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My Parcel Delivery Blog

Picking the best parcel courier

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There are so many questions that you need to ask yourself when trying to pick the best courier for your parcel. Selecting the cheapest, or the fastest, courier may be the simplest option but we suggest that you answer the below 10 questions before making your decision. This will ensure that you select the best courier for your parcel. 

1. What is the size and weight of your parcel?

There are some couriers who are more suitable than others based on the size, shape and weight of your parcel. For example, City Link will allow you to send an item that is 240cm in length, whereas DX requires your item fit into their tamperproof polybag which is 69x65x5cm. Parcelforce allows parcels of up to 25kg, whereas Hermes only allow up to 15kg. Ensure that the courier you choose is capable of taking your parcel to avoid collection refusals and/or surcharges from the courier depot.

2. How valuable is your parcel?

As parcel delivery becomes an increasingly automated process it is vital to choose the service that can treat your parcel with the care and attention it deserves – remember that machines cannot read the fragile message that you put on your parcel. If your parcel is valuable to you, either financially or sentimentally, ensure you select a courier with the best reputation rather than just the best price. You may also consider adding additional compensation cover as accidents can happen.

3. When does your parcel need to arrive by?

While courier companies cannot offer a guaranteed collection and delivery date they can give an indication of the length of time a parcel can take. Through My Parcel Delivery you can choose from same day, next day, two day and economy services.

4. Do you have a printer?

We appreciate that not everyone has a printer at home. Many couriers now allow you to use the service without printing your own label. The exceptions are Hermes, DPD, and any drop off service (myHermes, CollectPlus and Parcelforce Drop-Off).

5. Do you want your parcel to be collected from home or dropped off at your convenience?

Sometimes it is not convenient to wait in all day for your parcel to be collected. myHermes, Collect+ and Parcelforce all offer a parcel drop-off service for just these occasions. Beware; you will need a printer to use the drop off service.

6. Does your parcel contain confidential information?

If you are sending confidential and/or sensitive information you may want the added security of using City Sprint who offer a SecureData service, or DX who seal your parcel in a tamperproof polybag.

7. Is your parcel on the prohibited/restricted items list?

While most items can be sent via courier some cannot, and others can be sent but with limited or no compensation cover. For example, you cannot send external car parts (e.g. bumpers and bonnets), musical instruments can only be covered to a maximum of £100, and items which are made of glass or have glass components can be sent at your own risk, but are not covered against loss or damage at all. Ensure you check the prohibited & restricted items list before you book your delivery.

8. Do you need the parcel to be delivered at the weekend?

Very few couriers will allow you to select a weekend day for delivery. It is available through Yodel and Parcelforce at an additional cost, and Hermes will deliver and collect on a Saturday but will not allow you to specify a Saturday (or any specific day) for delivery.

9. Are you sending your parcel inside the UK or internationally?

If you are sending your parcel internationally not only will the number of providers offered be reduced, but there are other factors to also consider such as whether the country you are sending to offers home or depot delivery (as with some African nations), and whether customs will enforce any delays and/or charges.  We recommend that you investigate this prior to making your booking but if you need any help on where to look then contact our customer service team.

10. How much are you able to spend on your parcel delivery courier?

We appreciate that you want the cheapest courier possible however it is more important that you get the best value courier for the service you need and our price comparison service will make sure you can get that.

This list is not exhaustive and you may well find additional questions depending on the specific delivery you require, but if you ensure that you always consider the above 10 points your decision will be much simpler!