Choosing the best parcel delivery service

Choosing the best parcel delivery service

Published on 12th November, 2019 12:11pm by Sarah Loosemore

So you arrive on our site & you’re ready to send your parcel. You have the size, weight, where the parcel is going and you enter these details on our Quote & Book section. Next you'll see multiple delivery options with a variety of well-known courier brands displayed. Now, which one to choose?

As a courier comparison website, we like choice, that’s what we do! But we’re committed to make it as simple as possible for you to compare between the services and make your choice.

With the handy tips below you can quickly filter the list down so you find the perfect courier service for the goods that you're sending.

Whether you’re looking for UK delivery or International delivery, we’ve got the right service for you at Interparcel.

What is your budget for postage, what are you prepared to spend?

There are a number of factors that determine the price you’ll pay for your parcel delivery service. Firstly the size and weight of your parcel. Next the speed you need it there and the amount of Transit cover that’s needed. Whether you’re looking for cheap parcel delivery, or a fully loaded premium service, we have the range online and once you narrow it down, it's quick to make that choice.

What cover do I need and what cover do services include?

Most of our parcel delivery services include free transit cover as standard but the cover does vary by service. Always consider the value of the goods you're sending when making your choice. What free cover does each service offer as standard as part of the price for delivery? Our website clearly shows what cover is included for each service to help you make the right choice.

Free transit cover

Once you've selected a service you can easily opt to purchase Interparcel’s Enhanced Transit Cover if your parcel is worth more than the free included cover. Selected services will allow you to cover an item for up to £2000.

We really do recommend covering your parcel in full so in the rare event the goods are damaged or lost in transit, you can recover the full cost, especially important with valuable items. We’ve written a separate Blog Post on the benefits of our transit cover.

Parcel contents value

You must make sure though that any item you are sending is not prohibited or restricted as these items have Transit Cover restrictions.

Is Transit cover available on any item I send?

No. You must make sure that the item that you’re sending is permitted to be sent through our services and in addition if cover is available for that item. Prior to confirming your booking, you’ll need tick a checkbox to confirm that you’ve checked whether or not your item is prohibited. Our Prohibited & Restricted list is also always available on our help section. Simply select the country you are sending to and the courier you’d like to send it with and you’ll be able to clearly see the items which cannot be sent.

I’ll cover this more below too.

Restricted items

Is the type of item I'm sending ok to send?

Our couriers online will deliver your high-value items but there are certain goods which cannot travel through the network at all. These are known as Prohibited items and are not covered by our Transit cover as they should not be sent at all. Items which are prohibited include:

• Gold / Silver / Jewellery including Watches over £250
• Articles of exceptional value (e.g. works of art, antiques, diamonds, precious stones, gold and silver) over £250
• Currency of any country which remains a legal tender at the time of sending
• Mobile phones with Sim cards • Plasma Screens of all sizes

In addition we also have a list of restricted items. There are other items which can be sent but are deemed as unsuitable for our services. We do not recommend sending them through our services and they will travel at your own risk and will only be covered for loss in transit with our Transit cover. Such items are referred to as restricted items and include goods such as furniture (unless flat packed), fragile items, glass, ceramics, mirrored items or crystal. You’ll find details about restricted items towards the bottom of our Prohibited & Restricted page.

These items will only be covered for Loss and could be subject to surcharges, delays or returns.

How quickly do you need your parcel there? Is speed or price more important?

So you’ve looked at the different amounts of cover per service and how much it will cost to cover your parcel in full if needed, what else is there to consider? Well, how quickly do you need your item there? We offer Same day delivery (UK only) next day by a certain time or end of working day, Saturday and Sunday delivery (postcode dependant) and longer delivery services, all with varying prices from varying couriers.

It’s always worth considering our Same day service if your parcel is only travelling a small distance. A Same Day delivery service can be really competitive on small journeys and benefits from being loaded onto a dedicated vehicle with the parcel only not being unloaded at the delivery point!

We also have a range of time definite services, such as by 9am or by 10am.

If speed is not important to you then you can benefit from savings on a slower service that is just as great, just takes a little longer!

To Drop or not to drop?

Would you like the courier to collect your parcel or would you like the flexibility to drop your item at a drop off point? Maybe you’re used to dropping off at a Post office? Many of the Couriers offer a drop off alternative, with more attractive pricing. Drop off points can be to a secure locker accessible 24 hours a day, or local shops acting as a drop off point. We have a handy Drop Off Locator online so you can see your nearest drop off point.

Once you know which you’d prefer, select the tick box at the top of the Quote & Book section and you can filter out the services you don’t need to see.

Drop off or collection

Which courier company do you pick?

So you know how quickly you’d like it there and what cover you need. So which courier company do you pick, you’ll see we have similar services by different Couriers, such as TNT UK Express 9am vs Parcelforce Express 9. The simple answer is they’re the same service by a different UK courier and known household brand (although cover, printer requirement and courier price may differ) Interparcel only deal with the recognised National Brands, giving you piece of mind whichever courier you choose to ship with through our site.

You’ll recognise most of our couriers, if not all that are listed. You may know who you want to book with, as you’ve used them before, received a parcel from them before, or have deliveries so often, you know when the driver arrives! This really is down to personal choice as well as cover included and price if you don’t have a preference.

Rest assured though whoever you choose, Interparcel only sell the services of reputable couriers we know and trust. We’re continually monitoring service levels and only want to give our customers the choice of the very best in price & service.

Timed services

Do I have access to a Printer?

This is pretty much the last consideration. Most of our service require a shipping label to be printed and attached to the parcel. If you don’t have access to a printer we do have services where the driver will bring one for you, this is shown on the service descriptions, but you may pay more and this does limit your choice.

What if no service is displayed?

Contact us!  What you’re trying to send may not be part of our standard portfolio, but we may still be able to take care of it for you!

Why choose Interparcel and not the courier directly?

• Interparcel are a parcel comparison website, comparing the best available services from a variety of recognised courier companies giving you piece of mind whoever you choose.

• We give you the one stop shop to book with whichever courier you choose for each delivery. Stack them up in your shopping cart and book all at once across the range of UK Courier companies we offer.

• Price! We offer some of the cheapest prices online in the UK thanks to our negotiated rates with major UK Couriers.

• Exceptional service. We have a dedicated UK call centre open 8-8pm Monday to Friday, as well as weekend support so we’re always here for you.

Get in touch

If you're still not sure, or you're not ready to send your parcel, you can click to have the quote emailed to you and book when you're ready. We don't change the prices that often, but we do on occasion, so just remember they may change when you return.

If you any further questions on any of the above or anything at all we have our online assistant loaded with answers for you or Contact Us we’d love to hear from you and always happy to help!