Roam delivery: shopping delivered to your car boot

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Say goodbye to mixing with the sweaty shopping hordes or hightailing it to the post office before it closes.

Online retail therapy is so easy - a quick click and it's done. But heaven forbid your goodies don't fit in your home mailbox. Then you're doomed to trek to the ends of the earth to a far-flung delivery warehouse, which kind of defeats the point of shopping from the comfort of your sofa.

But - hey presto! - lucky Volvo owners in Gothenburg, Sweden, can enjoy Roam delivery, where items are directly dropped off in their car boot, without having them having to even be there in personi. Volvo developed this service because it found more than half of online shoppers are never at home when a parcel arrives. Items are often left sitting outside for hours, making them easy pickings for thievesiii.

In-car delivery for online shopping: bringing home the booty is getting easier. How do they do it?

First, the courier uses GPS to find your car's location. Then a one-use encoded key is used to open the car's boot. When the package has been placed inside and the boot closed, the courier can no longer access the car. Your phone app, Volvo On Call, sends you a notification when the car boot is opened and when it's locked againii.

The app also lets you use your car as a drop-off zone, so a courier can collect items you want to have delivered elsewhereiii. Volvo is making plans to eventually expand the service to other countries.

Other similar services

A select group in Germany - Amazon Prime customers who drive Audis - also get products delivered to their cars, in a pilot scheme being jointly trialled by Amazon, Audi and DHL. The car can be located anywhere apart from gated properties, including public car parksiv.

Amazon also offers large drop-off lockers in London and is looking at launching a drone delivery service therev. In Australia, 90 Big W supermarket stores have lockers in Sydney, Melbourne and Tasmania so customers can eBay collect goods free after hours. eBay's research showed this is a needed service because nearly half of online shoppers were not allowed to receive personal deliveries at work, so many had to take time off to get a deliveryv.

Lockers in shopping centres allow after-hours collection.

UK shoppers can also buy a secure parcel delivery box for their home, such as PinPod, which has a weatherproof, steel safe box with a digital keypad that can issue multiple unique, verifiable Proof of Delivery codes that are date and time stampedvi.

Back home, ParcelPoint works as a drop-off point for customers using retailers including UniQlo and Amazon. Australia Post's StarTrack offers 24/7 Parcel lockers and says the younger the customer, the quicker they want the delivery. About one-third, 28 per cent, of customers think it's OK to leave the parcel unattended in a safe spot outside their home, 29 per cent are happy for a parcel to be delivered between 9am to 5pm, 16 per cent want deliveries from 6pm to 9pm and 7 per cent want weekend deliveries from 9am to 5pm. viiAustralia Post provides the ability to track your order, with an option to change the delivery address in the earlier stages of the item's journey.

iKrok, A. 2015, 'Volvo in-car delivery will save you a good deal of time this holiday season', cnet, 24 November, viewed 21 December 2015,

iiSlashdot. 2014, 'Your next online order could be delivered to your car's trunk', 20 February, viewed 21 December 2015,

iiiMcGlaun, S. 2014, 'Volvo Roam Delivery service will bring groceries to the car', Slashgear, 20 February, viewed 21 December 2015,

ivWollaston. V. 2015, 'Get your Amazon order delivered to your car: pilot scheme will drop off items to parked vehicles even if the owner isn't there', Daily Mail Australia, 24 April, viewed 21 December 2015, 2015, 'Click & collect', viewed 21 December,

viPinPod. 2015, 'So, what is the PinPod home and business parcel delivery box?', viewed 2 February 2016,

viiStarTrack. 2015, 'Delivery options: what should I be offering my customers?', viewed 21 December 2015,