Online shoppers have helped propel Australia Post into the record books, with the delivery giant distributing more than 52 million parcels during December, the largest in its 211 year history.
The figure is an almost 20% increase on the previous year, with more than two million parcels being delivered across the country almost every day.
Instore shoppers also kept the business booming, with 21 million customers served at post offices during the month.
Utilising its 20 freighters and additional cargo space onboard domestic flights, Australia Post uplifted more than 7,400 tonnes of airfreight, up 76% from 2019.
Australia Post acting chief executive Rodney Boys said while the organisation had predicted it would be its busiest festive season, 2020 exceeded expectations.
“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,” he said.
“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.”
Mr Boys said his staff had worked tirelessly to keep up with demand during the festive season.
“These results were only made possible through the absolute commitment and dedication of our incredible team and our licensed post office and delivery contractor partners across the country,” he said.
“[They] worked tirelessly under difficult circumstances for their communities to deliver a truly phenomenal Christmas.”
Australia’s December parcels were predominantly made up of food and liquor, recording a 50% increase compared to 2019.
Fashion was up 37% and home and garden products up 36%.
Fashion accessories, adventure and sporting items, and books, also proved popular with strong growth.