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Topic: Why not get Post Office SCOUTS to wrap packages?

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Subject: Why not get Post Office SCOUTS to wrap packages?
Date Posted: 12/7/2011 6:50 PM ET
Member Since: 9/22/2010
Posts: 3,400
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I have lost count of the number of times I sat waiting to see a postal clerk while one or more were busy helping people wrap their packages.  Often, a clerk is busy for 10-15 minutes helping a customer see what fits in which box, or showing how to wrap tape around it. Then there are the people who do not fill out the forms or even the address before they get to the clerk. I mentioned this to one of the clerks who replied (with a sigh), "Yes, then other people wonder why it takes so long for them to get their turn." Obviously, the clerks see this as a problem too.

As I live in a university town (Gainesville, Florida) and have been with the university for over 32 years, I have a fairly good idea who some of these clueless people are. They are probably the students getting a graduate degree in some field of engineering, but they can't even wrap a package!  Why would anyone hire them?

So I have this idea that the Postmaster General needs to consider....

If you go to a mall at this time of year, you will probably see a counter where the Boy (Girl, Cub, etc.) Scouts are wrapping packages for people for a fee. What we need at the larger post offices are booths where the U.S. Post Office SCOUTS will help people wrap their packages (for a fee) before they go to a postal clerk.  Folks, this could provide the U.S. Post Office with tens of millions of dollars a year in extra income. 

Obviously, I'm just blowing off steam, but it is not a bad idea either.




Last Edited on: 12/7/11 7:00 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 12/7/2011 6:57 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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I'd be venting too.

My USPS counter staff do not wrap packages, customers with unprepared packages are aimed at the packing supplies for sale and asked to step aside until they are ready for postage. 

Customers wishing for full packing services can go to the USPS store, where your extra service charge pays for packing supplies and assistance.

Last Edited on: 12/7/11 6:57 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 12/8/2011 12:37 PM ET
Member Since: 2/5/2007
Posts: 30,804
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No way do the clerks help anyone tape their package.  They answer whatever question the person has about box size etc, ask them to step over to one of the tables and help the next person. 

When I forget to fill out the custom form for my military packages, they hand me the form and direct me to the table.  When I'm finished they let me go back to the front of the line to finish my transaction.

Date Posted: 12/9/2011 8:05 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,209
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Yup, the problem is with your clerks they are doing things they shouldn't be doing. In the PO I use, the packing supplies are placed on the other side of the room and line of people runs between the supplies and the counter to make it clear the clerks aren't packing. I've watched people get to the front without things taped and they are told the clerks don't have anything but Priority tape and unless they want to send it Priority, they need buy the roll of tape from the packing supplies and package it themselves. Clerks do help with the forms like customs and Priority mailing labels, but if they are filling out mail forwards or addressing envelopes they are asked to step aside and let the clerk know when they are done.

Date Posted: 12/10/2011 9:17 PM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2009
Posts: 11,864
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They should not be helping customers to wrap their packages.  It is correct that they can move aside, wrap then get back in line.  People who do expect this are really clueless!  They even want the PO to provide tape, markers, labels etc. for free to them.  I had one gal bring me her gift and ask me to wrap it.  I told her about the UPS store that does that at a charge or I could sell her the box, tape and such and she could do it herself.  She left in a tizzy and I was not rude.

Packages should be totally ready for mailing including customs forms, DC, insurance etc. so as to help speed the line through.  Do not wait to tape it, label it or anything else at the Post Office, please.

Date Posted: 1/8/2012 8:34 PM ET
Member Since: 1/7/2012
Posts: 4
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sigh...I guess I am glad I live in a small town then! I wait  every time I walk in my post office, for some reason or another. I for the first time, had an item, I could not wrap, and had no Idea how to ship. I had the address written on the back of a receipt, and went into my post office! Not only did they give me a box, that would fit the very odd object, they helped me tape it. I thanked them profusely! I usually have everything, including my DC slips filled, and waiting for them to stamp it! I ship a lot of items. at varied prices, and often.

The fact that they took the time to help me, with one item, makes me twice as glad I use the USPS  and not other carriers, who charge for what used to be common courtesy!