Friday 15 January 2021

Parcel chaos looms as drop-off locations close after all

Photo: DutchNews.nl

Hundreds of parcel drop-off points in shops nationwide are to close because of coronavirus rules and customer confusion, broadcaster NOS said on Friday.

All non-essential shops have been closed since Tuesday and although the government said expressly that parcel delivery points would remain open, many owners are shutting down after all.

In particular, customers are confused as to why they can drop off a package but can’t buy stamps, a spokesman for Ako and Bruna parent company Audax told news website Nu.nl on Friday.

Audax has now decided to close all 50 shops which it runs, while the hundreds of franchisees can decide for themselves what to do. NOS also said some 520 Primera shops will close from Sunday.

In total, retail organisation VVP estimates between 1,200 and 1,300 parcel points will be closed.

The shopkeepers themselves say they cannot afford to pay staff based on the income from parcels alone, even though delivery firms like DHL and PostNL have increased the fees from this week.

A spokesman for PostNL told NOS that the company has not yet assessed what the likely impact will be. ‘We are working at maximum capacity and are delivering 1.5 million parcels a day,’ he said. ‘We will have to see what will happen.’

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