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Asset Retrieval

Mark: Hi, it's Mark from Top Local here with Mark Huggan, Phantom Couriers in Vancouver. Vancouver's best couriers, one of the top 100 fastest growing companies in British Columbia, probably in the top 10, the way  things have been going. How're you doing today Mark? 

Mark H: Hey, doing well. Thanks. 

Mark: So, what happens when somebody isn't paying their stuff, do you guys actually go and get it. Paying for their products that they're leasing or supposed to be paying on and they've stopped?

Mark H: 100% . We've been doing it for years. So asset retrieval is the norm a lot of times. So, you know, like an easy one would be say, there was a partnership and somebody had something to belong to the other person, but it's like a shotgun agreement. You know, they're both pointing guns and somebody in the middle, that's us.

So we will drop off cheques. And so a simple case scenario, drop-off cheque pickup key, you know, super simple. Or it might be something more elaborate. Say a company has a lot of remote workers that something happened and you need to retrieve all those assets can say their workstations for an animation studio and there could be like 40 of them and they're randomly all over the province. You have to go get those. There's a lot of exchange going on, a lot of hard feelings or remote area ones. We did a Sechelt pickup and you know, it didn't go as planned. 

So we were in the middle, like, well, he was expecting X and they got Y so we have the item we're supposed to do an exchange. So we have to get in the middle and negotiate. And it's a lot easier when it's us, because we're just a face doing a job. And people are kind of irate and they're losing their mind, but we can say, Hey, we're just a courier, you know, like you're going to shoot us, but we're just here to do our job. And yeah, we can communicate as a go-between and we get a lot accomplished.

So that's just this week, we've done a lot. In fact, we did the Gibsons, which was not easy. North Van, super easy, but we did Edmonton and Calgary and a whole milk run between Calgary and Edmonton for a  Calgary client. So we do that all the time and it makes it easy. 

Mark: So why would somebody call a courier? Wouldn't be the first thing on my mind to do this kind of thing. How did this kind of evolve? 

Mark H: Well, you're right. You know, people are like, I don't know who to call and  it's something we do. We do it all the time. We always have done it. But they kind of just call us because we do solve so many problems for businesses. And it's a natural cause. Like we are sort of like just the go to, we'll call Phantom. Maybe they do it. Like, yes we do do that. We can do that. We will do that. We'll figure it out how to do it for you. 

Because we are like, a courier is like a concierge. You know, if you're busy, you're just going to call downstairs and get the concierge look, Bill, I need you to go pick up my shoes. Done. You know? So they do call us on the whim. They just get used to having us solving problems and it gets it done. So those kinds of things naturally evolve. 

We've had people, interesting story, but a divorce, you know, wasn't it going well, and we had back in the days of the two-way radios, I had a young courier, 19 years old, Lindsey on one side of the door broadcasting, a crying fit. Between the door and Lindsey was like, calming down the woman telling her like, yes, it's not going well for you, but I won't leave. I'll just hang out with you until it goes well. So she made the best of a bad situation that I'll never forget that, but it was like, yeah, the paperwork wasn't going well. And it relayed to the office to the other party and kind of got straightened out. And in the end, nobody was happy, but they weren't as upset. So, you know, we can do that stuff. We'll calm you down.

Mark: Bridging the gap. So what other kind of stuff are you guys picking up? 

Mark H: Well you name it, I mean, we, you name it. We had to go pick up like this heirloom today, but the big problem was somebody was holding it and when we got there, they didn't want to wrap it. Like they didn't want to package it up. Cause that was like their last final, like, you know, jab at you, like here take this, but it's like, Holy man, you can't just like drive around with this, this, you know, it's an old heirloom is it's going to fall apart. It like an antique thing. 

So of course we had to come up with a solution. We're always handed the hot potato. That's our life, you know. Ding dong. Hire the hot flaming hot potato. Can you just deal with it? So we usually have a trick up our sleeve where we can fix things up. We're always good at problem solving. It's just a good thing. We did. It's crazy thing too. 

Mark: So there you go if you've got a hot potato, if you need some assets recovered, if you have some stuff that somebody stopped paying for and you need to get it back, or you want a third party...

Mark H: And we'll try and track it down too, like manhunt, we're good at that. We are good at following the clues. We can find where people move because a lot of times there'll be forwarding mail that the person in the house will just be like, Oh, Hey, by the way, take this with you. If you ever find Joe, this has been forwarded. And sometimes you just call a few of those places and they're like, Oh yeah, we've got the forwarding address for this guy already. And boom, we're on our way. It's like a little detective job. 

Mark: Phantom Couriers, (604) 899-5447. Outside of the lower mainland +1 844-899-5447. They'll get your stuff back. Thanks Mark.

Mark H: Outside of the box, too. Right? There you go.

Misdirected Package Delivery

Mark: Hi, it's Mark from Top Local. I'm here with Mark Huggan of Phantom Couriers in Vancouver. Vancouver's best couriers. That's face it. They're one of the top 100 fastest growing companies in BC and Alberta, in Ontario. And Hey, maybe even in the whole world, how are you doing today, Mark? 

Mark H: I'm doing good, super busy.

Mark: So misdirected packages. This is something that we were just talking about that I didn't know that you guys do. Explain a little bit about how you guys find and deliver misdirected packages. 

Mark H: Yeah. Finding them is easy because, well, basically you know how that saying is you'll find it in the last place it was. A lot of major carriers, somebody might ship a package, let's take for instance, like you, you might send something to your son and he's like, Oh, I moved. So you're like, Oh, it was delivered to your old apartment, of course. So it's there. 

