Benefits of a legal courier

Couriers serve a lot of different interests and industries – but one of the most common professions that use a courier are those of the legal persuasion. Lawyers frequently use couriers for a variety of services – many of which we’ll cover today.

Reality is, that whenever you’re dealing with legal matters, there will be certain things that might be a little too hot to handle for just anyone – so having a trained legal courier can be worth their weight in gold for a law firm. Today, we’ll talk about some of the services legal couriers use and why they might be a good fit for you and your firm. Let’s jump right in!

Logistics of delivery

Much like the medical industry – lawyers need to transport documents in some pretty specific ways that are exclusive to their world. For example – certain documents must be packaged a certain way, perhaps in tamper-proof bags or envelopes, using larger packaging to avoid the bending of other documents, etc. 

In addition, lawyers may need to documents from A to B quickly to a place like a courthouse, police station or government building. Having someone who can perform these specific duties is imperative and sometimes required by law. 

Court filings

Many lawyers use legal couriers to both deliver and file documents with the clerk of courts. They know where the clerk’s office is located, will be familiar with local, municipal, state and federal guidelines and institutions and will be able to both deliver and file these documents for an attorney or entity. 

Document retrieval

Document retrieval in the legal world is a little more complicated than most realize. It can be time consuming, there can be waiting, needing to know who to ask to get the correct documents, etc. Most legal couriers are trained on exactly where they need to go, what they need to do and how to transport a document as securely as possible.

Saving money

Law firms can save a lot of money hiring a courier service. While it will be a little money out of pocket, it saves not only the firm from having to have someone on staff, but also keeps lawyers lawyering instead of running around dropping off documents and going through the runaround. This means more, tangible, billable hours. 

If you’re looking for help with your next legal delivery, give our Tampa Courier Service a call today and we’ll be happy to help. Until then -good luck!

Tips on shipping fragile items

Whether it’s moving or shipping valuables – packing heavy items can be a nerve wracking experience. Boxes go through a lot of handling and there’s plenty of risk that something could go wrong between here and there during delivery and transport. 

At the end of the day – it really comes down to how you pack these items – and that’s what we’re here to discuss today. Here are some tips on how you can pack your fragile items and avoid potential issues with them breaking during delivery. Let’s jump right in.

Smaller. Not bigger.

When packaging a fragile item, we recommend that you use smaller boxes. For starters they’re easier to handle – which means less likelihood of them being dropped or damaged. Second, there’s less room inside for the item to shift around. Any extra space you are left with – be sure to use heavy padding. 

All about the bottom

Most fragile items break because they fall out of the bottom of the box or are dropped. So whenever you are packaging something fragile, make sure you reinforce the bottom of the box with an extra layer or two of packing tape. This will help the bottom from falling out. Second, layer the bottom of the box with padding, that way if it’s dropped, there will be extra cushioning to fall back on. 

Focus on dividers and padding 

If you’re packing multiple items, be sure to lean back on dividers and padding. If packing glasses – use cardboard dividers. This keeps the glass from clinking up against the other glasses. If you’re looking at a few separate items – wrap each one multiple times and consider adding styrofoam inside as well to secure them and allow for more give. 

Labeling

Don’t do the obviously dumb thing and just ship the package. Label it ‘fragile’ so delivery drivers know it’s fragile. Don’t assume they’re going to assume that it is. This will get your drivers to handle your package with a little bit more care and attention. 

Hopefully you found today’s tips helpful. If you need help finding a Tampa Courier Service or shipping a fragile item, give us a call today. Until then – good luck!

What to do when a package is lost

Courier Services and the US Postal Service are not just good at NOT losing your things, they are outstanding at it. In fact over 99.5% of packages get delivered on time and to where they’re supposed to in the US. However – there is that slim chance. That shred of doubt. That one time where you need something and well, it gets lost.

What do you do? Who do you speak with? Can you get your package back? Today, we’re going to talk about a few things you can do in the event a package gets lost or stolen. Let’s jump right in. 

If its lost in transit

Companies issue tracking numbers for a reason. Sometimes packages can get lost in the shuffle, end up on the wrong truck, get sent to the wrong location. Use package tracking to make sure your package is due to be where it needs to be; but if it gets lost – using your tracking number to help the company find it and get it delivered to where it needs to go is the play.

What if they can’t find it?

So your package didn’t get to you or its intended destination and you called, used the tracking number and nothing came up. Next thing you’ll want to do is fill out a missing package form. Most courier services and the postal service have dedicated people on staff to help with these instances. They’ll do a deep dive and see what they can do to retrieve your package. 

What if it’s been stolen?

