LAS VEGAS (KTNV) – Empty store shelves and shipping delays have raised concerns among shoppers who are getting a head start in trying to find the right gift. Local retailers are struggling to keep up with demand with the peak holiday shopping season just weeks away.
RELATED: All Signs Point To Buy Gifts At The Beginning Of This Holiday Season
Supply chain disruptions are not only affecting big box stores, but also local small businesses. At the Pop Shack inside Boulevard Mall, owner Matthew Gargiulo says his store has limited inventory. As a result, he had to contact all of his suppliers to make sure he had enough products before the holiday season.
“The way we live now, there’s a chance that we don’t have what people want for the holidays,” Gargiulo said.
Container ships are clogging ports, waiting to be unloaded and causing shipping delays. To restock their products, Gargiulo says it would take a few weeks before, currently they expect it to take up to six months. Gargiulo says that with a limited amount of supplies, he had to adjust his prices.
“Everything has had a price increase of 10% to 20% more than last year,” Gargiulo explained.
The impact of this supply chain is also evident in our neighboring state. Kru Hicks is a resident of California who was on the lookout for certain collectibles. With stores in California out of stock, he drove three hours to Vegas looking for freebies.
He has already thought about Christmas, fearing that his loved ones will not have what they want under the tree this year.
“It’s going to be really hard to find certain things so I think people have to go out and plan ahead and if you haven’t started shopping you have to do it now,” Hicks explained.
Gargiulo says he expects this to be the busiest year yet.
“When you can’t find it in retail, they’ll have to go to a small store like this to find what they’re looking for.”
Gargiulo says his suppliers tell him the delays will only get worse. He encourages everyone to do their holiday shopping as early as possible to make sure they find the gifts you want.