fortnum and mason christmas store

Fortnum & Mason is famed for its Christmas gift hampers

Fortnum & Mason has slashed its Christmas delivery price to encourage customers to shop earlier this year.

The luxury retailer is now offering customers reduced same-day delivery service for £3.95 (usually £7.95) on Christmas orders delivered between 29 November and 12 December.

“It’s no secret that recent global events mean that Christmas shopping this year is rather different than it used to be,” Fortnum & Mason told customers via its newsletter.

“More and more people are doing their shopping online and delivery slots are already filling up incredibly quickly. At the same time, there is a shortage of delivery drivers in the UK.”

Its website also features a message advising shoppers to “begin your festive planning today”.

“We’ve noticed people are placing Christmas orders earlier than ever this year and would love to help you stay one step ahead,” it reads.

Fortnum & Mason has joined a swathe of grocers that have started preparing ahead for the peak holiday trading period.

CEO Tom Athron also told The Telegraph that “customers are being trained by businesses” to order early this year amid fears of supply chain and labour shortages.

He said businesses should be aiming to spread the peak period over three months rather than condensing it into one.

“It’s not so much to do with the [lack of] availability of products, it’s the availability of people,” Athron said.

According to Fortnum & Mason, which is known for its luxury Christmas hampers, sales are three weeks ahead of a regular pre-Covid year due to a spike in online orders.

The move to reduce delivery costs follows a recent announcement from Sainsbury’s CEO Simon Roberts, who encouraged shoppers to start preparing for Christmas.