42 comments

Why Your Snail Mail Is About To get Even Slower – Possible Canada Post Changes

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A story from CTV says that Sweeping cuts may be ahead for Canada Post as the Crown corporation faces a $327 million operating loss.

Canada Post is considering the following options to reduce their costs and stay afloat as less people use traditional mail

  • reducing home delivery from five to four, or even three, days
  • closing some of the 6,500 retail outlets across the country
  • consolidating its 21 sorting centres to just major cities.

While the changes could be several years into the future as a result of contracts and bargaining agreements, they will not be able to sustain those losses for the years it will take for those agreements to end.

Personally, I have used Canada Post less, not because of email but because locally they are so slow.  I sent and received several expedited parcels and xpresspost envelopes last week and only 1 of 6 arrived on time – Canada Post is refunding the cost of those packages as they guaranteed dates that were not met but I know the company I work for will be greatly impacted by mail arriving only 3 days (and will likely mean our mail room staff will be dropped to part time so the job cuts will be wider than just Canada Post).

How do you feel about these changes (and please remember that we have Canada Post workers who are members of SmartCanucks and be respectful of that).

Thanks for the better CTV link dlee

42 comments

  1. Sandra5

    I rarely mail letters now via snail mail. I was holding out with mailing my monthly visa bills in as a concerted support of Canada Post, but sadly, had to switch this bill to online payment during Canada Post’s last strike. Visa messed up and cashed the late-arriving cheque payment in addition to the online payment, so I won’t be switching back to mailing them cheques: too much hassle with Canada Post strikes and the extreme time sensitivity required with Visa payments.
    But as for the good news for Canada Post, my online purchases keep escalating, and I find that their parcel delivery service is excellent for my personal shopping needs ( I rarely if ever order stuff requiring expedited or xpresspost service so I can’t comment on how fast these services are.) Their rates are excellent and staff are friendly so I probably spend even more now with Canada Post because of all of the parcels I order.
    Long live Canada Post! I hope they stay in business forever.

    Reply
  2. Koalahug

    Noooo! I still send old-fashioned snail mail nearly every day, as I’m a member of an internaional postcard exchange program (postcrossing.com, for anyone who’s interested! It’s AWESOME!). I love to send faraway friends real, honest-to-goodness letters, cards and little gifts. Sure, email is more convenient, but nothing can compare with a hand-written piece of mail, as it has passed through the writer’s hands and it’s so much more personal. I send and/or receive things practically every day–including things ordered by mail–so if Canada Post downgrades its services that drastically, I will be so very sad :(

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  3. Strider

    I’m all for a 3 day delivery delivery schedule. I don’t get enough mail to justify daily deliveries, and M/W/F covers the week nicely.

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  4. sara

    I still get all my bills my mail, unless a company charges for paper bills. I refuse to pay the cost of toner/paper to print out my bills (I need to keep them for tax purposes). I have a community mail box so I never know when the mail arrives. As a result I tend to check for mail every other day. Maybe CP should consider converting more neighbours to these to save carriers’ time.

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  5. Carla

    I think 3 day a week delivery is great, especially for residential customers. Business delivery may need to be 5 days. I wouldn’t even mind having mailboxes where you go & get your mail. I grew up in the country, so getting mail hand delivered to my house is a luxury!

    Reply
  6. Mark

    Americans are mad that they won’t be getting mail delivered on Sat anymore and we’re going to get 3 day delivery…give me a break. Mail carriers make too much money and the corporate people as well. Everything going down the tubes it seems!

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  7. atyoung

    I am a little sad, but trying to be realistic. I share the same nostalgia as Koalahug and Sandra5, and still love sending and receiving old-fashioned letters. Dropping mail into a conventional street corner mailbox is also so satisfying! However, I also believe that some consolidations and perhaps a 4-day week of service may help offset the $3.3M loss. Keep us posted on this, FallenPixels!

