Estonian postal operator Omniva will start delivering international cargo to parcel terminals, with initial tests taking place in April before being rolled out nationwide in the summer.
According to head of the Omniva parcel terminal network Evert Rööpson, there are a number of noteworthy benefits for directing international package flows to the automated network: “First, it enables us to deliver the parcel to the customer more quickly and more conveniently. It also helps to better realize our ever-expanding parcel network and to relieve the post office overload due to high packing volumes in the high season.”
According to Rööpson, the aspect that overloads more popular post offices today is the manual process of serving customers picking up small international parcels. Customers also constantly express the desire to be able to collect small parcels from self-service parcel terminals. ”Now we have a solution that will help us to fulfil the wishes of many customers,“ says Rööpson.
Omniva has now started piloting automated forwarding of parcels from post offices to parcel terminals in locations where large parcel volumes overburden the local post office. The aim of the forwarding is to provide customers the option of claiming their parcel quickly from a parcel locker located nearby, at any time of day.
Previously, parcels sent to customers living in the Kristiine, Õismäe and Tallinn city center districts arrived at the respective post office determined based on postal code; they are now sent straight to the nearest parcel terminal, allowing customers to pick up their parcel 24 hours a day without standing in a queue.
To send a parcel to a parcel terminal, the parcel must be marked with the recipient’s cell phone number so that the customer can be sent a text message when the parcel arrives. The other requirement is that the parcel has to fit into a parcel locker and that parcel terminal with vacant lockers are available in the district. To ensure that they are available, Omniva has expanded its parcel terminal network.
This summer, Omniva will begin testing a sorting line that enables the automatic identification of whether a parcel qualifies for forwarding to a parcel terminal. This will allow goods ordered from Amazon, Aliexpress, eBay or a small foreign e-shop to arrive directly at the parcel terminal, all over Estonia.