Delays of 10 days or more can be expected for online shopping purchases as logistics constraints caused by the disastrous floods in NSW and Queensland start to bite.
The co-founder of shipping-technology platform Shippit, Rob Hango-Zada, said the floods had already caused major disruptions to delivery services across the country and the situation was expected to get worse.
Hango-Zada said sustained flooding activity could blow out wait times even further, and urged customers to brace for delays.
“Australia’s logistics operators are under extreme pressure, so we're urging consumers to be patient and to expect delays on their deliveries,” Hango-Zada said.
He said inundation had put some depots and warehouses out of action and posed a safety risk to workers.
Road closures, particularly the main roads that connect NSW and Queensland, had also restricted the movement of delivery drivers.
Delivery companies were also experiencing staff shortages, with most carriers running on only 60 per cent capacity or less.
The routes experiencing the worst delays
Deliveries between Sydney and Brisbane, and from Brisbane to just about anywhere, were likely to face long delays, Hango-Zada said.
He said the Sydney-to-Perth route and Sydney to Melbourne routes were also looking at delays of up to 10 business days.
Next day deliveries are likely to be less impacted by delays as they tend to rely on air freight, which Hango-Zada said had not been heavily disrupted.
Floods grinding business operations to a standstill
Digital retail specialist Meray Azar said one of her Brisbane-based clients, an Australia-wide dry-cleaning company called iBAG, was temporarily unable to deliver dry cleaning to customers because their basement was completely flooded.
Thankfully, no garments were damaged, Azar said, and the situation in Brisbane had since returned to normal.
She anticipates similar impacts for other online-shopping companies in the coming days, noting the cleanup may continue to pose delays over the medium to long term.