Doing a spot of online shopping? Be prepared to wait longer for it to arrive.

New Zealand Post has reported it is receiving, on average, more than 200 parcels every minute as the country slowly starts to move towards normality after weeks of Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.

The national postal office has sent an email to customers advising it had seen a "huge increase" in the number of parcels needing to be delivered around New Zealand as the country moved through alert level 3.

As people everywhere now prepare to move into level 2 on Thursday, even more retailers are expected to start operating again - meaning more parcels to be delivered.

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"While we knew this was likely to happen and prepared as best we could, Kiwis really have been shopping up a storm and we received the highest number of domestic parcels last week than in any other week in NZ Post's history," the email said.

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"To put this into perspective, we're receiving - on average - over 200 parcels every minute."

Customers were told that combined with physical distancing requirements, things were a little slower and therefore, parcels were taking longer to get to their destinations.

People expecting a parcel in the mail can wait between two to three working days.

However, in some cases, there are delays of up to five working days and longer with some international parcels.

Stratford NZ Post couriers are working hard to get parcels delivered.
Stratford NZ Post couriers are working hard to get parcels delivered.

The email said although staff would work to "pull out all the stops" to get items delivered as soon as possible, NZ Post was expecting more parcels over the coming weeks - and there would be ongoing delays as a result.


Other industry drivers called in to help

Because of demand, drivers from other industries - from shuttle companies to taxi service companies - had been pulled in to help with deliveries.

Approximately 200 extra vehicles are now operating and all possible warehouses around New Zealand are sorting and processing parcels.

Up to 11 sites around New Zealand are processing packages 24 hours seven days a week and parcels were now being delivered every day.

Extra efforts to get parcels delivered have also results in an additional 3000 containers to transport parcels around the country and teams delivering hundreds of thousands of parcels some days.

Members of the public who wanted to understand more about the delays or what the postal office was doing to get parcels delivered during unprecedented times were encouraged to keep up-to-date via the NZ Post website.