Hermes Germany informs Coronavirus update

[Last update: May 12, 2020] Being a parcel delivery service provider, we are in a position to make an important contribution to the current situation by supporting the security of supply for the public with our services. Our top priority is to avoid infecting our employees, service partners and courier staff. It is equally important to protect our customers to the best of our abilities.

(Photo: Hermes/Willing-Holtz)

[Last update: May 12, 2020]

What precautionary measures is Hermes Germany taking?

All our employees and service partners receive detailed information regarding the required hygiene and precautionary measures and are expressly asked to observe and comply with them. These measures are based on the official recommendations of the authorities and the Robert Koch Institute (RKI); they are continuously reviewed and adjusted at short notice if necessary. They include, for example, regularly and thoroughly washing hands, observing sneezing and coughing etiquette, adhering to the rules of physical distancing etc. Since there are many people from various countries employed at Hermes, this communication is multilingual.

To support safety measures, we have also provided all couriers with water and liquid soap, so that the crucial hand hygiene that is required is guaranteed even while the courier is out on deliveries.

In addition, we are in the process of providing the more than 11,000 couriers with masks and we are doing the same for the employees in our distribution centres. We have furthermore implemented far-reaching process changes at our logistics locations. Among other things, people are now working in smaller shifts in order to be able to maintain a distance of at least 1.5 metres from each other, and shift work is organised in such a way that the respective employee groups never come into contact with each other.

Is contactless delivery possible?

The most important protective measure for couriers and customers is that delivery to your door and parcel collection in the ParcelShop can both be contactless.

To make this work, Hermes has developed a solution that does not require your signature on the scanner, with proof of delivery provided by a photo. This ensures that the crucial distance of at least 1.5 metres currently required is maintained when a parcel is delivered. More information can be found here.

Contactless collection from the ParcelShop is also possible. You can find all this information here.

Can deliveries also be made without any contact with the courier at all?

Customers can receive deliveries without any physical contact whatsoever. Thanks to digital solutions, you can choose whether you want to receive your shipment (contactless) in person or have it delivered to a preferred safe place. When your parcel is delivered to outside your front door, in your gazebo, in your garage or to another safe place, delivery takes place without any point of personal contact.

Customers can redirect their parcel to a preferred safe place directly in response to the parcel notification sent by the retailer, in the Hermes app or via shipment tracking. If you want to have your parcels delivered to a preferred safe place on a permanent basis, you can request this here:

We are in close communication with the senders with a view to creating greater awareness of this option among customers when they place their orders online.

Are there any delays currently?

We are currently not experiencing any general restrictions or delays with deliveries in Germany. However, there may be delays on transport routes within Europe as a result of border controls. Goods traffic is currently exempt from travel bans.

Is Hermes Germany currently experiencing higher shipping volumes?

After the volume of consignments initially declined with the outbreak of the corona pandemic, there was such a big increase within a short period of time so that we are now operating at the pre-Christmas level. However, despite an increase in parcel volumes of approximately 40%, delivery continues to be stable and there are no general delays. This is mostly thanks to our dense network of state-of-the-art locations and flexible adjustments of our operational processes, such as setting up around 1,200 additional delivery routes at short notice and also increasing our staff for parcel sorting at our logistics locations. Our colleagues in the sorting centres and our couriers are doing a tremendous job every day to ensure that retailers and end customers alike can continue to rely on our services even during this corona crisis.

Can I get infected with the coronavirus from a parcel?

According to the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), it is unlikely that viruses will be transmitted via parcels. The coronavirus is transmitted via droplets and does not last long on surfaces such as plastic and paper. The absorbent surface of a parcel or letter, as well as air transportation, dries out the virus and destroys its envelope. The virus genome is also destroyed by sunlight or UV light. The WHO has stated: “We know from previous analyses that Coronaviruses do not survive long on objects such as letters or parcels.”

Are ParcelShops remaining open in Germany?

Since the majority of our ParcelShops are located inside facilities for basic supplies (grocery stores, pharmacies, chemists, petrol stations, dry cleaners, etc.), around 70-80% of the shops have remained open over the past weeks. With the gradual reopening of brick-and-mortar stores, the vast majority of our more than 16,000 ParcelShops across Germany are now open again. Our end customers can locate a ParcelShop via the ParcelShop Finder. Shops that are not yet open will not show up there.

It is still important that ParcelShop operators control customer access and ensure that queues are avoided. We support the shop operators as best as we can to achieve this and continuously provide them with information regarding the required hygiene measures.

Hermes also offers contactless collection from ParcelShops.

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