Australia Post has revealed it delivered 52 million parcels through the December peak period as more Aussies shopped online for their Christmas presents.
According to the national post carrier, more than 5.6 million households shopped online in the lead-up to Christmas Day, with volumes in October and November higher than in previous years.
Utilising air freight, Australia Post had 25 carriers hitting the skies each night, flying 8.7 million kilos of parcels across the country in December – a 13% lift on the year prior.
Meanwhile, on the busiest day in December, Australia Post moved 556 tonnes of parcels.
Australia Post Group CEO and MD Paul Graham thanked the staff for their efforts over the peak period.
"That we have seen another 52 million parcels delivered at Christmas demonstrates the dedication of the people in our Post Offices, our Licensed Post Office Partners, and everyone working across our processing, delivery, customer teams including more than 5000 new team members who helped make it possible.
"We thank Australians for their patience and support during these challenging times, and with so many customers heeding our call to shop and send early we saw a really big November for both deliveries and online shopping ahead of our traditional December peak," he said.
It wasn't just eCommerce deliveries that experienced high volumes in December, with Post Offices and PO Boxes also witnessing strong lifts in the month.
According to the carrier, more than 20 million customers visited Post Offices to send cards and gifts and collect packages, including more than 3.9 million from PO Boxes.
Further, more than 475,000 items were also collected from Australia Post’s free parcel lockers around the country during December, the most ever in a month.
However, while many Aussies were busy preparing for festive celebrations, it seems concerns over the pandemic were still lurking in the back of people's minds, with the online purchase of pharmacy items up more than 9% on the previous month.
Other top online buys included books (up more than 22%) and specialty food (up more than 5%).
To manage the pre-Christmas and Christmas demand, Australia Post bulked up its operations in November, introducing 45 new and repurposed operational and retail sites, getting additional planes in the air, welcoming over 4000 new team members and delivering on weekends.