So you phone up the carrier and they're like, sure, we'll go get it today, a day later, bring it to the depot and deliver it a day later. So it'd be three days. And if you can call us and we'll go into major cities and track it down and get it done same day. So that's how we got our start in Toronto was figuring out and picking up packages for match.com and Plenty of Fish. Things were getting lost. We'd go track them down, get them out to the right people.

And then, tada, there you go. So it's a good end. It's easy to do too. Like, cause they are there. It's just that they're a bigger, different beast they do overnight and we do same day. 

Mark: So another thing that we've not really mentioned before was you guys deliver pallets? What's that all about?

Mark H: Well freights, right? So anything that is palletized. We love to take it cause we have the 3 ton, 5 ton trucks. And we were doing freight over in Edmonton. So Benjamin Moore, a customer got referred to us through the BNI Network. And since there was a major flood in Fort MacMurray, can't catch a break, burned down, flooded. Well, the insurance companies are all getting all the paint and restoration under control.

So everything has to be shipped up. All the new goods. So we're shipping up, paint for the painting crews. I think we missed out on the drywall and all that stuff, but definitely we're shipping up pallets of paint for Benjamin Moore. That's a good gig. You know, pellets are like 800 pounds of paint.

Mark: And another thing that you were in the mix of, your amazing days, you guys were delivering candles, you've been doing a lot of candle delivery. Candles? 

Mark H: Yeah, for sure. Vancouver's got a lot of local candle manufacturers and, you know, once they get there, and now that Covid's over, manufacturing is up, right. A lot of things didn't come from China anymore. So there's local manufacturers. And they have to get them out to the stores. So we were delivering once again for our truckloads to like London Drugs distribution, to get out to all the London Drugs for an excellent client of ours. So we do that constantly.

It's just something that's in the mix. We just see it every day. It's like the forest for the trees, but yeah, we definitely do it. And candles are big thing. I mean it's summer, right? Everybody has candles for their Instagram. So you need pallets and truckloads of them. That's what you need. Candles, summer. 

Mark: So what's, today's weird delivery. What was your weirdest delivery today? 

Mark H: We've got three, three stand out weirdly. Well, one's just, weed is normal. Right. But of course, every now and then there's an independent weed guy that calls us up, we just deliver it. So people like, Oh, I think this is weed. And it's like, yes, it is. But then the person that was delivering the weed goes out to Burnaby and they get a call and be like, pick this up and bring it back to Vancouver.

And it was a replica gun, like a like a pistol. And so the person that shipped, it said, Oh, Hey, open it up and look inside just so you know in case you feel it's heavy or whatever, it's just a replica. And sure enough, it was a replica and it went to an army surplus store, I guess that's where they bought it. They didn't want it. So they take it back. 

Then the courier leaves there, just in east Van, just goes over to Main and Broadway area he picks up a 25 pound box of breast implants. So this couriers day is just like what was going to be envelopes. So these of course, went to a clinic and they're being fulfilled in whatever need necessary. It could have been for reconstructive surgery or whatever.

But went to another one of our clients, but the funny thing was when the courier picked up the box , it was like, they called in the weight of the box. And they're like, yeah, it's 25 pounds of breast implants, nowhere in the notes and just kind of stuck out. It was like, Oh, that's interesting.

So they got to get around somehow. Might as well be by courier. So I thought that was an interesting one. That was an interesting run for a courier day. 

Mark: So there you go, the ever interesting life of a courier in Vancouver, Edmonton Calgary, Kelowna, Victoria, Toronto, Nanaimo all over great across the whole country. Phantom Couriers. You can reach them in Vancouver area (604) 899-5447. Or nationally +1 844-899-5447. If you've got a problem, you need to get it delivered Phantom Couriers will get it there. Thanks, Mark. 

Mark H: Right on. Thank you.

Meal Prep Delivery

Mark:  Hi, it's Mark from Top Local. We're here with Mark Huggan, Phantom Couriers in Vancouver. Vancouver's favourite courier company, one of the top 100 fastest growing companies in British Columbia. And well, let's just expand it, Alberta, Ontario. The world. Hey, how are you doing Mark? 

Mark H: We're doing great. Thanks. How are you? 

Mark: Good. So we're going to talk about meal prep delivery. What is that? 

Mark H: Alright. So people at home, they order weekly meals brought over for their particular diet preferences that week. And we work for meal prep companies that prepare the meals all over the lower mainland. And well, we worked with them as far away as Fort Langley to Vancouver.

And so they prepare the meals, they get them all together in packages, and then we go and take them out to the clients' homes. And so with that, there's the specific needs to get to be done. There are usually frozen meals or meals and cooler bags with ice packs, which means the bags in ice packs have to be retrieved.

They have to be accounted for. There's inventory management. Specific, you know, non-contact dropping off. Plus I don't know about you, but if you've ever cooked a Sunday dinner for two, I mean, you know, that things aren't always working perfectly. So a lot of patience when you're doing the pickup, because people were putting the orders together.

So it's a big teamwork thing between, the logistics of owning a meal prep company must be huge. So the courier really needs to be like the easiest part of their day. Like everything's done. It's ready. Let's just go. So when we arrive, we try to make it like, Hey, great job. Let's go. And if there's any waiting around, we're just patient.

Because we know it's already been a hard, long road to get it to that point. We must just make it the happy ending. A different industry, but happy ending comes along sometimes once in a while. There you go. 

Mark: So given where we're at with the pandemic and it's going to stretch out for a while, from the way it's looking. This is probably a business that's really expanding, right? 

Mark H: Oh 100%, you know, for sure. You know, everybody was a little bit paranoid at first. Like, Oh, I don't know if I'm going to order my food because people have touched it, but those industries were probably the first ones to get the excellent protocols in.