    Reply
  8. Yura

    It’s not like Canada Post doesn’t do their jobs right. The problem is they don’t even do their job! They have NEVER once delivered a parcel to my door (even when there are people at home), and all I got was a notice on the door telling me to pick it up myself. They don’t even bother knocking on your door even though they are at your doorstep – yes, they are THAT lazy.
    Oh yeah, if there is a tiny bit of rain or snow, guaranteed there will be NO mail for that day.
    Mailing something using Canada Post with no tracking number? Good luck! I kept losing stuff in the mail, and when I called to complain, Canada Post said they do not open cases with no tracking numbers (yes, even if you show them the purchase history of three consecutive orders of the same item because it keeps getting lost in the mail!).

    Their system is seriously messed up, and in my opinion they are the biggest waste of my tax money. If it takes $1000 to fire them all, I’d go to the bank and take out the cash now, coz over the years we’ve lost way more money per tax payer than that!!!

    Reply
  9. Nikki

    I’m really lucky where I live that my mailperson is awesome. I’ve never seen them, they’re like a mail ninja lol I don’t get a lot of mail but if it’s raining or snowing they always make sure the box is closed, I’ve rarely ever had to pick up a package and because I’m part of Pinecone and online shopping I do get some quite frequently. I like that my mailperson doesn’t knock. They always put it in a plastic bag and sit it outside my door. I live in an apartment where you have to walk down to get to my door so nothing can be seen from the road, I love it, it’s like Christmas when I get parcels lol I’d be sad if we lost mail, I too am a member of postcrossing and love mailing and receiving postcards, plus I don’t want to have to pay the outrageous delivery fees for UPS or FedEx when I get online orders. Cut back to three days a week, cut out some of the Shoppers postal outlets (my town has 2 or 3! We only need one!) but don’t discontinue it completely!

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  10. Scarecrow

    My mail carriers have been awesome, just this past week I got 3 packages hand delivered to me. I have yet to receive a package or had a package sent that arrived late. The only negative was some of the postage has been a little expensive, but there’s a new delivery envelope available that is a little cheaper. I feel bad if some people have to lose jobs over this.

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  11. Jessica

    Well I am a Canada Post employee and this is certainly a kick in the face. I’ve been classified as a temporary employee for 4 years. In November I was told a permanent placement would happen very soon…with cuts like this I’m screwed.

    Reply
  12. Nico

    Yura, to contrast your experience, I have had nothing but excellent service from Canada Post – deliveries on time, packages left as indicated, and I pay to have a tracking number because it’s an added level of service. I don’t think most Canadians realize just what Canada Post does and the conditions they have to deal with. Getting a package across this country in a matter of days is a feat, and having to deal with freezing conditions and sidewalks that haven’t been shovelled all winter can’t be pleasant. Ring the bell then leave? I would do the same rather than stand at a doorstep waiting for someone to drag their butt to the door. Ring the bell and move on so that more packages can be delivered. You can also require a signature for a package, by the way. I leave a little something for my postie twice and year, and get a handwritten card in reply as thanks. And when walking my dog on different occasions, two different posties asked if they could give her a treat. Your generous offer to provide $1000 to fire them all suggests to me that yura … inconsiderate person.

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  13. Diana

    I have terrible experience with Canada Post. I usually send cards overseas and sadly 1 out of 5 gets delivered and the other 4 are lost in the middle of nowhere. And my friends keep sending me cards and I haven’t receive any one of them. I know we are wrote down the right address and if it happens to be a wrong one it will be returned to sender right? Anyway in packages, I always receive a note that I need to pick it up in their office which is absolutely ridiculous! As of now Im waiting for a package from London which should be here now by 1st week of Feb but until now its not in my doorstep…

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  14. Nico

    I too send letters and packages overseas, and realize that Canada Post is only part of the equation. The birthday card I sent to Mexico? Didn’t make it. Do I blame Canada Post? The mistake could have been on their end, but I also recognize that – based on my experience in Mexico – the bureaucratic organization there leaves much to be desired. Once your letter gets on a plane or on a boat bound for another country, it’s probably in the hands of someone that isn’t Canadian, and doesn’t work for Canada Post. Could service in Canada be better? Of course it could. But are we willing to pay for it? I’m reminded of the barrage of whining that entitled people let loose every time a postage stamp goes up a few pennies. 63 cents to send a letter from Vancouver to St. John’s? Outrageous!

