Current summary of service impacts (updated 5/7/20):
URGENT REQUIREMENT? – If you need your item urgently please upgrade to express postage services at checkout. These are mostly traveling normally through the postal systems. Budget services are still quite unreliable. Sometimes things are arriving normally, sometimes with delays.
FRENCH DELAYS – La Poste (90% of our parcels are sent through La Poste or start their journeys with them) are suffering staffing issues but parcels shipped in June are progressing through the postal systems almost normally in most cases. Backlogs from March, April and May have now mostly been cleared.
INTERNATIONAL DELAYS – Due to the reduced number of international flights some items are now being sent by sea which is adding 4-6 weeks onto delivery times.
INTERNATIONAL BORDER DELAYS – The United States, United Kingdom, Canada and Australia have a significant pile up of parcels on their borders. Delays are occurring on the borders going into customs and again on the way out when being handed over to national carriers.
LARGE OVERSIZE ITEMS – Restrictions on sending large items via budget services are still in place. We have a driver going back to the U.K. on 20th / 21st July so the worst case scenario will be we take them from France and send them from the U.K. where it is possible to ship these larger packages. If you are not wanting to wait any longer just let us know and we will cancel your order and refund you.
TRACKING PARCEL OPTIONS – Etsy customers can track their parcel on the Etsy order page, customers on our own website can track in their account area. Customers in countries such as the United States, Australia, Canada and the United Kingdom can use the same tracking numbers shown on the order page with their national carriers such as USPS, Canada Post, Australia Post and Royal Mail once items get through borders and enter your country.
Useful links and articles:
CLICK HERE for a link to an article on the virus and it’s effects on global shipping services and business.
CLICK HERE for a link to an article on how many postal services are using much slower services via ships rather than flights due to lack of aircraft.
The Etsy and Ebay forums are full of threads discussing delayed packages and problems with global deliveries. It’s not just us! Link here to just one discussion of many on global postal delays: https://community.etsy.com/t5/All-About-Shipping/Shipping-Delays/m-p/130267105#M334060
Australia Post service updates page: https://auspost.com.au/about-us/news-media/important-updates
The US postal service USPS service updates page: https://about.usps.com/newsroom/service-alerts/
Canada Post service updates page: https://www.canadapost.ca/cpc/en/our-company/news-and-media/service-alerts.page
United Kingdom service updates page: https://www.royalmail.com/coronavirus
Update 5th July 2020
The majority of newly sent parcels are traveling normally at the moment. 10% are facing odd delays. Express services are 99% efficient.
Delayed packages are still arriving and starting to track again. Sometimes after some weeks / months. Out of the many delayed packages we have had during the pandemic we have had no completely lost parcels yet.
Update 29th June 2020
Mail in Europe seems to have pretty much gone back to normal with just a few stragglers finally turning up.
International mail to the US, Australia and Canada is still experiencing delays but there are no patterns. Some parcels are arriving in normal delivery windows and some are being added to the piles at the borders awaiting processing. Parcels that got stuck at the beginning of the pandemic in March / April are slowly being reached at the bottoms of the big piles.
There are points of delay going into customs and once parcels have got over the border and are awaiting pick up by national carriers. If your parcel is delayed for a long time the last tracking will likely show a border point.
Out of the 100’s of delayed parcels we have had, none have been confirmed as lost yet. Tracking is intermittant but most things are slowly getting through the postal systems.
Express premium services are travelling as normal.
Update 20th June 2020
We are pleased to report further appearances of long lost parcels. Budget services are still haphazard, with some deliveries arriving in normal delivery windows and others taking 3-5 weeks. Express services are mostly arriving on time with a couple of day delays in some circumstances.
We received our first 1 star feedback as a result of delayed delivery this week. I knew it was coming, it was just a case of when! We will of course continue to make our best efforts to explain the delays and plead for understanding and patience in these unprecedented times. A quick look back through our 1000’s of feedbacks to more normal times will confirm delivery has always been prompt pre-Corona. The parcel we received the one star feedback for arrived with the customer today. See the tracking by clicking here
With the lifting of border controls to some degree this week here in France Mr EVE finally got back to the UK suitably booted and suited to make some deliveries of large oversize items. We would thank those customers for their patience. 1000+km in a day. Please rest assured we are doing everything we can to get things to you as quickly as possible.
Update 15th June 2020
The lack of aircraft traveling internationally are still causing delays and not helping towards tackling the backlog of delayed parcels waiting to hitch a lift in spare cargo space. Some parcels have been sent by sea instead which is adding weeks onto delivery times.
Borders are also a major cause of delays as there are not enough staff to process and deliver current high levels of packages due to the increased levels of online shopping. The backlogs are only being processed slowly and in some cases not at all.
Parcels sent in June via budget services seem to be traveling reasonably well through the postal systems. Many reaching customers in normal delivery windows of 5-10 working days. Parcels sent via upgraded express services are arriving in normal 3-8 working day delivery windows.