First of all, food safe, they're already sanitary. And then they already had things in bags. They're already frozen or flash frozen. And really that's the first non-contact delivery there is. Cause you arrive at the home, there'll be branded bags there that they were had previously had you just take the old ones, put the new ones there. They're taken out to be sanitized. Everything is tickety boo. You know no contact 100%. And then everything inside is super sterile and people are appreciating it. And you can see the meal prep popping up in all sorts of things. 

A lot of companies specialize in like a paleo meals or keto meals. And then there's some from South Asian community. They put out more warm food. Like it's not frozen as much. So it might be like fresh prep eat this today. So that takes it a little bit different than a frozen meal, but they're all over the place and they're popping up and we're working with them all the time.

So it's fun. It's challenging. And it's fun. And it gives us more to do and we'd like doing it. So it's a good job. 

Mark: Keeping people happy, keeping smiling faces, keeping people fed. Phantom Couriers. If you have a meal prep company and you want a reliable delivery service to make sure stuff gets there on time and get your stuff picked up, organizing it all for you,makes it as easy as possible. Phantom Couriers. Reach them at (604) 899-5447. Or if you're  in Edmonton or Calgary or Toronto, +1 844-899-5447. Thanks Mark. 

Mark H: You got that right. Thank you.

Curbside Pick-Up

Mark: Hi, it's Mark from Top Local. We're here with Mark Huggan, Phantom Couriers in Vancouver, one of BCs, 100 fastest growing companies. Open seven days a week, delivering all over the province now, especially in the lower mainland and Vancouver Island, Gibsons. How are you doing today, Mark? 

Mark: We are doing great. Thank you. 

Mark: So curbside pickup, what's curbside pickup. That's something you guys are really moving into. 

Mark: Yeah, it's easy. So you want to go shopping or buy something then most companies, you go to their website and it says place order and will alert you when the product has been picked by their staff.

For instance, myself, I have been using the curbside pickup at a bicycle store on West Broadway. So I placed my order. And then it says, thanks for your order. We'll send you an email or a text when it's ready. And I'm like, Oh, I don't really want to stand by and wait for it. So I just put it into the courier software.

And when I get my text, it's ready. I send the courier and, you know, two hours later, I've got my items. They just take the order number and go pick it up. It's really convenient for me to use the courier to go pick it up because I can be in two places at the same time. Courier's picking up my stuff. I'm doing other things. Saves me time and it's really effective.

I also do it myself at the Home Depot. It's summer getting things going on my deck. I wanted a bunch of stuff. I just ordered it all up. Quickly the ding happened and I'm like, Oh, well, I'm at home. I'm not going to go drive down there. My car is way too small. So I just sent a courier to go pick it all up. And it was, you know, 20 minutes later, 25 bucks later, I got all my stuff. And then all of our customers, they do it too. 

So big items like furniture at CB2. You just send us the invoice. We'll pick up the furniture because it usually comes in from a fulfillment warehouse and that's a long time waiting, but people are very excited to get their new furniture. They always want to get it.

Coach, you know, that place. Luxury items, people sort of, you know, they're not exactly having a great time right now because of the situation. So they want to reward themselves with something nice. They'll order something beautiful from Coach, and they'll be like, Oh, can't pick it up. But ding, courier will bring it to you. And they're ecstatic, when we're at the, it's here, they're so happy. 

Holt Renfrew. The other day, we picked up a nice pair of shoes. I mean, Nice. Pair of shoes. Super nice pair of shoes. Delivered them.

Cannabis, wine, cigars, you know, it's really easy. You just order it from the store. They text you. You tell us, we're gone. You have it in 20, 30 minutes. It's really easy in Vancouver. 

Mark: And that's seven days a week. If the store is open as well, right? 

Mark: Yeah, for sure. Especially on weekends because who wants to be doing errands on weekends? When you could have Phantom Couriers do the errands and you can have your fun. And that's the whole idea. So there's something new that came out of this whole shutdown is the start up of curbside pickups. It makes it a lot easier for consumers. It's not online next day overnight. It's at the store, same day delivery. So it's really better than waiting for Amazon to bring it. It gets you the stuff that same day, in most cases. So it's pretty cool. I like it.

Mark: And so on weekends, you guys are doing a lot of wine and grocery delivery, is that right? 

Mark: Yep. 100%. Everybody wants their wine and their food. And it's, you know, now that it's nicer weather, nobody wants to be driving around in that hectic traffic so we can consolidate a route, boom, pick it all up.

You know, Okanagan wines. We pick it up all day, Marquee wine all the time, Cigar Connoisseur, Vancouver Cigar. Go and pick those things up, drop them off at people's places. And then Whole Foods does all the groceries. So it's pretty good for getting your weekend adventures or, you know, activities, you don't have to go out and drive around.

We'll get you all the goodies and you can have a nice relaxing evening. Makes sense to me. 

Mark: Yeah. Since we've actually got the sun again.

Mark: Beautiful British Columbia, man. 

Mark: Alright, so there you go. If you need anything curbside pickup relax, take it easy. Let Phantom Couriers deliver it right to your door.

Mark: Yeah. 

Mark: Easy, quick, easy, fast. They'll deliver a bridge for you. No matter what it is, they'll deliver everything pretty much. 

Mark: Pretty much, man. And people are happy, so that's keep them happy. 

Mark: So you can reach them at (604) 899-5447 in the lower mainland or +1 844-899-5447. Seven days a week, they'll get it delivered for you.

Any package anywhere... 

Mark: Phantom Couriers gets it there. 

Mark: Thanks Mark. 

Mark: Right on. Thank you.

Delivering West and North of Vancouver

Mark: Hi, it's Mark from Top Local. We're here with Mark Huggan of Phantom Couriers in Vancouver. Vancouver's favourite courier company, fastest one of the 100 fastest growing companies in BC and probably the fastest growing courier company. Are you doing Mark? 

