Something non-comics-related I don’t understand

Cidu Bill on Nov 24th 2017

Why doesn’t every major mall have a UPS or USPS storefront, especially during the holiday season:? Seems like it would be a huge win for everybody.

Filed in Bill Bckel | 10 responses so far

10 Responses to “Something non-comics-related I don’t understand”

  1. Mark in Boston Nov 24th 2017 at 09:49 pm 1

    You find them at little tiny shopping centers, the kind with five stores in a strip and no indoor mall.

    There are “UPS Store” franchises and also places like “Postal Center USA” that offer private mail boxes and package dispatch services. If your mall doesn’t have one and you’ve got time and money on your hands, you might consider opening one of your own.

    But the fact that every major mall doesn’t have one tells me that perhaps they aren’t fun or profitable to run.

  2. Boise Ed Nov 24th 2017 at 10:13 pm 2

    Maybe the large-mall rent is too much for UPS. Also, the strip-mall stores are easier to drive up to with your outgoing packages.

  3. Singapore Bill Nov 25th 2017 at 12:56 am 3

    I think there is not that much demand for shipping things. With online shopping, I can order the item and have it delivered to my recipient as a gift. I’d imagine demand for shipping stuff is actually down, at least from individuals.

  4. Kilby Nov 25th 2017 at 04:23 am 4

    There are some malls that have specialty shops that open just for those few “busy” months, the post office could certainly get one of those locations if it wanted to. I think the problem is simply logistics, not just in terms of personnel and opening and then closing a special location, but simply to get all the packages into the truck. Those little “strip” malls (see MiB @1) usually have a parking lot right in front of the door, and often a loading dock in the back. A post office in the middle of a fairly busy mall would generate plenty of outgoing material, with no easy way to cart it out to wherever they can manage to park the van.

  5. Carl Nov 25th 2017 at 07:41 am 5

    Almost any large mall will have an on-premises Staples or the equivalent now. All of them have shipping via UPS as a service. One wonders whether there is a non-compete.

  6. padraig Nov 25th 2017 at 10:35 am 6

    Because most people who want to buy something and immediately ship it just buy it from Amazon.

  7. Cidu Bill Nov 25th 2017 at 10:59 am 7

    I’m not sure about the “no easy way to cart it out” part, Kilby, because malls certainly have “back doors” for deliveries.

  8. James Pollock Nov 25th 2017 at 06:55 pm 8

    Boise Ed had it at #2.
    Mall rent is very high. That works out OK if your store sells primarily to people who want to walk in, see what the choices are, and leave with the item(s) right away. If you are dependent on pedestrian traffic, that is what mall management has to offer to a store or store chain.
    Being in the mall does have advantages besides the high pedestrian traffic. Parking isn’t an issue (relative to other locations… I’m fully aware how hard it is to find a parking spot at the mall this weekend.)

    What private-industry postal stores typically offer is receiving and storing incoming mail for people who can’t, or shouldn’t, just use a home mailing address. (Many a home-based business has a mailbox at a postal store so they have an address such as 6036 Commercial Street rather than 123 Residential Lane.)
    That’s a valuable service, but the cost per square foot of mall space would price the service out of most people’s budget, or, more likely, drive them down to the little strip-mall store that can offer the same exact service for non-mall-rent prices. You have the same problem with outgoing mail… the cost to deliver that from mall space is so much higher than the cost to deliver that service from non-mall space is substantial, and the market won’t bear it.

  9. Olivier Nov 27th 2017 at 05:29 am 9

    In Uppsala (Sweden), I was looking for a post office and couldn’t find any until a native took me to the nearest supermarket and there was a post counter, next to the lottery counter.

  10. Meryl A Nov 28th 2017 at 04:17 am 10

    Malls here do not have Staples - they are in strip shopping centers. Office Max (Depot) closed all locations except one in Suffolk county.

    The big mall upscale mall has had a USPS in the basement as long as I can remember. It is open mall hours - even when other post offices are closed. Great to remember when one needs to send something out on odd days or at night. Then again, post offices in Orthodox Jewish communities are closed Saturday and open Sunday.

    As an accountant in the old, pre everyone has a computer days, “the fun thing” was the night of April 15 and going to post offices that were staying open until midnight. Huge lines at some. The main Brooklyn po had employees outside at the curb with huge mail bags so one did not have to try to park - just toss them from the car into the bags. One year a lot of returns did not get to clients and I had to go and send out a stack of extensions at the last minute at the big po around here (they were where the rest of the po’s sent their mail to be sent on) and people were leaning against the walls writing out returns and extensions.

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