Messenger/Courier  What They Do

Just the Facts


Receives and delivers messages, documents, packages, and other items. May deliver between offices or departments within an establishment, to other establishments, or to private homes.

This career is part of the Business, Management and Administration cluster Administrative and Information Support pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Walks, rides a bicycle, drives a vehicle or uses public transportation to deliver messages and materials.
  • Delivers messages and items to designated points according to instructions.
  • Obtains signatures and payments, or arranges for recipients to make payments.
  • Plans and follows the most efficient routes for delivering goods.
  • Receives messages and materials to be delivered and records information on the recipient, such as name, address and telephone number.
  • Records information such as items received and delivered or recipients' responses.
  • Checks with home office after completed deliveries to confirm deliveries and receive new instructions.
  • Calls by telephone to deliver verbal messages.
  • Maintains delivery vehicles.
  • Sorts items to be delivered according to the route.

Insider Info

Dig into the details and check out what people in this job have to say about their work.



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Couriers and Messengers

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 10 lbs., sometimes up to 20 lbs. You might do a lot of walking or standing, or you might sit but use your arms and legs to control machines, equipment or tools.
  • Work in this occupation involves bending or twisting your body more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves use of protective items such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hearing protection, a hard hat, or personal flotation devices
  • Exposure to pollutants, gases, dust, fumes, odors, poor ventilation, etc.
  • Conditions are very hot (above 90 F) or very cold (under 32 F)
  • Work in this occupation involves using your hands to hold, control, and feel objects more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Sound and noise levels are loud and distracting
  • Work in this occupation requires being outside most of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves making repetitive motions more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves standing more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves walking or running more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Regular working hours and limited travel

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Bank Courier --
  • Bicycle Messenger --
  • Delivery Clerk --
  • Delivery Driver -- Drives automobiles, vans and light trucks to pick up and deliver various products.
  • Diplomatic Courier -- Safeguards and escorts diplomatic pouches containing classified and sensitive material between US diplomatic missions and the Department of State.
  • Laboratory Courier -- Safely transports laboratory specimens, various equipment, laboratory supplies, patient reports and similar objects between hospitals and outreach clients.
  • Page -- Locates library materials, such as books, periodicals, and pictures for loan, and replaces material in shelving area (stacks) or files, according to identification number and title.
  • Singing Messenger -- Performs song and dance routines to deliver messages and entertain specified individuals for customers of message delivery service.