Mark: Excellent. How are you? 

Mark: Good. So you guys are going around the bend. You're going up up North. You're going past what you going further West in West Vancouver and North from there. What's going on with all that. 

Mark: Yeah, as we were talking about before, the couriers we've always had from West Vancouver to Chilliwack is our work zone. And we've been getting more and more calls for Lions Bay, Squamish, Brackendale, even Pemberton and the rates weren't in place.

So people would just like make makeup rates. They really didn't think about it. So, you know, you talking to somebody on the phone and you find out that they need to service done and start calculating how far it is, how fast they need it. And you see that your rates aren't in place and your software doesn't handle it, nobody's does. So I just made a solution for it and it seems to be taken off pretty good. People are loving the response, and now it's not so painful. You know, if you live in Lions Bay, a lot of people used to charge an absurd amount of money and they'd be like, okay, just do it. And they'd never felt the value.

So now we've got a fair price. And the people are appreciating the value. And we just picked up a client, actually, a jewelry artist up there had a delivery from another place, like a third party, unrelated, like the fact that we got there quite quick, asked phone desk and said, what did that cost? And so we calculated the price and told her, and she was pretty happy. She went to our website and signed up a new account.

So at that point, we figured out proof of concept. This is an area that needs to be served. A lot of people commute in and you know, they love living up there and I've never heard a courier complaint. Oh, I got to go to Lions Bay. I mean, it's a gorgeous break from reality. You turn that corner and your job is summer vacation. There's a lot of things to do up there. There's businesses going on, you know, from the ferry terminal all the way up to Pemberton, people are doing things. They do things that we are doing here. They have the same needs and wants. And so we're servicing it and having a good time.

Mark: Sea to Sky Highway is pretty amazing. And Whistler of course is a world famous, world ranked ski resort and Squamish is fantastic for all kinds of outdoor activities of course. That's just a little further than Lions Bay. 

Mark: I just think of us. Whistler is just a giant mall. It's a shopping centre and people all congregate around shopping. You don't find a lot of people living around the Number One Freeway by the Port Mann Bridge, but you do find them living around where you get the food and the clothes.

So people live up there, the congregate, they need things done. Plus, you know, it is our getaway land and every long weekend, it happens. Like, I think it was a May long weekend, which is the most famous of all the long weekends when it's kind of panicky, people aren't used to it. We get all the calls for like left my tablet on the dining room table in our house in Whistler. I need it today or chargers or cell phones or keys and wallets and all sorts of stuff. So we've had as many as six calls on the day after the long we can go up to people's houses and they give us the key code. We go inside and solve these problems. So it's a hotspot. So if you forget your laptop in Whistler, we can go up and get it.

And it's pretty cool that people know us well enough to give us the key code. Cause you know, like Airbnb, those little metal boxes and the key pops out, you just go in, you know, they're watching you from their office with their, whatever, their nest or something. But it's another thing we do for people up there.

And it's not so painful as before. I mean, I remember it was like 300 bucks to go to Whistler to pick up a guy's laptop. And it's way more affordable now and we're getting work on the way back. So that's pretty good. I'm happy to do it. 

Mark: So there you go. If you're a little bit further than West Vancouver, a little further West and North.

Mark: West and North yeah. 

Mark: You're not getting the kind of service you want. The guys to call in Vancouver are Phantom Couriers. You can reach them at (604) 899-5447. If you're even further out, you can call them on their 800 number +1 844-899-5447. Book your deliveries, book your pickups. They'll look after you. Thanks, Mark. 

Mark: Right on. Thank you.

Phantom Couriers Nanaimo and Bees Delivery

Mark B: Hi, it's Mark from Top Local. I'm here with Mark Huggan of Phantom Couriers in Vancouver. They are Vancouver's favourite courier service. One of the fastest growing courier service in probably Western Canada, and is in the top 100 fastest growing companies in BC. And probably is even edging towards the top of that right now, given how they've been growing through this pandemic. How are you doing today, Mark?

Mark H: We're doing great today. Thank you. Busy day, that's for sure. 

Mark B: So the Nanaimo location is open and rockin'. What's going on? Tell me a little bit about your new Nanaimo location. 

Mark H: Yeah, for sure. So we were busy in Nanaimo and we were always just sending things from the lower mainland to Nanaimo. We thought we really need to get a presence over there so I partnered up with a friend of mine that owns a printing company, Print Three. And we've got space inside Print Three that has a street address so we are running an office out of there with walk-in service and same-day delivery in Nanaimo. So right now, we're going between Ladysmith and Lantzville focusing in the Nanaimo business thing.

We joined the Nanaimo Chamber of Commerce, which is exciting. And we're going to be joining up with the local BNI Chapter in Nanaimo as well. This next Thursday, I think. 

Mark B: Cool. And again, is that a full service? Is it just parcel delivery? What kind of stuff are you guys doing in Nanaimo? 

Mark H: Like I said, we fly things over there all the time and our courier picks up from Harbour Air and delivers legal documents, mainly. Wine. We've been doing a lot of wine from the coast over there. And then we're working with Pomme, a grocery store, and doing all the grocery deliveries out of Pomme. So we're doing B2B,  B2C and we've got a bit of e-comm starting out. 

We're doing everything from small parcels to larger deliveries. Just the same as we're doing in Vancouver. We've even got a freight hook-up out there with Diamond Delivery. 

Mark B: So I know there's a local number to come but right now people can use +1 844-899-5447 to get a hold of you in Nanaimo?

Mark H: Yeah easily. It just comes right to our phones here in Vancouver and our system is networked into Nanaimo. So what we see here, we see there. We've got the same functionality. Like, I'm looking at the GPS now and I can see the drivers and trips happening in Nanaimo. I don't have the GPS in the plane, though. Otherwise I'd watch it fly over.

