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Updates Regarding COVID-19

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Latest closures and reduced hours by region:

Find partner carrier updates here.

UPDATE Wednesday, April 8

For BC region clients: New reduced hours at our BC branches starting Monday, April 13

  • Vancouver and Richmond
    • Monday 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
    • Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday 11:00 am – 6:00 pm
    • Friday 10:00 – 6:00 pm
    • Saturday & Sunday closed
  • Surrey
    • Monday to Friday 11:00 am – 6:00 pm

For Atlantic region clients: All Maritime Bus locations will be operating on a reduced schedule. Departures will take place on a Monday, Wednesday, Friday schedule and most terminals will be closed on Sundays until further notice. Click here to find the updated hours of operation for a specific location.

UPDATE Thursday, April 2

With our contactless drop & go, batching and sorting shipments still apply. This means that if you have 10 or more shipments you must sort and batch by carrier. Failure to do so may cause processing delays and we want to ensure that your packages are processed efficiently and get on their way. Not sure how to create a batch? Learn more here.

UPDATE Wednesday, April 1

We ask for everyone’s cooperation to maintain proper physical distancing when dropping off shipments at our branches. During peak times, this may mean that a queue forms when dropping off shipments safely in our contactless area. We appreciate your patience with this. Read more.

UPDATE Thursday, March 26

We will have limited quantities of refurbished Zebra printers on sale for a special reduced price of $150 plus applicable taxes. Order online or email your branch today and our staff will make contactless arrangements directly with you. 

UPDATE Wednesday, March 25

The UPS Store #520 drop spot will have reduced hours effective today.

  • Monday to Friday 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
  • Cut-off remains the same 12:00 pm
  • Saturday & Sunday closed

UPDATE Tuesday, March 24

For our Quebec region clients, effective immediately, we will be unable to accept any UPS or FedEx shipments due to closures with our U.S. partners.

Also starting Wednesday, March 25 the UPS Store #306 drop spot will be closed until further notice. Today will be the last day for accepting shipments at this drop spot.

Due to COVID-19, delivery times can be expected to be delayed especially services to international countries.

Read more about the Ontario and Quebec provincial government updates here.

UPDATE Monday, March 23

  • Chit Chats is operating as normal and we will update our clients once we know more from the government as to what constitutes an essential business.
  • Updates to the Asendia Priority Tracked service. Read more.
    • Thailand no longer available as a part of Asendia Priority Tracked effective immediately. This does not affect any shipments where postage has already been purchased or shipments in transit.
    • There will not be any changes to rates at this time.
  • Reduced drop spot hours starting Tuesday, Mar 24

UPDATE Thursday, March 19

UPS Store 306 (Mont-Royal Plateau drop spot) has reduced hours of operation starting Thursday, Mar 19. Find the latest hours in our Quebec region blog post.

UPDATE Wednesday, March 18

Chit Chats will continue to carry out normal cross-border operations for your U.S. bound shipments. We’re doing our best to help provide the highest level of service while doing our part to reduce the health impact for our community at large.

Additional travel restrictions concerning the Canada – United States border were announced this morning. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s address to Canadians, detailed that all non-essential travel including tourism and recreation will be temporarily restricted. Travel related to trade, commerce and other essential work will not be impacted by these changes.

We advise all our clients to let your customers know of possible delays with shipments due to the ever-changing environment.

As the situation evolves we’ll be updating our clients through this blog. Please check back for the latest information.

UPDATE Monday, March 16

Based on the information to date and the safety recommendations of the Public Health Agency of Canada, we made the decision to only accept shipments using contactless drop & go effective Wednesday, March 18 in all our branches until further notice. We are taking the following step as our top priority is the health and safety of our staff and clients while minimizing any interruption to your business.

What does this mean?

  • All branches will accept shipments in designated areas only (contactless drop & go)
  • Suspend in-branch label printing and computer usage
  • Hold any returns at our branches 
    • If you’d like your returns sent back by mail please contact the branch 
  • Supplies from branches will only be available in bulk quantities please contact the branch to coordinate any requests or order online 
  • Revised branch hours in our Ontario region go into effect Wed Mar 18

Alternatives available

We understand that these are trying times and we ask for your patience as there may be wait times to facilitate contactless interactions between clients and staff. There will be signage at all branches to help identify the designated drop off areas. Our support team is always available by phone or email if you have any questions. 

Thank you for your understanding and cooperation. Take care of yourself and others. 

_______

Out of an abundance of caution, our Ottawa drop spot, Makerspace North is suspending the acceptance of shipments effective immediately. Until further notice, we recommend that our Ottawa area clients make use of our courier pickup service or mail-in to our Pickering branch when getting their shipments to us.

UPDATE Sunday, March 15

As part of our commitment to client and staff safety, starting Monday, March 16 we will reduce access to shared branch computers until further notice. This is an effort to limit shared touchpoints and increase physical distances as recommended by the CDC and the health authorities.   

We strongly encourage all clients to prepare and print postage at home. You can easily print from home with the following types of printers:

Other ways to help

Other ways to get shipments to us

These are all recommended guidelines from the CDC and health authorities as precautionary measures to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and we appreciate your cooperation. 

UPDATE Friday, March 13

Ensuring the health and safety of our staff, clients, and partners is our top priority.

Given the growth in the number of cases of COVID-19 globally, we understand the increased concern surrounding this. As of today, there is no disruption to our services but we are aware that this could change at any moment depending on the government’s mandate. We are monitoring the situation daily to assess any impact on our and your business and will update you should anything change.

As of today, our partner carriers have advised no changes to their services. We recommend advising your customers especially in areas that have been impacted that shipments may experience delays as carriers navigate these areas.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises that it is likely very low risk that the COVID-19 can be spread from products or packaging, because of poor survivability of coronaviruses on surfaces. Currently, there is no evidence to support the transmission of coronavirus associated with goods; and there have been no reported cases of COVID-19 in the United States associated with imported goods.

USPS

Asendia

  • Currently, there is no ban on the movement of mail to and from the U.S. 
  • Due to the limited availability of flights, shipments may experience delays.
  • Asendia service updates can be found here.

Chit Chats

We have taken precautionary measures at our branches: 

  • All Chit Chats branches have been supplied with hand sanitizer 
  • Extra steps to disinfect and clean common areas 
  • All Chit Chats staff have been asked to take the following precautions below
  • We recommend all our clients to use these guidelines as well 

Precautionary practices

  • Stay home if you’re sick, even if your symptoms are mild
  • Pay extra special attention to hand hygiene; the CDC recommends washing hands for a minimum of 20 seconds each time with warm soapy water (WHO: How to handwash?)
  • Avoid touching your face (eyes, nose and mouth)
  • Minimize physical contact with others, elbow touches over handshakes or hugs
  • Practice good respiratory hygiene (cover your mouth and nose with bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze and dispose of the tissue immediately)
  • Limit non-mandatory travel 
  • Stay healthy and hydrated 

We are committed to ensuring our staff and clients’ safety and doing everything we can to minimize the risks and impacts. We will continue to update this blog post with the most recent updates.

The Chit Chats Team