Express mail

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1903 4d Express mail cover from Kendall-Bedford with red official Royal Mail express label affixed. The vertical line also indicates that express service is required.

Express mail is an accelerated mail delivery service for which the customer pays a surcharge and receives faster delivery. Express mail is a service for domestic and international mail and is in most countries governed by a country's own postal administration. Since 1998, the international accelerated delivery services are governed by the EMS Cooperative.

Express Mail Service and the EMS Cooperative[edit]

Express Mail Service (EMS) service logo

Express Mail Service (EMS) is an international express postal service offered by postal-administration members of the Universal Postal Union (UPU). These administrators created the EMS Cooperative in 1998 within the framework of the UPU to promote the harmonization and development of postal services worldwide. As of July 2006, EMS is offered by 154 of the 191 UPU member countries' postal authorities[1] as part of their normal postal services. Seven additional countries have arrangements to deliver EMS items.

An independent auditor measures the express delivery performance of all international EMS operators. EMS Performance Awards are based on postal operator's performance, including service performance and tracking. Gold, Silver, or Bronze certificate are awarded to EMS Cooperative members depending on their yearly performance. These EMS award winners are recorded in the EMS Cooperative's Hall of Fame.[2]

EMS Cooperative members[edit]

EMS SpeedPost from India

Since its creation, 177 postal administrations have joined the EMS Cooperative, representing over 85% of EMS operators worldwide.[3]

Other express mail providers[edit]

Many transportation logistics firms offer similar accelerated services. UPS, DHL and FedEx are the most popular alternatives. Those carriers offer even faster delivery with their early morning delivery services. However in many countries such alternative carriers shipments have different status for several legal purposes. E.g. in Russia shipments from abroad to individuals for private needs are exempt from customs duties of value is less than €1000 if sent via post or EMS, while when sent by other means the exemption applies to values below €250 only.[4] In some countries legal notification sent by post and EMS are deemed made on the date of dispatch, while for other couriers on the date of delivery only.[5]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]