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Mainland-Bound Mail From D.R., BVI To Be Processed In Puerto Rico
Change slated for Oct. 1; more countries to be added later
BY KEN OLIVER-MENDEZ
September 12, 2002
"Both the Royal Mail and the postal administration of the Dominican Republic will benefit greatly from this change," says U.S. Postal Service Caribbean District Manager Roberto Perez de Leon.
As of Oct. 1, U.S. mainland-bound mail from the Dominican Republic (D.R.) and British Virgin Islands (BVI) will no longer be processed in Miami but in Puerto Rico, announced U.S. Postal Service Caribbean District Manager Roberto Perez de Leon.
Perez de Leon said that because of increasing volume from other destinations, the processing time in Miami for U.S. mainland-bound mail from the D.R. and BVI has been averaging 26 to 30 days.
With the change to San Juan, Perez de Leon said he expects mainland-bound mail from the two neighboring jurisdictions to average a four-day delivery turnaround.
Perez de Leon is scheduled to discuss the change in a speech tomorrow before the BVI Chamber of Commerce, to be followed by presentations in the Dominican Republic.
"Both the Royal Mail [which serves the BVI] and the postal administration of the Dominican Republic will benefit greatly from this change," Perez de Leon told CARIBBEAN BUSINESS. "It will make both more competitive with the private courier services."
The increased mail-processing volume in Puerto Rico is also expected to spur growth for the U.S. Postal Services Caribbean District, which employs more than 3,700 people in Puerto Rico, Perez de Leon said.
The Postal Service District chief said many commercial institutions that have relied on private courier services will be enticed to switch to the government-run systems as a result of the move. "The BVIs banking industry, for example, had stopped using the Royal Mail for stateside transactions because of the delays," he said.
Perez de Leon said the next goal will be for other neighboring islands and countries to follow suit. "We dont have a schedule for it yet, but we plan to add the French and Dutch islands," he said.
Shop, ship, and relax
Meanwhile, Perez de Leon said the Postal Services innovative Shop, Ship, and Relax program is in the implementation stage. Through the new program, the Postal Service is teaming up with Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Island hotels to allow guests to send packages home from their hotels.
"The airlines tighter restrictions on carry-on luggage is going to make this service increasingly attractive to our visitors," said Postal Service spokeswoman Mildred Diaz. She said the Postal Service is working with major island hotels to train and equip their counter personnel in the Shop, Ship, and Relax service.
As part of the initiative, the Postal Service has designed new delivery boxesincluding one especially designed for golf clubs. Perez de Leon said the Hyatt resorts are among the hotels enthusiastically signing up for the program.
This Caribbean Business article appears courtesy of Casiano Communications.