The impact of the COVID-19 coronavirus is far-reaching. All over the world, we're learning that for weeks, maybe months, we'll have to rethink our idea of “business as usual”. With so many closures and a growing number of quarantines, is it still possible to send a parcel?
Working around it
While airlines are cutting down on flights, which is causing some delays, the present outlook of most parcel delivery companies with international networks is quite positive.
There is of course uncertainty about what lies ahead, but for now the big companies, including DHL, UPS, DPD and FedEx/TNT, remain largely operational, leveraging their vast networks to get around local service disruptions.
In the countries most impacted by the coronavirus, like Italy, some services will be suspended in specific postal areas. However, this varies from carrier to carrier, so you may still be able to find an alternative service.
Most carriers advise that you should check before shipping that the person or business you are sending to is able to receive parcels, especially with business closures in some regions.
If you have already sent your parcel, carriers will hold them for you until delivery can be completed, or return to sender if this is not possible. However, please note that some carriers will charge for returns.
You can refer to our coronavirus alerts page, or to a courier company's website directly, for a list of affected postcodes. Most carriers are making daily updates.
The vast majority of updates from carriers are of service delays rather than suspensions. In some impacted countries, your parcels may take an additional day or two to reach their destination. However, delivery will be completed and delays are generally not lengthy.
Carriers and delivery drivers are taking precautions at every stage of your delivery. Drivers will still collect from your door but will adhere to social distancing rules.
At the receiver's end, most carriers have declared that signatures are no longer required except for some high value shipments. They are also limiting face-to-face contact at pick-up shops.
We're here to help
Like many companies, we are taking the appropriate measures to protect our staff and customers. We are asking our customers to inform us if self-isolating due to illness and to leave their parcel in a suitable location outside of the premises for collection.
We are also asking all staff and visitors to our depot to comply with social distancing guidelines.
If you have any concerns about your shipment as events unfold, or if you need advice about your parcel delivery options, we're still available to help by phone, email and live chat. Please don't hesitate to get in touch.