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A combination between the public bus and the mail van. The
bus station would also incorporate a large-parcel postal
station. Before making their run, the bus would be loaded up
with parcels for people along the route. When the bus,
through GPS, comes to within maybe 10 minutes of the
drop off bus stop, an automatic
text/call/email/IM will go out to the sendee, alerting him to
come to the bus stop for pick up. Once the bus and sendee
arrive at the bus stop, the parcel is delivered (and maybe a
tip given). This would help public transportation subsidize
their costs while not making any major changes to their
Prior Art [8th of 7, Sep 21 2010]
Baked Baked Baked
Information from the Post Office Vehicle Club, including a link to the Postbus Appreciation Society [pocmloc, Sep 21 2010]
||Most people would bitch about a system like
this...but, that doesn't make it a bad idea. [+]
||One possiblity that conforms to current setups a bit better would be to have the mail carrier ride the bus to one stop, deliver to the next stop, and then the next bus along either picks the carrier up or hands them the next sack of mail to be delivered. The latter would require some coordination and timing work, but should be feasible.
||It would certainly be preferable to having mail
delivery vans following the same routes as buses,
using more fossil fuels for roughly the same benefit.
||you could also have bonded riders who could deliver
packages to the addressee in exchange for free fare.
||What if it's an express bus? I want the mail to be hanging in a
sack from a hook on the bus station, and the bus grabs it on
the fly without stopping. Then, there's an area in the back
of the bus where clerks sort the mail, and it's tossed out the
window as the bus races past the destination. Like the
||taking note of the postbus link, i think it would be
adequate if only 1 delivery bus per day per route
would be needed. If anything, they could even
deliver mail to the more rural post offices.