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How Long Does Canada Standard Shipping Take Without Delays?

Pramod Bhat
  •  
  •  
November 13, 2020

"Your order might be delayed because a flock of migrating Canada geese blocked the aircraft that carries the cargo." Imagine saying this to your fuming customer over the phone. This might be a good conversation-starter to diffuse tension, but sadly, some customers have a one-track mind. Their focus is on receiving their package on the date specified on the checkout page. As a seller, you may have asked, “How long does Canada standard shipping take?” under normal circumstances. But you also know that anything can happen while your cargo is in transit, whether by sea, air, or land. Hence, you should be familiar with the reasons for shipment delays so you also know when to look for alternative options. 

But first, let us have a recap of how long Canada standard shipping takes so you will have a better idea.

Estimated delivery standards in Canada

Here are the delivery standards for sending packages:

Type of deliveryDelivery time
Domestic standard shipping2-12 business days
Domestic express shipping1-8 business days
Air international shipping6-10 business days
Express international shipping1-5 business days

Note: This is based on data from major shipping/courier companies.

Now, you can evaluate how long delivery will take before a package can reach the customer. We didn't include door-to-port international shipping since it is a transaction between you and your shipping company

Keep in mind that these delivery standards are from the buyer's perspective. However, it doesn't show what you are doing behind the scenes to meet your customer's expectations. The customer doesn't know that you needed to allot at least a month to replenish your stock or deliver your products to other parts of the world, or you had to go through great lengths to achieve your promised one- to two-day delivery for your Canadian customers.

However, it would help if you also knew how to avoid various causes of shipping delays, which we will discuss next.

Reasons for shipment delays

Weather

This is one of the common causes of delays, but the impact on both ships and ports is immeasurable. Although weather radar systems are more advanced today, you can never control or cheat nature's forces. You may check the weather forecast for the coming weeks, but sea freight shipping usually takes months, and weather changes could happen anytime. 

Shipping could take longer during extreme weather conditions, which could force the ship to deviate from its original route or seek shelter at the nearest port. This type of safety precaution can further delay the shipping time for 1-2 weeks.

There is not much of a difference when shipping by air or land. If the weather situation is deemed dangerous, the shipping company will not hesitate to delay shipping until it is safe to travel again.

Technical troubles

Did you know that one ship engine has more than 120,000 parts? Unfortunately, thousands of technical faults could happen during a voyage. No matter how minor the engine trouble is, the ship would need to dock at the nearest port for repairs, and that alone could eat up valuable time. The same goes for trucks with no choice but to pull over to check and repair the engine, and aircrafts that are forced to land at other airports.

Maritime hazards

Do you remember the migrating bird incident above that we cited as an example? Believe it or not, it could really happen, along with accidents due to other shipping hazards like fishing nets, floating trees, floating ice, etc. Even an intoxicated captain can cause significant delays, just like what happened in Sweden in 2017. According to the Maritime Herald, the drunk captain of the dry cargo vessel BBC Lagos caused the ship to be stranded off the coast of Sweden. 

Bizarre things could transpire anytime in the world of shipping, and even a drunk captain or migrating birds could indirectly hurt your business.

air international shipping

Traffic

This one is obvious but still causes major headaches for both sellers and courier companies, especially if the truck is traversing national highways and busy city streets. Unnecessary inconveniences such as major roadblocks, accidents, construction, and checkpoints might also cause delays. 

Heavy traffic also could occur at sea due to congestion, which is caused by a high concentration of vessels at a specific channel or port. A ship would need to wait for its turn until the cargo from the previous ship is entirely unloaded. 

Another piece of trivia (regarding moving cargoes on container-ships) that will blow your mind: A giant ship with a capacity of 20,000 containers, like the one owned by Maersk, needs 3,000 people working three-day shifts ‘round the clock to load and unload, based on a report by The Wall Street Journal. Three days sounds fine, but once you multiply it by 10, the average number of ships docked at a port daily, another week or so is wasted just waiting for your shipment.

Rescue operations

Wait… a cargo vessel engaging in rescue operations? Yes, it is possible because of the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS). As stated in the SOLAS Convention, any vessel close to the scene of an accident must come to the rescue and assist the affected ship. SOLAS was created in response to the RMS Titanic disaster. Although the objective of SOLAS is noble, we can't deny the fact that it could lead to shipment delays.

Conclusion

At this point, it seems that it doesn't matter if you knew how long standard Canada shipping takes like the back of your hand. One way or another, shipment delays might occur. Everybody cringes at the word "delay," and when we say "everybody," it includes you, the courier company, and your customers. This is why you must be aware of all possible shipment options and not have to have to explain to your customers that a flock of innocent birds caused the delay of their package.


Take a break from stressing yourself trying to figure out how long Canada standard shipping takes under not-so-normal circumstances. Let Stallion Express assist you with its top-notch Canadian shipping services. For inquiries, you can call +1 877-863-7447 or email [email protected]

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Pramod Bhat
Written by Pramod Bhat

Pramod is the CEO of Stallion Express - the leading eCommerce shipping provider in Canada. His vision, leadership, and innovative strategies have catapulted Stallion into one of the industry's most trusted brands. He is on a mission to help online sellers in Canada scale and succeed. He is also the reigning office ping pong champion.

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