scan0001As you will know by now, the Royal Mail Enquiry office on Cromwell Road, Whitstable, has finally closed.

This means that many of you will be travelling to Canterbury to pick up your undelivered packages.

However, there are a number of other options available, and you should have received a letter from the Royal Mail outlining these.

As it says, you can have the item redelivered on a day of your choice, you can have it delivered to a local Post Office, subject to a small charge, or you can have it delivered to a neighbour.

However, there is one option which is not mentioned in the letter but which you will see on the “Something for you” card left by your postman.  This is that the item could be left in your official “Safeplace”.

What’s a “Safeplace” you ask? The card doesn’t tell you. If you look it up on the Royal Mail website, however, you’ll see that the word “Safeplace” is trademarked and that the service is available for Tracked items only.

Tracked items are bar coded and electronically tracked as they go through the system. All postal workers carry a device these days which reads a bar code and which then sends a wireless signal to a central computer once the item has been delivered.

If you order an item by Tracked mail you can opt to designate a safe place for your purchase.

The safe place is then specified on the package. It might say “leave in porch”, or “leave in shed”, or any of a number of possible locations.

There is an extra charge for this service, as you pay a premium for Tracked mail, but there is nothing to stop you talking to your postie and achieving the same result free of charge. All you have to do is to agree between you on what the safe place will be, and to ask your postie to leave any packages there in future.

This could be your unlocked porch, or a closed box in the back garden, or anywhere you choose out of sight of the road.

That way you save the bother of redelivery or the expense of travelling to Canterbury.

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