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Tue Dec 4 2018 11:24:41

Problems with New USPS Collection Box

By: Reader

Sponsored Link

Dear Ina,
I just have to complain about this to you and your readers: 

The Postal Service, in its usual contempt for the customer, has changed NYC mailboxes from a swinging door arrangement to a rigid slot.

The result for sellers like me, who brace most envelopes with hard cardboard, is that I can no longer mail those braced envelopes unless the post office nearby is open.  

Very annoying and inconvenient; likely going to be a nationwide change, with no apparent consultations with customers beforehand.
B.



Comments (13) | Permalink

Readers Comments

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This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Tue Dec 4 11:33:30 2018

They replaced the old ones here in Southern California about 10 years ago!

The swing door boxes were too easy for thieves to get mail out of. . .

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This user has validated their user name. by: toolguy

Tue Dec 4 12:05:47 2018

The US Postal Service will be closed on Wednesday December 5th in honor of George H.W. Bush

I hope eBay is aware of this and doesn't mark sellers with late shipments!

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This user has validated their user name. by: iheartjacksparrow

Tue Dec 4 16:52:02 2018

I haven't seen a mailbox in my area for years. The only ones I know of are the ones outside the post offices, which I would never put my mail into after thieves stole both boxes from outside one of the locations a few years back. New boxes were supposedly bolted down so no one could take them again, but if there's a way to do it, a thief will figure it out,  

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This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Tue Dec 4 18:39:24 2018

@toolguy

Ebay is aware.

https://community.ebay.com/t5/Announcements/Seller-Shipp
ing-Metrics-and-National-Day-of-Mourning-December-5/ba-p/29245118

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by: ebayout This user has validated their user name.

Tue Dec 4 18:40:29 2018

You do know that your mailman picks up mail in addition to delivering it?

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by: Snapped This user has validated their user name.

Tue Dec 4 19:24:58 2018

''....no apparent consultations with customers beforehand.''

Perhaps readers may recall a recent and very prominent newsworthy event about a 'postal customer' who mailed about a dozen crude pipe bombs all over the country.  These were collected from boxes (i.e., mailed 'anonymously') that had a receptacle door large enough to accept those, as well as many other parcels mailed previously, though not in the majority 'ticking', that violated the long standing postal prohibition of maling packages exceeding 13 oz that aren't sent with a prepaid (thus trackable to the source) label.  So much for any honor system attempting to assimilate customer's 'desires'.

The collection box design that resulted that might appear to have neglected customer ''consultations'' was -is being - fielded as an added security measure, BECAUSE the customer's safety and well being is an imperative, not in spite of it.  A trade off, to be sure.  But such is the world we all live in now, sadly.

The USPS is a business, deriving ALL it's income from the sale of postal products and services, taking nary a dime from taxpayers.  Many of these - such as priority boxes, tape, labels, etc., are provided free as part of that class of delvery servce.  

Thus, being anything less than customer centric would be self defeating, despite the occasional and statistically rare incident of 'incompetence' endemic to every huge organization.  Of course, when YOUR plane crashes and makes the news, it't not likely that the other tens of thousands that arrive safely every day (and are not newsworthy) will come to mind.

Customer focus and responsiveness is a continual emphasis.  Last mile delivery is a competetive environment and nobody does it better or cheaper, or to every household in the country, every day.  Next time you get a package in the mail, take note - is it a UPS ''Sure Post'' (tm) piece perhaps?  Now why would UPS do that?  

In any event, if the collection box route is not for you, collection from your own front door is always an option.  Contact your local PO to arrange for that - or simply leave it on your porch with a note for the carrier.  There's no charge.

Incidentally, every postal employee is a postal customer too, including the PMG.  There's no employee discount.  People tend to lack any consideration for all that as well...

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by: Chicago48 This user has validated their user name.

Tue Dec 4 21:34:01 2018

The USPS is receiving and delivering MORE packages than letters, so you would think they would outfit their mail boxes the way that Fedex and UPS does.

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by: Moonwishes This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Tue Dec 4 21:53:09 2018

If you want a mail pick up, you can ask for it online as long as you have done it by midnight or 1 AM or around then. No problem with it as I had to do it for months last winter due to record snowfalls. We also have a large rural box so when I can, I can usually fit most outgoing in it.

I do enjoy seeing in movies and TV shows how they don't understand mailing items, such as in Men Black 2 where a girl brings the box to the counter tied with lace and Tommy Lee Jones tells her that she needs to use the brown paper as well as string - both items my PO won't accept. I've seen scenes where they would dump extra large boxes somehow into the outside box that carried a bomb. The funniest was watching CSI-Cyber and they were trying to track down a guy who had mailed something and they showed a close up of the label. At that point in time, there was NOTHING you could ship through the USPS for the amount showing and all label printers at home computers or postage machines have a code on as to who the business was that sent it. They based an entire hour show on something that would have taken maybe 5 minutes to figure out, then go find the guy and arrest him! Sorry, I love finding plot mistakes!

