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3 NYC parcel delivery services that could save your holiday

Get that package on your own time

Curbed Flick Pool/peterjcb

New Yorkers who don’t live in doormen buildings know that receiving packages from USPS, UPS, or FedEx can be a hellish endeavor. Pesky scheduling conflicts, faulty buzzers, and a whole host of other variables could mean trekking to one of the city’s truly inconvenient package processing warehouses all for an Obama Chia Pet or some other unnecessary home good that would be better sacrificed.

But the holiday gifting season is here, online shopping is more prevalent than ever, and design lovers be damned if they let that Rose Main Reading Room Ceiling umbrella for mom perish in parcel hell. Luckily, package services that get the anguish of a missed delivery attempt, and want to help, have never been more present in this city—and they just might save the holidays. Read on to find out how.

Doorman

Cell phone app Doorman allows users to schedule deliveries at their convenience. Here’s how it works: Instead of inputting one’s own address for delivery, the packages get sent to Doorman’s address. From there, users can specify a one-hour window, any day of the week as late as midnight, in which they want the Doorman drop-off to take place.

There are different options here when it comes to pricing: for those expecting just a few packages, the A La Carte option costs $5 per delivery plus $2 per package. Users expecting a small portion of the T.J. Maxx warehouse to arrive on their doorstep may be better suited to monthly subscriptions, which start at $29.

Doorman isn’t available across the entire city just yet, but those within the following zip codes are in luck: 10001, 10002, 10003, 10009, 10010, 10011, 10012, 10013, 10014, 10016, 10036, 11206, 11211, 11222, 11249.

Parcel

If you’re gifting a NYT Cooking subscription to NYC family or friends this year, Parcel has your back. Parcel teams up with e-commerce companies that market in perishables to schedule deliveries directly with consumers. The delivery service works with the likes of craft beer subscription service Tavour, flower subscription service Stem & Bloom, and NYT Cooking to coordinate deliveries.

Parcel’s been around for a while, and in that time has honed in on the holes in the specialized delivery market. The company relies on their database of NYC buildings and their idiosyncrasies—notes on broken buzzers, obscured building numbers, etc.—to help the delivery process go as smoothly as possible.

Parcel’s CEO, Jesse Kaplan, explains that notes on broken buzzers mean that delivery drivers will be prompted to call users rather than slap a “we tried, sort of” notification on the door and bounce. Parcel is available throughout Manhattan and Brooklyn.

Amazon Locker

For Amazon shoppers who are willing to travel a short ways to retrieve their package, there’s Amazon Locker. For those who opt to pick up at a Locker location, Amazon will push out an email notification when the package arrives at the locker along with a code that unlocks it. The email also includes intel about the package’s address and opening times for the selected location. (In Manhattan, tons of Lockers are set up in 7-11’s.)

For all the unfortunate siblings who learned that their sister actually gave up on gardening after ordering a DIY planter kit, take note: Locker also accepts returns, on certain occasions. Best of all, Amazon Locker is a free service to the website’s users.