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Bengaluru’s first evening post office gives out cafe vibe

It offers regular postal services, in addition to merchandise for philately enthusiasts
Last Updated : 17 January 2023, 19:27 IST
Last Updated : 17 January 2023, 19:27 IST
Last Updated : 17 January 2023, 19:27 IST
Last Updated : 17 January 2023, 19:27 IST

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It is 6 pm and the staff of Bengaluru’s first evening post office that opened on Museum Road on Monday is waiting for customers. An hour passes and an old man walks in to post an envelope and leaves just as quickly. A 30-something man visits a few minutes after but to check “the new space” with a glowing signboard, and cutout of a postman riding a red scooter. A staff member rises from his seat to answer his queries about envelopes on display.
“I loved the modern look. It is better than traditional post offices. It is beneficial for people who want to post things after office hours,” Gnaneshwar, who lives in the vicinity, told Metrolife on his way out.

Thanks to wicker chairs and a three-tier bicycle planter arranged on artificial grass leading up to the entrance, The Evening Post Office (TEPO) exudes a casual vibe, distinct from the older post office that is in the same building. TEPO is located behind.

On the way to the service counter is a lounge area designed for visitors to sit and read magazines and postal
journals in English, Kannada and Hindi.

Or, you can browse through a stock of mugs printed with stamps, and picture postcards with QR codes that you can scan to see a video tour of heritage monuments like the Taj Mahal. These are on sale.

Old-style tube lights are gone and lighting fixtures, from panel to chandelier, are aplenty. A mural tracing the heritage of postal services in India is colourful and engaging.

“About 100 people have come in today, mostly for bulk booking and Aadhar card services,” a staff member told us.

TEPO is open from 1 pm to 9 pm six days a week and wants to cater to working professionals and businesspersons who don’t find time to visit post offices in the daytime. “Regular post offices close by 5 pm or before that,” senior superintendent of post offices, Bengaluru East Division, Himanshu Chaudhary, explained why the initiative was mooted.

Nandan Shanbhag, who visits post offices frequently to send small parcels, applauded the initiative. “Most times, the urgency (to send a package) comes after 2 pm. It is not possible as of now because by the time we reach a post office, the officers are finishing their pending work or wrapping up for the day,” said the practising company secretary.

You can book registered or speed letters, documents, parcels, and avail of services like parcel packaging at TEPO. There is also a self-service kiosk. It doubles up as an Aadhaar centre, which the public can use to apply for a new card or update their credentials.

Philately lovers also have something to look forward to. “The ‘My Stamp’ service allows anybody to create their own postage stamps. You need to provide a photo and ID proof (for that),” Chaudhary informed. In 30 minutes and for a price of Rs 300, you can walk away with a sheet of 12 personalised stamps. These can become gift options for birthdays or weddings, he said.

Aishwarya is a postcard and stamp collector. She feels the new-age appeal of TEPO will encourage the younger generation to send postcards and experience the thrill of receiving them.

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Published 17 January 2023, 19:23 IST

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