In the event any package has been stolen – make sure you file a police report. Include tracking information as well as any and all details you can provide on contents, intended destination, drop off/pickup and the like. Also file a missing package report with the carrier so they can investigate as well. In these situations, carriers are not liable for your lost goods – but may refund you for the shipping costs. In many cases, you can buy package insurance as well – which in specific cases where the delivery is of high value, you should strongly consider.

What to tell the intended recipient

The first thing you want to do is to communicate to them immediately that their package is lost. Let them know what occurred, what you’re doing to rectify the situation and when you can generally expect the package to be delivered. If the package is replaceable or you can send another, so so at your expense. 

Hopefully this will give you a little guidance as to what to do if your package is lost or stolen. We also hope you’ll never have to use any of this. And of course, if you’re looking for more advice, feel free to reach out! Until then- good luck!

Which industries depend on using a courier service

A lot of times, it’s hard for businesses to get a gauge on whether or not they really need courier services or not. And truth be told – the courier service industry has become a lot more specialized and diversified over the years – with some companies dabbling in some very specific industries. 

So today, we’re going to talk about some of the businesses that tend to be the most dependent on courier services. Hopefully with a little more insight – this can help you to understand whether or not using a courier service might be of benefit to you and your business. Let’s jump right in!

Hospitals & Doctor’s offices

Hospitals and doctors offices depend heavily on courier services. In fact – medical courier services are almost an entire industry unto themselves nowadays. Medical professionals often need things fast and on short notice. Whether it’s lab results, paperwork, legal documents or even as critical as organ transplants. If you’re in the healthcare profession there’s a lot that courier services can help with so when time is off the essence and the stakes are high- you can rest assured that what you need is getting to you as quickly as possible. 

Manufacturers

In the world of manufacturing – time is money and money is time. Getting things done as quickly and efficiently throughout the manufacturing process is the name of the game. Not only can courier services help get goods to where they need to get there more quickly than most – they can also help on the front end in terms of getting materials needed to manufacture the components themselves. For those courier services who dabble in logistics – courier services can be even more helpful in terms of fleet management, reduced costs and the like. 

Printing companies

A lot of folks think print is dying – but the truth is – print marketing has been pretty steady the last few years. While it certainly doesn’t have a place like it used to in today’s increasingly digital world, people still want physical things they can touch and read with their own hands. But just like always – the challenge is getting print materials to where they need to go – offices, stores, events and the like. While they used to manage some of their own fleets, larger companies have cut costs and moved in the direction of courier companies to get their things from A to B. 

Like we said – courier services have some specialities so if you’re a professional in one of these industries – using a courier service should certainly be on your to-do list. In the meantime, if you have any questions or would like to learn more about how all this can work for your company – give us a call today! Until then – good luck!

Choosing a medical courier service

Choosing a medical courier service is serious business. Whether its lab results or items critical to procedures – a medical courier service needs to be punctual, fast and precise. 

Today, we’re going to discuss a few of the things we feel like most healthcare professionals should make their highest priorities when choosing which medical service courier to go with. Let’s jump right in. 

Timeliness

One of the most important qualities a medical courier service needs to have is timeliness. Whether it’s lab work, organs, clearances, equipment – when it comes to healthcare – the clock is always ticking and the difference between being on-time and not being on-time can sometimes mean the difference between life and death. Medical drivers must be quick, time-sensitive and be able to get things to where they need to be as fast as possible. 

Safety

Medical products, deliveries and the nature of healthcare in general is sensitive, complex and delicate. Trucks should have cooling capabilities. Drivers should be HIPAA trained. Safety protocols must be followed and drivers should be experienced. There’s a lot at stake when it comes to delivering in the healthcare industry – so safety is of the utmost importance. 

Tracking

Because so many healthcare deliveries are so sensitive – organizations should have the ability to track their deliveries wherever they may be. Having eyes and ears on the ground not only lends itself to maintaining peace of mind; but also allows for medical professionals to formulate action plans precisely for when deliveries get there. 

Courier insurance

Accidents happen, unfortunately. Even the best, most responsible drivers can fall victim to traffic, bad weather, hazardous road conditions and well, frankly – other drivers. When this happens – it’s crucial that any medical courier service that you do business with has insurance. That way – when the unforeseen circumstance arises – you can cover losses. 

Choosing a medical courier can be a laborious process but making sure you’re doing your homework is essential. If you’d like to learn more or learn about how medical courier services can help you, feel free to give us a call today and we’ll be happy to fill you in. Until then – good luck!

How courier rates are calculated

So let’s say you’re finally ready to bite the bullet and use a courier service. How does it work? How do you calculate rates? Today, we’re going to discuss that with you. While every courier service is a little different from the next – most stick to a fairly uniform pricing structure. 

Here are the four things that affect courier rates and what you can do to help mitigate cost a little bit. Let’s jump right in!

