In an interview with the Postmaster in Plaistow, Aamber-Rose McIntyre, she stated “Shipping, depending on where it is coming from, is already taking three times longer than average shipping did a year ago.” She was part of the Northern Atlantic Postal Service telecon on Monday. During the conference, it became apparent that North Carolina and many other states are already seeing the effects of online shopping for Christmas. Due to the late arrival of packages, many families have already started their seasonal shopping in hopes to have what they want under their tree. 

Many Post offices are also short staffed. This makes separating packages into routes, taking orders at the window, and delivery very hard to manage.

Online shopping is going to drastically affect the holiday season. Due to the unemployment in many places, the delivery schedule is taking much longer than it has in the past few years. Remember to get your shopping done now if you’re looking to buy gifts online.