September is well known to be the the Freight Forwarding Industry’s peak season. We know that this period is one of the biggest annual challenges in the logistics calendar and if not managed well, could be a risky time. At PFE we know to expect the annual impact that the peak season brings and we plan ahead to ensure we offer our customers a reliable service.
This year we’ve seen shipping volumes steadily increase. We expect this to continue as we enter the traditional peak period supplying the UK Christmas market. Our expectation is that throughout September and up until the beginning of October (coinciding with Golden Week) that demand will be extremely strong.
Golden Week has a significant impact on global supply chains originating in China as commerce slows down during this period. Factories shut during this week and ports and customs operate with a skeleton staff. This creates additional pressure and enhances the rush of shipments into the UK and Europe to meet retailers’ demands for Christmas goods. The combination of Christmas demand with Golden Week shut-down causes congestion and capacity challenges for moving goods out of China.
As we head into the 2017 peak shipping season, we are well prepared to meet our customers’ needs. We understand the importance of timeliness for our customers and work with all of our colleagues and Partner agents to ensure that your supply chain continues to run smoothly.
These seasonal factors are also driving demand for air freight services and creating congestion and capacity issues that are impacting rates and schedules. There are predictions of a strong peak season this year that will strain capacity further driven by big global brands distributing product ready for the Christmas market.
For example, Apple will use air freight to distribute the initial orders of the new iPhone 8 (and 8+) across the globe. The announcement of the new model is anticipated to happen on 12th September. We expect demand for flights from all Southern China & Hong Kong to suddenly increase and flight availability will be greatly reduced as a result.
Retailers planning for Christmas will have a greater impact on the air freight market later in the year. Any orders that are too late in production to ship before the end of October will be switched from sea to air services at the last minute so retailers can get products on the shelves in time for shoppers to buy them.
The above factors will ultimately cause more cargo to be offloaded from booked flights. In order to mitigate these issues, PFE only work with certain airlines to guarantee that our space is not given to other cargo carriers.
We expect to see continued high demand for some weeks to come and would like to thank all of our customers for your support during this busy period.