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  15. Katbean

    I think this is really sad. My letter carrier is so awesome, cool guy, I’m sad he will be reduced to having only a part time job. It’s hard for regular Canadians to find fair jobs that pay a decent wage so this is a larger blow to us all and yes the effects will trickle to other streams.

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  16. Wondering

    My fiance and I send letters between BC and AB, and it takes about a week for a letter to arrive. Handwritten letters are so much different than emails, and these days it seems that people don’t have the time to write letters- which also contributes to this happening with Canada Post. So sad!

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  17. Tammy

    We are lucky if we get mail 2 times a week now they come when they feel like it. They don’t even delivery packages to my house anymore we have to go to the post office and pick it up they don’t even try so personally I don’t feel bad that they need to make cuts they are not working now anyway I think it might help provide better service.

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  18. abbasgirl

    My postal carrier no longer checks to see if I’m home before leaving a notice to pick up packages either. But I think it has more to do with the changes they made late last year which put a heavier workload on some carriers than with actual laziness. I live in an apartment building, so there would be a lot of packages. The mail used to be delivered in the early afternoon, but now it’s at around 5, so I think their day is a lot longer now.
    I don’t like the idea of having the mail come less days. Of the three options, I would prefer that they close down some outlets. I hate UPS so I hope Canada Post remains an option for packages.

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  19. adora

    I think their union is causing problems. They hesitate to make changes that would make workers redundant.

    They can replace large portion of people in their outlets with vending machines and self-service counters. It’s so easy to fit booklets of stamps in vending machines!

    Their outlet hours are way too long. I can never understand why they need to open until 9 pm or even on Sundays. Opening 100 hours a week increase their overhead which are pass down to us. I really don’t think anyone in Canada can do eBay business using Canada Post.

    I’d really prefer they keep delivery for 5 days a week, and cut cost elsewhere. There are so so many obvious inefficiency. I mean, do they really need to input every dimension of the package in the computer? Seriously? Have a template box like the carry-on thingy at the airport.

    What I find most ridiculous is how they force services on you! It’s more expensive to send a small package from ON to BC ($11.50) than to Europe($6.50) because they force you to get insurance.

    They are making the country less competitive.

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  20. Karen

    We already only get mail three (maybe four) times per week. Three adults live in my home and we receive at least 10 pieces of mail per day – so it amounts to getting 30+ letters on some Tuesdays (we never get mail on Fridays, and rarely on Mondays). My mother works from home, and this negatively impacts her business repeatedly. The nature of her work means she CAN’T go purely electronic or use a third party mailer. I’ve had packages stolen which magically show up two weeks after I make a complaint, opened and half used. My coupons don’t get to me at least 75% of the time, and sometimes show up later on, with the envelope re-taped and the high value ones cut out. We don’t get mail half the time in the winters – never on snow days.

    I work for a company that ships online purchases via FedEx or Canada Post, and know from the other side, too – Canada Post is absolutely useless. Go right ahead and make cuts, it needs to be overhauled completely.

    Just in case everyone’s curious – I live half an hour away from Vancouver. In a suburb. 2 minutes from Highway #1. I am by no means rural, and there are NO road issues in my neighbourhood.

    Reply
  21. Jessica

    Adora – Corporate run outlets are only open Monday to Friday (if it’s a HUGE outlet like doing a few million in sales per year, they might be open Saturday) and most are either 8-5 or 9-5. Outlets that are open long hours like those in Shoppers Drugmart are franchises. The employees are not paid by Canada Post. Canada Post pays minimal margins to Shoppers Drug Mart. (or whatever host store it might be in) The franchises are purely a draw to get people into the host store, the margins made barely cover the staffing. I know this because before I worked for Corporate offices, I managed a couple franchises.

