According to ParcelPending.com a staggering 11 million homeowners have had a package stolen in the last year alone. The thing is, as the popularity of online shopping grows, so will the number of packages that are being stolen.
Package thieves or ‘porch pirates‘ as they have come to be known can strike anywhere and at any time of the year. But what can we do to combat these thieves and reduce the chances of our own packages being stolen? Read on as we share some valuable tips…
1. Actually Be There
This isn’t always possible and I have still heard of stories in which the thieves stole a package even while the homeowner was in. If you can’t be at your home address when the package is due to arrive then have the package delivered to where you are going to be. UPS have it spot on when they say to have a package, “sent to where they are — not where they are not.”
If you are going to be at work, have the package sent there or if that is not possible, arrange for it to be delivered to a friend, relative or neighbor. It is also a good idea to make sure that the package requires a signature upon delivery so that it doesn’t just get left on your porch.
2. Understand the Different Delivery Options
Amazon are the biggest online retailer and they understand the customer more than most. The good thing is that they are also trying to make it easier for us as customers to receive our packages safely. Amazon, now offers in-home and in-car delivery (US only) as well as Amazon Lockers that enable customers to safely and conveniently receive and return packages. Many delivery companies offer different delivery options so be sure to understand them fully.
We also recommend taking advantage of delivery notes if you are not going to be home. Many delivery companies allow you to specify an area where they can safely leave the package which will be out of the sight of anyone going past the home. Don’t do what a friend of mine did and asked them to put it in the top of his recycling bin. They did so which was great except it was bin day so he still never got his package but he did learn his lesson.
3. Doorbell Cameras
There are many different types of doorbell cameras but in most cases, they will begin recording as soon as they detect motion. Ring and Nest doorbell cameras are very good examples. If somebody wants to come near your front door and try to steal your packages, they WILL be caught on camera and the footage can be used by the police as evidence. Nest will also alert you by phone when the camera is triggered and you can warn the thieves off with the built-in microphone.
4. Avoid Delivery and Collect the Parcels Yourself
Probably the best option to avoid porch pirates would be to completely avoid home delivery altogether. We have already mentioned the Amazon lockers that will allow you to have packages delivered and picked up when you are ready but other delivery companies such as UPS also offer ways of doing this by having the choice to have the package delivered to an “access point”. The Royal Mail can also hold parcels for you.