Mail mishaps cost NZ Post $100,000

Missing mail can result in a wad of cash or a pack of stamps from New Zealand Post.

The company handed out more than $100,000 in compensation to customers around the country for mail that went missing or was damaged from October 1, 2013, to October 1, 2014, according to information issued under the Official Information Act. But not all was paid back in the form of cash.

When Palmerston North resident Rosie Penman posted a present to her grandson and it went missing, she was given a book of stamps as compensation.

For claims under $25, NZ Post offered postal products in lieu of a monetary payment, a spokeswoman said.

Penman could not remember what the item was that went missing but said she was happy to receive a book of stamps as compensation.

"It's better than nothing . . . as long as you don't lose them."

Sally Hoult of Palmerston North, thought it was a good idea to receive postal products as reimbursement for lost items. "Most people would use stamps."

A total of $4431 was paid out in compensation to Palmerston North customers for claims relating to domestic mail during this time.

Of this, $122 was paid out in postal products.

There were 2245 compensation payments made for domestic mail during the year to October - 545 of those were paid out in postal products. Palmerston North had 68 compensation payments - 12 of those payments were paid out in postal products.

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A total of $113,309 was paid out in compensation to NZ Post customers.

The company paid $5577 compensation in postal products.

"The number of items reported missing represents a very small percentage of items sent through our network," the spokeswoman said.

It was not always known how an item had been damaged but she said one of the most common reasons was inadequate packaging.

"We encourage senders to ensure mail items are packed properly, and provide guidelines for this on our website."

She said compensation was not paid by NZ Post on items that were inadequately packaged.

 - Manawatu Standard

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