Canada Post workers are set to potentially go on strike early July *- I think I've heard July 2nd, but what do I know. This is bad news for me because I've recently ordered a watering can in the shape of an elephant (the water comes out of its trunk!) for Caleb. It's shipping from the US and due to arrive mid-July, which might be right in the middle of the strike. Jon told me to just go with the generic watering cans - no rain spout, long delivery time from the US, potentially very, very long delivery time, cost 3x as much as a regular one for an adult - but as soon as I saw the elephant... But I'm sure the real question for most of you is how will this strike affect our outgoing shipments?
The short answer is we're not too sure yet. We're busy trying to keep everything crossed that there won't even be a strike! However, we've been busy looking at other carriers just in case. We're hoping to keep things moving along the best we can! Here are a few things to keep in mind:
  • Other carriers may not be able to ship to rural destinations, or it may be completely exorbitant, and we may not be able to sustain the cost of that. In either case, we'll let you know what's going on and see what we can do.
  • Some other carriers also cannot ship to PO boxes.
We very likely will have a bumpy road to setting up a new carrier, and we, as always, know that you guys are patient and willing to bear with us as we try our best. We will not be increasing shipping rates unless the strike goes on for a long time. We've been absorbing the extra costs of our Canada Post shipping, but private carriers will be more expensive. Right now, we're forecasting some increase for a little while, and hoping that things will right themselves before too long. As we see how much packages are costing, we may have to make some changes (i.e. increase the cost of shipping).
I read an article on how Canada Post may be shooting itself in the foot, with this strike. Small businesses (like us) will have to look at other carriers (like we are doing now) in order to continue to stay alive - trust me when I say not being able to ship orders online for even a few days can be huge to a business as small as ours. Once we overcome the hurdle of getting set up and learning a new system and routine, we might never come back. That's not to say we're never coming back! You know me and how much I love the whole notion of the postal system and dropping off love letters in red boxes and having them magically appear days later and provinces away. It's just a thought to think about. I think this may be another argument for making Canada Post an essential service, as it really, really detrimentally affects small businesses like ours.
Letter Writing Club Toronto Canada stationery shop Canada
In any case, if you've got any snail mail waiting to get out, now's the time. If you have any parcels that are really urgent you can always pay a bit more to go with a private company like FedEx or Canpar, but snail mail is a bit tougher. Within Canada or internationally, you should be sending letters out today or tomorrow, or at the latest Monday - internationally, of course, as long as it exits the country and into the hands of the receiving country's post before the strike, your letter will make it to its destination just fine. It's times like these that I regret not having the electronic contacts of some of my penpals, so at least just this once I could legitimately blame a long response time on something other than me procrastinating. At the very least, an extremely thin silver lining is that our train trip out west is planned for the end of July - far enough away that if the strike does happen and we need to set something up, we have enough time to make sure everything is in place and rolling on wheels before we head out. If the strike was timed to happen right when we were going on our trip, I think we might have had to cancel the whole thing. And who knows! Maybe if you're in Toronto, or coming to the city for a trip, it'll be a good time for an in-store pick-up, to check out our shop and say hello!   *As a side note, I just love how the article uses the word "alarmist" with quotation marks. It literally makes me laugh out loud to think that Canada Post doesn't want to be "alarmist" in telling everyone that there may be no mail delivery, which could mean no elephant watering can, but in a serious way, could really affect how small businesses and their owners and their employees can afford to continue to put dinner on the table. But the real priority is, you know, making sure they're not being "alarmist" or anything.

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June 23, 2016 — wonderpens



Anonymous said:

Thanks so much for sharing your experience! We really take this kind of feedback to heart, and sometimes we don’t hear it because we’ve only ever offered Canada Post so it doesn’t seem like there are other options. This has been an eye-opening experience for us to look at other carriers, and also to hear back from customers about what they’d prefer. If it makes you feel any better, Jon has had his own battles with getting our shipments and packages delivered instead to the post office for the next day, despite the shop being open for deliveries! He is, of course, the pick-up person in our family ;)

We’ve heard both the great and the not-so-great about Canada Post delivery, and while I know it varies from route to route (and worker to worker), it’s very important for us to at least offer different options when we can. We’ve started out with FedEx because of this fiasco with negotiations, but it looks like your experience and many others will keep FedEx as an option going forward.


Anonymous said:

Glad everything arrived safely! Hope you enjoy everything :)


Anonymous said:

Sorry for the late reply!

I’m so glad everything arrived safely, and I hope you are enjoying your new Traveler’s Notebook. I use mine everyday, and I sometimes feel I would be lost without it. Thank you so much for your kind words!


Anonymous said:

Hi Tim, yes you’re right – I believe it could go either way! I should have mentioned that workers could either be locked out or the works themselves may vote to go on strike. I was trying to simplify things so I could describe what would happen if the postal workers were not working, but I should have been more judicial in how I described the situation. I will be more careful in the future – thanks for pointing this out for me!


Rebekah said:

On an unrelated note: I’m a new customer and received my Traveler’s Notebook in the mail today. I’m already in love with it, and my analogue life can begin ?. What a delight to find a handwritten card in the package! Thank you, guys and keep it up!


RB said:

To be honest, I would be up for a permanent change to other carriers, or at least the option of it, at an increased rate to me. Other carriers come to my house, at my door, and deliver packages. Canada Post, although they bring my mail at a 5 min walk from my house, refuse to deliver packages to my door and make me drive over 30 minutes to get my packages. I find this totally lazy on their part and not acceptable in a competitive market. They nickle and dime their service into an ever worsening experience, and then complain that they are having a hard time financially. I just would like to see retailers offer more options for shipping, and cut out Canada Post with their incapability to adapt to a changing online world.

Jason Hunt

Jason Hunt said:

Well that’s alarming. I think I will have to place my next Order pronto then! I would hate to wait too long and get an alarming email from you explaining that my shipment might be delayed!

tim parris

tim parris said:

Isn’t this a lock out and not a strike? A strike is set by the employees. A lock out is set by the employer.

The impact is the same, but the responsible party is different.

Maeli Z

Maeli Z said:

My son uses the same watering can, it is well worth the wait! Hope Caleb gets years of fun from it. :)


Anonymous said:

I also hope it will be worth the wait!! Caleb loves watering the plants, so I’m hoping this will help foster a love of green things and taking care of them as he gets older.


Katarina said:

That is the cutest watering can I’ve ever seen! I really hope Canada post gets their act together, and hopefully there isn’t a strike.

Elise M

Elise M said:

Glad got my pens, inks and all my accessories! – super cute watering can by the way! :-D

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