Mark: Hi, it's Mark from Top Local. I'm here with Mark Huggan of Phantom Couriers in Vancouver in a time of great uncertainty. We're in the midst of the Corona virus in mid March, 2020 and we're talking about couriering. Delivery of packages has become a vital service. How are you doing today, Mark?
Mark: Excellent. Super busy. Like you said.
Mark: So yeah, you guys are hopping and bopping and thank you honestly from the heart. Thank you so much for what you guys are doing. You're a critical piece of what needs to happen in the world as we kind of go into lockdown and people are staying at home. So thank you for what you guys are doing.
Mark: Sure, no problem. It's what we do. We always have, but now it's becoming more of an essential kind of service. We've seen a lot of that, our customers are like, we've got a call from a guy, and he's like, are you guys still operating? But yeah, of course we are. I'm just taking precautions, you know, because people are working from home and that's great. And our guys are working from their car. So they're distancing. There's a lot of just leaving things on porches and stuff, but it's still, it's not contributing to the problem. It's alleviating, you know, people all go into one place to pick up all their laptops and stuff. We just have a courier, pick that up and decentralize the chaos and then centralized the efficiency. So it's in our wheelhouse where we like to work. So it's pretty good.
Mark: So what kind of precautions are you guys taking?
Mark: Standard ones. We work with the, like, whatever comes out, Dion's been looking at all the regulations and what needs to be done, but just what you see on the news, they change it daily. So we keep our, you know, six foot distance and you know, everybody's wearing gloves and not touching doors and carrying styluses. Nobody's handing phones back and forth anymore. Nothing like that. So we've upgraded like a proof of delivery. Hey, here's your thing, click take a picture, attach the pictures of the way bill goes to customer.
They're like, Oh that's Mark. Things like that just makes it easier texting ahead of times and telling people, because we are doing a lot of residential delivery. So we're like, we're two minutes away. We'll be right there. Just putting on the porch were taken off, and people like, yeah, do that. Every time people come into the office, we make sure that they're gloved up, that they're everything they know is going on.
And then the government, or one of the regulations that Dion says that everybody has to have like Phantom, I have this vest now. So because we're recognized as working. And not just out and about. So everybody's got this stuff. So when we're in a place, people they know, okay, this guy's on a mission. They know what they're doing. Security is, come on in, because there's lineups and everything. I was just at a store on Arbutus and it was a 30 minute wait to get in because one person at a time. But the courier guy just comes blasting in because he's been pre-checked out as he's not coughing, no fever, no temperature. You know, nothing like that. So no symptoms, obviously.
Mark: Sure. International shipping is still happening?
Mark: Our air freight's been going out with documents. We haven't had any trucking stuff happen. Like no new calls. I can't think of anything else. No. But all the air freight, it's business as usual. You know, customs of course is going to be taking a longer look at things to make sure there's nothing going on that's not supposed to cross, like probably personal items and weird stuff that probably would be more scrutiny. But with documents and electronics and stuff, they're still boogieing pretty quick.
Mark: And what about the eCommerce business that you guys usually are doing day to day? So that's still...
Mark: Kaboom Holy man. Oh yeah. You know, like here's a solid, interesting thing. So drop shipping is, you know, everybody's into drop shipping and there's this standup desk company, Effie desk. So the guy usually like pops out a couple of week. It's like whoosh it's just full of the standup desks all being ordered. Right? Because suddenly his orders are going crazy.
Contact lenses. Of course they've gone right up cause people are panicking that they won't be able to get them. So eCommerce websites like Clearly helping out the contact lenses. Lots of deliveries today for them all successful too. Cause everybody's home. Lot of times you go someplace, they're not home, but now they're home. We're just like pow pow pow, nailing it.
The wine has been incredible. Just tons of it actually like, literally tons of wine because it's wine club season and everybody's home, so they're just, we're going up there. Nobody's picking up their wine. So that's big. Their websites are ticking out super efficient too, and you can see the wine stores like, Oh this is great. Because if they had four pallets of wine and Mark came in at one o'clock to get it, and Mark came in at two o'clock to get it well that's two boxes of a pallet left. But if Phantom comes, 40 boxes gone, one hour. Wine store cleared. Everybody's delivered super efficient, and I think they were like, Hey, this is like, look at this. It's way better for the store. You know, less people in and out, not waiting for somebody when they want to leave. You can see these sort of evolutions of efficiency happening.
Mark: So what about bike couriers? Are you still doing any of that kind of action?
Mark: Oh yeah. Solid all day. Like those guys are busy. The roads are empty too. Lots of security courier interaction. So we'll go to lobby, security guards there. He's the only one going up and down. He's been checked out. We're outside. We're inside. We give it to them. So there's a good symbiotic relationship going there. All the couriers know the security anyways. They're always, they talk all the time. So concierge and security, couriers, it's a lot more efficient. I see maybe mailrooms becoming more of a thing, which is a plan I've always wanted to bring it to Vancouver. I want to have a centralized mailrooms that are a hub that could just, everybody comes in and it goes out and I think we'll see that developing. For many reasons, just efficiency and security and health. You know, if this thing is with more people, more problems, this could solve problems. We're living and learning right now. A big deal.
Mark: And what about employment? Are you looking for more couriers?
Mark: For drivers? Yeah, we are definitely are. We've had a few couriers, obviously parents being hit hard with schools closing and then spring break and there's a lot of things, you know, some couriers were like, their daughter was immune deficient, so she can't go to daycare, so she had to stay home. Even though in the normal day, she would just go be normal, but everybody's a little bit cautious. So with that, and then bringing on four new clients today, busier and growing all the time busier. We've had a lot of calls from people that used to work here that went off to go do other things and have suddenly coming back. They want their jobs back because those other jobs aren't panning out. So yeah, we're definitely looking to get more staff. We just on boarded an excellent courier today. Trained her. Everything went smooth and it just got a feedback. She had a really fun, exciting day.
Lots of, you know, just, good time to start a job, right? Like we're all pandemic. Would you like to be a messenger? Yes. So that was pretty fun. Did that. And with the bikes, I see we are going to need more bikes anyways cause we're doing longer hours. We're going to be doing a lot more deliveries to residences and a lot more hours. So we're down four till 8:00 PM, so definitely need more manpower.
Mark: So there you go. If you're looking for a solution, if the you've been laid off or you're temporarily whatever, you need something, you need something to fill in the gap, the guys to call are Phantom Couriers. If you're looking for a job, but also if you need home delivery, if you need office delivery, if you're working from home. These are the guys who are going to get it done for you. Phantom Couriers, 604-899-5447 check them out. They're the highest rated courier company in Vancouver for a very good reason. Any package anywhere..
Mark: Phantom Courier gets it there. Almost 155 star reviews.
Mark: Thanks man.