Update 9th June 2020
More and more parcels are tracking again after no movement for many weeks and in some cases, months.
Backlogs from late April / May now seem to be starting to get slowly processed.
We would urge all customers not to be concerned about loss. It just hardly ever happens (three parcels in over 10000 to date across all our shops and two of them showed up sometime later). Parcels nearly always turn up eventually. If they don’t, all our parcels are insured for loss. If you no longer need the item please contact us for instructions on how to refuse and return your parcel with no cost to you.
Thank you for your patience Jamie! Jamie’s package took twelve weeks to reach him in Canada after getting caught in a pile up on the border.
Update 3rd June 2020
There are still many delays with parcels sent via budget services. Borders are still a major problem with less postal and customs staff, large build ups of parcels, less planes and much more people shopping online. Some carriers are using ships rather than planes.
Express services are not facing excessive delays at borders but seem to be moving consistently, if a little slower.
We still have no news regarding sending larger oversize packages or getting a driver back to the UK for oversize UK deliveries but fingers crossed we will get something sorted after the 15th of June. I will contact those customers waiting as soon as I have solid news.
Update 28th May 2020
The French Prime Minister says that after June 15th, France expects to open the borders with European countries without the 14 day quarantine, except with those countries that impose this on France.
Depending on the situation in the U.K. we hope to get a driver back to the U.K. shortly after the 15th June to take big items that have been held for delivery to our English customers. This obviously depends on how long England has travel restrictions on it’s border…
If LaPoste has not raised it’s restrictions on the sending of large items by that time, we will also be able to take those items we have been holding for international customers back to the U.K. for shipping from there where there are no restrictions on sending large items.
Update 25th May 2020
A very patient Alexius ordered this vase from us on the 10th March. 10 weeks ago! It arrived with him in Australia this morning!
Link to a video highlighting the issues with Canada Post especially but many of the issues discussed here apply to other carriers too: https://globalnews.ca/video/6991655/canada-post-on-parcel-backlog?fbclid=IwAR1xHQY80pjS1cBk1iWgGv2nhHRB3DHY0dNtCfLRibbK8gW8cuW0UwpPeDE
Links to two French articles on how bad things are with Canada Post at the moment: https://www.journaldemontreal.com/2020/05/23/postes-canada-croule-sous-les-colis-1?fbclid=IwAR0JlWh4K8O0LMbV0H7fgThzPnXT3A3YWeqVk4TCpDGdNnlZtyVqFrTjP_Q
Update 19th May 2020
It is with great relief that we report that many parcels have now started to move after many weeks of no movement. It seems they are starting with the top of the pile with more recently delayed parcels moving first and then moving to those on the bottom of the pile. Most parcels sent in the last four weeks are moving. Some of those sent before that are seemingly still sitting in piles.
Please contact us if your parcel is showing no movement for four weeks and we will start a claim / investigation. All packages are covered for loss, but we need to file the claim first. This takes at least a few weeks for the courier to locate the package or confirm it as lost.
We would again really like to thank those customers who have been so patient and understanding with us in these incredibly trying times.
Update 15th May 2020
We stuck it out today to speak to customer services at La Poste about delayed parcels. After 50 minutes at 15 Cents a minute of holding we finally got to the head of the queue and spoke to a somewhat grumpy operator, only to be told what we really already knew. The postal system globally is in chaos. International borders are particularly troublesome. There are huge back-ups of parcels going back to the beginning of March.
We are able to start cases for lost parcels after twenty working days / four weeks have elapsed from dispatch. If you would like us to start a case and you have not yet been in touch please do contact us and we will start a lost parcel claim / investigation.
As detailed in our postal policies everything we send is insured (you can see our policies on Etsy by scrolling down on our shop home pages on Etsy). Ultimately you will receive your item or a full refund after the carriers have carried out their investigations. These investigations are taking 3-6 weeks at present.
We appreciate the situation is stressful. We can confirm though that it is not as stressful as home schooling!
Update 14th May 2020
Parcels sent in March 2020. Most parcels, perhaps 80%, have now arrived. We are starting or have started claims and investigations for those that have not. We expect at least 99% to turn up eventually though.
Parcels sent in April 2020. 50% of parcels sent in April are at a stand still. 25% are starting to move slowly but this percentage is increasing daily. The rest have arrived.
Parcels sent in May 2020. The majority are currently moving slowly but steadily through the postal systems.
All parcels sent via premium express services are arriving in normal delivery windows.
Update 10th May 2020
We are pleased to report a continuation of parcels starting to show some movement after long periods of holding.
France will be lifting some restrictions from Monday 11th May which we hope means that parcels that got delayed in France will now start getting on their way to you. We also hope to be able to start sending large packages. with couriers again soon.
Those of you waiting for delivery on large and fragile items that require personal delivery may have a couple of weeks longer to wait. It will be a few weeks yet before we can get a driver back to the U.K. Likely mid-June.
