Penneys. Smyths, IKEA and all the retailers warning about Christmas shopping in Ireland

Some love it, some can’t stand it – but Christmas is just 101 days away.

Now, three-and-a-bit months does seem like quite a long time, especially for those of us who tend to leave shopping until the last minute.

But we may not have the options this year, as a number of Ireland’s top retailers have put out warnings about potential stock issues.

It’s led to calls from retailers to get your Christmas shopping done early in 2021.

Here’s the latest update from three of the best-known brands in Ireland:


High street giant Penneys has issued a warning to anybody who shops in its Irish stores.

Penneys shoppers will have to wait for some winter fashion items in Ireland because of stock delays.

Owner Associated British Foods (ABF) said Primark was ‘experiencing some delays to the handover of some autumn/winter inventory caused by port and container freight disruptions’.

However ABF finance director John Bason told Reuters news agency the problem was ‘about delays rather than cancellations’, adding: “All stores got this early autumn stock, we’re fully stocked and ready for the season, there will be no shortages.”

The firm added that Primark, which trades under Penneys in Ireland, is expected to see a decrease in the total amount of inventory released to stores of €235 million (£200 million) by the end of its financial year.

A closed Christmas shop in Dublin


Smyths Toys Ireland have issued a warned to customers for Christmas this year due to global shipping issues and container shortages.

It may be only September, but Irish ­parents are being urged to buy gifts for the festive season early due to supply problems.

A Smyths Toys Ireland spokeswoman said on Tuesday: “Smyths Toys advises you to shop early for Christmas.

“This is always a good idea so as to avoid the rush and to avoid disappointment.

“It is particularly important to shop early this year as global shipping and container shortages are causing supply issues in many parts of our lives.

“We encourage you to sign up to our catalogue now or drop instore from 24th September to pick up your FREE 300 page Smyths Toys catalogue.

“This will give you the time to make those key gift decisions.”


Swedish home furnishings company Ikea has been hit with issues in their supply chains, leading to around 10% of their product becoming unavailable.

Difficulties in the transport and sourcing of raw materials have meant there is low or no availability of certain products.

Ikea has also said a rise in demand for their products over the lockdown periods has also contributed to the shortages.

A spokesperson for Ikea said: “Like many retailers, we are experiencing ongoing challenges with our supply chains due to Covid-19 and labour shortages, with transport, raw materials and sourcing all impacted.

“In addition, we are seeing higher customer demand as more people are spending more time at home.”

They added: “As a result, we are experiencing low availability in some of our ranges, with approximately 10 per cent unavailable.

“We hope this will reduce as the situation improves in the coming weeks and months.

“Going forward, we’re constantly looking for more opportunities to secure product availability for our customers and apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.”

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