Global Mail Delivery Delays Update: April 14, 2014

World Map_standing imageHere are the latest global hot spots that may delay mail delivery as reported by International Delivery Solutions.

Thailand:  The Songkran Festival taking place between April 13-16th. Mail items arriving during this period will be held until when the processing and delivery of mail resumes.

Greece:  The Confederation of Greek workers and the Association of the Civil Servants held a 24 hour strike for on April 9th. This affected both inbound and outbound mail services.

Argentina: Customs officials and brokers in Argentina called a one day strike April 10th. This was a nationwide strike and customs did not operate for one day, as a result delays to mail services were probable.

Indonesia:  Indonesia Post informs that the country’s legislative elections took place on April 9th.  No postal operations took place.

Chile:  April 1st an 8.2 magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of Chile, causing significant damage. Mail delays are probable.

USPS to Raise Prices in 2014

Salvation Army Band

Salvation Army Band (Photo credit: danperry.com)

As regular as the traditions of Black Friday and the Thanksgiving Macy’s parade, the USPS seems to have its own holiday season ritual – the annual announcement of price increases.  In a press release posted on the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) website on November 21, the commission confirmed that it has approved a USPS request to increase prices for 2014. The press release states that commission made the determination that “the rates proposed by the Postal Service are consistent with the law, provided that the Postal Service does not implement Full Service IMb requirements concurrently with the proposed increased rates.” The commission clarified this statement by explaining that the preparation required to assign IMbs (Intelligent Mail Barcodes) to unique pieces of mail, bundles, and pallets, would be a classification change. The impact would need to be included in USPS’s calculations for rate changes.  Implementing the proposed rate adjustments in addition to the Full Service IMb requirements “would result in increases in First-Class Mail, Standard Mail, and Periodicals that exceed the statutory Consumer Price Index price cap, currently at 1.696 percent.”

Price changes go into effect on January 26, 2014.

Global Mail Delivery Delays Update: December 3, 2013

World Map_standing imageHere are the latest global hot spots that may delay mail delivery as reported by International Delivery Solutions.

Venezuela: Dec 2nd extensive power outages occurred across Venezuela. Multiple cities, including Caracas, lost power, apparently not uncommon but will cause transportation and mail delays.

Philippines: Since Nov 8th, Typhoon Haiyan has caused extensive damage to infrastructure in parts of the Philippines. The worst hit areas are Samar, Leyte and Northern Cebu provinces. These areas have experienced severe storm damage and postal services in the area have been badly affected.

Finland: Since Nov 25th, Itella Post delays in postal deliveries in Finland, due to industrial relations with the local union.

Portugal:  Nov 29th & 30th, The main trade unions in Portugal enacted a 24 hour strike.

Chile: Nov 25th thru Dec 3rd, work at the national customs administration stopped processing airmail.

France:  Bank Holidays on Nov 1st and Nov 11th may cause mail delays.

Brunei, South Korea, Philippines, Japan, China, Taiwan, Malaysia:  Airline Cargo Hub handler problems started on Oct 10th this has led to delays to cargo and mail passing through that hubs for several weeks.  The situation has cleared up, however, expect delays to clear the back-log. All mail and parcels will clear by early December.

2013-2014 Postal Holidays

50537499_a0a978e670_mThere will no postal service on Monday, November 11, 2013 due to the observance of Veteran’s Day.

Please see below for the remaining 2013 postal holidays as well as the 2014 holidays.

Allen Press will be closed November 28-29, 2013 and December 24-25, 2013.

2013

Monday, November 11 Veteran’s Day
Thursday, November 28 Thanksgiving Day
Wednesday, December 25 Christmas Day

2014

Wednesday, January 1 New Year’s Day
Monday, January 20 Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr.
Monday, February 17 Washington’s Birthday
Monday, May 26 Memorial Day
Friday, July 4 Independence Day
Monday, September 1 Labor Day
Monday, October 13 Columbus Day
Tuesday, November 11 Veterans Day
Thursday, November 27 Thanksgiving Day
Thursday, December 25 Christmas Day

Global Mail Delivery Delays Update: October 22, 2013

World Map_standing imageHere are the latest global hot spots that may delay mail delivery as reported by International Delivery Solutions.