A summary of the changes happening in France from the 11th of May can be found here: https://www.france24.com/en/20200509-france-prepares-to-ease-covid-19-lockdown-what-you-need-to-know
Update 6th May 2020
Thankfully over the last few days we are starting to see updated tracking with parcels that have got delayed and/or stuck over the last couple of months. Hopefully this trend will continue.
Update 4th May 2020
Many international parcels have not moved for some weeks. We anticipate normal services will start to resume from next week when restrictions are slowly being lifted in France. Postal services in your own countries may though still be hit with delays and hold-ups.
We currently have around two hundred parcels delayed in transit. Usually it’s one or two! Again, thank you for your patience.
Update 27th April 2020
La Poste are currently facing multiple issues with backlogs and service outs including tracking and customer services. We are currently finding it impossible to contact them on the phone to chase parcels or start investigations for late ones. Doubtless they are a little overwhelmed.
Lost parcels are very rare. Generally 1 in 1000 packages that we send. If a parcel is confirmed as lost after an investigation is made we will refund you in full. Delivery times and investigations are taking longer at the moment and all we can do currently is ask for your patience.
We send hundreds of parcels out a month and never have more than one or two investigations underway. We currently have around 100 late parcels. Most of these parcels are stuck at borders. These are clearly difficult times for the postal services globally.
Please note a parcel is not considered as lost and worthy for investigation until twenty working days / four weeks have elapsed from dispatch. Normal transit time is generally up to ten working days / two weeks.
Update 19th April 2020
We are now starting to get multiple reports of parcel delays overseas. Especially the United States, United Kingdom, Australia and Canada. Delays seem to be occurring on the borders, in and out of customs.
Update 15th April 2020
La Poste have placed further temporary restrictions on accepted parcels (translated through Google translate):
“As part of our adaptations related to the Covid-19 and to protect our employees with barrier gestures we regret that we can no longer send packages of more than 15 kg, so-called bulk packages (Length – 1m or the sum of Length – width – height – 150 cm) as well as packages of “tube” shape”
Where financially viable we are using other couriers for larger and/or heavier items. If we encounter delays in getting your parcel on it’s way we will be in touch offering you the option of waiting for La Poste to resume normal services (likely mid May), contributing towards the cost of a more expensive courier or receiving a full refund.
Some customers are starting to experience some delays in receiving parcels. Mainly those internationally outside of the European Union. The United States, Australia and Canada seem to have pile ups of parcels on their borders.
Thank you for your ongoing support and patience in this difficult time.
Update 14th April 2020
The French President has announced that the lock-down will remain in place until May 11th. After that date it is suggested things will start slowly returning to normal. We think it is likely shipments will experience ongoing delays throughout April and May.
France 24 reports on Macron’s speech at the link here: https://www.france24.com/en/20200413-macron-targets-easing-of-france-virus-lockdown-from-may-11
Update 13th April 2020
Restrictions have been put into place for some oversize and heavy parcels by a number of couriers. The thinking behind this is if it needs more than one person to handle it it is an unnecessary risk. Please allow for dispatch delays of at least three weeks for large and heavy items over 10kg in weight. We may be able to ship by alternative means. If urgent please get in touch prior to purchase.
Update 7th April 2020
Our normal couriers La Poste (the French national post office) are still accepting mail but it is not currently moving much within the French postal system. This suggests that there may be some delays with orders made in the last week or so. The majority of orders made before that time seem to be moving as normal through the system.
Where possible we are using other couriers for international orders but sometimes this is just not financially viable. Please assume that our normal delivery window of 5-10 working days is unlikely to apply throughout April. Please contact us prior to ordering if things are urgent and we will see what we can do.
Update 30th March 2020
The French Post Office, La Poste, is only accepting and processing parcels on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday of each week until further notice. This is to restrict unnecessary human interactions. This means that if you place an order on Friday, Saturday, Sunday or Monday it will not be on it’s way until Wednesday.
Update 25th March 2020
Parcels still seem to be arriving in normal delivery windows. 3-7 days within Europe and 5-10 days globally.
Update 23rd March 2020
Our courier is suggesting that there may be delays at borders both within Europe and globally. They cannot any longer guarantee shipping times.
Update 19th March 2020
Our courier has now asked for customer phone numbers so that they can contact you in the event of any postal delays, local enforcement rules or for personal contact issues. Please message us after purchase with a contact phone number.
Update 18th March 2020
The Post Office is taking parcels back to the depot for us daily so we have no dispatch delays currently in place. Items continue to be on the way within 24 hours of order.
Update 17th March 2020
All our digital shops remain open for business. We are dispatching items globally.
Customers should also allow for delays with postal systems across the world. Currently we cannot even begin to estimate global delivery times. More local services within Europe that do not involve flights will likely face less disruption.
Update 15th March 2020
All our digital shops are open for business. We are dispatching items globally on a daily basis.
We will update this page with any developments as they happen.
We wish you all the best in these worrying times.
Eve & Stephen