Proof we’re a nation of slackers
AUSTRALIA, you should be ashamed of yourselves. And blokes, I'm particularly looking at you.
We may take pride in being a laid-back nation, but when it comes to Christmas shopping, it turns out we're just downright lazy.
New figures from Australia Post prove just how slack we've become with last-minute Christmas shopping, and how much we're relying on that down-to-the-wire lifesaver Express Post.
A survey from the national post provider found 20 per cent of shoppers admitted to only starting their Christmas shopping this week.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, it was mostly men who were the last to join the festive spirit with 12 per cent of blokes surveyed planning to knock off their lists after December 18. Just 1 per cent of women admitted the same.
Parcel post levels also back up the last-minute trend with the postal network recording its biggest ever parcel delivery day in history on Monday with 2.5 million packages processed.
Express Post deliveries in particular are up massively, further rubbing in our seasonal slackness.
On Tuesday and Wednesday this week more than 1 million Express Post parcels were processed each day - that's about a 35 per cent annual increase.
And if you're among those last-minute shoppers relying on the service, an important reminder: Express Post items must be lodged before 1pm on Thursday. That's tomorrow.
The deadline is a little earlier than usual with Christmas falling on a Monday this year, something Australia Post's general manager for small business Rebecca Burrows says might be behind our extra festive slackness.
"What we're seeing is an increasing trend to late shopping both online and in store, so it seems like people have really gotten used to the convenience of things arriving on time or at the door," she told news.com.au.
"However having a few less shopping or shipping dates, it means the date creeps up a lot quicker."
Ms Burrows said the Express Post cut-off was important for businesses providing last-minute online shopping, as well as those of us sending gifts.
While cut-off time varies box to box - depending on where you live a 4pm drop-off on Thursday could still get your gift to its destination on time - Australia Post is going with the 1pm rule to avoid disappointment.
"The Express Post network covers 80 per cent of postcodes in Australia, and outside of that we will be doing everything we can to get there by the fastest available means," she said.
If you miss the cut-off, your gift won't be delivered until Wednesday December 27, which is just sad.
Some courier companies are advertising last-minute services for extreme risk-taskers or the extremely lazy.
Direct Couriers promises packages processed on Friday will get there in time, and Zoom2U has declared its commitment to be the "last man standing" for end-of-year courier deliveries, operating right up until the 25th.
Santa of course remains booked in to deliver gifts the night of the 24th.