Entrepreneur Jesse Kaplan moved to New York last summer, and immediately ran into a familiar problem: If you don’t live in a building with a doorman, getting packages delivered to your house can be an unbelievable hassle. Whether it’s trying to chase down the UPS deliveryman down the block or trying to translate one of those USPS pink package slips, it is just no fun. “I started coming home every day to a door peppered with missed package slips. After several weekends lost waiting on line at the post office, I couldn’t take it anymore. I spent over a month meeting with doorman-less New Yorkers, hearing the same nightmare stories over and over,” Kaplan told me via e-mail. And so Kaplan brainstormed a solution: Parcel, an after-hours package service that’s launching in Brooklyn on November 20.
The idea is a pretty simple one: You send your online orders to Parcel’s headquarters in Williamsburg, and then you can schedule a time for them to deliver those packages to you when you’re actually home. You schedule an hour slot between 7 pm and 11 pm through Parcel’s website, pay $5, and you get your packages to your door without having to travel out to some godforsaken part of Queens to hassle the FedEx dudes. (I have done this, and would not wish it upon even the most obnoxious screaming dude on the subway).
“We’re currently unable to deliver packages wider than two feet in any dimension or heavier than thirty pounds. Otherwise, we can deliver pretty much anything,” Kaplan wrote. So like, no to having your Ikea order delivered that way, but yes to pretty much anything else. Parcel is already operating successfully in Manhattan;as of now, the service is limited to there and Brooklyn, though they’re looking to expand based on popularity. Is it sort of atrocious that we can’t just have some sort of mail system that actually functions? Yeah, probably. But in the meantime, this seems like a pretty good solution.