Christmas Carton Deliveries

Getting your Cartons Delivered by Christmas

Credit: Tim Mossholder on Unsplash


We don’t like to mention it so early but Christmas is around the corner!

We understand that as a manufacturer, you may need more cartons or sleeves for your products to satisfy the extra Christmas demand.

Pre-Christmas can be a hectic time in Dollard Packaging as many of our customers need extra packaging. We want to ensure that we get all your packaging delivered to you on time.

Below we outline a few tips that will help to get your Christmas packaging requirements to you on time.

Early Warning

Whether your packaging order is a straightforward reprint of existing packaging or a new packaging design, giving us an early warning is one of the best ways to help us deliver on time.
Give us a call about your possible order, even if you are not sure of all of the details, such as the quantity, number of package sorts, number of colours etc. We can put this order in the production schedule as a possible job and contact you at a later date when hopefully you will have more details.

This will allow us to plan the production schedule, order the boards and plan staffing requirements to meet the demands of the busy pre-Christmas time.

Existing Cartons and Sleeves

If your packaging order is for a straight reprint of a previous order, there are fewer factors that can affect the delivery date than if you are ordering packaging with new artwork design or new packaging structure, (such as if the flaps, die-cuts or windows have changed in shape or size.) Let’s look at the factors below.

Factors affecting Delivery Times of Existing Packaging

It is advisable to always check the delivery time for packaging job (even if it’s not pre-Christmas) and don’t assume that the delivery time will be the same as the last job, even if it’s in the same month as last year. Several factors can make a difference in the delivery date.

Board type used

We order the board from the paper mills and we rely on them to deliver on time. If you choose a slightly more unusual board or if you are changing to a different board type, this may mean a longer delivery time. For some jobs, if the type of board and the order quantity are confirmed, we may be able to order the board even if other aspects of the packaging, such as the design are as yet unconfirmed*

*This may not be possible for all orders.


In rare cases, high winds or inclement weather conditions may mean that board deliveries are delayed.

Extra Delivery Factors – New Carton Design

If you are ordering a carton or sleeve that has a new or altered design or structure, there are extra factors to bear in mind when ordering packaging.

Get the packaging structure right first, then the design.

If you are ordering packaging for a new product or changing an existing design or structure, getting the structure and the design right from the start will significantly help your chances of getting your packaging delivered on time. Below we have essential tips on how to ensure you get it right.

Talk to us before you talk to your packaging designer

Before you begin to create the artwork or give your design brief to a packaging designer, talk to  Dollard Packaging first. Yes, talk to us first. The reason for this is that the structure of your packaging is the first thing to consider. The overall structure of the packaging must be agreed before you can engage a designer to create artwork.

Keylines are Important

At Dollard Packaging we can help you create the correct structure of your packaging and supply your designer with a Keyline (A Keyline is a layout guide that your designer must use to format the artwork correctly. This ensures that when the packaging is printed and folded, all packaging sides face the correct direction and all the interlocking/overlapping parts fit together perfectly) See keyline example below in Figure below.

Keyline for Carton Printing

Keyline for Carton Printing sample

Once you have the correct keyline, your graphic designer can design the artwork, safe in the knowledge that when the packaging is printed, all the sides will be facing the correct way and the flaps will interlock correctly etc. We can supply a keyline to your graphic designer and he/she can consult us with any queries on the layout, style etc.

You can read more about this on another Dollard Packaging blog here.

Getting this critical first step right will mean that no time will be lost in artwork edits or recreation.

Carton and Sleeve Proofing

Another crucial step in ensuring an efficient delivery date is checking your proof carefully as errors in the artwork discovered at a later stage can delay production. You can download our proofing checklist from our Helpful Guides page.


Give us as much warning as you possibly can for all of your packaging requirements – whether or not it is packaging for the Christmas market or ongoing year-round requirements.
• Talk to us before getting the packaging artwork creation process begins – this will mean that we can supply a keyline to your designer and this will help ensure the artwork is correctly formatted and the design process is as efficient as possible.
• Don’t assume that the delivery time will be the same as the last time just because it’s the same order quantity etc.
• Keep the lines of communication open at all times and let us know when any order details are confirmed.

Call us on 01 847 0044

Originally published October 2017, updated October 2023