What Ms. Zhang didn’t expect when she hunkered down for Shanghai’s citywide lockdown was complimentary ready meals and desserts from luxury brands such as Louis Vuitton and Cartier to start arriving the very next day.
Since the COVID-19 containment began on April 1, closing stores and paralysing online shopping, brands have overcome attendant delivery difficulties to gift provisions to “very important clients” (VICs) like 24-year-old entrepreneur Zhang.
Though not high-value gifts, the effort to keep in touch has “impressed and surprised us,” said Zhang, who wanted to be identified by surname only citing privacy.
Shanghai has seen some of the strictest containment measures worldwide, with residents forbidden from leaving apartments in blocks where COVID-19 cases have been found, while some buildings and even entire streets have been fenced off.
With supermarkets shuttered and logistics chains upended, residents have struggled to buy food. Government provisions aimed at filling gaps have been delivered sporadically, with reports of mixed quality from district to district.