Retailers’ final Christmas order dates are in meltdown, so shop now, urges ParcelHero

Despite High Street stores re-opening, online Christmas orders are still booming

Many stores are now pulling back final order dates to ensure delivery, while others have axed services, warns home delivery expert ParcelHero.

The home delivery expert ParcelHero is warning of a Christmas delivery meltdown. It says many retailers are now advising standard delivery times of up to 14 days, scrapping express delivery options and making their final order dates for Christmas even earlier.

Unprecedented demand

The return of High Street shopping has proved patchy and has not slowed the surge in online shopping. As a result, some retailers are struggling in the face of unprecedented demand, warns ParcelHero. Its popular shoppers’ Christmas deadline tool is recording many stores’ last order dates being brought forward significantly to ensure delivery by the big day.

ParcelHero’s Head of Consumer Research, David Jinks MILT, says: ‘It’s too early to say if it will snow at Christmas, but we can forecast a delivery meltdown if stores don’t pull back final order dates dramatically. That’s why it’s good to see many stores taking early action.’

Final order dates

The following stores have brought forward their Christmas final order dates:

Agent Provocateur: 21 December back from 23 December
Disney Stores/Shop Disney: 22 December back from 23 December
Evans Cycles: 17 December back from 23 December
Jigsaw: 22 December back from 23 December (no express option)
Topshop: 21 December back from 23 December (no express option, in receivership)
The White Company: 21 December from 23 December

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Further action

Having woken up and smelt the eggnog, several stores stores are taking further action:

Cath Kidston has suspended next-day deliveries
New Look says to check delivery times when you place an order as ‘delivery times are subject to change during our busy periods.’
Superdry is quoting two delivery times, depending on whether it is sourcing items from its UK or Belgian warehouses
Topshop has suspended ‘express to home’ and ‘express to parcel shop’ services following administration
Urban Outfitters is warning of transit times of up to 10 days on standard shipping near Christmas
The White Company warned us of potential delivery times of up to 14 days on standard shipping near Christmas and has suspended next-day deliveries

Strain on delivery services

‘Due to Covid, Christmas was always going to stretch retailers and their delivery partners. Last year, 387 million of the 462 million Christmas peak deliveries were online shopping orders. This year, retailers’ deliveries alone will put an estimated 592 million parcels in the system in the weeks before Christmas. That’s in addition to all the parcels people are sending to their friends and relations during lockdown.

‘Given the strain on delivery services already, we won’t be at all surprised if many more retailers change to even earlier final order dates as Christmas nears. That’s why our continually updated Christmas deadlines tool is so useful for keeping shoppers in the know with all their favourite retailers’ final order dates.

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