Shipping delays affect shoppers this holiday season


Designed by Kennedy Wilker

OHS staff and students have been experiences holiday shipping delays

Kennedy Wilker, Writer

After the shipping demand was at an all-time low due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, shipping is now at a skyrocketed demand. Seventy-six percent of Americans shop online and over 50% are buying more online and less in store. There is a rapid increase in the demand for imported goods and companies are rushing to keep up. With Americans changing their buying habits, it takes a whole industry to continue.

The shipping delay is predicted to last until early 2023. With the demand increasing, prices are predicted to go up. Months of shipping upsets due to the pandemic, including shortages, factory shutdowns, congestion within the ports and labor shortages have all contributed to the cause of the recent shipping delays. USPS detailed supervisor Ms. Lisa Johnson said, “A lot has changed in the last year. Once something is first changed, it takes awhile for everyone to get used to it.” As the system is shifted, it takes some effort to get it back on track.

Some days we’ll have double the number of packages and it affects each position into a chain reaction.”

— Lisa Johnson

The standard shipping time frame people have become accustomed to depends on the global supply chain that allows brands to ship products overseas to each destination. The supply chain delays and consumer demand has resulted in shipping containers being piled up at global ports. Consumers will have to wait longer to receive their items and it will cost the companies more money to ship. Senior Jenna Dallenbach said, “I have experienced a lot of delays. It is disappointing to expect something and it does not come in time, but it has taught me to buy from more reliable places and in-store.” Companies and postal services are advising to get your shopping done earlier, upgrade to faster shipping and shop in person, especially at local businesses.

Labor shortages are leaving a footprint on the issue as the numbers of workers are thinning out and the demand is rising.  The number of truck drivers and postal workers are at a low. Postal services are struggling to deliver the surplus of packages with so few employees. The postal service is having a hard time keeping up. Johnson said, “Some days we’ll have double the number of packages and it affects each position into a chain reaction.” Once one job is hit from the delay, everyone will indirectly suffer.

With the holidays approaching, this season will be hit hard with shipping delays. Consumers will experience empty shelves, higher prices and major shipping delays. People won’t be able to get everything on their list in time or will have to pay more to get it. Fedex and UPS announced deadlines posted to make sure people get everything ordered in time to make it under the tree. Teacher Mr. Dan Leer said, “I think as we get closer to Christmas, things will get a lot more hectic.” The shipping delays and the increased demand that comes with the holiday season will go hand and hand in affecting each other until the industry can get back on top of things.

Consumers can help to reduce the shipping delays this holiday season. To help minimize holiday shipping delays, order ahead of time with a set a time frame for when you can order at the latest and factor in any possible issues that could occur while in transit. Upgrade and choose the faster-and typically more expensive- shipping option like overnight and priority shipping. For businesses, updating inventory and preparing for large shipments over the holidays will help reduce the shortages.