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by: UB This user has validated their user name.

Wed Dec 5 07:38:01 2018

@chicago48 USPS does not deliver more packages than letters. Please get your facts correct. https://about.usps.com/who-we-are/financials/periodic-reports-8k/11-14
-2018.pdf

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by: Tinker Belle This user has validated their user name.

Wed Dec 5 09:22:07 2018

@Snapped - you said it exactly as I would.

@ B - I would consider as a couple have said, scheduling pick-ups of your outgoing mail. Sorry, this is now the world we live in that seems to continue to degenerate, as far as people trying to take advantage of others and thinking harming others is fun.  It wasn't that way when I grew up, and I'm glad I will not be around in 50 years. Just ''living'' has changed from not having to worry very much to being a downhill slope of having to make our first priority defending ourselves from others who would harm us or take advantage of us.  

The change from USPS doors to slots is an attempt to prevent criminals from dropping harmful things into PO boxes. This seems to have been going on all across the country, and  just reaching B's area.

As for area collection boxes - the ones in our community disappeared years ago, other than those immediately outside the post office buildings.

As for Fed Ex/UPS boxes - GONE! same situation, the fear of bombs and other criminal activity. I have been fortunate, occasionally using UPS, that a local business allows customers to send packages through their store (but this isn't publicized).

FedEx is a different story -- ONE box in our entire ''region'', demanded by an attorney who uses FedEx and the box is at his office door.  The ONLY other choice is to drive 30+ miles (one way) to the FedEx or UPS facilities - or try to flag down a driver.  

Paying for a pickup is not an option - there goes any profit on my sold item.

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by: Moonwishes This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Wed Dec 5 13:40:08 2018

@ Tinkerbell >>Paying for a pickup is not an option - there goes any profit on my sold item.<<

At least even homes can get free pick up from the USPS if needed.

The only gripe I have about my PO is that when they are closed on weekends, is that substitute drivers from the city come in and they don't care where or how they deliver packages. Finally had to report them to my Postmaster and things are better now. I have never seen anyone working at the PO with a less than normal intelligence, so it does strike me as odd that these substitutes will put boxes on the ground, outside in the pouring rain and always under the worst gutter!  They are apparently not using their heads! I got a box one day that wasn't anywhere near the front door and was absolutely drenched to the point that when I tried to pick it up it squished and caved in. This was a Tuesday morning. It hadn't been there on Monday when I took mail out nor when I went out and got the newly delivered. But when I checked the tracking, it showed that it had been delivered on Sunday! (supposedly). All I could figure is they ran out of time or something. Scanned everything else that was to be delivered on Sunday and delivered them in the early morning hours of Tuesday and tossed packages willy-nilly into areas as this one was so far from the front door, it wasn't a practical or logical place to put a package and would have actually involved more steps!

At this point, I think we only have the collection boxes in front of the PO and they empty them several times a day.

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by: Tinker Belle This user has validated their user name.

Thu Dec 6 15:04:08 2018

Moonwishes, I hear you.  I can't afford to pay for pick-ups, not that I use UPS / FedEx anyway. I DO feel FedEx (Express) is the #1 best way to ship anything critical, but seldom do that.

We live on a USPS rural route and our packages were constantly being dumped off to lay beside the mailbox on the roadside. We got the neighbors' mail and I am sure some of them must have gotten some of ours. I filed numerous complaints with management that was above the local PO to no avail.  Substitutes were always the worst - when I spoke with local PO, I got attitude - we will do what we want (and got angry when I reminded them of the directives I got from above).  

I would get wet boxes occasionally but nothing as bad as yours. Our worst was in winter when one of them crawled up icy steps we do not use and left our mail by the door on an open porch (well there was a roof).  We never did figure out what had blown away.

I finally gave up and no longer get mail at my home, thankfully getting me away from that unpleasant group.  We got a box at another village post office, actually closer to my house, with exactly the opposite experience - Great people, terrific, friendly and helpful! This was one of T-H-E best security moves I have ever made - our mail stays within USPS until we pick it up! We dont mind running over to get our mail, and more often than not have packages to leave off. Also being a completely different zip code makes it difficult to track down where I actually live.

My only Mail problem now has been that miserable ''Smart Post'' (FedEx or UPS takes the package to the PO which makes the final delivery)  but I have figured out that using the Post Office street address with a ''Unit'' number works! but I make a point to complain to the sellers about it - don't let me ''assume'' the courier will bring it all the way!  

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This user has validated their user name. by: SalesBoy

Fri Dec 7 05:13:43 2018

I'm eternally grateful that I'm an RFD customer, allowing me to use a nice, big mailbox for outgoing/incoming packages.  My carrier will even take larger outgoing packages from a big hinged tote I put below the box.

My son lives in Brooklyn's Bed-Stuy and I dread sending him any packages for fear they'll disappear before he gets home.



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