3 Ways Delivery Drivers Go Above and Beyond to Keep Packages Safe

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Porch package theft is simple. All you need is three ingredients: a porch, a package and a thief. Preventing porch package theft? Not so easy. Sometimes it feels like you need a whole arsenal of measures and countermeasures to make sure that box of tube socks is still on your porch when you get home from work. You get a porch cam. You buy a Package Protector™. You send detailed delivery instructions so your package gets stashed in the third azalea from the left. One of the critical components of package protection that you often don’t think about is your delivery driver. If we’ve learned anything in 2020, it’s that delivery drivers, whether they work for the United States Postal Service, UPS, FedEx or directly for e-commerce retailers, basically keep the world turning. There are all kinds of delivery driver stories where the package never made it, or the box with the laptop got carelessly thrown over the fence and chewed up by the neighbor’s dog. But let’s face it. When we couldn’t leave our houses and everyone was afraid to go grocery shopping, delivery drivers were heroes. Today we’re doing a (socially-distanced, obviously) group hug with some of our favorite delivery drivers. Because they’re part of our community, and having a relationship with your delivery driver is one of the best ways to make sure your packages get delivered when and where they’re supposed to be.  

The Goodest Boys (And Girls)

 
View this post on Instagram Moose asks her favorite driver Tim, “Where’s my bonus treat?” in Westborough, MA

A post shared by UPS Dogs (@upsdogs) on Jul 31, 2020 at 5:49pm PDT

The rivalry between mailmen and dogs is legendary and goes back as long as there has been a mail service. So the first step for most delivery drivers when it comes to winning over the neighborhood is winning over the neighborhood dogs. Social media accounts like @upsdogs and hashtags like #pupsofjay chronicle delivery drivers’ missions to befriend dogs and win over their owners, one Milkbone at a time. Delivery drivers know the way to a dog’s heart is with bacon, and they’re not afraid to use that to their advantage. Dogs are often — and understandably — nervous when strange people come to the front door, but if your pooch is more wannabe rent-a-cop than actual guard dog, help them get to know your delivery driver. A driver is way more likely to take the time to find somewhere safe to leave your package if they aren’t worried your Very Good Boy is about to attack.

The Delivery Ninjas

 
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Okay, so your local delivery driver and Scruffy are pals now. In fact, you’ve heard Scruffy muttering in his sleep how dog treats seem to taste better when they’re fresh off the delivery truck than the ones you keep in the kitchen, but you’re choosing to ignore it. Either way, you know the delivery guy is on your side now, how do you take advantage of this? One of the key ways to protect your package is to leave detailed instructions for your delivery driver with your order. Maybe your porch faces a busy street, with nowhere ideal to hide a package, but it’s easy to stash a box behind the garage, now that Scruffy is no longer on guard duty. But beyond the delivery drivers who will go the extra mile — okay, the extra thirty feet — to hide a package behind your gate, there are the ones who know the best places to hide your package. The brave delivery ninjas are the kinds of people you never want to play against in a competitive Tetris tournament because they have some skills. You have to respect a driver who will go to the effort of hiding your package over your front door or camouflage it among the throw cushions on your porch loveseat. A driver who knows you — and draws little hearts around their name and Scruffy’s during math class — will make sure your package is as safe as possible.

The True Delivery Driver Heroes

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It’s probably safe to say that almost no one knows your neighborhood as well as your mail carrier and other regular package delivery drivers. They drive the same streets day in and day out. What’s the expression? “Neither wind, hail, sleet, pandemics, flash floods, forest fires…?” Okay, that’s the updated 2020 version, but either way, delivery drivers know the flow and feel of your neighborhood, and they know when something is wrong. Not all heroes wear capes. Some wear snappy brown walking shorts, like Tom Holland who, when dropping off a package on his usual route, noticed the box he’d left there four days ago was still on the porch. Instead of carrying on with his day, Tom started banging on the door until he realized it was unlocked. When he let himself into the house, he found the elderly owner on the floor in medical distress. It doesn’t take much work to find other heroic stories, like Erick Richardson, who was on his delivery route when a man flagged down his truck and told Erick he’d been shot. In total,  Erick transported three men with gunshot wounds to the hospital but refused the title of hero in local news stories. And, forgive us if we’re getting sappy, but it doesn’t even take saving a life for a delivery driver to be a hero for someone. Drivers like Shane (no last name given, he’s just that cool, like Cher or Pitbull) get to be heroes just by helping to brighten a little girl’s day by bringing her ice pops after she mistook his truck for the ice cream man’s.

Bonus Feels

   
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For some bonus tears, there’s the story of 11-year-old Emerson and her local USPS mailman Doug. Emerson was already a prolific letter writer when COVID hit, and one day she wrote an extra letter addressed to Doug, thanking him for all his hard work. Emerson and her family couldn’t have imagined the response they’d get from USPS workers across the country. Pretty soon, Emerson and her parents were inundated with personally written letters from letter carriers from around the U.S. They wrote jokes, talked about how lonely they were, working during the lockdown, and some even confessed that they, like Emerson, were die-hard Taylor Swift fans. Cue the waterworks.

Teamwork Makes the Package Dream Work

Keeping your package safe is a team effort. You could have all the technology in the world, but nothing is going to be as effective as a delivery driver who knows your neighborhood, likes your dog, and cares about you. Our delivery drivers have been working extremely hard as essential workers during the pandemic. If you want to show them some love (after all, they’re bringing you your tube socks and your dog bones), you can put out a gift basket with some bottles of water, gatorade and bags of chips or granola bars, along with a note, so they know exactly how grateful you are for those safe packages. Add in a little defensive maneuvering like a Package Protector™, and your delivery driver will be the hero you need every day.