Police warn public over mail theft as Christmas parcel deliveries spike

More than 2 million parcels have been delivered in the past week - and New Zealand Police are warning recipients not to fall victim to mail theft.

At New Zealand Post's Highbrook depot the staff are working like elves to ensure Christmas gifts arrive on time.

"It's been a really busy period for us, we've delivered 15 million parcels between Labour Weekend and this Christmas," said NZ Post chief operating officer Brendon Main.

Of those, 2.2 million have been in this past week alone.

"We've got a team of absolute stars who're out there getting everything ready in time for Christmas, we plan on being the last man up the driveway on Christmas Eve," Main said.

But Police isn't concerned whether parcels will make it in time. Because there are so many of them going around, they're worried they won't make it into the right hands.

"There would be some people that would see it as an opportunity to get their hands on free Christmas presents at the expense of others," said Inspector Owen Maurirere.

Police safety tips include making sure you or someone is home for the delivery, have clear instructions for the postie or get it sent to work.

As for sending gift cards, vouchers or money in an untrackable envelope - police say it's a no.

"This time of year it could be a dangerous practice so my advice would be don't do it," Insp Maurirere said.

And at this time of year police have even noticed cars following courier vans to scope out their next targets.

"If you see a suspicious vehicle following a courier and it looks out of place, by all means call police," Insp Maurirere said.

So those people can be added to the naughty list while the ones on the nice list can get exactly what they ordered for Christmas.