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Why are there shipping delays?

Posted on December 12 2020

The situation is constantly changing as countries modify their lockdowns to try to reduce COVID 19 impacts.    We have detailed below some of the major markets where deliveries are currently impacted.     Export air transport remains challenging, particularly in regions where airlines have reduced passenger flights – Australia, some Island nations.  This sometimes can mean slightly longer export times.
Reporting delays 4-6 days due to severely heavy snow- expecting to improve next week.
Bpost has advised that due to a second wave of COVID-19, the Belgian Government has announced a new lockdown to run until 13 December 2020 at the earliest. BPost will continue to process and deliver items in compliance with the lockdown measures, which are likely to result in processing and delivery delays for all mail types throughout the country. Items requiring a signature on delivery will, until further notice, be delivered with the delivery person signing on behalf of the customer while in their presence.
Snowfall/freezing rain in Newfoundland, Manitoba and Northern Ontario are adding delays.
There are variable delays throughout, with major cities reporting 2 – 4 day delays
Calgary, Moncton – 2 days
Toronto – 3 days
Vancouver, Winnipeg - 4 days 
Delays throughout, including international mail arrivals in to Canada.  Toronto has now announced 4 week lockdown with immediate effect
Czech Post has advised the Czech Republic has been hit with the second wave of Coronavirus. The Czech Republic Government declared a 30-day state of emergency for the entire country which has been extended to 20 November. Due to the restrictions, quality of service cannot be guaranteed for all mail types until the end of the pandemic. Force Majeure is in place.
PostNord of Denmark has advised that the Danish Government has implemented further special measures to minimize the spread of COVID-19. Delivery delays are likely from 9 November until 3 December 2020, or further notice. Force Majeure is in place.
Government has eased the lockdown and allowed some non essential businesses to reopen, there are still delivery delays as companies observe enhanced social distancing measures La Poste has advised that COVID-19 infections have significantly increased throughout France, as a result, the Government has extended the lockdown through December 2020. Consequently, La Poste will not be able to guarantee delivery standards during this period, with delays in processing and delivery of all mail types likely throughout the country.
Government has eased some restrictions and allowed some non essential businesses to re open.  Enhanced distancing measures are contributing to some delays for final delivery.   Bavaria has entered lockdown allowing only essential businesses and workers.
Delivery is still possible in Germany, but tighter controls due to the renewed coronavirus outbreak are resulting in delays. An adapted procedure for receipt signature via local postal service is in place for the Deutsche Post. Fewer collection points are available due to the mandatory closure of non-essential stores. DeutschePost recommends specifying a preferred locations for parcel delivery to drop off, no signature, or to use a Packstation address.
Hellenic Post of Greece has advised that from Saturday 7 November, the whole of Greece entered a national lockdown. As a result, both domestic and international mail collection and delivery will be affected, leading to delays. Lockdown end date not yet advised.
New restrictions are in place to prevent further outbreak of Covid-19. This will result in delays in delivery for all types of mail – between 4-7 days.
An Post are reporting they still have delays in parcel processing and delivery due to high number of infected workers, combined with peak volumes.   They hope to have most of the backlog cleared by 15th Dec, but delays are still between 4-10 days
Poste Italiane has temporarily suspended delivery to some cities with high infection rates
Camastra (CAP 92020) - in the Caltanissetta area
• Misilmeri (postcode 90036) en Ciminna (90023) - in the Palermo area
• Vittoria (CAP 97019) en Acate (97011) - in the Ragusa area
• Cesarò (98033), Bronte ( 95034), Maniace (95030) en San Teodoro
(98030) - in the Catania area
• Pallagorio (88818) - in the Cosenza area
• Cotronei (88836), Isola Capo Rizzuto (88841) en Mileto (89852) - in the
Catanzaro area
• Bagnara Calabra (89011), Platì , Bruzzano Zeffiro (89030) en Cardeto
(89060) - in the Reggio Calabria area
Latvian Post have advised that a state of emergency has been declared by the Government from 9 November until 6 December 2020 and possibly beyond. Postal services will continue to function with reduced working hours and workforce. Signatures will not be collected on delivery. The measures will affect the processing and delivery of all mail types, with Force Majeure declared until the state of emergency is lifted.
Experiencing high infection rates so have enhanced safety measures, signature deliveries not currently available, electronic scans only to minimize contact. Deliveries are delayed.
To minimize the impact of Covid-19 Malta Post has adjusted their operations in order to secure the health and safety of their employees. This will result in delays in delivery and will last until further notice. Lack of transport capacity is adding additional delay.
Polish Post has advised that the special measures aimed at slowing the spread of COVID-19 are still in force in Poland, and will continue to affect its services until further notice.
Slovakia Post has advised that due to an increase in the number of COVID infections, the Slovakia Government has declared a partial lockdown across the whole country from 24 October 2020 for at least three weeks. *Not yet lifted
During the lockdown, postal services will operate with restrictions and reduction of the workforce. Addressee’s signature will not be collected upon delivery.
Slovenia Post has informed us that Slovenia has been hit with a second wave of Coronavirus. The Slovenian government has declared a 30 day state of emergency from 19 October 2020 for the entire country, with wide ranging restrictions, curfews and a ban on movements between some regions.
As a result, the quality of service for all mail types cannot be guaranteed. The impact is expected to last until the end of the pandemic with force majeure being invoked again until further notice.
Correos, has advised they continue to experience problems with capacity, frequency and regularity of international flights due to the current COVID-19 situation. The force majeure situation previously declared remains in force, which continues to have a major impact on operations. As a result, we cannot guarantee the quality of service for all inbound and outbound mail until further notice.
Switzerland has put special measures in place to limit the spread of Coronavirus. La Poste Suisse need to comply with these measures and may have reduced staff numbers so not able to deliver all mail to specifications. Signature on delivery is suspended and delays to mail services can be expected.
Heavy rain in southern Thailand is causing floods in many provinces, and blockages are causing delays in the transportation and delivery of all mail types.
National lockdown has been lifted, but some regions remain at Tier 3 with only essential workers and business permitted.
Staffing issues due to self-isolating and social distancing, along with increased parcel volumes, continue to have some effect at our mail centres leading to some delayed deliveries.  
Due to the impact of peak volumes and limited availability or capacity of our United States Postal Service entry points (at US airports), we are experiencing heavy delays on our shipments. Transit data shows that USPS is experiencing major backlogs in these entry points, resulting for some volumes to experience delays of 6 weeks or more.