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Australia Post halves letter delivery amid ‘bigger than Christmas’ parcel boom

Australia Post has been granted permission to reduce letter delivery services to cope with the increase in parcels being sent during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Across metropolitan areas, letter deliveries have been cut from daily to every second day, in order to divert more resources to parcel delivery.

Australia Post CEO Christine Holgate said parcel deliveries have skyrocketed.

At one Sydney processing facility, 136,000 cases of wine were processed last Saturday. At the same time last year, just 12,500 cases passed through the facility.

“The volumes are bigger than Christmas, and when it is Christmas you plan … I don’t think anyone foresaw the coronavirus and the volume,” Ms Holgate told 3AW’s Neil Mitchell.

“At Christmas time we have 50 per cent of our parcels with posties being able to carry them on their motorbikes, a lot of them are small … but in coronavirus people are ordering TVs, they’re ordering chairs to sit on.”

With the drastic increase in parcels and changes to working conditions, Australia Post is scrambling to cope.

The postal service is retraining 2000 posties to deliver parcels and has hired 500 new casuals.

Nine new parcel processing facilities have been opened, and Australia Post has chartered aeroplanes to facilitate air mail.

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