But other areas on the coast, like Sunshine Coast, we watch the ferry go over with our driver on it so it's fully tracked and traced while having time expectations that we're honouring. We can totally manage it and it's fun.

Mark B: So that's Nanaimo. How's your week been? What's an interesting story from this week?

Mark H: Do you have kids? You know, like I ask a million times, "Hello children. What'd you learn at school today?" "Nothing... wait, calculus, biology, science, how to weld, team work." You can't see the trees for the forest. Everyday is filled with interesting things and I am de-sensitized to chaos. Nothing much, just delivered life saving medicine, paid out 50 mortgages, certified 500 million in cheques, delivered a wedding dress, an engagement ring, grandma's ashes. NOTHING. Pretty quiet week.

But I was going over my notes and we actually delivered live bees. You saw it in the news a couple of years ago where big trucks are pulling around beehives and letting them go because bees are having a hard time with pollution, cellular towers, pesticides and all this stuff. So at BC Bee Supply, they have live bees that they ship out to people who will put them in their gardens or rooftops and get them into the ecosystems. 

So we got a call. I saw it in the morning and I was like, "Oh, that's interesting." And then I forgot all about it. They were 100% packaged and the delivery went perfectly. I was just imagining a Steve Martin movie or something, like these things flying on the side of a car. Nothing went wrong. They got delivered. It wasn't even one of our regular client on either end. It was a person who just phoned us up and paid with a credit card. 

So I'd be interested in meeting anybody from BC Bee Supply and seeing how they're getting their logistics done. And I think bees are kind of cool. So yeah, it was a lot of bees inside of a car. I mean, come on, you've seen it, right? One bee in your car and you go insane but this person had like hundreds of bees and a hive. Another normal day at Phantom Couriers. 

Mark B: So there you go. If you need anything delivered, even your live bees. More than one at a time though.

Mark H: Yeah, for sure.

Mark B: Phantom Couriers in Vancouver, Nanaimo or Sunshine Coast, is rapidly expanding across the province of BC and Western Canada at (604) 899-5447 or +1 844-899-5447. Check it out. They're worth every penny. Any package, anywhere, Phantom Couriers gets it there. 

Mark H: Thanks man. 

Mark B: You bet.

Weekend Delivery Now Available

Mark B: Hi, it's Mark from Top Local. We're here with Mark Huggan, Phantom Couriers in Vancouver. Vancouver's best, most exciting courier company. Bicycles, cars, vans, trucks, planes, even weekends. How're you doing? 

Mark H: Marketers? Jet powered helicopters? Yeah, doing good. 

Mark B: So you guys have been open for the weekend for a while now. How's that going? 

Mark H: It's going really well. It's been three months of being open seven days a week. At first, we were just doing it for the demand of the COVID onslaught. There was lots to do. And now we've established a weekend ritual where it's busy enough to be including more drivers per day.

We initially had limited hours. Now we're extending our hours. The demand is there, the word is getting out, and I was very surprised. So it's working out better than I expected. 

Mark B: So there was a very special delivery that you guys did just recently. What's the story on that one? 

Mark H: Yeah, it was cool because I was in the office, so I was like, Oh, I like this kind of stuff right. Cause you know, it's usually just things to do and then do the stuff. So it was out in West Vancouver and it was a late pickup. It was a one o'clock pickup. Must be delivered by 2:00 PM exactly. And I was like, Oh, what is this? I'm taking a look and I see it's picking up an ice cream cake. I was like, Well, okay, one hour? Is that like a little bit too long a time? So I phoned the driver and she had already been texting the receiver. And what it turned out to be was because birthday parties are not so easy during these pandemic days and it's not as much fun that their friends are just driving by the house. So apparently, the kid who was having this birthday was really fixated on the fact that she was born at two o'clock.

And so we picked up the cake and we took it to the building, contacted concierge. He was in on it. The mom was in on it, and of course the kid's watching the clock counting down and at 1:59:59. The driver knocks at the door and the kid's probably thinking, It's my birthday but what can it be? The kid goes to the door. Nobody's there, just an ice cream cake. So it kind of made her day. And you know, if we weren't open, we wouldn't have gotten to do it. It was a feel-good moment and the fun part of doing deliveries. So somebody will probably remember this. I don't know the girl. I just thought it was cool. Like, let's make that happen. So I'm glad we were open. It was just a good thing to do. And if there's anybody out there who's got something going on in the weekend when they can't be in three places at the same time, it's the perfect opportunity to call a courier and get your wishes to come true. 

Mark B: So this is kind of unique for you guys. There's not a lot of other courier companies that are open on weekends, right? 

Mark H: That's right. It started when I was sitting around doing paperwork after everyone had gone home and got a late call from this woman in England. I thought, There's gotta be a bigger company that must be open. So I did a Google search and the answer was no. She wanted somebody to go to London Drugs and pick up some medicine for her son who wasn't feeling well. It was just after office hours. Way too late to call someone in. So after helping her out, I decided that we'll open on weekends. There's a need so we'll extend our hours. Let's service that need and make people happy. So I'm pretty stoked to do it. Ever since I've had my company, I always felt like the after hours pager guy or the after hour cell phone number.  

There's no systems and procedures like, "Hey Mike, will you be the after hours guy?" Sure, maybe if they're not watching TV, you know. It's an inconvenience for somebody just to randomly pick up the phone for one thing. And it could be anywhere so it's nice to have a scheduled team that's ready to go. Now we strategically get drivers from across the lower mainland and we spread them out because the volume is not as high. And then for Vancouver, we'll operate West side, East side, North side, South side so we set up for crisscrossing. Cover and move, get the job done. 

