More and more people are turning away from standard parcel delivery options, for instance sending your package through Royal Mail, and are looking to use alternative couriers or parcel delivery companies.

Although you may save yourself some money, it is important to choose a reputable service so that you can ensure that your parcel will arrive safe, sound, and in good time. These are just five things that you should consider when you are trying to find a reputable parcel delivery company.

1. Reviews

Before you settle on a company, check their reviews. You should be able to find reviews online, but look for ones from an independent source such as Trustpilot, not just reviews that they have posted on their website as these are likely to be biased.

For any company, there are bound to be a few bad reviews, but if the bad is catching up with, or even outweighs, the good then you should be suspicious.

2. Price

As the old saying goes; money doesn’t grow on trees, so price is important to all of us. A good way to find the best price, from a reputable company, is to take a good on a courier price comparison site.

With just a few clicks of the mouse, you will be able to find the cheapest deals on couriers in your area. There is no similar way to compare the best deals.

3. Delivery Times

You are going to want your parcel to arrive at its destination in good time. As such, you should take a look at the delivery times that the parcel delivery company offers. Are there different options or packages available?

For instance, can you get next day delivery if you need it? Check whether the courier company will guarantee delivery times, or if they are just estimated, booking your courier on this website will allow you to track your package from receipt until delivery.

4. Delivery Areas and Tracking

Some smaller parcel delivery companies may have a limited area in which they deliver. They may not be able to offer you international delivery, or even delivery to more remote parts of the UK such as Northern Ireland or the Scottish Highlands.

And, if they do, they may charge additional fees. If you are unsure whether or not they will deliver your parcel where it needs to go, you will need to check with them. It is also important for many people to have tracking options so that they can make sure their parcel is making it to its destination in good time.

5. Insurance Options

Does your chosen parcel delivery company have the confidence to offer you insurance on your parcel, in case it gets lost or damaged. It is worrying if there is no insurance for the parcel you are sending, because in the worst case scenario, you will be out of pocket.

It’s possible but rare that your house insurance will cover the loss and replacement of your package, but can you take this risk? Many companies offer insurance up to a certain value as standard, but will expect you to pay extra if the item you are sending is particularly valuable.

Check what the threshold is, because if your parcel is worth more than the maximum insurance value and it gets lost or damaged, you may end up getting no money back at all.

Once you have considered the above points, you should be well on your way to finding the right parcel delivery service for you. It is important to go with one you can trust, and sometimes this is more important than simply finding the best price.

Post contributed by Simon Bowers, a writer and business enthusiast, having been writing on this topic for 20 years since graduating college with a diploma in business.
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