by Susan Duclos, All News Pipeline:
When we first heard the chatter about the probability that Americans would have issues finding what they want and need for Christmas shopping, it was easy to first think “Well, Christmas has been so commercialized with less and less people celebrating the birth of Christ, and more overly concerned with what gifts they are getting, maybe this is a blessing in disguise.”
I still think the holiday has in fact become too commercialized, but understand that for many, the presents are simply part of their celebration of the birth of Christ.
As more and more warnings came about the number of items that won’t be on the shelves or just a limited supply would be available, whether from supply chain issues, or shortages of the parts needed to manufacture certain products, or labor shortages, and let’s not forget the inflation, we realize that for many, Christmas was going to be hard in 2021.
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Personal experience has made some things clear.
If sending gifts by mail, do it earlier than usual because the congestion at post offices across the country, along with the labor shortages, can cause delays.
Secondly, where we are seeing stories and images of physical brick and mortar stores with depleted and/or empty shelves in a number of departments, electronics, children’s toys and games, bicycles and clothing, just to name some of the areas where it is more difficult to find what is needed than in previous years.
Alley said the store had about 100 bikes in stock, but would normally have around 1,000.
Bicycling.com reports the shortage could last into 2022, saying the supply-chain and the time it takes to build new factories are to blame.
Honestly with the price of gas as high as it is, and the short term lowering of prices about to rebound back to the higher prices, maybe even higher than before, bicycles could become a preferred mode of transportation for some again.
At least for those not having to battle a foot of snow in the Winter, although as inflation continues unabated, some may even choose to take their chances no matter the weather.
So, whether for a child, grandkid, niece, nephew, or yourself or other adults in the family, a bike may be one of the best investments in 2021-2022, but the brick and mortars are still having issues with stock, while online ordering continues (for now!) to have the stock available, reasonably prices and with a short delivery date.
Clothing & Shoes:
Another group of items we are seeing reports of shortages in physical stores, is clothing, whether it is depleted, or just lacking a variety of selections, many use Christmas to get not only what is wanted, but what is needed for themselves and their loved ones.
“We have a gentleman who makes shoes for us in Italy,” Dunn said. “He said ‘Listen, I can send you as many shoes as you want. They just won’t have soles on them.’”
Meanwhile Dan Ungar of Mar-Lou Shoes has his vendors telling him the exact ship his stuff is stuck on.
Reuters reports that the shortage of new clothes is actually bumping up sales for second-hand clothing stores. According to the trade group, 85% of toys sold in the U.S. are manufactured in Asia.
Just imagine opening up a gift to find a lovely pair of shoes….no soles!