If you’ve caught a train recently you might have seen this advertising on the windows for NZ Posts Parcel Pod service. My reaction when I first saw it was to be surprised that wasn’t a a full carriage wrap like Auckland Transport have bizarrely allowed to happen some times. Full carriage (an bus) wraps should simply not be allowed as while partially transparent they make the train/bus darker, harder to see out and almost impossible to see in. This on the other hand was a small sticker which is something I not going to get too upset about.

Parcel Pod

What annoyed me though was the content. I’d heard about Parcelpod before and thought it sounds like a superb product to tie in with PT use. With them advertising it on the trains perhaps they were planning on rolling it out to at least major stations. Looking at the website you get these four for Auckland.

Albany Box Lobby
11a/110 Don McKinnon Drive
Auckland 0752

Counter hours: Monday to Friday 7.00am to 5.00pm.
Access: 24 hours seven days a week.

Botany Town Centre, Carpark 3 Food Hall entrance
588 Chapel Road
East Tamaki
Auckland 2013

Access: 24 hours seven days a week.

Newmarket PostShop Box Lobby
416 Broadway
Auckland 1149

Counter hours: Monday to Friday 8.30am to 5.00pm. Saturday 9.30am to 1.00pm.
Access: 24 hours seven days a week.

Near to Victoria Street West PostShop
151 Victoria Street West
Auckland Central
Auckland 1010

Access: 24 hours seven days a week.

With the exception of Newmarket none are even close to being convenient for someone using the rail network, hell even for car drivers most of these aren’t convenient. On Twitter, NZ Posts feedback was that this is just a general advertisement and not something specifically aimed at PT users. In my view it definitely seems a bit odd to go to the effort of advertising on PT then doing so with a product that is actually convenient for PT users to use/buy is probably a good start.

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  1. Newmarket Post Shop is 600m and at least two sets of signalised intersections away from Newmarket train station, so not exactly convenient. It’s actually not all that convenient for anyone except motorists, but I guess, like so many New Zealand corporates, that’s the default mode of transport access. Frankly, I think AT should be chasing NZ Post to construct parcel pods at key stations if only the rental stream. Recalls the time when Te Whau/Avondale Railway Station also served as a post office (1882-1912).

  2. There isn’t even a recognizable footpath outside the one on Victoria St. Why is it not at the Wyndham St postshop?

    1. There’s a postshop in Customs St East that is about 100m from Britomart, that one would make the most sense.

  3. Great initiative by NZ Post, given their dramatic failure to capitalise on the email revolution. How many of us have arrived home to find a courier package in full view at the front door? Or worse, a note from the courier company that requires us to traipse all over town. Why wouldn’t NZ Post trial the scheme on their own premises? And maybe they’re negotiating with AT for station sites, who knows? Matt, I think you’ve jumped the shark with this one!

    PS I realise that some readers have had a charisma bypass. Please be advised that the final sentence in para 1 above was written with tongue firmly in cheek. (Google it).

    1. Given this service has been in place for well over a year now, and NZ Post is showing no intention of expanding it to more convenient locations other than their own PostShops, I don’t think he’s jumped the shark at all.

  4. This blog does a lot of great work so this is a minor criticism, but I’ve noticed several posts recently that seem a little petty and, in my view, detract from the impact of the blog in covering serious issues, e.g. the CRL or funding for RONs. This one, and yesterday’s about Pak N Save’s fuel offer both fall into that category.

    Its interesting that this post says “What annoyed me is….”, because that’s the impression I’m getting – a general grumpiness and sensitivity about anything at all that could imply less than total support for public transport, let alone assisting car drivers in some way.

    As I said, a minor criticism, but there definitely does seem to have been a change. The last thing I’d want to see is this blog going down the whaleoil route (which bashes anything at all that anyone remotely left-leaning has suggested, completely swamping some of the more serious questions raised).

    Regarding this post, I’d have thought it more important to have locations close to where large numbers of people work. If you don’t work, you can get your parcel delivered to home, and stations are only useful for those that catch trains. Albany, Botany, Newmarket and the CBD seem to fit the bill quite well.

    1. But the problem with courier services in NZ is that it isn’t always easy to get parcels at home. They don’t deliver at night or on Sundays, many don’t deliver on Saturdays, you can’t specify the time they come (which means you have to hang around at home potentially all day on a weekday waiting for them – not an option for everyone), the drivers don’t always stick to the rules of getting signatures (we’ve all heard the stories of signature-required items left in mailboxes, and yes it has happened to me), and so on. Insert standard rant here.

      This initiative (if done well) is therefore a great idea. Roll it out in employment centres and key PT nodes, why can’t it happen at both? (with luck it is only a trial so far). E.g. at my home station of Ellerslie, there are PO boxes with after-hours access in the middle of the shopping street just by the train station, a Parcel Pod there would be easy for anyone commuting into or out of Ellerslie to use.

      What would REALLY be good is cheap, high-quality courier service such as provided in Japan – specifying the time slot for delivery, delivery Saturdays and Sundays (both at no extra cost) etc etc – but that really is dreaming. Check out this for a representative example of what courier service can be

      1. What would be really great is if NZ Post could simply use the large network of parcel collection points they already have. Whenever I get a package, inevitably I’m not home and I get a card to go visit some NZ Post site in Richmond Road… or Dominion Road… or up at the shops… or at Victoria Street… seemingly selected at random.

        Why not just cut all of this out, and offer a service where you can pick one of NZ Post’s many, many agents or post offices, get the parcel delivered straight to them, and pick it up at your leisure? Like ParcelPod, except you don’t have to sign up and pay for some subscription service, you just go and do it. Anywhere.

        Clearly this is possible, because this must be how a decent fraction of packages delivered to houses actually end up being collected right now. In fact, it seems like it’s easier than trying to drop it to people’s individual houses.

        1. Canada post recently announced they were stopping individual delivery to urban/suburban houses. Instead all delivery to “community mailboxes” which are like post boxes located in each neighbourhood. I believe a large percentage of areas already get delivery via these and they are just rolling them out across the remainder of the areas.



          1. Am I the only one who thinks this is a terrible idea? Delivery to your door 6 days a week is a blessing to have. It looks like Canada Post is just trying to save money by cutting back on delivery days and insisting on community boxes. More efficient for the post company? Definitely. Better for consumers? Not sure about that. I agree that the Japanese system is the best (good call, Glen).

  5. I rang NZ Post on 0800 501501 and was told it is a trial and costs $5 for 3 months or $10 for 6 months. The young lady said that she would pass on the thought that they would probably get more custom if they were to locate some at PT hubs such a Britomart, Newmarket, Papakura etc. She said she would post the recording on to those who make decisions. We will see what happens or ring and ask the same questions if you are interested in using the system. If there are a few of us then maybe there would be an incentive to spread it other locations.

  6. the downside is that if the delivery requires a signature or is carried by anyone but dhl/courierpost/nz post, then the item either gets sent back or kept at the counter meaning you have to get there during 9-5 to collect. Then even if it does satisfy those criteria, randomly some items get pacelpodded in a location different to your home one requiring a trip into town when you were expecting to go to newmarket for example.

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