Cyprus postal services on Wednesday blamed the coronavirus pandemic for delivery delays after it received complaints from parents who had sent Easter food parcels to their children stuck abroad which arrived at their destination so late that the food had spoiled.
The most popular items in the food parcels were the traditional Easter flaounes and some chose to pay extra for quick post to make sure their packages arrived on time.
However, the postal authority received many complaints, mainly for the UK, over parcels which took double the expected time to arrive at their destination.
A local mother told the Cyprus Mail she had a problem with the recipient postal services, as they delayed taking the parcel to her son’s house once it arrived in the country.
“I paid €72 instead of €28 for express delivery and in the end, they arrived after five days,” she said.
Another mother complained to the media on Wednesday she paid about €100 to send two separate six-kilo flaounes parcels to the UK with the promise they would arrive in three days. When she called them to complain after about nine days, the reply she got was dismissive, saying “Don’t you know people in England are dying?”
“Submitted packages are dispatched from Cyprus the same or the next day in the morning,” deputy director of the department of postal services Pavlos Pavlides told the Cyprus Mail.
According to Pavlides, the pandemic decreased the traffic in postal services but also forced workers to operate in a different more time-consuming manner.
“Some delay is understandable due to special package management,” he said.
Services worldwide operate with limited number of staff and additional protective measures hence procedures take more time, Pavlides said.
“Personally, I sent a package to my relatives on April 8 and it was delivered on April 20,” he said. “This would normally take up to five days.”
Refund policy does not cover spoiled foods according to the providers’ terms, said Pavlides.
Cyprus post currently provides services for Belgium, Greece, Germany and the United Kingdom.
Packages to America are sent only via quick post since April 21.