Santa in transit: Australians worried about delay in gift deliveries

Delays in deliveries leading up to Christmas could leave thousands of disappointed Australians without gifts under the tree, new research from Finder shows.

A nationally representative survey of 1,013 respondents found that 65% of Australians have shopped for Christmas online this year, counting on the hope that their orders will arrive on time.

Research found that 1 in 10 people (9%) – which equates to 1.7 million Australians – admitted that Christmas would be ruined if their gift deliveries did not arrive on time.

Another in five (20%) would buy a last-minute gift in-store to avoid coming back empty-handed at Christmas.

More than a quarter (28%) would simply wait until January to give a late gift to loved ones when it arrived in the mail, while 5% would offer something instead.

Research expert Kate Browne says gift shopping is a major source of stress for Australians as the holidays approach, made worse by the global supply chain crisis.

“The surge in demand for global delivery, combined with major supply chain disruptions and stringent customs procedures, has left Australians waiting months for their deliveries to arrive.

“Many international shipping routes are currently suspended and isolation requirements leave large numbers of logistics personnel on rest for days or weeks at a time.”

According to the World Bank, even before the pandemic, the container ports of Melbourne and Sydney were among the lowest 15% and 10% of global ports in terms of efficiency.

“This is great for online shoppers – worried about whether their gifts will arrive on time for Saturday.”

The ACCC revealed in a recent report that freight rates on international shipping routes are now 7 times higher than they were just over a year ago.

The average length of time a ship is idle at Port Botany – one of Australia’s largest ports – has nearly doubled from 11.9 hours before the pandemic to 21.2 hours in 2020-2021.

“There is no worse feeling than waking up on Christmas Eve and realizing that not all of your presents have arrived.

“It might be too late to place an order in time for Christmas, but that doesn’t mean you have to show up with nothing on the day.

“Gift cards, books, and booze are all great and affordable last minute gift ideas, and you can even buy them at supermarkets and newsagents, which means you won’t need to. to face a crowded mall.

“Be sure to check store availability before you go, as some stores will be out of stock in the last days before Christmas. Write a list of things you need to save time and stress.

“If you don’t have time to shop, homemade gifts, like a new batch of rum scoops or a photo album, are a thoughtful way to show your appreciation for those around you,” Browne said.

Finder has compiled a list of the best last minute Christmas gifts when you need a gift fast.

Almost all Gen Z Australians (90%) have ordered gifts online this year and are the most likely to say that Christmas will be ruined without their online gift deliveries (19%).

If your online gift orders didn’t arrive in time for Christmas, what would be the result?
I did not buy Christmas gifts online 35%
i would give them the gift in january 28%
I would buy a last minute gift in store 20%
Christmas would be wasted 9%
I would offer them something else again 5%
Other 2%
Source: Finder survey of 1,013 respondents, December 2021

Need a last minute gift? Finder has compiled a list of the best last minute Christmas gifts.