175 years in the service of Switzerland

  • By 2030

    Logistics centers throughout Switzerland

    Swiss Post has to structure its processing capacity in a way that ensures that it can always respond to fluctuations in parcel volumes. In 2023, it will open three new regional parcel centers, with more to follow by 2030. With these centers, Swiss Post is creating jobs throughout Switzerland. And parcels are sorted where they are posted.

    Swiss Post logistics center with delivery vans and truck trailers
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  • 2022

    Logistics partner for the healthcare sector

    Swiss Post builds a temperature-controlled logistics center in Villmergen (AG) that is specially designed for the storage of medical and pharmaceutical products. It supplies all utensils, instruments and medicines required for the work of hospitals, medical practices or outpatient clinics. At the right time in the right place. Sensibly sorted, counted and sterilized. And after surgery or care is completed, Swiss Post takes the used materials back.

    Employee in protective clothing packs medical material
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  • 2014

    My consignments online service

    Swiss Post launches “My consignments”, a free service that sends customers an SMS or e-mail (or later also a push notification) when a parcel or registered letter is on its way to them. Customers can also manage their consignments, for example to have them delivered to a different address.

    Customer with smartphone
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  • 2009

    Three large letter centers

    The Härkingen letter center starts operations, following the letter centers in Zurich-Mülligen and Eclépens. This marks the completion of the largest project in Swiss Post’s history. All aspects of letter processing have been redesigned.

    Letter center Härkingen
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  • 2001

    Economy & Priority

    Two speeds are introduced for parcel post: Economy and Priority.

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  • 2000

    Track & Trace system

    Customers can use the consignment number to find out where their consignment currently is or when it will be delivered.

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  • 1999

    Three large parcel centers

    Swiss Post starts operations at the parcel centers in Härkingen (SO), Daillens (VD) and Frauenfeld (TG). This is a once-in-a-lifetime logistics event in Switzerland. Swiss Post had invested some 450 million francs in cutting-edge technology and an expandable infrastructure. For the first time, parcels can now be sorted automatically right down to the parcel carriers’ individual delivery rounds – revolutionary for the time.

    Swiss Post parcel center with railway facilities in the foreground
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  • 1992

    Postcard Eurocard

    The Postcard Eurocard is launched on the market.

    Postcard from 1992
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  • 1991

    Introduction of A and B Mail

    Two speeds, two prices: the customer can decide. An A Mail letter initially costs 80 centimes and is processed within one day, while a B Mail letter costs 50 centimes and is delivered within two to four days.

    “Lively” stamp with A Mail design from 1996. Source: Museum of Communication
  • 1968

    First automatic letter sorting system

    The first automatic letter sorting system comes into service at the Bern Schanzenpost post office.

    First automatic letter sorting system at the Bern Schanzenpost post office, 1968
  • 1964

    Introduction of postcodes

    Postcodes are introduced on 1 October 1964, leading to a massive simplification of sorting. From this point on, in-depth geographical knowledge is no longer required. The postcode system forms the basis for the later introduction of automatic sorting.

    Sorting at the Sihlpost post office, 1965
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  • 1930s

    PostBus brochures for international tourists

    Swiss Post is already advertising in French, English and even Persian, encouraging people to explore Switzerland as a holiday destination by Postbus.

    PostBus brochure for international tourists, 1922
  • 1906

    Payment transactions via Swiss Post

    Swiss Post is assigned a “Postcheque and giro service”. Thanks to its dense network of 4,000 operating locations, it offers ideal conditions for this. In principle, anyone can now open an account and make cashless transfers.

    Postcheque counter at the main post office in Geneva, 1935. Source: Museum of Communication
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  • 1874

    Foundation of the Universal Postal Union

    The Universal Postal Union is founded in Bern with strong Swiss participation. A Universal Postal Convention is negotiated soon after. International postal traffic is transported by rail and ship. After the Second World War, the aeroplane becomes an important means of transport.

    Logo of the Universal Postal Union, circa 1956. Source: PTT Archive
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  • 1870

    “Greetings from…”

    Switzerland is the fourth country in the world to introduce the postcard. The postage costs just half that of a letter. As tourism takes off, the following decades see a veritable boom in postcards.

    Postcard from circa 1900 with a picture and the inscription “Greetings from Lucerne”. Source: Gebrüder Metz, Kunstverlags-Anstalt Basel (ed.) / Museum of Communication
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  • 1857

    The Railway Mail Service is introduced

    From the 1850s, the backbone of postal transport is the Railway Mail Service. Mail is sorted en route in specially designated carriages. Before the introduction of postcodes, this work requires very good knowledge of geography and the PTT transport system. It is later supplemented by sea mail, and from 1920 by air mail.

    Railway Mail Service postal workers sorting en route in the office of the Railway Mail Service carriage on the Basel-Belfort line, 1926. Source: Museum of Communication
  • 1850

    First postage stamps valid throughout Switzerland

    While individual cantons have been issuing postage stamps since the 1840s, federal stamps now arrive on the market. They allow Swiss Post to collect postage from the sender, not the recipient.

    The first postage stamps valid throughout Switzerland: Swiss cross, post horn and face value of 2½ centimes.
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