Kristaps Krūmiņš, member of the Latvian Postal Service (LP) Board, said that as the number of letters decreases, shipment volumes rise, so both this year and next year the Latvian Post plans to expand the network and install parcel machines outside.
"At the moment, the Latvian Post already has a little more than 100 parcel machines, [..] We have successfully made our procurement to have more than 200 parcel machines in Q3 next year. Of course, such solutions reduce the number of queues in the mail departments, and now, in fact, the mail departments are mainly made up of customers who choose other services," said Krūmiņš.
Omniva also continues to increase the number of parcel machines. Its spokesman, Jānis Andžāns, said that this year the number of machines increased by 60%.
“By the end of the year, we will reach the total number of 360 parcel machines in 133 areas throughout Latvia, and there are approximately 52,000 lockers. We will also place them in Bērzkrogs, Ezere, Pūre, Stende, Druva, Valdemārpils, and elsewhere. There are some individual segments of goods where this volume of shipmentsmay have decreased, but at the same time clothing, footwear, cosmetics – we see, we could even say, rapid growth, in certain segments of goods, this growth is reaching 20%,” said Andžāns.
There is also enough competition among delivery services. For three years, Itella Logistics, an international logistics company, has also been offering parcel machines. Its CEO, Ainārs Gilis, said that the machines are installed mainly in malls, but different from others, with each user opening their cupboard using a PIN code in the locker door, thereby reducing the lines.
The Omniva spokesman Andžāns estimated that, in view of the increase in the number of parcel machines, customers will be able to get their gifts more quickly this year during Christmas. Last year the goods were handed out of cars because there was a lack of room in the machines.
If other parcel suppliers carry goods mainly by land, the Latvian Postal Service also uses aircraft.
Therefore, LP Board member Krūmiņš calls for the timely sendoff of packages abroad: “Mailing shipments are mostly carried on passenger aircraft in the same compartments as passenger baggage. Consequently, during Christmas, if the number of passengers on airplanes increases, it is likely that the place we can fill in with mail will be reduced. If we want to catch up for Christmas, we should organize the departure at the beginning of December if we are talking about international shipments. We will deliver the shipments within Latvia if they are sent even, for example, a week before Christmas."
No price changes are expected for Latvian Post this year, but prices are likely to rise in the new year.