Because of Christmas, far more packages are delivered in December than at any other time of the year. Photo: Element5 Digital, pexels.com
15 million Christmas parcels
Wrapping and unwrapping Christmas goodies is twice as enjoyable if there are some nice wintry themes printed on the box. In Germany alone approx. 15 million parcels are sent during the pre-Christmas period. In the UK this figure is even higher, and Royal Mail transported as many as 138 million parcels in December 2016.
This year however, it is questionable whether all those parcels will get to their destinations in time for the big day. For the first time two parcel services – Hermes and GLS – have limited their contingents in Germany. The decision-makers are of course aware that there has been an increase in internet purchases during the festive season and have therefore stepped up their staffing levels and vehicles. Just over 20,000 additional workers and 10,000 vehicles are being mobilised by Hermes, GLS, DHL and DPD. Nevertheless, there is a distinct shortage of transport options, carriers and storage space to cope with the onslaught.
Beautiful packaging: Special editions of packaging sets are highly popular during the Christmas season and are quickly sold out. Photo: Deutsche Post AG
Ensuring greater efficiency in the packaging process
Packaging companies are not unfamiliar with the state of seasonal emergency. Over the Black Friday weekend at the end of November 2017, UK customers alone received more than 80 per cent of all mail-ordered purchases in their homes. It’s a sign that retailers could no longer avoid these new customer demands. Shipping cartons nowadays need to provide more than just safety during transportation. To do justice to the greater demand and to avoid chaos before Christmas, experts are recommending to the relevant companies that they apply efficient packaging solutions along the entire supply chain. This means reviewing and adjusting every single component in detail:
Accelerate the packaging process at the manufacturing plant
Reorganise the warehouse by providing better access and signage
Reduce packaging material
Minimise transport costs
A lot of hard work: In Germany alone approx. 15 million parcels are shipped during the pre-Christmas period. In the UK this figure was as high as 138 million parcels in December 2016. Photo: DHL
Secure packaging at home
Anyone who packages Christmas parcels themselves before taking them to the post office can be confident of safe shipment as long as they choose the right packaging material in the right size. This means using sufficient protective material, such as corrugated paperboard, plastic chips or paper that will cushion the impact of jolts, falls and friction and to ensure that even an expensive bottle of wine or exclusive vase will reach its destination in one piece. Fixing a packaged item securely within the shipping box provides further protection during shipment, as does adhesive tape attached firmly and tightly to the cover flaps.