What You Need To Know About Chinese New Year and COVID Shipping Delays
Each fall, our vendors who manufacture FF&E products in China warn us to get our purchase orders in early if we want to receive products before Chinese New Year. Because of COVID, we need to think about these timelines even earlier this year to keep new construction and renovation projects on track. In this post, you’ll learn what to expect from the CNY downtime this year, some specific pandemic-related challenges that are impacting lead times, and some tips to ensure your new hotel construction or renovation stays on schedule.
The dates for CNY vary each year because they are based on the lunar calendar. In 2022, it starts on Tuesday, February 1st, and goes until the 16th. Many Chinese companies and factories will close for ten days or more beginning on the 1st, and those that don’t will be short-staffed. In our experience, normal production often tails off in late January and doesn’t resume until early- or even mid-March.
Before COVID, we could easily plan for this schedule disruption; however, strains on the supply chain because of the pandemic make it more difficult at this point. The best solution is to order your FF&E products as soon as possible. Because CNY will be nearly two weeks earlier in 2022, and there are new pandemic-related supply chain strains to consider, our recommendation this year is to get orders in before the end of September so they can ship before CNY. We recognize that this is very different than the pre-COVID recommendation of late November or even December!
Supply Chain Update (2021-2022)
We’re hoping for relief in late Q2 of 2022. But, until then, here are some of the global shipping challenges we’re currently seeing:
○ A semiconductor chip shortage is plaguing transfer truck production. This impacts truck availability to deliver goods from rail yards and shipping ports to clients.
○ Ocean freight woes continue with high demand for containers and high shipping costs. Moreover, log jams at U.S. ports add
more transit time.
○ The current labor shortage impacts driver availability, manufacturing, and customer service-related jobs, which all affect lead times.
○ Multiple port closures in August and September due to COVID outbreaks have put further strain on Shanghai and Hong Kong as freight companies look to divert shipments.
○ CNY downtime plus delays mean that pre-COVID order recommendations of late November to late December no longer guarantee exit before CNY.
○ Many vendors moved to Vietnam only to meet similar issues on production slowdowns due to COVID, although not at the volume China is experiencing.
How Innvison Helps Keep Your New Hotel Construction or Renovation Project On Track
We are starting to see many hospitality manufacturers move production to North America (Mexico, U.S., and Canada). Others are looking to adjust their state-side inventory positions given the current lengthy and unpredictable lead times.
Because Innvision has a robust vendor program, we have flexibility within product categories from lighting to case goods to seating and more. In addition, we actively monitor the activity of manufacturers and work closely with many who are taking effective action to offset or eliminate delays. This helps ensure that hotel owners and developers have a positive experience and minimal FF&E delays for the duration of their project.
Innvision knows how to minimize FF&E delays on your hotel construction or renovation so it is a success. To learn more about how we can help, contact Innvision today.