On Saturday, one driver went from Vancouver to Richmond to Delta to Surrey, and then all the way back up to Squamish to drop off some stuff. It was a $400 day. Very busy from ten til two so it was a rocking day for her. A hundred dollars an hour. Can't complain. So we got the job done and everybody was happy and it makes me very happy. 

Mark B: So there you are. If you need delivery service in the Vancouver area, right from Whistler to Hope, and even further as they expand into Vancouver Island and the Interior, and Calgary and Toronto, contact Phantom Couriers, (604) 899-5447 or use the toll-free number +1 844-899-5447. www.phantomcouriers.com. Thanks, Mark. 

Mark H: Excellent. Thank you.

Phantom Couriers Expansion – Victoria to Toronto

Mark B: Hi, it's Mark from Top Local here with Mark Huggan of Phantom Couriers in Vancouver, Vancouver's fastest growing courier service and one of the 100 fastest growing companies in BC. How are you doing today, Mark? 

Mark H: Obviously, we're very fast, so yeah, we're doing awesome. How are you? 

Mark B: Good. Great. So let's talk about expansion. You guys are rapidly growing, expanding into all kinds of areas across BC, Alberta and maybe even the big smoke. What's going on? 

Mark H: Wanted to do it for a long time and just started doing it. And then once we started doing it, it worked. And I was like, okay, this is good. So, you know, there's a lot of good contributing factors.

First, it's easier than it has ever been. Indeed is a very excellent platform for hiring. So when you're there, you can just hire your people. With the help of companies like yours, we are getting landing pages and getting business addresses in other cities. When we get a business location set up, we go to Google Business and establish our presence. You know what they say. If you build it, they will come. Once you start telling people you're there and people know you, they're like, "Wait a minute, Phantom's over there. I'll call them."

It might be a company that's based in Vancouver doing business in Nanaimo. Once you get over there, you're going to meet one of their partner companies. They're going to say, "Did Phantom drop off the package? What did you think?" "It was great. We should switch to Phantom." Or we will say, "Hi, we're Phantom."

And it's just that organic growth. So, you know, it was weird not to go to Victoria first but we went from Vancouver straight to Nanaimo. It works. We have a location there with a friend of ours in a print shop. So it works just like Phantom used to have a print shop here when the printer needed to shack up, because printers and couriers work hand in hand. Symbiotic relationship. 

First, we zoom down south to Victoria where we're doing grocery store deliveries for Whole Foods. In Nanaimo, we started off with a simple grocery store as well, and it just led to the B2B. And now that we've got it, it's really nice because we've got Gibsons and we can get there with a sea plane or helijet. Give it to our guys and gals. Presto, is done. 

Then going east towards Calgary was an easy too because with a disruption in the supply chain, we had an opportunity to get into Kamloops and Kelowna. Our operations manager is from Alberta and he made a few phone calls, lined up a few ducks and t's good to go. 

And you mentioned the big smoke, being Toronto. One of our biggest e-comm customers is obviously operating there, but they're operating with next day on Canada Post and Purolator. And we were on the phone and I said, "Victor, we're going to Toronto." And he's like, "That's our largest e-comm market. We don't have any same day there. Can you get your software running?" I said it's the same software and it was like the light bulb went off. We signed some contracts and now Phantom Couriers will be in Toronto. 

We've got a guy there working now solving problems for another e-comm company where they shipped a bunch of stuff over there. All of it got lost. I found it. Well, not me personally, but our company found it and then we got Matt, our courier in Toronto, to pick it up, sort it out and go. And now Matt has been doing some woodworking transfers between shops and some freight. It's perfect. 

It was just one of those kinds of things. Did you want to talk about it? Sure. You know, do it or shut up. So we just did it. It was pretty cool. It was pretty much a "Fast Times at Ridgemont High" moment. It just happened. 

Mark B: So Phantom Courier is expanding right across the entire country. Well, at least from Toronto west to Vancouver to Victoria. 

Mark H: There's a lot missing in the middle. But you know, we'll fill that up. If it happens, I mean, come on. I was a bike messenger. Oh hey. Whoa, whoa, whoa. Hold the phone. Yesterday was our 24th year in business, man! 

Mark B: Nice. 

Mark H: Yeah, I know. Like, I forgot about that. So 24 years in business. Okay. It should have happened a lot sooner. It didn't. But here we are. We are having fun. There you go. Twenty four years later.

Mark B: If you want to go with a winner, if you want to go with the fastest growing company, if you want to go with a company that delivers on time, anywhere, any place, the guys to call are Phantom Couriers in Vancouver. You can reach them at (604) 899-5447 or nationally +1 844-899-5447. Thanks, Mark. 

Mark H: Right on. Thank you.

Subscription Deliveries

Mark B: Hi, it's Mark from Top Local. We're here with Mark Huggan of Phantom Couriers in Vancouver, one of the 100 fastest growing companies exploding right now as they expand rapidly during the Corona Virus 2019. Silly season.

Mark H: 2020 man. 

Mark B: 2020. It's 2020, and it's COVID 19. I got it.

Mark H: You're not the only one.

Mark B: That last workout just killed me. So how's it going, Mark? 

Mark H: Today's a fantastic day. Totally positive day. Everybody was happy. 

Mark B: So subscription-based deliveries. We were talking before we started here that you've had a real big growth in that. What's going on there? Give us some examples.

Mark H: Okay. Let's take for instance, an orthodontist. People come in, they're assessed, they're given the program that's going to make their teeth straight. So they're happy and suddenly, because of the pandemic, they can't come in to pick up their Invisalign style braces. So they know that every six weeks your teeth are moving this way. 3D printers are printing braces.

