Supply-chain problems impacting local businesses ahead of Black Friday

Shipping issues and local businesses
Published: Nov. 19, 2021 at 6:01 PM CST
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WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - Black Friday is traditionally a time for holiday shoppers to save money. This year, with rising shipping costs and expected delays, customers should prepare to pay more than in previous years. The U.S. Department of Labor shows the nation’s inflation rate at 6.2 percent, its highest point since 1990.

With the holidays approaching and demand for products increasing with costs of shipping, neighboring shops in downtown Wichita have felt the impact. As an adjustment, The Boutique 5 Stationary and Petite Gifts increased its shipping prices from $7 to $15. Owner Alexus Scott said the main issue she’s facing is the lack of supplies.

“The shipping issues that we’ve been having, just like other local businesses, some shipping containers have literally been lost,” Scott said. “They have been just taking (an) extremely long amount of time to get to us, which means we’re kind of at a standstill.”

The growing demand for products and diminishing quantity of goods has Scott concerned.

“I wonder, ‘okay, are we going to be ready for the holidays?’” she said. “Are we going to have what it is that we need for customers to provide a wonderful gift, whether it’s for a family member or friend.”

Her advice for holiday shopping is to plan ahead.

“Again, go over those lists, check them twice and just plan ahead, because you never know what’s going to happen,” Scott said. “You never know what delays, what shortages may come up randomly out of nowhere.”

Scott said she hopes to see more people shopping local this year, despite the convenience of shopping big brands this holiday season.

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