Saturday, 11 June 2011

Postal "Service" Canada - UK: Canada 1, UK 0

It is always a frustrating and anxious time when sending international letters or parcels since even when a premium is paid for accelerated or tracked delivery, the system doesn't work on an end to end basis and it typically fails to meet the poor consumer's expectations or even indicated times on postal service websites. The attitude of each country's post office is that it did what it promised and the other one is at fault.

Today, I received a letter from Canada here in the UK. A registered letter, which is meant to be tracked and signed for on delivery. The standard is 4 to 7 business days. Oops, neither happened this time. Mailed on May 31st, it arrived June 11, which is at least 8 business days, or 9 if one considers that in the UK mail gets delivered Saturdays too. Worst, the registered letter was simply put through our front door mail slot. Though we were home at the time, we heard the letter being put through and the doorbell was not rung. Canada Posts tracking system says the item left Canada June 1st and arrived in the UK June 3 (did they fly via South America, or what?). After that, it disappeared for 8 days in the UK postal system till it arrived here. All that for a big premium on postage. I've had the same experience going the other direction, from the UK to Canada, with similar results of significantly slower delivery than promised. The item leaves the originating country quickly and then goes into some sort of slow delivery mode.

The Canadian postal strike just reinforces a negative impression.

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