We've got one really smart orthodontist who quite possibly is going to buy every single orthodontics office in the lower mainland. But this guy, super smart guy, said, "Look, my people need their braces". So he fired them off to us. We had 500 smiles we had to deliver. We picked them all up and helped on the back-end due to a lot of bad addresses. People move so we did all the admin around that. We really cleaned up his supply chain and nailed it. And then everybody got their braces.

So we did same day courier, overnight courier, like two day for everybody that this guy services from Lion's Bay to Abbotsford, Chilliwack, and all points beyond. Got them all out there. He was happy because what had backed up over 22 days was out in three and customers were like, "So what's going to happen next month?" And he's like, "Well, Phantom, will be back!" We cleaned up that list so going forward he can focus on getting more clients in the door, getting more braces on people that want to have a better smile, and do what he really loves, which is fix smiles and just get that automated system going out.

So he's pretty happy and all his admin people only have to show up once instead of like, Mark will be here at 10 and Brian will be here 10:15 and the next guy will have to wait until 11 because, you know, social distancing. We were able to safe drop them all with photographs, call the person, and leave them at the door. The customers can do what they want, like if they want to leave it and wait two days or if they want to pick them up with tongs or whatever. It makes everybody comfortable and it made that business get back into functioning. It's awesome. I'm pretty happy to see that one. It was good.

I made the decision on January 1st to take care of myself. Oh, COVID-19. Things happen. Lots of dieting, people eating healthier, and seeing counsellors and stuff. And so everybody knows the name Jenny Craig. So Jenny Craig in the US they got going with Postmates. There was nothing to fill the void up here in Western Canada so they called me up and now we're picking up frozen and chilled food from the nutritionists and taking it out to people in these really cool thermal bags with ice packs. We're doing that for Victoria, the lower mainland and Kelowna.

So, you know, a big footprint. We're getting a lot of work done, dropping off the bags and not having the customers return them so there's no fear of contaminated bags going into the system. So that's not cheap for Jenny Craig and they caught the ball and they're like, "we can't give these bags back. Just write them off." You know, it's the cost of COVID. So that's really cool. And admirable. You've got to admire somebody who's not trying to cut costs here. They're really taking care of their customers because if somebody gets where they want to get, and if they get that goal, they're going to tell a thousand people. So that subscription-based thing was pretty cool to talk to them about. It was a good deal. I liked it.

And then of course, local entrepreneurs that like Ecom, Shopify and Etsy entrepreneurs, there's just billions of them. Everybody's got a great idea, you know. Face masks for one thing. People are stitching them up and they're like, I'm going to sell this in my Shopify website.

Expect all these delays for Amazon and Canada Post because they have the plugin and you're kind of a slave to the plugins for FedEx, UPS, all that stuff. So I've been calling around like, "How do I get a plugin?" They're like "Give me $30,000." And I'm like, "How do I get a plugin? I'm not giving you $30,000."  Like, forget it man. I'm not going to do it. 

So I kinda did the old Phantom Courier DIY way and we've kind of hacked up a good push notification system that we'll be testing out with a couple of stores in the neighbourhoods where our office is.We'll probably have to get somebody to transfer it into the digital waybill system we've got and we might use Zapier to automate it. So we're going to have a push to Phantom to Zapier to, Digital Waybill. It should work and this could put a big crack in it and make it nicer because if your customer is waiting four or five days for this thing, they're going to forget about it. Then they get worried. Then they start calling you. Then you gotta stop what you're doing and deal with it. But if we can do it, we'll do it same day. They're going to be impressed. They're going to come back. So these opportunities are evolving and they're pushing us to, think of how to solve problems.

Be problem solvers. This is what we love to do because the day flies when you're solving problems, you know. It's like, Oh, I gotta think about this. This is cool. Try it. Works good, didn't work good. I now know what to do or not to do. So we're having a pretty awesome week. 

Mark B: Awesome. 

Mark H: Everybody's stoked, it's like good work. You know, like people are happy. It's hard work and we're making it happen is what we'd like to do. 

Mark B: You also mentioned you might be looking for a virtual assistant.

Mark H: Oh yeah. I've got so many ideas. It's like, my staff here are, you know, project managers, operation managers, CSRs, call takers. A lot of times I'm like, "Can you just do this? Can you just develop all this for me? Can you go get some data and filter it out for me?" And it's like, "Yeah." But it never gets done. So I'm definitely looking for a really good assistant, and obviously it's going to be a virtual assistant at this point, but somebody might want to jump on a team of a very fast thinking, growing company. It's fun. Thanks for asking. Are you applying? 

Mark B: I have a gig. 

Mark H: I know you do. You've got a good gig. Right on.

Mark B: So there you go. If you need a package delivered any time anywhere, Phantom Couriers are the guys to call. You can reach them at (604) 899-5447. You got to call and book cause they're busy, but they're working seven days a week.

They are delivering to the Sunshine Coast and Nanaimo now soon to be in Kelowna within the next couple of weeks. 

Mark H: We're always there, but we're going to be full-time. Our hours on weekends are limited hours from 10am to around 3pm, but if you call us at 2:59 and need something done quick, we're there for you. So the weekends are expanding rapidly. Clearly Contacts, a big client of ours, we always do their same day. We're having a talk tomorrow, so we might be rolling out their weekends and that'd be great because it will keep the couriers more active. So if you need us later in the day, we're there for you.

Mark B: Phantom Couriers. It's all happening. If you want a package delivered, give him a call. Thanks, Mark. 

Mark H: You're right on, man. Thank you.

Phantom Courier Expansion

Mark B: Hi, it's Mark from Top Local. We're here with Mark Huggan, Phantom Couriers, Vancouver's favourite courier service, and we're talking deliveries. How are you doing today, Mark? 

Mark H: Excellent, thank you. 

