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You Might Want To Start Holiday Shopping Earlier This Year. Here’s Why.

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Shopping and shipping off those gifts during the holiday season can always get a bit dicey, but things are going to look even different this year.

So many of us are buying gifts online at places like Amazon. I mean, the VAST MAJORITY of the gifts I buy are from Amazon. It’s simply cheaper and more efficient in most cases.

When we shop online, we may not even realize the extent of how much we are relying heavily on the shipping of these goods.

It’s this shipping of goods that will be partly to blame for changes shoppers will see this holiday season.

Now, don’t shoot the messenger here. I’m just here to warn you of what’s coming.

Shipping time and costs are going through the roof, and it seems like it might not be getting better any time soon.

It’s no secret that businesses are hurting for employees right now. One stop to the drive thru at your local hamburger place (where you now have to wait in line upwards of 30 minutes) will make you acutely aware of the employee shortage.

Even hospitals are feeling the crunch, as ER times skyrocket due to the shortage of doctors and nurses available.

So, you can imagine the trouble that manufacturing businesses are having in retaining employees, producing their goods, and getting the product out to consumers.

The shipping industry is not immune to these problems, and they are seeing even more troubles than ever.

On top of the problems with keeping employees, companies are now having to deal with the looming catastrophe that is the Delta Variant.

More than 18 months into the pandemic, the disruption to global supply chains is getting worse, spurring shortages of consumer products and making it more expensive for companies to ship goods where they’re needed.

CNN Business

Due to loss of employees, shipping snags, and problems arising from the Delta Variant, holiday shoppers are most likely going to see a hike in prices, fewer choices, and delays in shipping this holiday season.

Companies such as Adidas — Crocs — and Hasbro — are already warning of disruptions as they prepare for the crucial year-end period.

CNN Business

Now, you know that a LOT of our goods come from China, and they are having no end to trouble at their shipping ports.

Just south of Shanghai, at Port Ningbo-Zhoushan, they have had to close up shop due to one of the doc workers testing positive for COVID. They have been closed since August 11th!

Many of the large manufacturers are having to reroute to avoid this port, so we are already seeing heavy delays on products shipped from overseas.

The partial closure of the world’s third busiest container port is disrupting other ports in China, stretching supply chains that were already suffering from recent problems at Yantian port, ongoing container shortages, coronavirus-related factory shutdowns in Vietnam and the lingering effects of the Suez Canal blockage in March.

CNN Business

The staggering demand for product, met with the snag in shipping issues, means that prices to ship goods are out of control.

There’s simply not enough capacity.

Soren Skou, CEO of Maersk — the container shipping giant

Port Ningbo-Zhoushan is by far not the only place seeing these shipping fiascos. Bottlenecks in the shipping process are being seen all over.

That spells trouble for retailers and consumer goods companies trying to restock inventories heading into the crucial year-end holiday shopping season.

CNN Business

If you look at the ports off Southern California, there are shipping boats just anchored there, waiting to be shipped, received, or processed.

So, bottom line, shop early this holiday season, expect delays, and expect that prices will be higher than you have seen in the past.

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