Mon, Feb 09, 2009 - Page 2 News List

Voucher handout goes smoothly

SECOND ROUND Chung Hwa post said a number of post offices were not crowded yesterday because they had the whole day to devote to the voucher distribution

By Shelley Shan  /  STAFF REPORTER

A boy plays with consumer vouchers after his family picked them up at a post office in Taipei during the second stage of voucher distribution yesterday.

PHOTO: LIN CHENG-KUNG, TAIPEI TIMES

Despite minor complaints from residents in several districts, the second round of consumer voucher distribution passed off without any major hitches over the weekend.

Tseng Chin-hsiung (曾錦雄), Chunghwa Post mail business and operation department director, said each post office in charge of distributing the vouchers was less crowded yesterday than on Saturday.

“We only had four hours on Saturday to handle the business, which was why some post offices were a bit crowded,” Tseng said. “But today [yesterday] we had the entire day dedicated to the service, so people could come at different times of the day.”

Distribution of the vouchers is part of a government scheme to boost the economy.

The first stage of distribution, in which each citizen received NT$3,600 in vouchers, took place on Jan. 18.

Post office officials said 424,500 people turned up yesterday to collect their vouchers.

The day earlier, statistics from the post office showed that approximately 560,000 people received their vouchers, which was about 30 percent of the people who did not claim their vouchers last month.

The nation’s post offices were originally scheduled to close at 5:30pm on Saturday, but some of them did not close until 7pm because people were still turning up.

To facilitate voucher distribution, the post office opened one window for each borough, the basic unit of city administration, with two post office employees at each window. One checked the registration lists, while the other handed out the vouchers.

Some post offices counted out the exact amount of vouchers and placed them in red envelopes beforehand to avoid distribution errors.

No shortages were reported on the first day.

Situations also varied from one post office to another. Distribution at the post office on Jinan Rd (濟南路) in Taipei on Saturday, for example, went smoothly and orderly.

One resident, Esther Lin (林純華), told the Taipei Times that it took her only seven to eight minutes waiting in line and five minutes to get her vouchers.

“The lines were long, no doubt, but the staff were standing outside to regulate entry,” she said.

However, those who were supposed to pick up vouchers at the post office on Yongji Road (永吉路) were upset because of the slightly chaotic situation at the beginning.

“There are 10 boroughs in that neighborhood, so there were 10 lines waiting outside the front door,” Tseng said.

“The door was narrow and could not accommodate all of them at once and the staff asked those waiting in the 10 lines to combine into two lines, which made some people unhappy,” he said.

For those who did not pick up their vouchers on the weekend, they can do so during the regular post office hours from today until April 30.

Also See: Vouchers boost sales at hypermarkets

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