Hotel FF&E Supply Chain Update: Even More Stressed

In two January posts, we provided visibility into hotel FF&E shipping delays from Asia and what one hospitality furniture manufacturer is doing to try to mitigate them. These delays for imported goods set to deliver to hotels undergoing construction or renovation were worse than we had seen in a very long time. The slowdowns, which also drove shipping costs up significantly, came from four primary factors:

  • A surge of orders, especially from consumers stuck at home in the US and ordering online, has created so much demand for shipping containers in Asia to carry the goods across the Pacific that it is oustripping the supply of containers
  • A shortage of vessels cannot meet the demand to carry all of the containers from Asia to the US
  • Congestion in US ports has increased the time it takes a boat to enter port, dock, and unload cargo, so ships full of containers are stuck in port for weeks longer than usual
  • Ground transportation (truck and rail) equipment and personnel scarcity mean that even once the product comes off the ship, it takes longer to get to its US destination