Amazon’s Shipping Times Heavily Affected by the Coronavirus Outbreak

By Gary Chapman
gchapman@lc.edu

The shipping times for tech giant Amazon (which for their Prime service has promised to have two-day shipping) has jumped dramatically because of the recent outbreak of COVID-19.

The shipping times for most “non-essential” items (e.g. a dog harness) has jumped from a few days to mid-late April.

According to a published email by Jeff Bezos, “We’ve changed our logistics, transportation, supply chain, purchasing, and third party seller processes to prioritize stocking and delivering essential items like household staples, sanitizers, baby formula, and medical supplies. We’re providing a vital service to people everywhere, especially to those, like the elderly, who are most vulnerable. People are depending on us.”

According to an article by Jason Del Ray for Recode, a spokesperson for Amazon stated that “To serve our customers in need while also helping to ensure the safety of our associates, we’ve changed our logistics, transportation, supply chain, purchasing, and third-party seller processes to prioritize stocking and delivering items that are a higher priority for our customers.”

Note that items that are shipped by third parties are not affected and can ship most items in a few days or more. This has caused a few problems for those sellers though.

An article by Jason Del Ray noted that “products ranging from printers to child safety locks where Amazon was highlighting its own item — or those of sellers using its Fulfillment by Amazon warehousing service — that had slower delivery speeds” and that the ones who do store in their warehouses cannot access and retract their inventory from there “because warehouse staff is so focused on getting high-demand products out the door,” Jason added.

Essential items do include other things like printer paper, ink and some tech (for instance, a Western Digital 1TB hard drive) has two to five day shipping.

This, of course, does make some people who purchase items regularly sad. Jeremiah Turner, a warehouse worker from Bethalto, noted when asked about the delays that “It’s depressing, but I do understand why they’re doing it.”

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