Japan: Oct 16th Typhoon Wipha hit Tokyo, causing extensive air and ground transportation disruptions in the city.

Italy:  Oct 16-18th, Industrial strikes planned at the airport hubs affecting inbound and outbound mail and processing sites.

Philippines: A strong earthquake struck near Carmen, Philippines, on Oct 15th affecting infrastructure and transportation.

China:  Oct 1st through the 7th, National holidays in China meant that mail offices in the country were closed and operations limited. Normal services resumed on 8th October but some delays may be experienced.
 
Thailand: Since Oct 3rd and ongoing, areas in central Thailand are currently affected by heavy rain and flooding. Only services in the following post code areas have returned to normal: 17xxx, 35xxx and 65xxx. Finally, the following postcode areas are currently affected by the flooding which may cause delays in mail operations and deliveries: 10560, 18xxx, 20xxx-21xxx, 27xxx, 30xxx, 40xxx, 65xxx, 67xxx and 71xxx. Some post offices in the affected areas are unable to open as usual and mail operations and delivery of all postal items are subject to delays.
 
El Salvador:  Postal workers participated in industrial action Oct 4th through the 6th.
 
Seychelles:  Mail routes have been delayed as supplier transportation to the area is difficult to find. An alternative routing has been found for current mail that will also carry the backlogs.

United Arab Emirates:  The UAE Government has moved the start date of the Eid al-Adha holiday from Monday, October 14th to Sunday, October 13th. The holiday will end on Thursday, October 17th as scheduled.

Venezuela:  Postal operations have resumed as of October 15th, after a strike delay.

USPS Price Increases Proposed for 2014

iStock_000004729406SmallA news advisory from the United States Postal Service today announced a slate of proposed price changes for the new year. The Governors of the Postal Service voted on September 24 to seek price increases above the typical annual increases associated with changes in the Consumer Price Index (CPI). The USPS will propose the price increases in their annual filing to the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) on September 26. If approved by the PRC, the changes would go into effect in January 2014 and are projected to generate $2 billion in incremental annual revenue.

Here are the highlights:

  • Letters (1 oz.) — $0.03 increase to $0.49
  • Letters additional ounces —  $0.01 increase to $0.21
  • Letters to all international destinations (1 oz.) — $1.15
  • Postcards — $0.01 increase to $0.34

Global Mail Delivery Delays Update: September 23, 2013

World MapHere are the latest global hot spots that may delay mail delivery as reported by International Delivery Solutions.

Brazil:  Currently the Brazilian Postal Service is on strike.  We have been told that mail delivery will continue but delays should be expected.
Italy:  Sept 22nd – 29th The World Cycling Championships will take place in the Tuscan Region in Italy. Due to this race, delays may occur for mail services including delivery in the following post code areas: 50XXX to 59XXX.
Malta: On Sept 17th airline employees staged a sick day causing flight cancellations across the country.

Mexico: Sept 16th-18th the combination of Hurricane Ingrid on the Gulf coast and Tropical Storm Manuel on the Pacific coast have resulted in delays to mail services in nearly all parts of Mexico.

Greece: General 48-hour general strike Sept 18-19th to transportation and other services.

China / Hong Kong: Typhoon Usagi made landfall in southeastern China Sept 22nd. Airlines have canceled flights, several thousand residents have been evacuated from low-lying coastal regions and Hong Kong has received third-highest storm severity rating.

Kenya: A terrorist incident at the Westgate Shopping Mall in Nairobi is ongoing as of Sept 23rd.  Reports indicate that at least 69 people have been killed and more than 200 others have been injured in the attack.

Global Mail Delivery Delays Update: September 12, 2013

World Map_standing imageHere are the latest global hot spots that may delay mail delivery as reported by International Delivery Solutions.

Brazil:  Currently the Brazilian Postal Service is on strike.  We have been told that mail delivery will continue but delays should be expected.

France: Government workers in France’s transport sector strike Sept 9-11 protested proposed changes to retirement benefits.

UK:  Sept 9-11th postal workers in Weston-super-Mare area are taking part in strike activity.

South Africa: Many union workers indefinite strikes in the country, including fuel shortages.  Sept 9th, for casual postal workers in the mail and processing centers of the South African Post Office in parts of Gauteng, expect delays.

