More than 18 months into the coronavirus pandemic, parts of the global shipping industry are still struggling to get its customers’ goods from A to B.
What’s causing these recent shipping issues?
The global freight sector is under pressure for a variety of reasons.
Closures at major container ports – such as Ningbo-Zhoushan in China, which had to shut down in August due to one of its staff testing positive for Covid-19 – are continuing to cause problems. Other terminals in Asia have also had to put their operations on pause recently, including Yantian, just up from Hong Kong.
It’s not just the initial period of downtime at these locations that creates obstacles. It’s the speed at which big sites like this can recover their operations and deal with the backlog of containers. Everything bottlenecks, bringing shipments to a halt.
Country-by-country restrictions are still wreaking havoc with deliveries, and charges are sky-rocketing due to a marked increase in demand now that most strict guidance has been lifted. Then, of course, we’re still dealing with the lingering effects of the Suez Canal blockage. It may have taken place back in March, but, as previous experiences have taught us, it can take months – if not years – to address the backlog created from this kind of event and get operations back to pre-incident levels.
Add to this the problems we’ve been experiencing here in the UK with driver shortages and fuel scarcity, and you can see why getting goods from our international ports to our customers has been something of a challenge at times, too!
How we’re combatting the crisis
At Hallmark, we’re doing everything we can to make sure the disruption to the worldwide supply chain is having minimal impact on our lead times.
Because we have a global presence – and we can source materials from a variety of companies in all kinds of locations – we can spread the risk of delays by placing orders with suppliers who have better connections and who can provide the goods we need at more competitive rates. From woven labels and washcare labels to personalised mailing bags, swing tickets and custom thank you cards, we guarantee you will continue to receive quality products at the best possible prices, regardless of what’s going on in the industry.
As a company, we certainly haven’t been unaffected by the recent breaks in the global supply chain. But we’d like to take this opportunity to reassure our customers that fulfilling your orders remains our top priority, and we will continue to adapt our measures to ensure you receive the fastest turnarounds and the fantastic level of service you have come to expect from us. We will always be honest and transparent when it comes to providing you with realistic timelines for delivery, and if anything should change after you’ve placed your order, we’ll be in touch straightaway to update you.