While COVID-19 ravaged the world, e-commerce companies like Amazon had one of their best years on record. In April alone, Amazon outdid its own Black Friday numbers every day of the month. That’s a whole lot of packages being shipped and delivered!
And now that the holiday season is finally here, more people will likely opt to shop online to reduce their risk of contracting the coronavirus. Tap or click here to see some of the early Black Friday deals you can take advantage of now.
Amazon’s delivery infrastructure is world-class, but even it can see that a storm is brewing on the horizon. This holiday season is set to be record-breaking in terms of online shopping, and Amazon is now urging customers to pick up their packages in different ways to beat the rush.
Amazon says ‘Expect delays!’
Amazon urges customers to try out alternative ways of picking up their orders in light of what looks like a record-breaking holiday surge. In a statement released Monday, the company outlined how Amazon shoppers can have their gifts delivered to physical stores instead of their home address.
The statement emphasizes that using alternative delivery locations can help protect loved ones from finding out about surprise gifts. But the push does have additional benefits for the company.
Amazon already stretches its delivery infrastructure to the brink, and the holidays are typically its busiest season. The pandemic has led to a massive increase in online shopping, so it’s logical to assume that Amazon would do whatever it takes to lighten the load.
With FedEx and UPS already warning of potential delays, it’s no wonder that Amazon kicked off its Black Friday deals a week early to beat the holiday rush.
What are the alternative delivery methods I can try?
If you’re worried about delays for items you’re going to order, Amazon’s alternative delivery methods are definitely worth checking out. The company offers several ways to pick up orders and process returns — including self-serve options.
- Amazon Hub: Amazon’s designated pickup and drop-off locations for packages, returns and more. This includes self-serve Amazon Locker kiosks and select retail locations. Tap or click here to visit Amazon Hub’s homepage to find a location near you.
- Amazon Books: Amazon’s brick-and-mortar bookstores can be used as an alternative delivery location. Tap or click here to visit Amazon’s retail homepage to find a location near you.
- Amazon 4-star: Amazon’s new department store chain that only sells trending items rated 4-stars or higher. These stores can be found in malls across the country. Tap or click here to visit Amazon’s retail homepage to find a location near you.
To have your order sent to an Amazon physical retail store or an Amazon Hub location, search and select the most convenient location when prompted at checkout. You’ll choose Amazon Hub or a retail store instead of your home address for delivery.
Once your package has been delivered, you will receive an e-mail notification with details about how and where to pick it up. You’ll have between three and 15 days to pick up the order depending on the Amazon Hub or retail location.
With COVID-19 continuing to surge across the U.S., we’d recommend opting for Amazon Hub lockers versus face-to-face retail pickup. Although Amazon’s retail stores are following wellness precautions like many other stores, reducing contact with others is still the best way to protect yourself from the virus.