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COVID-19: general update (as at 24 March)

On 24 March: In the context of the lock down in France, we have suspended the buying functionality in France until it is safe to do so again. Please go here to check what that means for you. We have updated the shipping information below accordingly.

With the breakout of the Corona virus (COVID-19) it is very important to protect yourself and those around you. Governments in each country are now taking measures to reduce the spread of this virus. Some of these measures may impact your orders on United Wardrobe. 

We have therefore outlined the current status and our recommendations. Keep in mind though that things are changing day by day in each country so answers could be different again tomorrow. We will update this article as new information comes in.

COVID-19

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) this current Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is a new strain from a large family of Coronaviruses viruses. 

Researches up to now have indicated that this COVID-19 virus is mostly spread through close contact with an infected person or through respiratory droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes too close to you.

To stay up-to-date on the situation please check out here. But in any case, it is important to respect the WHO recommended measures to protect yourself

Contamination through packages and clothing

It is not likely that you would catch the virus through your received package. According to the WHO, the virus has a small chance of survival on surfaces. So by the time your package travels and gets to you, any trace of virus should be dead. We however advise you to clean the item with simple disinfectant or wash it after completing your order. You should also wash your hands before and after taking care of the items.

If you want more information on how to wash the clothes best, you can consult the website of the American CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).

Sending and receiving packages

Of course, with the latest measures put in place by governments, sending packages has become a bit of a challenge . Many postal and service points are closing each day. If this is the case for your usual point, please check in your neighbourhood to see if any other shops will be open. Postal points that are situated in supermarkets will likely stay open.

We provide below a status from each of our shipping partners. This will be updated as the situation changes.

Shipping with PostNL

For now, PostNL states that they will continue to deliver parcels but this may take longer than usual to get to you. They do take extra measures for their employees who deliver your packages at your door. Please make sure you respect these measures and the 1,5 meter distance with the delivery person.

The latest information about this subject can be found on the website of PostNL.

Shipping with Bpost

For now, Bpost states that they will continue to deliver parcels but this may take longer than usual to get to you. They have also a few measures in place regarding postal points. 

In France in particular, deliveries will be severely affected by the country's lock down. Don't worry though, if your parcels going to France cannot be delivered to the buyer's home address, they will be stored in a secured location until it is safe for deliveries to resume. 

You can read about all the measures in the latest Bpost press release.

Shipping with La Poste/Colissimo

If you had already sold or bought something that is meant to be shipped with La Poste/Colissimo, we strongly recommend you wait until the end of the lock down to ship it

Shipping with La Poste/Colissimo is affected by the lock down. They are working hard to continue to deliver letters and parcels to your home but expect delays. They have put in place a number of measures to protect you and their employees. You can read about these measures here, and please make sure you respect them for everyone's safety.

In particular, if you really want to ship your orders, we strongly recommend that you order your label or stamps online (directly on the La Poste website), print them at your home and then use the pick up from your mail box service (free with any Colissimo label purchased online) to avoid going outside.

If you need to go to a post office (and cannot just put your package in a mail box), a very limited number of French post offices remain open. You can check out which ones are open in your area here but please make sure you comply with the government's measures (e.g., don't forget your signed authorisation). 

Shipping with UPS

According to UPS, access points in the Netherlands and Belgium currently remain open. However, the shop-owners can decide for themselves if they want to close their shop or not. They will communicate this to UPS and this will be updated on the UPS website. There is however a small delay between the UPS website and the UPS points listed on UW. So please check out UPS website to see if your service point is closed or to find the closest one.

In France, shops are closed by order of the government (except supermarkets and tobacco places). This means that most packages can't be delivered by UPS in France. Find below what to do if you need to ship/receive a UPS package.

For orders not yet shipped to France: 

We strongly recommend that you hold off shipping your parcel until the end of the lock-down. 

If you really want to ship your parcel though, please do not use the UPS label we provided. Instead:

  • ask the buyer in the chat to give you his home address,
  • buy a new shipping label (with Track & Trace) at a company that supports home delivery (PostNL),
  • drop the package at your nearest post office or mail box and give the new Track & Trace code to the buyer in the chat,
  • send us the receipt so we can refund you the shipping fees. 
Packages shipped to a UPS point with PostNL are very likely to get lost. So please make sure the buyer gives you his/her home address before you ship the order.

For order already shipped to France:

If the service point is closed, packages will be returned to the sender immediately. This will be visible in the Track & Trace code. Therefore:

  • Wait for updates on the UPS Track & Trace code. When the package can't be delivered, it will show a return scan.
  • If the order is returned, contact us, we will freeze the order and wait out the return with you. When the package is back at the seller, you can decide if you want to cancel the order or reship the package via PostNL to the buyer's home address.
  • When you both choose to reship, we will pay for the second time shipping. The seller can buy a shipping label at a company that supports home delivery (such as PostNL) and send us the receipt.

Shipping with Mondial Relay

Following the French government's directives, Mondial Relay has stopped all deliveries in France since Tuesday 17 March 2020. This impacts all orders within France, but also between Belgium and France. In a nutshell:

  • Belgium to Belgium delivery is as usual 
  • France to France delivery, France to Belgium delivery, and Belgium to France delivery are stopped until further notice

Find below what to do if you need to ship/receive a Mondial Relay package in France.

For orders not yet shipped to France: 

We strongly recommend that you hold off shipping your parcel until the end of the lock-down. 

If you really want to ship your parcel though, please do not use the Mondial Relay label we provided. Instead:

  • Ask the buyer in the chat to give you his home address, 
  • Buy a La Poste/Colissimo label (with Track & Trace) directly on La Poste's website using this new address,
  • Drop the package at your nearest post office or mail box and give the new Track & Trace code to the buyer in the chat,
  • Send us the receipt so we can refund you the shipping fees. 
Packages shipped to a MR point with La Poste are very likely to get lost. So please make sure the buyer gives you his/her home address before you ship the order.

For orders already shipped:

  • Orders going from France to Belgium are expected to be delivered as scheduled. We will let you know if the situation in Belgium changes.
  • Orders going from France to France, or from Belgium to France
    • Mondial Relay was able to drop off packages at French service points until Tuesday 17 March evening. If this was not possible (the service point was already closed, or delivery was scheduled after that date), your package has been stored in a Mondial Relay warehouse until further notice.  
    • If your packages was dropped off at a French service point, it will stay there or be returned to a Mondial Relay warehouse to wait until it can be shipped again.
    • In both case, don't worry, we will pause your order, stop the automatic completion and wait with you that your order can safely get to you once the shipping can resume.  

Useful links

For the latest information, we refer you to the following websites.

Shipping compagnies' websites

Health organisations' websites

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