What is a courier service?
5 criteria to consider when choosing a courier service.
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Courier companies are businesses which are responsible for the delivery of packages, documents and mail between two parties.
Unlike state-operated post offices, companies that offer courier delivery services are usually privately-owned and offer more competitive services, such as door-to-door package delivery 7 days a week, same day and overnight services and some even boast 24/7 services. Most couriers will also offer fully tracked international package delivery services to a wide range of global destinations.
If you’ve forgotten a loved one’s birthday and need a package delivered the next day, or you need to send a large box to another state and require online tracking and protection cover, a courier delivery service will give you the peace of mind that your item will arrive safely and on time.
How to choose the best courier service?
Even though there are many different courier services available in the US, choosing the best one for you can be quite tricky. How do you decide between FedEx, UPS, USPS or DHL courier services and which will be most suitable for your needs? The short answer is it depends on your situation.
Here are the top 5 factors to consider:
1. Courier for your business: Package delivery speed
As an e-commerce business owner, you know that delivery speed is everything. Your customer expects that wedding gift to arrive before the wedding, not after. If you are sending important business documents to close a deal, not delivering them on time can mean that someone else gets the deal, not you. Will the courier be able to deliver the package the next day? How long does it take to deliver packages domestically vs internationally? How soon can the courier pick up the package? Some courier services offer lightning-fast pick up whilst others operate only during Monday-Friday business hours. Guaranteed delivery time is another factor to consider in that case as well.
2. Sending documents and valuables: Tracking and delivery guarantee
When safety is of the essence, choosing the best courier service should depend on tracking services, delivery guarantee, and insurance. Imagine you have a really important gift to send to China. What if the courier loses the gift?! To protect yourself from this, make sure you choose a courier with additional insurance and tracking options. When you send a package, the courier company will provide a label that has a barcode on with a tracking (or consignment) number on it. It is then scanned as the package moves through different steps on its delivery route. This allows you to ‘track’ your package directly on the courier’s website. To make this easier, delivery comparison sites allow you to track packages sent through different courier services, all in one place. In addition, when sending fragile or valuable goods (e.g. musical instruments) you want to be 100% sure your courier handles them with care and that you are protected against potential loss and damage.
3. Moving your stuff: Delivery Price
So, you’ve decided to move to another state or abroad? Congratulations! Now you need to figure out how to send your life’s belongings to another country without breaking the bank. You will spend hours browsing different courier delivery websites only to discover it can be extremely hard to compare courier prices between different companies as they depend on various criteria. Package weight, size, content, delivery speed, destination, and additional services like extra insurance all affect the courier delivery price. The good news is, package delivery comparison sites, like Parcel Monkey can now do that for you. They can help you compare delivery courier prices and terms to give you the best price on domestic and international shipping.
4. Shipping abroad: International deliveries
Nowadays, almost everyone has friends and family overseas or does business with people abroad. Need to know what countries your courier delivers to or how long it takes to deliver packages from the US to Germany, or even to Hong Kong? Getting the best deals on international shipping between 200+ countries is something a comparison site can also help with.
5. If you’re busy: Package collection and delivery times
Collection and delivery times are also important when choosing your courier service. When you need to send a package in the evening or during the weekend, choosing a courier service with designated drop-off points is the best option for you (and will likely save you time and frustration by forgoing long line wait times). If you don't have time to head to the Post Office or Drop Off point, or you're shipping a heavy package, you can have the courier come and pick up from your doorstep.
What is a Package Delivery Comparison site?
After we’ve discussed what a courier is and how to choose the most suitable one, you can probably see that making these decisions can be really tricky. Package delivery comparison sites have been created to solve these problems and alleviate stress. They can help you choose the best courier service depending on your needs, completely free!
Wherever in the world, you want to send your package, you can compare the best couriers to get optimal service and delivery rates. Simply enter your details into our shipping calculator and get instant prices.