A box with no name: unnamed package delivered to front desk/reception4 min read


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In many occasions, for example when travelling abroad, whether it is due to baggage restrictions or special products, many people choose to send their packages to a reception or front desk of a hotel, hostel or company. Sometimes, the name of the consignee is not specified on the package, and this is a problem both for the sender and the receiving organisation. What can you do to secure your delivery? What should you do as an organisation?

Delivering packages to a front desk/reception

When you travel often or are going to do a long trip you can choose to send your parcels prior to arrival. Sending a package to a hostel or an organisation you don’t trust or know beforehand is not always a good idea. If you are going to be on the go and don’t have time to collect your package personally you can also choose a parcel shops to receive your parcel. Many modern accommodation sites, especially budget-friendly ones have automatized check-ins, this means there is nobody there in the front desk to physically receive your package. Even in the cases of 24h reception some planes may not have and a specific protocol for when a package is delivered to the front desk, let alone when the package is delivered without a name. Furthermore, some countries allow a package bought online to be sent only to the billing address as an anti-scamming measure. The best for you as the sender is to call the hotel/hostel/company you are sending your package to and guarantee that there will be someone to keep your package until you arrive. It is also a good idea to provide extra identification, for example, your name, room number or reservation number to guarantee that only you or an appointed person can take the package. In many hotels and hostels, packages will be stored in a room until the guest’s arrival, upon which packages can be claimed. If you send your package to a hotel and it arrives when you are already checked in there, most hotels will deliver the package to your room or otherwise notify you so you can receive it.

Always check and read the updated policy

Most hotels and hostels have their own policies regarding the reception of packages. When traveling, you should always check the policies and services of courier companies to see if front desk/reception delivery is available. Generally speaking, the front desk/reception delivery is accepted, and this service is provided without an extra fee. However, many hostel, hotels, and companies have special requirements. For example, they may ask you to provide not only the name of the consignee but also the reservation number. In some cases, packages will only be accepted within a limited number of days prior to the guest’s stay, so you should keep in mind the estimated delivery date of your package. Furthermore, we heavily recommend you read the policy of the organisation before sending a package.

In most cases, if the package arrives without a name or the name written on the shipping label does not match the name on the reservation hostels and hotels send back the package to the courier service. Some organisations keep the packages for a period but after this, your package will be sent back to the courier service. This is mostly to protect themselves from scammers who will claim unnamed packages left on the front desk.

What can you do as an organisation that receives an unnamed package?

What you can do as the recipient of an unnamed package depends heavily on the policy of the organisation. Generally speaking, bigger organisations have policies regarding packages delivered to the front desk/desktop. If you are a hotel, hostel or another type of accommodation you can check if the package contains any reference, for example, a room or reservation number. You may also keep the package for a few days and wait for someone to claim it. However, you must always ask for proof, for example, an email confirmation of the courier company stating that the package was delivered to your hotel. The most important part is to always notify your customers of what the rules are and state them clearly on your website. You can choose not to receive packages at all, to charge a fee or to only receive a certain type of deliveries, for example, sent by particulars but not from online businesses. Most hotels choose not to keep unnamed deliveries as they may take up a lot of space and can be problematic. If you think having packages delivered to your hotel will be complicated to manage, you can simply choose not to accept them.

Last modified: February 19, 2019

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