    Yura

    Reply
  22. cdn75

    Considering 3 of the 5 mail days my box is either empty or junk mail, I would be fine with a 2 day week.

    I think Canada Post is doomed no matter what they change…..too little too late.

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  23. Jessica

    Sorry, hit submit by accident.

    Yura – We deliver mail even in snow and rain. The only time the carriers shouldn’t is if the weather has created unsafe working conditions. Everyone has the right to refuse unsafe work conditions, not posties.

    Reply
  24. cdn75

    Yura…..you are a bit dramatic. Fire them all because your mail does not arrive on snowy days??? REALLY???????? My neighbour works for Canada Post(luckily towards the end of his career), we live in the country and he drives an hour and a half to work, leaving at 3:30 a.m. The storm that basically shut down Ontario last week……he went to work….for the whole shift. He cares. There are many more Canada Post employess like him. So don`t lump all the losers that the union protects in with the good employees.

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  25. Tammy

    Well, I guess we do have to face the reality that times have changed and with email and electronic transactions now so widely used, physical mail delivery is down. And with that being the case, then I can’t see how Canada post could not scale back in some way in order to maintain business without it being a financial loss. Unless they can come up with some other form of business venture “add on” that would be of use to the public in order to generate more business coming in. It doesn’t make sense for any company, unionized or not, to just keep the same number of employees when the need for the service is not there. As unfortunate as that is for those who have the jobs now, there are no guarantees in any job that the market won’t change and you will no longer have the security of a job for like. Personally I wouldn’t care if mail was only delivered to my house 4 days instead of 5 however for business I could see this may be more of an issue. it’s certainly a tough situation and I would hope that their union recognizes (unlike the teacher’s union) that when things in the economy change, they can’t just demand to plug on as usual but rather have to make reasonable concessions, just like the rest of the employed Canadians out there.

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  26. jld87

    Some days I only get one piece of junk mail, so really a 3 day delivery schedule makes sense… and since I have a box up the road to get my mail out of, I don’t even get over to it every day. Sucks for the people whose jobs it will affect, but snail mail is starting to be a thing of the past, like telephone operators and, grocery bag boys

    Reply
  27. Laura

    I’ve had a love/hate relationship with CP over the years, especially since moving to a rural area. I won’t go into details to bore everyone, but there was once a month where we did not receive any mail….all because of a personal issue. Anyhow, I am not surprised at the cutbacks. Too bad, but it was bound to happen.

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  28. Mona

    I know all to well about my mail man(east york), he delivers my mail sometimes between 6:00pm & 7:00pm, there are days he don`t come at all.
    It`s ridiculous how we have to suffer for your mistakes. I get mail every day. I depend on the mail on a daily basis.
    There are other cut backs you can implement like, cutting out the downtown week-end mail delivery service among other reasonable options.
    Leave our daily mail delivery alone please.
    Thank you

    Reply
  29. Astrogal

    I don’t get it when people say the post office is irrelevant nowadays because of e-mail. What about packages? Can’t send those via e-mail. I still use the postal service for packages and sending cards in the mail, which I still find more personal than an e-card for those really special people. Ever since I was a child, I loved getting mail and I still look forward to checking my mailbox every day. It’s true that more times than not, it’s just full of junk mail or no mail at all, so I guess they could cut it down to 3 or 4 days and then get more good quality mail perhaps on those days.

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  30. Paul Paton

    I have known for about 5 years that this would come to happen. Canada Post wants to close all their postal outlets with counter service and turn them into sorting outlets only. That is why they have allowed so many RPO`s (Remote Post Office) such as Shoppers Drug Mart etc. to be created. In the near future they will discontinuing rural mail delivery, those folks will have to go the post office or a group box the retrieve their mail. We brought it on ourselves folks since the online era.