Weight of your delivery

This one you’re probably familiar with – especially if you’ve been to the post office. In fact, it’s probably the primary factor in determining a rate. The bigger the package, the more it’s going to cost. In certain specific cases – courier companies may also have a weight limit on what they’re willing to ship. This comes from wanting to look out for their drivers’ safety. If you’ve got a supersized delivery – you may want to explore other options such as shipping by a freight carrier. 

Density

So believe it or not – the density of your package also factors in. More dense it is – the higher the price you’ll pay. Why? Because the more dense a particular package is – the more likely it is that said package will take up extended space in a delivery van or truck – limiting what they can transport. In essence, it’s paying for the space.

Distance

Goes without saying that the further a package has to go – the more resources need to be spent in order to get it to its destination. These resources include both fuel and man-power, but also requires a little more oversight and especially if the package is headed overseas or to another country – there could be more involved. Some courier services do relax a bit on this one however, so feel free to call around and compare prices company to company.

The type of service

Courier services come in a variety of forms – from standard door-to-door delivery to same-day and rush deliveries. The less urgent and the more lead time you give generally means you’ll pay a little less. If you’re looking for an urgent delivery or utilize an on-demand or same-day delivery service – it will cost a little bit more. 

Courier rates, as you can see – are impacted by a variety of factors. It’s essential to take these into account before making your decision. In the meantime – if you’re looking for a Tampa Courier Service, feel free to give us a call and we’ll be happy to help you out. Until then – good luck!

Four under-the-radar benefits of using a courier service

Everyone knows the major reasons to use a courier service. The speed, security, transparency and customization are all obvious benefits and a significant reason why people are choosing courier services.

However, there are some others a little more under the radar that customers are going for these days; a few of which we’re going to share with you today. Here are some under-the-radar reasons you might want to use a courier service. Let’s jump right in. 

Fewer restrictions

Courier services are able to ship a wider range of packages in all sorts of shapes and sizes. Have a jumbo delivery? Courier services can usually accommodate you. Have a weird shaped delivery? Courier services can do it. In fact – there are courier services out there who specialize in the unusual and nonstandard parcels that go well beyond the scope of a post office. They know how to handle these goods and get them to their destination on time and in one piece.

Greater support services

One major benefit to working with courier companies is the number of support services they offer. From package tracking to warehousing and storage – you can consolidate a lot of services into one by going the courier service route. This helps provide a greater convenience to business owners in addition to a more efficient overall operation. 

Reduced liability

Courier services take the liability of delivering parcels off of you and onto themselves. Not only are they better trained – but many carry insurance that will protect you (and your customer) in the event that something happens. That means no more worrying about whether company employees might cause accidents making deliveries. 

Customer Retention

Look, the name of the game in business isn’t just selling your service. It’s selling it to people over and over again. Happy customers often mean repeat customers and if that’s front of mind than courier services can help do just that. Your customers will benefit from the reliable service, lower shipping costs and professional handling of their parcels. This will give you a competitive advantage and help you grow your business.

If you’re looking to learn more about what a courier service can do for you, give us a call today and we’ll be happy to help. Until then – good luck!

The core four courier services

Every courier company is a little bit different. Some are bigger box, catch-all delivery services while others cater to a specific niche like medical services, refrigerated deliveries, warehousing, etc. 

Today, we’re going to discuss the basic core services most every courier service offers. Sometimes a back to the basics is in order- and if you’re someone who’s new to all of this – we think this should be pretty helpful for you. Let’s jump right in!

Express service

Express service is a lightning quick shipping option. This is essentially a ‘within 24 hours’ service. Depending on the size and the scope of the company that you’re working with – they may even include quick service continentally or even globally. Long story, short – if you need to get something from A to B as directly as possible – this is the service you’ll want to choose. 

Standard courier service

Standard courier service isn’t that unlike traditional mail delivery. You have a package, you pay a nominal fee to have it delivered, are given a time frame and the package is handled and delivered on that date. While this option is the least expensive, it is certainly slower than some of the other options available to you. Estimated times of delivery can vary depending on the route the delivery drivers are taking. 

Same day courier services

We’ve written entire blogs on same-day in the past but if you have a genuine sense of urgency – like we’re talking timely court documents, lab results or an organ transplant – same day makes sure that things get to where they need to be the same day of the booking of the delivery. There is usually a cutoff time each day – and every business is different, so be sure you ask in advance. But so long as the payment has been made by that time, your package will be rushed out the door and will be on its way to the destination as quickly as possible. 

Freight deliveries 

Freight can really vary in terms of size, scope, cost – and a whole range of other factors but it essentially includes big things. Or bulk shipments. Or anything that needs something big to move said other big thing. Whether you need a truckload or a less than truckload – you can find a truck or van that fits your needs. So if it’s a giant delivery- freight is going to be the way you want to go. 

