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Airport Archives: Post Office and Republic Join to Offer Express Mail Service

Post office and Republic join to offer express mail service
Brainerd Daily Dispatch, Archives

The Brainerd post office and Republic Air Lines didn’t have much in common until July 1 of this year.

On that day, express mail service began in Brainerd, offering guaranteed next-day delivery of a two-pound package for $9.35 to about 10,000 cities around the country.

Shortly after 5 p.m. each day, a republic Air Lines jet is loaded with Brainerd’s express mail, bound for the Twin Cities. The flight arrives in Minneapolis at about 7:15 p.m., and the mail is further dispatched to more than 230 zip code areas.

“The idea has really taken off,” said Brainerd Postmaster Don Rasmussen, during an interview recently. “We handle about 22 pieces of express mail every day—which is two and a half times more than Bemidji.

“I’m proud about that,” he continued. “Since we started, we’ve handled the third largest volume of express mail in northern Minnesota.”

Before Rasmussen came to Brainerd 1-1/2 years ago, next-day delivery was limited to only 35 zip code areas, through truck delivery. Only two or three pieces of next-day delivery mail per week were dispatched.

“The need had always been there,” Rasmussen said. “We just couldn’t give people the service they wanted.” A questionnaire he distributed to local businesspeople last fall elicited several positive responses—enough to warrant using the airline.

However, Rasmussen said “We are limited. Our next-day service area varies monthly, because of airline schedule changes. Ideally, if the Republic flight left Brainerd thirty to forty-five minutes earlier, our next-day service area would be increased immensely.”

He commented that the failure rate for the service is only about two percent. “We strive for 100 percent of the packages reaching their destination,” Rasmussen said. “I only know of three people who have applied for refunds since July 1.”

The guarantee ensures that a package will be delivered by 3 p.m., if mailed by 5 p.m. the previous day.

 
 
 
 
 

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Brainerd Lakes Regional Airport
16384 Airport Rd, Suite 5 · Brainerd, MN 56401-5852 · 218-825-2166