Every year,marks the kickoff to the holiday shopping season. But if you want a happy and present-filled Christmas or Hannukah holiday in 2021, you'll want to , in October.
A number of factors are coming together to complicate gift giving this year, especially for those prone to procrastination. Clogged ports, a stressed trucking industry, labor shortages, higher demand and higher shipping costs are all impacting shipments of toys, electronics, apparel and more. The supply chain issues are not only impacting imports from China, where many ofare made, but also shipments within the United States.
"Major retailers are expecting a strong holiday shopping season, but have warned of limited inventories, longer shipping times, labor shortages and fewer discounts," Morgan Stanley economists recently.
U.S. ports are struggling to keep up with imports
One major pain point in the supply chain is the backlog at U.S. ports. Late last month, CBS News reported that the Port of Los Angeles, which handles 40% of U.S. imports, is facing a.
"The American consumer's buying strength is so strong and epic that we can't absorb all this cargo into the domestic supply chain," says Gene Seroka, director of the Port of Los Angeles.
East Coast ports are seeing record volume as well. The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey recently reported that it moved more cargo in August 2021 than in any other August on record.
There are plenty of domestic shipping delays, too
Of course, unloading cargo from ships is just the first step in getting, apparel and more from Asia to store shelves. Shipments need to be put on trucks, as well. And there just aren't enough trucks to get everything where it needs to go without big delays.
"There are really on average about 16 available truckload shipments for every available truck to move product out of (ports)," Bob Biesterfeld, the CEO of shipping logistics company C.H. Robinson,.
Scott Price, the international president of shipping giant UPS, holiday cards early this year, too!)he is half-jokingly warning people to "order your Christmas presents now, because otherwise on Christmas day, there may just be a picture of something that's not coming until February or March." And the United States Postal Service is bracing for increased holiday shipping volumes by raising rates and , effective October 1. (Send those
Here's how to avoid the holiday shipping crunch
The nation's supply chain is stressed, but you shouldn't be. There are plenty of great Nordstrom, Kohl's and other retailers on right now, offering popular electronics, kitchenware, apparel and more at deep discounts. Here are some of the best Pre-Black Friday deals available now, as curated by the CBS Essentials team.,
Walmart pre-Black Friday deals
Walmart has tons of tech, makeup, home goods and more reduced right now.
Best Buy pre-Black Friday deals
Best Buy has TVs, laptops, video games and more tech on sale.
Ulta pre-Black Friday deals
Find makeup, skincare, fragrances and more reduced at Ulta.
Amazon pre-Black Friday deals
, featuring what the company is calling "epic deals," is on now. You can save big on Alexa-powered devices, toys, apparel, kitchenware, beauty and much more. Here's a sampling of what's on sale.
Nordstrom pre-Black Friday deals
Nordstrom has markdowns on men's, women's and children's fashion, home and more.
Disney x Casetify insulated stainless steel water bottle
Keep thirst at bay with this Disney x Casetify insulated water bottle (26 oz.) featuring a retro design of Minnie Mouse or the whole Mickey Mouse gang.
GameStop pre-Black Friday deals
GameStop has deals on video games, gaming accessories, action figures and more.
Wayfair pre-Black Friday deals
Find furniture, small kitchen appliances, bedding and more reduced at Wayfair.
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