It starts from Abu’s miserable ordering experience, inquiry sent from UK –
Mr. Abu sent us the inquiry on 4th January 2019, for an urgent order to ship before Chinese New Year. Our colleague Estelle replied a long email immediately:
4th Jan is Friday, Abu still can’t accept the truth that it’s too rush to get the order shipped before CNY. Late Friday night, he contacted Estelle on WhatsApp, to tell if we could ship it, he will place order and make payment the next Monday, which is 7th Jan.
We could understand Abu’s feeling, guessing he has promised his customer, while his old supplier couldn’t deliver goods on time. Or maybe Abu didn’t notice the last month before CNY, shipment won’t be that regular as before, he didn’t arrange the order earlier. Any way, we double checked with our shower factory, but very pity the small accessories are the only problem, no stock and couldn’t catch it.
Some experienced importer may ask about CNY or require us to fill a CNY survey in advance, at least in November. For 2019 CNY, we got the 1st survey from one of clients on 18th Sept. 2018, the supermarket prepare orders much earlier. : ). While some other buyers maybe not familiar CNY situation, so today let’s talk about the unusual delivery around CNY.
Chinese people celebrate Lunar calendar New Year, which usually about one month after Solar calendar, it depends, you can ask supplier or just check the Lunar calendar. We will give some useful suggestions in the form of FAQ.
Q: Will you close your factory / company during CNY holidays?
A: For sure, the rate is 100%.
Q: What is your factory closing date for CNY?
A: Most factories would close around Lunar calendar 23th Dec. For this year, it is Solar calendar 28th Jan ( as 26th and 27th is weekend, so most companies would close at 25th Jan. )
Q: What is your Due date to receive PO to ship before CNY?
A: For 30days lead time, usually, we require 40 days before closing date, which is middle Dec for this CNY. But some smart importers would prepare orders much earlier, they place all orders in November, before entering December their Western X-Mas / New Year holiday.
It may vary according to different products / manufacturers, for example our hand tools category, the usual lead time is 60days, some factories’ PO cut off date is Oct. It also depends on their production status.
Q: What is your latest delivery date before CNY?
A: In theory we can set it the last day before the closing date, but in practical, because the Vessel booking, more importantly the container arranging, it’s better prepare it at least one week before closing, in case during vessel booking peak time can’t get SO, or run out of container driver (some drivers start holiday earlier), many factories have to load goods whenever the container come, many do it during night.
We have suffered middle night loading last year, the container arrived our warehouse loading on 2:00AM, when finished loading around 4:00AM……
Q: What is your factory / company opening date after CNY?
A: Chinese official CNY holiday actually total only 7days, but as our tradition it is the most important festival, for many working outside people, it’s the only chance of the year for them to meet parents and family reunite together. Especially for factory workers where their hometowns are thousands miles away from their working places.
If you know about that, you would understand usually factories’ actual opening date after CNY is Lunar calendar 16th Jan, after 15th Jan the Lantern Festival. Only after Lantern festival, we call it the CNY holiday ending in our heart.
But usually many factories / companies open at Lunar calendar 8th Jan, it’s a good date to start.
Q: What is your due date to receive PO to ship after CNY?
A: It’s similar, as need prepare all the materials before hand and get it ready before CNY, in this way, factory could produce immediately after back from holiday. It need 30days before closing date.
Q: What is your soonest delivery date after CNY?
A: If raw materials all get ready before CNY, for our bathroom products, can ship within 2 weeks after CNY.
If have to prepare materials, it really depends, depends on the accessories suppliers too. As our experiences, the new orders get shipped around 1 month after CNY.
To sum up, it’s about one month around CNY, 2 weeks before and 2 weeks after, order production influenced. When I’m writing this, I heard from my colleagues talking the containers all are arranged before 25th Jan next Friday, some of our shower factory workers already left, factories will end all production this week, as many workers leaving, left workers will load containers for the left ready goods next week.
If Mr. Abu could see this, he would understand the actual valid time is only 2 weeks, not 3 weeks, we really hope and strive to help, if have accessories stock, yes, we can, as our shower factory produce all the main materials. Without, we can’t, we are sorry dear Abu, it’s shower cabins with more small accessoires, not shower enclosures or shower doors.
Hope it is useful for you, to avoid such problem happened again.