ATLANTA — UPS announced that about 1,500 Package Express Centers locations will join the UPS Access Point network in 2020.
UPS Access Point locations in rural cities and towns across the United States offer the convenience of one-stop, package pickup and drop-off services.
These small businesses enjoy increased foot traffic and customers get increased options to receive and drop off packages when and where it is convenient.
In some communities, Package Express Centers are the only shipping option within as many as 50 miles, allowing them to serve as community hubs.
In turn, UPS expands the number of locations where consumers and small business can gain access to UPS shipping and delivery services. Coverage is expanding so that 92% of the U.S. population will be within five miles of a UPS Access Point location.
“We are extending the reach of our UPS Access Point network into rural and super-rural locations, areas that have been underserved in the e-commerce era, which don’t always have access to full-service shipping services,” said Kevin Warren, UPS’s chief marketing officer.
“This collaboration will give these consumers much-needed choice, control and convenience over their package deliveries and merchandise returns.”
For more than three decades, Greeneville, Tennessee-based Package Express Centers has worked with independent, small-town businesses, ranging from pharmacies to hardware stores, to offer full-service UPS shipping services, including packaging expertise.
About 50 locations have been testing the addition of full-service UPS Access Point location features in recent months, and a full offering is being implemented across the Package Express Centers network. The test has received positive reactions from participating businesses and customers.
“In some of these towns, anyone waiting on a package or needing to return a parcel will often feel out of luck and out of place due to a lack of options,” said Stephanie Hopson, president of Package Express Centers.
“We are excited to bring this UPS service enhancement to our network of businesses across the nation’s heartland. This new UPS Access Point rollout will assist retailers, their communities and UPS customers by making their lives more convenient.”
For UPS, this collaboration further extends the reach of its UPS Access Point program, which allows consumers to choose from more than 36,000 specially selected global locations, including The UPS Stores, Michaels, CVS Pharmacy, Advance Auto Parts and thousands of independent merchants in North America.
It works in conjunction with the UPS My Choice program, a free service allowing nearly 67 million members to customize package deliveries to fit their specific needs.
Consumers can receive estimated arrival and progress alerts, sign for a package in advance, set vacation holds or change a delivery address to their workplace, a neighbor’s home or a nearby UPS Access Point location.
“Now, consumers don’t have to travel as far to have comprehensive full-service shipping options to pick up and drop off packages on their terms,” Warren said.
At A Glance
• Collaboration enhances UPS’s solutions for busy consumers and small and medium-sized businesses to pick up and ship packages in rural areas underserved in the e-commerce era.
• Small-town businesses can offer new services while boosting foot traffic, while UPS adds delivery services at pre-existing pickup locations.
• Expansion will increase UPS Access Point locations to more than 22,000 in the United States in 2020 and more than 41,000 globally.