Britain’s favourite retailers have revealed their final Christmas online order dates. With Christmas falling on a Monday this year, there could be some nasty surprises for last-minute shoppers, warns the home delivery specialist ParcelHero.
As yet, no store delivers on Christmas Day and many retailers don’t deliver on a Sunday. That means Saturday, 23 December is the last possible delivery date for many stores, forcing retailers to pull back their last order deadlines this Christmas.
With Christmas delivery confusion likely, ParcelHero has just relaunched its ever-popular retailers’ Christmas deadline tool. It lists fifty of the UK’s favourite stores’ final online ordering dates for Christmas.
ParcelHero’s Head of Consumer Research, David Jinks M.I.L.T., says: ‘A Monday Christmas is the nightmare before Christmas Eve for retailers. With the earlier Saturday deadline for deliveries and a three-day gap for retailers whose standard delivery option is working days only, pressure will be mounting. Stores such as printer and laptop specialists HP and Waterstones bookshop don’t offer Saturday deliveries. That means they have had to move their final Christmas ordering date back to Tuesday, 19 December to allow sufficient time for a Friday delivery.
‘It’s not just standard-price orders that are impacted. Several retailers’ final deadline options for their fastest express deliveries are also looking cautious. Last year, for example, Superdry and The White Company offered Christmas orders right up to 23 December, but they are advising that this year’s last possible order date is 21 December.
‘Such precaution makes a lot of sense, as there could be some Christmas delivery disruption this year. Some Amazon warehouse staff are likely to be on strike around Christmas time, reports Personnel Today. That could have a big impact on deliveries in certain areas or for particular products. The journal also states that Net-a-Porter staff are planning strikes in the run-up to Christmas, although ParcelHero’s understanding is this action has now been shelved.
‘Iceland supermarket workers at a major distribution centre are also planning strikes over the Christmas period, according to the union Unite. And there could be a shock looming for chocolate lovers. The GMB union says Ferrero Rocher production is also expected to be impacted by strike action, potentially spoiling Christmas for partygoers and ambassadors alike.
‘Additionally, some delivery organisations and distribution centres are struggling with a lack of seasonal staff because the pool of available workers has sunk considerably post-Brexit. For all these reasons, we strongly advise shoppers not to place their trust in retailers’ final order deadlines, as deliveries and supply chains could be under strain. Last year, as we neared Christmas, stores including Paul Smith, The Conran Shop and Pets at Home pulled back their final deadline by several days to ensure their customers weren’t left disappointed. That was a sensible move.
‘Click & Collect services will also be tighter this year, as many stores will be closed on Sunday, 24 December. That means shoppers who are collecting in-store must not leave it too late to pick up their orders. Remember also that the turmoil that has hit the High Street over the past few years may mean that the “buy now – pick up in store” option you have traditionally used may no longer be possible. Even though brands such as Debenhams and Topshop still appear on our retailers’ Christmas deadline list, these businesses have largely moved online amid extensive store closures. Don’t bank on that department store you haven’t visited in a while still being there!’