American package service UPS has severely underestimated the amount of gifts ordered online: a large number of its parcels were not delivered on time for Christmas. Amazon, a UPS partner, has given its customers gift certificates and free shipping as compensation for the tardy delivery.
132 million packages
UPS previously announced it estimated some 132 million packages were to be dealt with in the week prior to Christmas. Nevertheless, the company lacked capacity to meet the demand, citing air capacity as the biggest problem. Competitor FedEx had no delay at all, but other companies like Wal-Mart also had to deal with delays. Amazon has said it will be investigating UPS’ performance in this matter.
Analysts had predicted that the total worth of all online purchases during the holidays would reach nearly 60 billion euro, a 15 % increase. Still, plenty of retailers were caught by surprise by the huge jump in online purchases in the days leading up to Christmas, which saw a 37 % spike compared to the same period in 2012. It is apparent that an increasing amount of people are willing to purchase their Christmas gifts online.
(translated by Gary Peeters)