Phillip Gittens, Director of Post & Maurice Howland
Last year we discovered the Grenada Postal Corporation’s (GPC) Global service for importing items into Grenada. This year when I attempted to pick up our first order, there was a “hiccup.” I was advised that I would need an agent for future shipments. When discussions with postal and customs staff proved fruitless, I wrote a rather strongly worded letter to the Chairman of GPC’s Board of Directors. Shortly thereafter, I received a call from the Chairman assuring me that my issue was being addressed, and then I received an email from Mr. Gittens’s office requesting a meeting.
We met at Merry Baker for a Friday build-a-burger and then continued the discussions on Motivator. Mr. Gittens assured me that customer service was his priority and that he wished to expand the service to other cruisers. I offered several suggestions for outreach to cruisers that were well received. In situations like this, what always amazes me is not our difference, but rather the commonalities you soon find. Mr. Gittens was educated in the US and we took some of the same management courses. We were both familiar with the same cities and restaurants in the US. He used to be an active hasher, and has “on, on” stickers on his car (we have one on our dinghy). We even enjoy the same brand of beer.
Today I picked up four packages from GPC Global without a hiccup.
For those of you not familiar with GPC Global, here is a quick rundown:
Grenada offers Grenada Postal Corporation (GPC) Global service as an alternative UPS, DHL, and FedEx (see: http://www.grenadapostal.com/GPCGlobal.html ).
To initiate the service::
· Complete the 3 page GPC Global agreement downloaded from this address: http://www.grenadapostal.com/images/GPC%20Global%20Agreement.pdf
· Take the completed form to the main GPC office behind customs on the Carenage along with 2 forms of ID.
· You will be charged a 50 EC setup charge and a 25 EC yearly fee.
· They will email to you the link for the Pak YA site (tracking site), your user name, password and account number.
· When you order items, use the following address:
Your full name
7582 NW 74th Avenue
GND<your account number>
Medley, FL 33166-2423
To ensure you do not pay excessive duty:
· Print two (2) copies of your receipt(s) for the item(s) ordered.
· Go to: http://www.gov.gd/egov/eforms/customs/C14.pdf and print out a C14 form.
· Complete the form and take it with a 1 copy of the receipt to a customs office, i.e., Port Louis, Grenada Yacht Club, etc.
· Customs officials will sign and stamp the form
When your package arrives in Medley, FL, you will receive an email asking if you want the package held to be combined with other shipments, or processed for shipment. There is also an opportunity to request or decline insurance.
Shipment to Grenada by air transport is on Thursday night/Friday morning. Friday morning you will receive an email requesting copies of your invoices and a completed C14 form. You can fax, email, or drop the forms and receipts off at GPC Global window at the post office. Packages are then available for pickup after 2:00 PM on Friday. I suggest waiting until Monday so as to miss the Friday afternoon crush.
The information about the service states that there is a minimum charge of 35 EC per package up to 4 Lb, 5 to 50 Lb is 8.60 EC per Lb, and 8 EC per Lb above 50 Lb. I found however that the shipping charges were less than advertised. For two small packages weighing less than 4 Lb I paid $25.80 EC for shipping.
Bottom line: GPC Global is much cheaper than FedEx, UPS or DHL. It is faster and more secure than USPS and it provides you with a U.S. address for Internet orders.