Mark B: So,expansion plans. You guys are expanding where? 

Mark H: Sort of locally. Sunshine Coast. We're definitely up there everyday and we've got couriers in Nanaimo now. We used to use contractors. So we would get it here, put it on a plane or a helicopter, fly it over there and get somebody else to do it. And now we've got our own Phantom staff in Gibsons and Nanaimo. It makes a big difference. I didn't notice how much of a difference it would make until we started doing it.

I was like, this is incredibly excellent. You know, I trusted the other contractors we worked with, but it was not as seamless. And now it's perfectly seamless. I love it. 

Mark B: So what makes it seamless now compared to how it was? 

Mark H: Just simple little things like the proof of delivery we use. Our system gives us an automated proof of delivery and we used to have to wait for the contractor to contact us, and then somebody here, would have to put it in or else we'd be like, "Was it done?"

Sometimes it's because they were an analog courier and we have a lot of digital back end so there was just that lag. And now there's no lag. For instance, today at 3:30, we got an order from a wine shop on DavIe and we had wine in a helicopter to Nanaimo, Nanoose Bay for dinner. They wanted their special wine but couldn't find it. They got it in Vancouver. We helicopter it, put it with Michelle and boom, it's done.

So that was, you know, 90 minutes later in Nanoose Bay from Davie and Burrard. Pretty cool. Which, even just by ferry is many hours and an epic day long trip, basically. It's worse because they're not serving french fries or anything on the ferries anymore and you have to stay in your car now. Now, you stay home and couriers and helicopters do the work for you. I mean, like, that's sweet. It's way better.

Mark: And you guys are doing a lot of grocery delivery over there as well? 

Mark: Yep. We're working for a new chain that's got a few places. It's good because this is spawning from social distancing. You luck out if you pick the right time to go to the grocery store. You just walk right in. But if you have to stand outside and there's 30 people and you're six feet apart and the line up is down the streets, it gets old fast. Our way is safer too. They order through the grocery store online, it's ready, we show up, take it from the social distancing table thing and bring it over to the house. You'd leave it on the steps and people can deal with it as they wish. You know, they can leave it outside as long as they want. They can touch it with gloves, there's no confusion. It's really easy and straightforward and customers have a lot of control. So it works out better. That's been building like crazy here.

Mark: So what about the Sunshine Coast? What kind of deliveries are you doing up there? That's ferry-only access as well. 

Mark: Yep. And there's not a lot of ferries. So we're usually on the 7:15 in the morning ferry going over. So we will meet our courier David up there, and we've been, right now I'd say 99% of the stuff we're sending up there is PPE stuff, so protective clothing and equipment.

My friend, Jeff  Cripwell, is a car dealer. He commutes and he's like, there is a huge need for same-day couriers to and from Gibsons. Because Jeff lives there, half the time they'll forget something at home. We could have it easily picked up by our courier, put on a ferry, and delivered to them. There's no unescorted cargo at any point. Somebody has to go and hand it off and that's fine. Just get somebody over there. It's a short ride. We had a bike messenger go out on the weekend, just rode his bike up there, got on the ferry. $13 fee for crossing. Dropped off this big box to David. Boom! He's back riding around in West Van.  So we're dialed in, we've got all the schedules, and it was a surprisingly wicked success. I didn't think it'd be so great and people are appreciating it. 

Mark B: So for the Sunshine Coast, are you going right from Gibsons all the way up to Nanoose Bay, or how much of the...

Mark H: Nanoose is on the Nanaimo side. So that was a totally different thing. 

Mark B: Sorry, sorry. Wrong place. 

Mark H: Yeah. So all of the Sunshine Coast is accessible once you get off that ferry. We've gone up to, well, I don't know where this clinic was, but I was watching the GPS thing go fairly far up, and I was like, "Oh, look at that!"

Mark B: Madeira Park, or..

Mark H: Yeah, if I was to look at the map, I kind of thought he was heading towards Squamish, parallel to it. I was like, "What's going on?" So I don't know where that address was, but David's all over the Sunshine Coast and whenever I look at it on the map, he's sticking around the perimeter, but he covers a huge area. 

Mark B: And what about Nanaimo? What kind of area are you guys focused mostly on? The city of the Nanaimo or are you going up to Parksville, et cetera? 

Mark: Well, we haven't really done that yet, but the city of Nanaimo is basically where we've been doing our same day, inner city stuff. But Parksville is like a hit. We do it all the time. I've never considered it and we usually just get overnights with that kind of stuff. But you know, if people want to same day, now we're capable. We always had to meet a courier so before, if we wanted a same day to Nanaimo, the contractor we had was in Victoria. So they went from Victoria, which is super south all the way up, and if you missed them, you're out of the game even if it was at Harbour Air sitting there. If that guy didn't hit it at one o'clock, and he only stops once, you're hooped. Now we can go over as many times as they fly. It's at our depot. People can pick it up at any time so it makes the scheduling and routing much easier.  

Mark B: And you guys have access to all that, where the courier is right on your computers and you can connect with them and find out exactly what the ETA is, all that sort of stuff, if customers have questions?

Mark H: Oh yeah, 100% and it's so seamless. The customer even knows where they are really because of our digital waybill app. But it's way easier. I love it. I'm surprised how much I like it. I was like, "Oh, this is relaxing. You're in my world."

Mark B: So there you go. The start of the beginning of world domination from Phantom Couriers in Vancouver and if you need service in Nanaimo and the surrounding area or along the Sunshine Coast. Forgive me for not recognizing which Bay it was at the top end the post. 

Mark H: I can't give directions.

Mark B: Call Phantom Couriers (604) 899-5447 to book your appointment. Thanks, Mark. 

Mark H: Right on. Thank you.

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