As of Monday, Dillons is no longer offering metered mail services.
The service ended at 42 Dillons stores across the state last fall and has now stopped at another 21.
“At Dillons, we are focused on providing a fast, friendly, and hassle-free checkout at the registers for the countless customers who shop with us,” said spokeswoman Sheila Lowrie in an e-mail.
“Ultimately, this reallocation of resources will allow for better service at the check-stand and greater ease when cashing a check or receiving a refund at Customer Service,” she said.
“We will continue to offer stamps and serve as a drop-off for USPS with daily pick-ups, but will no longer meter mail and packages.”
USPS spokesman Brian Sperry, also in an e-mailed response, said Dillons made the decision.
There may be some confusion related to that because a customer service representative from Kroger, the parent company of Dillons, e-mailed at least one Dillons customer to say it was a USPS decision and that the postal service would install some of its Village Post Offices in response to the the metered mail service stopping.
Sperry and Lowrie both say that’s not the case.
“Village Post Offices (VPOs) are established within communities in rural America and are operated by small business owners and provide essential postal services including stamp purchase, mail and delivery pickup, Post Office Box rentals and flat rate shipping options,” Sperry said. “The Postal Service will consider putting a Village Post Office in a community where there is no existing Post Office or where the Post Office has reduced operating hours.”
He said it’s not considering adding the VPOs in response to the Dillons decision.
“It’s important to note that there are many convenient ways to access USPS service, including the Post Office that never closes at usps.com where customers can buy stamps, ship packages, and request a Free Package Pickup – all from the comfort of their home or business,” Sperry said. “Other time-saving options include Stamps By Mail (ask your carrier for a form), and Stamps By Phone 1-800-STAMP-24 (1-800-782-6724). Customers may also buy stamps and ship packages through their rural carrier, also known as a Post Office on Wheels.”