Australia Post's Melbourne sorting facility
Australia Post has recorded its biggest month ever in its 211-year history, with more than 52 million parcels delivered during December, an almost 20% increase on the previous year.
The strong growth in online shopping continued into December, with 19 days for the month where more than 2 million parcels were delivered across the country. During the month, over 21 million customers were also served at Australia Post's more than 4,000 Post Offices, including regional and remote locations.
Making use of up to 20 dedicated freighters and additional cargo space on limited domestic passenger flights, Australia Post uplifted over 7,400 T of airfreight, up 76% compared to the same month in 2019, including more than 490 T on the busiest night.
Acting chief executive officer and managing director Rodney Boys says while the organisation had predicted it would be Australia Post's busiest Christmas ever, it exceeded expectations.
"There is no denying that online shopping grew strongly through 2020, and this reached a new level in December as millions of people chose to buy their Christmas gifts online," he says.
"Ongoing COVID-19 restrictions, social distancing and reduced domestic flights, coupled with significantly higher parcel volumes, meant that delivering Christmas 2020 for all Australians was always going to be incredibly challenging.
"We prepared extensively, opening 60 new or re-purposed facilities, adding 3,000 vehicles and putting on additional dedicated planes, all to keep delivering for our customers. 2,700 posties undertook additional training, with over 2,000 transitioning to deliver parcels in vans and an extra 5,000 people were recruited."