December 13th, 2018 9:35 AM by Katelyn Mountjoy
One in 3 people have had a package stolen. The amount of American’s that have had a package stolen off their front porch is astonishing. According to an analysis done by InsuranceQuotes in 2017, 25.9 million Americans have had their package stolen from their doorstep or front porch JUST during the holiday season. And that’s an increase from the 23.5 million during the holidays in a 2015 study. With online shopping rising, so is the amount of theft.
I don’t know about you, but package thieves really irk me to a degree that nothing else can match. People work their butts off ALL year round to be able to afford gifts (especially for their children) and these porch pirates think it’s okay to just walk up and take these hard-earned gifts…with no remorse I might ad.
Unfortunately, there’s no way to predict when the thieves will come sneaking up your door steps, BUT there are many ways to prevent it.
In the past few years, in order to combat package confusion and theft, delivery services and startups have been working to find and create alternative ways to prevent porch pirates from getting packages and to help make the delivery process safer.
For example, UPS has created the My Choice program. With this feature that was created in 2011, customers are offered updates on their packages and are able to view estimated delivery times & even CHANGE the delivery address prior to the scheduled drop off time to prevent the package sitting outside.
However, if alternate delivery addresses aren’t relevant to help protect your package, UPS Access Point is another free feature allowing customers to choose a local public location for delivery (like a local bank or drugstore).
If you live in an apartment or condo, there is another system available called Package Concierge that is a system of lockers which are typically installed near resident mailboxes. When the packages get delivered to the locker, the residents are notified via the app or email code and use this to unlock the right locker. Cool right?
They even snap dated, time-stamped photos of each retrieval and delivery!
Here are a few key tips for helping protect your beloved holiday packages:
1 – Get some cameras!
My family and I recently bought Nest Cameras for our driveway and front door and let me tell you…I think they are the best investments we have made this year. Not only do you feel the safety of knowing your property is under surveillance, but you also will have proof if anything bad were to ever happen. AKA a package pirate. If a thief is smart enough, they will see the camera and hopefully be scared off (not that any thief is smart…).
Can’t afford the nice ones?? Get a fake one! We had this camera for a while too and it looks SO real it’s unbelievable. (& cheap)!https://www.amazon.com/WALI-Surveillance-Security-Outdoor-Warning-x/dp/B01940JPLQ/ref=sr_1_3?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1544642367&sr=1-3&keywords=fake+camera
Or this one is a goody too >
https://www.amazon.com/Security-Realistic-Recording-Business-Armo/dp/B07F2XC89F/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1544642367&sr=1-1-spons&keywords=fake+camera&psc=1These are so easy to set up - all you do is put some batteries in and pin them on a wall. The lights continuously blink making it look like it is capturing film... quite impressive.
2 - Porch coverage to block the packages.
What better way to lure in a porch pirate than to have a pretty fresh package sitting on your porch in the wide open. Get smart about your receiving tactics and put something on or around your front porch to hide deliveries. This can include a chair, a planter, a thick column, or a decorative ceramic piece. Simply leave a small note for the courier to leave the package wherever you prefer.
3 – Have packages delivered to a different location.
If you have a package being delivered with valuable items, or just don’t want it waiting on your porch regardless, you can always request it to be held at the delivery facility until you are able to pick it up yourself. Or you can have it delivered to a secure location via UPS Access Point, Amazon Locker Delivery & Package Concierge. This helps with not having to travel super far out of your way to pick it up. Many online retailers actually offer free shipping to close-by stores, so customers can pick them up safely.
Keep in mind – the best way to protect your packages is to simply stay proactive about its delivery (time and place)!