Expecting a package? Here’s what delivery drivers want you to know

MOUNT DESERT ISLAND —The following delivery tip list was shared by UPS driver Lisa Hayes, who delivers to Seawall, Bass Harbor, Tremont, Bernard and sometimes Seal Cove on Mount Desert Island. She attributed it to a UPS blogger. Islander staff was unable to track down its origin, but we felt it important enough to share, since more holiday shopping is being done online this year than in previous years.

Tip 1 – Porch lights

Please leave lights on if you are expecting a package, especially after 4 p.m. It helps us find your house. Hunting for the right house when it’s raining and dark outside is a bummer.

Tip 2 – House address

Try to make it easy for us to spot your house number so we can get the package to you quickly. Reflective numbers on the house itself, numbers on both sides of the mailbox or curb numbers in reflective paint make it easier to find you.

Tip 3 – Alcohol

If you are expecting wine or fancy beer and you’re not home, don’t expect us to leave it on your porch. Sorry, but we aren’t allowed to do that.

Tip 4 – Last moment

If you wait until the last moment to order or ship stuff, it will cost more and might be potentially late, so plan ahead.

Tip 5 – Anger management

We sincerely want you to get your packages. Unfortunately, our families have gotten used to not spending time with us from now until mid-January. If delays occur, please try to keep in mind that we are having rough days ourselves. Being mad at us won’t help anything.

Tip 6 – Dogs

If you are expecting a package, please secure dogs inside. Being a chew toy isn’t in our contract. Plus, it will delay your package.

Tip 7 – Dogs, again

Please wait until we are out of your yard before opening your door. We aren’t interested in seeing Spot run.

Tip 8 – Access point

If you aren’t home and we send your package to an access point, we should leave an info-notice with that address on it. DO NOT go to that location that day. In all likelihood, it’ll be delivered there tomorrow. You will have seven days to go to that location to retrieve your package.

Tip 9 – Cyber Monday

The sale was Nov. 30 this year. The following Wednesday is a rough day because everybody else and their cousin shopped that day, too. Expect unusual issues, like a knock on your door at 9 p.m.

Tip 10 – Surprise presents

If you are getting a Barbie Dream House or a new Schwinn, try to keep your kiddo away from the porch while we are delivering. We don’t want to ruin anybody’s Christmas surprise.

Tip 11 – Conversation

We try not to be rude about it, but we really can’t talk for the next two months. Our workload literally doubles this time of year. If you have questions, try to make them quick and clear. To answer the most common question: if it isn’t on our truck, we don’t know where your package is.

Tip 12 – Returns

Somebody got you the wrong size sweater or television for Christmas. You want to send it back. We can do that, but you have to request a “Call-Tag” return service from the shipper (Amazon). Please have your item ready to go. We really don’t have ‘just a second’ while you try to quickly repack the item. We will try again the next day, OK?

Tip 13 – Apartments

If you decorate your door for the season, please don’t cover your apartment number. If you must, try to write your apartment number somewhere in the decoration. Know if your apartment office will hold deliveries for you or not. Most offices stop holding deliveries during this time of year. Also, make sure your apartment number is on the shipping label when you order. A lot of packages go back to the hub because we’re missing apartment numbers.

Tip 14 – Oversized deliveries

If you order something big (televisions, furniture, mattresses) and it’s raining, we may not leave it. Unless you have a safe place to put it out of inclement weather, we’ll probably take it back.

Tip 15 – Walkways

Please try to keep them clear of cords, toys, snow, ice or other slipping/tripping hazards. Obstacle course challenges can be fun, but let’s save American Ninja practice for another time.

Tip 16 – Manners

Our delivery people are only human. During this time of year, we miss a lot of time with friends and family; something as simple as a thank you from you goes a long way.

Tip 17 – Tips

There are lots of suggestions on giving your delivery person a tip, but it boils down to the individual delivering. Some drivers like cookies, brownies or chips. Cash is uniformly appreciated, as are gift cards. A bottle of Gatorade goes a long way. In the end, we consider it a bonus and greatly appreciate it. If you feel led to tip, thank you. If not, no big deal.

Tip 18 – PVDs

UPS has hired a lot of Personal Vehicle Delivery drivers this season. There are folks using their own cars, trucks or vans to deliver packages (typically residential stops). They won’t be dressed in the “browns” that you identify with UPS. Try not to be freaked out by it.

Tip 19 – Time crunch

This year has the shortest amount of time between Thanksgiving and Christmas (22 days). The less you panic about the time crunch by preparing for it, the less panicked we will be with the huge volume compacted into fewer days.

Tip 20 – Crunch crunch

If you’re going to ship something to a friend or loved one, pack it well. Empty space in the box allows it to be crushed in the trailer or on the belts. Fill it with something or get a smaller box. Also, don’t skimp on the packing tape. Don’t let $500 of gifts be damaged or undelivered because you don’t want to use an extra 25 cents worth of tape.


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