Bermuda /  Puerto Rico / Dominican Republic:  Tropical Storm Gabrielle struck Bermuda on Sept 11th, Puerto Rico and Dominican Republic on Sept 5th – heavy rains and flooding.

Belgium: On Sept 11th customs officers at Brussels Airport  staged a “work-to-rule,” or “go-slow,” strike to protest the recent implementation of new shift rosters causing transit delays.

Italy:  Sept 22nd – 29th The World Cycling Championships will take place in the Tuscan Region in Italy. Due to this race, delays may occur for mail services including delivery in the following post code areas: 50XXX to 59XXX.

Microsoft Announces Elimination of Tag Service

Microsoft Tag

Microsoft will eliminate their Tag service on August 19, 2015.

Publications and journals promoting their work through the use of Microsoft Tags may want to re-think their mobile barcode strategy after Microsoft’s announcement on Monday.

On August 19, 2015, Microsoft Tag codes will expire.  In the notice provided to customers on Monday, the company addressed several concerns, including how long current customers could access and use their accounts, as well as how they can begin migration.

In section 2.1 of the Tag Terms of Use page on Microsoft’s site, the company stated that basic features will be available “until at least January 1, 2015.”  This announcement meets their Tag Terms of Use, which states that Microsoft will “provide at least two years prior notice before we terminate the Basic Features or entire Tag Service and provide the Basic Features as part of the Tag Service for as long as we operate the Tag Service generally.”

This means that Microsoft, who announced termination of the Tag Service generally on August 19, can immediately terminate any and all features of the Service except for the Basic Features.  They can then terminate the Basic Features two years later, on August 19, 2015.

Microsoft is encouraging that current customers prepare for the termination of their Tag service by transitioning to QR codes through Scanbuy.  Scanbuy, who uses a platform titled ScanLife, will be offering services to Microsoft Tag customers as of September 18.

“This transition path will help you to continue running your campaigns using Microsoft Tags on the ScanLife platform,” the August 19 release stated.

ScanLife’s website currently offers a “welcome package” to customers using Microsoft Tags.  This free package includes basic usage information, simplified code publishing and online support.

For more information on QR codes, visit our website.

Global Mail Delivery Delays Update: July 16, 2013

World Map_standing imageHere are the latest global hot spots that may delay mail delivery as reported by International Delivery Solutions.

Peru – Bad weather over the region July 12-17 causing flight delays.

Greece – Postal strike on Tuesday July 16th.

Canada Flooding – Canada Post continues working on providing mail and parcel service throughout the communities affected by the June/July flooding in Southern Alberta. As of July 12th, the majority of delivery service in Calgary has been restored however some 2,000 addresses are still not accessible. Those residents will continue to pick up their mail until service can be restored.  The following postal codes were affected: T1A, T1B, T1C, T1V, T1W, T2G, T2N, T2P, T2R, T2S, T2T or T3B.  And those that live in Rural Postal Codes T0L 2C0, T0J 0S0, T0J 3W0, T3H 5X3, T3H 5X4 or T3H 5X5.   Canada Post has not posted any news on Toronto July 8th Flooding, however, expect mail delays in the Metro area.

Brazil – National unions July 11th protested day of struggle, expect mail delays.

Egypt – Due to the on-going political situation, expect mail delays.

Argentina – Union mail and trucking strikes on July 8th.

Canada – Quebec Eastern Township of Lac-Megantic July 6th train explosion will affect the region for the next several weeks for mail and transportation.

Portugal – General strike on June 27th.

Trinidad – Customs delays June 26th an onward affecting mail and packages.

Costa Rica – Transit strikes June 26th around San Jose affecting airport routing, will affect mail.

Mexico – Sporadic volcanic ash eruptions in Mexico City from the iconic Popocatepetl volcano, causing airline and traffic delays.  Mid June and onward.

Jamaica – Air traffic controller strike June 22-24.

Singapore and Malaysia – Smog causing air transport disruptions June 20 thru 25.

New Zealand – Polar storms with 124 mph winds on June 21-22 caused airline and power disruptions.

Italy – Rome transportation strikes on June 24-25th.