Courier warns of ‘Christmas delivery chaos’ from e-commerce spike

Record online spending is set to create delivery chaos this Christmas, ParcelHero has warned.

The home delivery courier said that a doubling of online sales this year due to the Coronavirus has already created unprecedented demand, with many delivery and
logistics companies “stretched to full capacity” in the run up to the festive season.

The company predicted that this will create a probable record online Christmas sales period, doubling deliveries for many retailers while potentially “snapping”
overstretched supply chains.

Comparing the rise in online spending to the Mount Everest of Christmas peaks, ParcelHero’s head of consumer research David Jinks said the double-whammy of families separated by Covid restrictions mailing their gifts, plus a shortage of skilled drivers created by Brexit, could prove “a mountain too high to climb”.

ParcelHero had its busiest day ever last week and online pure-play Ocado also overtook Tesco to become the UK’s most valuable retailer.

Jinks explained: “The huge demand for deliveries is being compounded by the reported loss of a quarter of a million EU nationals from the UK economy this year, which will lead to a 30 per cent shortfall in drivers and warehouse workers.

“Even though many retailers and delivery companies are attempting to hire thousands more staff in preparation for this year’s Christmas peak, this might be difficult to do in practice,” he continued, adding: “Retailers may need to radically shake up their Christmas distribution plans.”

ParcelHero’s warning comes after Yodel announced it would create 2,950 new jobs to handle volumes during the Christmas peak. Meanwhile Amazon is planning to create
more than 20,000 seasonal and permanent positions worldwide ahead of the festive period.

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