Now What?? …Mail Disruptions


Now that February is over, talk seems to generally turn to the c’mon already where’s my mail type discussion. The answer isn’t always easy, and a little understanding of the international postal system can go a long way.

For example.

Some times things go wrong.

Really wrong.

And it’s times like this we should consider how efficient and largely problem free the international mail system actually is.

Consider the United States of America where 149.5 billion  ..that’s right  ..the Billion with nine zeros after it  ..pieces of mail were delivered during 2017 alone.

Given the unpredictable nature of daily life, the fact that a letter can generally make it from the Netherlands to Australia within a range of 9 to 13 days is quite amazing considering that even in the later 1800’s — 90 days each way would be a world record.

You can get a very general idea of how long a letter should take to arrive by referring to this very useful chart from the Netherlands Postal Service.

And this isn’t the only useful service provided by PostNL. They along with several other countries, publish a regular update on international incidents and alerts delaying worldwide mail delivery. Things like last night’s black ice in southern France, the winter storms in the United Kingdom and Croatia, and the recent heavy influx of international mail through South Africa’s customs system.

Holidays and generalized chaos in any destination or transiting country can slow the mail down.

If you’d like to see for yourself, our personal favorites are the PostNL service alerts, the New Zealand Post mail updates, and the Royal Mail international incidents update. Between the group of them it’s reassuring to know someone is keeping an eye on the slowdowns and maybe have a better idea how long that letter may be in transit.


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