So there you have it – the core four, if you will – of courier services. If you’re ever in the St Petersburg or Tampa Bay area and need to have your items shipped, give us a call today and we’ll be happy to help. Until then – good luck!

Courier Services and Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence is bound to impact every area of our economy sooner rather than later and our little corner of the universe here at Affordable Couriers will be no different. In fact, in many ways it’s already beginning to peek its head in the doors. 

Today, we’re going to keep it a little light (Or heavy if you think that AI may lead to the great rapture) – and talk about some of the pros and cons of AI in courier services and how they may impact you and your basic efforts to get your things from one place to the next. Let’s jump right in. 

AI benefits

Route Planning

AI is very good at creating streamlined routes from one place to the next. You even see this in your own GPS apps on your phone. Utilizing route planning software, couriers cna help program a list of delivery stops that’s not only fast – but is efficient in terms of both time and fuel consumption. 

Self-service

Delivery inquiries, basic customer support and basic questions are all things that can be answered by AI – making a lot of lower level customer service more responsive and quick. It’s also less time on our part answering a lot of the same redundant questions. In many cases – you might even be able to have a route planned out, a package dropped off an delivered and not have to interact with another human.

Automated dispatch

Need to change a route? Modify delivery times? Add a stop? AI dispatch systems can both allocate and reallocate routes, deliveries and the like based on not only your wants and needs – but also off traffic patterns and accidents all in real time. This gets sent to the driver for faster maneuvers. 

AI cons

Personalization

AI isn’t too savvy yet and sometimes what the ‘best’ or ‘most efficient’ route isn’t always what’s best for you. And let’s face it! Sometimes you just want to talk  to someone and not have to grapple with technology. 

Dependence on infrastructure 

So what happens when tech fails? Even in super tech savvy cities like the Tampa St Petersburg area – technology isn’t always dependable. Internet connectivity, technology infrastructure; not only do we need these things but many of the places we may be sending our things too might not have that kind of infrastructure we do. Secure areas, rural areas – long distance deliveries – they don’t always have what it takes to support AI. At least not yet. 

Emotions!

Look, people use us for a reason and many times it’s because there’s an urgent need. It’s not JUST that the product needs to get into their possession – it’s maybe an organ donation, medical delivery, court documents – something with real urgency and sensitivity attached to it. Human element preserves the empathy and care that some deliveries require in order for customers to feel like they’re being treated right. 

As you can see -there’s a lot to think about. If you find yourself needing to use a courier service in the St Petersburg/Tampa Bay area, give us a call today and we’ll be happy to help. Until then – good luck!

Looking for a new Tampa courier service? Here’s what to prioritize!

So you’re a small business owner. You’re considering switching to a local Tampa courier service. Maybe it’s because you’re trying to scale your business. Maybe you’re looking for a better rate. Who knows? All you know is what you’re doing isn’t working as well as you’d like and you’re looking for something better.

When it comes to choosing a Tampa courier service, everyone seems to know the end game, but can struggle identifying the right place to start. Today, we’re going to discuss some core characteristics you should look for in a courier company and why they’re so important. This way, you can be assured that you’re working with a reputable business that will provide you with the service you need. Let’s jump right in.

Experience

Capabilities are great, but capabilities in the hands of practical, real life experience is better. And truth be told – there’s been a lot that’s changed in this business the last 10 years, never mind the last 20. If you have a company that’s been around the block and has been in business for a long time – there’s probably a good reason for that. Experience counts.

What are their restrictions?

We’ve always said that sometimes a surefire sign of a really good business is one that knows exactly what it CAN’T do. Tampa Courier services aren’t necessarily a one-size-fits-all proposition and while many feature many of the same services, others don’t and some may be better in specific areas than others. So what are their specialties? What are their restrictions? What can’t they do? What can’t you do?

Technology & capabilities

Customers have more control than ever and especially in industries where knowing where something is, whether it’s on time or not can have significant meaning to your success or failure. Does the company have same-day delivery? Can you track packages? If it’s a medical courier – do they have refrigerated trucks? Are their drivers HIPAA certified? Can you get info on real-time arrival? What do they provide for proof of delivery? All these things can matter!

Prices

Clarifying price structure up front is really important. While some of us are looking to save a few shekels, some of us are looking for a little more value and value CAN sometimes mean that you pay a little bit more for improved service. Just be clear about what the structure is and how a company’s fees work. This way, you won’t be surprised by any out-of-the-blue fees or or costs down the road.

Hopefully you found this blog helpful. If you’re looking for a Tampa Courier Service, give us a call today and we’ll be happy to help. Until then – good luck!