Ontario Courier Service Provides Greener Alternative

Kingston, Ontario business owners Charles Lapointe and Isabelle Racine wanted their small package delivery service, Go Local Courier, to stand out from the other companies offering similar services in town. So, in addition to adopting a professional look often lacking in courier services, the couple decided to "green" their business by making their deliveries in sub-compact Toyota Echos. Now the company promises that it makes swift deliveries while burning 55% less gas than competitors:

It was actually an inexpensive launch as the company began with just three cars - two of them Toyota Echos, which sold for a base price of about $13,000 last year.

Lapointe also had a local software developer design a dispatch-free system that avoided the need to hire a dispatcher and allowed customers to order deliveries on the company's website.

Each delivery car has an HP wireless pocket PC called an IPAQ that receives the orders. The company's drivers co-ordinate with one another over who delivers which packages to which addresses.

"We're not big enough yet that it becomes a headache," Lapointe quips.

Lapointe believes Go Local Courier may be the only courier company in North America using a dispatch-free system that can track orders and provide customers with online billing and paperless connectivity.

He also promotes Go Local Courier as Kingston's only green local courier service, in line with Natural Resources Canada guidelines.

The plan seems to be working -- after just over a year in business, Lapointe and Racine already have expansion on their mind: two more employees, and two more Echos. ::Business Edge News

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