Chinese couriers must notify customers before dropping off parcels

New regulations require Chinese couriers to notify customers before dropping off parcels. China’s recent regulatory amendment, which mandates parcel delivery workers to inform customers of the exact delivery location, has evoked a mixed response across the sector.

Effective March 1, 2024, the amendment requires delivery workers to refrain from leaving packages at community delivery areas without prior customer notification, necessitating direct delivery to people’s doorsteps. During the COVID-19 pandemic, many community delivery areas were established in China to mitigate person-to-person contact and curb virus transmission.

Under the new regulation, couriers or companies leaving packages in community delivery areas without advance customer notification could face fines of up to 30,000 yuan ($4,200). The objective of the rule, as outlined in a statement by the Ministry of Transport, is to enhance the protection of customers’ legal rights.

The average person in China received over 90 parcels last year. While many customers have embraced the amendment because it allows parcels to be delivered directly to their doors upon request, others have voiced confusion and annoyance, expressing a preference for the previous method. Couriers have also raised concerns about the change.

Based on the 2021 National Survey on the Status of the Workforce, China’s total number of express delivery personnel stands at around 4.9 million. The working hours of express delivery couriers are deemed strenuous for the average individual, with nearly half of them clocking in 10-12 hours daily. Only 30.6% adhere to an 8-10 hour schedule, while a substantial 21.4% toil for over 12 hours. As income dwindles and working hours extend, a labor shortage inevitably emerges.

Source: China Daily

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