While we’re all getting back into work after the Christmas and New Year break, it is worth remembering that China will close for six days to celebrate their Lunar New Year in a few weeks.

From the 15th to 21st February your suppliers and manufacturers will completely shut down while China celebrates the New Year.

With six Norman Global Logistics offices across China, we are all familiar with the level of supply chain disruption the holidays create every year, which is why we are proactive with alerts like this.

While the Hong Kong public holiday is shorter than the mainland’s (16-19th Feb) there is still much preoccupation with preparations for the holidays, with some companies granting their employees leave to get home.

Largely dependent on the number of migrant workers, some factories close for up to three weeks (some even longer), which means that New Year holiday-related events may extend into March.

If you have outstanding orders, or are placing any it is worth checking with your vendors what their holiday plans are and what impact they will have on your order availability.

Any delay in production, will mean that delays occur in shipment as well. This is why we always ask shippers to contact us at the earliest opportunity because, with sufficient time, we can usually take steps to minimise or even eradicate shipping delays.

As the holidays get closer, air and sea space will get increasingly tight as shippers try to despatch consignments ahead of the break and shipping lines will exacerbate the situation by pulling capacity ahead of the slow down after the holidays with blank sailings and port omissions.

Depending on the speed at which your vendor can expedite orders, we would suggest that any orders placed after the 26th January will be impacted by the holidays, which is fine if you’ve factored a longer lead time into your planning.

More cautious shippers will get their orders in before the 19th January and ensure that sea freight consignments are available for the first week of February 2018.

With many shippers trying to keep their supply chains moving and with vessel space tight, we would recommend that shippers book two or preferably three weeks in advance to secure space.

While air freight cut-offs will be later, we would still recommend speaking with us at the earliest opportunity to secure space and good freight rates.

If you have any questions or concerns you can contact us directly for assistance – without obligation.