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The Processes of a Parcel’s Delivery Journey

ByDave Stopher

Oct 24, 2018

When you send a parcel, do you often wonder where it goes before it reaches its destination? Within a large supply chain, it can pass through various people and processes, whether you’re sending finished products to clients abroad or arranging the delivery of materials to another business for whom you are a supplier. The evolution of parcel tracking has made it more transparent and provided greater visibility of the journey any parcel you send experiences.

Packaging and Preparation

Before any parcel makes its way to the post office or is collected for delivery, it needs to be properly packaged up. The way this is done will depend on the contents, but some good advice is to start with a strong box which offers as little empty space as possible. Use packaging peanuts or bubble wrap to fill any empty space and add extra protection, while making sure the label is securely attached and the address clear.

Shipped Out

Once your parcel is ready to send you can either take it to your local post office or arrange for it to be collected. The latter is often best when sending multiple or large, heavy and irregular sized items. From here the parcel will begin its journey, usually making the short trip from the post office or with the delivery service to the local distribution centre, where it can be processed and sent in the right direction. Also remember that there are drivers for hire that are very important as well.

Distribution Centre

At the distribution centre your parcel will be moved around and sorted, placed in with other parcels heading to the same or a nearby location. Any specifics, such as same or next day and time specific delivery will be checked to make sure they are being met. Depending on when they are due and where, they may then be left in storage for a bit or immediately placed in another van and taken on their final mile delivery.

International Flight

If you’re sending parcels overseas, then after the distribution centre they will be transported to the airport or ferry terminal, depending on the requirements. They’ll be loaded onto the aircraft, flown overseas and collected in the destination country before being sent to another distribution centre and completing the final mile. Find out more here about European delivery services.

Final Mile Delivery

Completing the journey, your parcel will be collected from the nearest distribution centre it ends up with and driven to the address on its label. In many ways this is the most important part, as the driver here may be the only person your customer sees, so they need to make a good impression and make sure it arrives in top condition.
Depending on where your parcel is going, it can pass through a number of different people and processes on its delivery journey.