The expert parcel broker Fastlane International is warning people forced to switch to couriers this Christmas may never return to old fashioned Post Office queues.
The escalating Post Office strike could hasten the eventual demise of the Post Office, warns the expert Parcel broker Fastlane International. Around 300 Crown Post Offices won’t open from today. Fastlane says the strike will drive customers who don’t send items regularly into using courier services for the first time: and once people have used a courier once they seldom go back to queuing at the Post Office to send items over large letter size.
Says Fastlane’s Head of Consumer Research, David Jinks MILT: ‘The Post Office is a venerable institution that has been with us for 350 years in one form or other. Even though the arrival of parcel broker services such as Fastlane have made it a largely outmoded way of shipping parcels, the traditional Post Office still has a significant role to play in the local community. It would be a great shame were it to disappear entirely.’
Explains David: ‘The strike will impact mainly on the 300 main Crown Post Offices in UK towns and cities. For those people who are still queuing at the Post Office in the traditional way this will mean much longer waits at those smaller branches that remain open. Customers may well try bypassing the Post Office altogether by ordering a courier service online and having their parcel picked up for them rather than having to queue – and find they have saved money.’
Says David Jinks:
• We understand why Post Office staff are taking these actions; the Communication Workers Union (CWU) claims the Post Office plans to franchise around 60 of its main flagship Crown Post Offices. But many people only send parcels at Christmas and it’s going to mean extra stress for them at this busy period. They are likely to try a courier service for the first time instead. And we predict few of these customers will return to Post Office counters.
• Customers switching from the Post Office to using an online broker such as Fastlane International will also save significantly against the Post Office’s rates: thanks to offers such as Fastlane’s new discount My Hermes service – and enjoy free £50 free insurance cover on their shipment.