    Reply
  31. Nico

    Thank you Jessica for your great responses. I agree with everything you said, and also appreciated the facts you shared with others about postal services, worker’s rights and franchise outlets.

    I am so tired of everything becoming automated and would hate the vending machines replacing workers.

    I also am a supporter of Unions and one of their purposes is to project the jobs of it’s workers. Rather than making people redundant they would just have to put a freeze on hiring, if that became necessary.

    Unions are not the enemy, as much as the right wing media would want you to think that.

    Anyone want to talk about making the Senate redundant?

    Reply
  32. Crys

    We have the best mail person ever. He rings the bell and if you are not home, he will write on an envelope that goes through the mail slot of the door if there is a package left between the screen door and the front door. He’s friendly with my dogs. His name is Rob.

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  33. Ron Ash

    If private companies ran as badly as canada post we would all be out of work, The only reason they keep going is because of the never ending pocket of the public. Well our pockets are now empty sell it off and let them learn what it is like to work like the rest of us. I have known many people who have worked for canada post and it makes me ill to listen to the stories they tell of how our mail is treated. Home delivery 5 days a week is outdated. As for unions 5 companies I have worked for in my career are no longer here because of unrealistic union demands all 5 companies got fed up shut their doors and moved elsewhwere. Wake up people if we don’t dump these companies that are costing us more than they are worth this government will go under and they will be out of work anyways.
    You are right Nico the senate is redundant another government money pit.
    Paul canada post put everyone in the rural areas on group boxes over 5 years ago using the excuse it would saved them all kinds of money another lie so don’t worry about us we are already there.

    Reply
  34. Yura

    It’s clear from the comments that I’m not the only person having problems with Canada Post’s services. For the many people who are frustrated with years of lost (stolen) parcels and delayed mails, there is no use in telling them how excellent YOUR post carrier is. Those kind of comments proves no point whatsoever.

    Contrary to US, where majority of the online transactions are shipped via USPS, ever wonder why it’s so rare that a Canadian business (big or small, local or online) would ever use Canada Post as their carrier?

    Sorry if my comments hurt some Canada Post employees’ feelings, but it’s time for you to grow up and realize how badly your corporation fails (unless, of course, you are part of that problem).

    Reply
    • FallenPixels

      Yura, these are not the comments that made the last CP thread (during the lockout when tensions were high) go downhill

      Personally I have experienced great mail carriers and lazy ones – and most if not all of the CP workers on SC will acknowledge that there are bad apples and that the new systems have caused more issues than they have solved and slowed them down.

      My major peeve is when they leave a card when you are home like Thursday…

      Reply
  35. Konrad

    I think privatise the corporation is the best option. Who would want to use Canada Post when the service is unreliable and ineffective. It took more than 4 weeks for a post card to arrive when it was posted overseas. It took 6 working days for a letter to arrive in Edmonton when posted in Winnepeg.If I have an option, I would use anything else other than Canada Post.Don’t waste taxpayers money and keep this corporation in operation, privatise the corporation and let some private business to run it with efficiency and effectiveness.

    Reply
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    Reply
  37. David Cook

    You can waste a great deal of your life waiting for Canada Post to deliver a simple envelope. What’s the freakin’ problem. Do we have to swallow this kind of non-service. What an insult and an embarrassment. Something has to be done …

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  38. David

    I am continually getting other peoples mail in my mail box and my mail is constantly going somewhere else. Talk about losers. I see them sleeping in their trucks for a couple hours then run like a bat outta hell to toss the mail in.

    And to the comment in your story “(and please remember that we have Canada Post workers who are members of SmartCanucks and be respectful of that).”
    Screw that! have you been in the post office lately? Have you spoken one on one with these people?? I will be “respectful” to them when they get their heads out of their butts and act respectful to the customers.

    Reply
  39. e

    I have no problem that Canada Post goes under and someone else (who knows how to run a postal service efficiently so our tax dollars don’t go down the drain) takes over. The organization is a monopoly and we are stuck with it.

    Reply

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