Cayman postal service officials say they are aware of problems with package notifications and are working to correct them in the coming days.

Some customers have complained recently of receiving notifications weeks after their packages arrived.

Deputy Postmaster General Melissa Martinez-Ebanks said the post office went to a new system of package notification in late April. By the end of May, she said, it was clear the new system was not working.

Before the change, she said, package notices were printed out individually.

“What we were finding is sometimes notices were being picked up off the printer by the wrong person,” she said. Those notices would sometimes get misplaced or lost.

In an effort to fix that problem, the decision was made to print the notices in bulk once a day, she said. But that has not improved the process. She said she has plans to return to the previous system with some potential modifications.

“I will meet with the team to see if there’s any hybrid system that might make it faster,” Martinez-Ebanks said. Ideally, she said, notifications should be sent out the same day a package arrives.

Apart from the problems with the new system, she said there are a number of factors that can lead to delays in notifying a customer that a package has arrived. The biggest has to do with shipping labels.

“We’re seeing a lot more people ordering from Alibaba Group and eBay,” Martinez-Ebanks said. “A lot of the packages tend to be small, like three or four inches. What we commonly see is addresses that are just cut off.”

Shippers typically require a street address. Since there is no regular home delivery in Cayman, customers have to include their post office box on the shipping label as well. That is the portion that often gets cut off, Martinez-Ebanks said.

There are other occasional problems as well.

“We’ve had issues with addresses in Chinese,” she said. “So that’s a challenge.”

Sometimes the tracking number gets cut off, or a label might be illegible, she said.

Martinez-Ebanks said she expects the situation to improve quickly.

“We should have things sorted this week,” she said.

She had suggestions for local customers who have ordered package shipments to Cayman:

If possible, include an email and phone number on the shipping information so the post office can send an electronic notification via text or email.

If a tracking number is available, call 949‑7001 or email the post office at [email protected] ahead of time to alert them of the expected arrival date and how to reach you. You can also use the tracking number to ask if a package has been received.

If you share a post office box or use a company post office box, check with others to see if a notice has been received.

1 COMMENT

  1. My sister-in-law posted a small envelope containing a vacuum filter from West Palm Beach, Florida, on 27th March stamped with air mail postage of $14.50, with our correct address in the GT Central Post Office. I enquired several times at our Post Office over the last few weeks and was told “it had not been received”. On Friday afternoon June 21st, a parcel notice appeared in our post box dated April 26th with the comment at the bottom “printed June 13th 2019 at 14.43″.
    I visited the airport Post Office on Saturday morning and asked to see the Deputy Post Master but was told she was in a meeting’. A gentleman took my number and said he would have her call me. I heard nothing and called this morning and left a message on Ms Martinez-Ebanks” extension. I received a call from Ms Martinez-Ebanks later this morning who mentioned she had called me Monday, but I missed the call. We had a very useful discussion and arrangements have now been made to send me future notifications by e-mail which should avoid and delay.
    Having read this article, it appears this delay is in my case and in many others, is the result of sheer incompetence. How else would you describe it when the reason given is “the notices were picked up off the printer by the wrong person and got lost”. It does not need rocket science to print a notice and put it in a post box.
    What we have here is a major problem with the parcel system that has been ongoing for months but which has been kept under wraps. Senior management at the Post Office must carry responsibility for this debacle and to make matters even worse do not respond to enquiries from the public regarding this issue.
    I receive mail from New Zealand in less than 2 weeks yet a package from West Palm Beach takes 12 1/2 weeks, this is simply not good enough.

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