What's the alternative of saying "delivery guy" or "UPS truck driver" if, for example, you are leaving a note and you want to make it sound less menial? I guess you can say "UPS truck operator" but how would you call a "pizza delivery guy"? "Pizza delivery operator" sounds somewhat silly, right?

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    Why bother with anything but the company name: Dear FedEx, Dear Pizza Hut, Dear Sears? There's no need to acknowledge that the delivery person is a person rather than a dog or an android. They know that. You know that. Even your cat & dog know that. Don't step into the quagmire of PC language if you can avoid it, & you can avoid it if you try. – user21497 May 8 '13 at 2:03
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    OTOH, you can always take the WalMart approach: Dear Delivery Associate. Or you can go all out & say something like Dear Fellow Human Being So Worthy of My PC Veneer of Respect That I Have to Make a Donkey of Myself Trying to Figure Out What to Call You So That You & My Neighbors Won't Think I'm Some Kind of Arrogant & Offensive Consumer or Whatever & feel really really really virtuous & superior to everyone who tends to notice things like gender, age, weight, sunglasses brand, footwear, hairstyle, exhibitionist body piercings, tattoos, & general level of attractiveness. [NB: Humor]. – user21497 May 8 '13 at 2:21
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    PC labels serve two purposes: They make the PC cantor feel morally superior, & they dehumanize everybody else. – user21497 May 8 '13 at 2:25
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    @BillFranke's point is good in that a note on the door can just say, FedEx - leave pkg behind planter. If referring to the person, when we must, however, can be handled with "driver", as I offered in my answer, without tripping over our over-sized PC yokes. :-) – Kristina Lopez May 8 '13 at 2:38
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    Alimentation facilitator – mplungjan May 8 '13 at 8:40

For the general case, deliveryperson may sound less informal and more respectful. For the specific case of a messenger or parcel service, you can use courier.

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    I like "deliveryperson". As to the "courier", let's leave that to the Canadians. :) I'm pretty sure in Brooklyn, where I moved not too long ago, nobody calls a delivery guy - "courier". Even officially – iLemming May 8 '13 at 1:39
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    We call them "couriers" here in Australia, too. – AlbeyAmakiir May 8 '13 at 6:40
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    And also here in the UK. – calum_b May 8 '13 at 12:05
  • the fact that Americans kept 'u' in 'courier' is good enough sign that you should avoid using the word within the US. :) – iLemming May 9 '13 at 14:53

For UPS, FedEx, etc., we say "UPS driver", "FedEx driver", etc. since "driver" is gender-neutral. For pizza, we say "pizza delivery guy" because that's what we've always called that person.

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    +1 for emphasizing gender-neutrality in a non-awkward way, but mostly for “because that's what we've always called them.” ;) – Bradd Szonye May 8 '13 at 1:49
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    Yeah, & I call my mother "Double X" & my father "X.Y." because being "gender-neutral" is a positive Pyrrhic value in a world without substantial values. [Have I ever mentioned that I'm a cynic?] – user21497 May 8 '13 at 2:33
  • @BillFranke, down boy! Lol! – Kristina Lopez May 8 '13 at 2:41
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    If we don't laugh at ourselves, Kristina, we will be laughed at (What am I saying? We are laughed at!) by the rest of the world. – user21497 May 8 '13 at 2:43
  • @BillFranke, i'm laughing at you right now! And with you, too! ;-) – Kristina Lopez May 8 '13 at 2:46

I've always been a fan of "Courier," but I'm also a fan of formality. Example: Dear FedEx Courier, I'm not home at the moment. Please leave the package by the back door. Many Thanks, etc. Or: Dear Pizza Courier, I've left my children with $30 for the pizza. Please keep the change. Cheers, etc.

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    Shouldn't it be I've left $30 with my children? – user13107 May 8 '13 at 8:03

How about UPS/FedEx/pizza deliverer?

deliverer: a person who delivers goods to customers usually over a regular local route : We eagerly took the food and tipped the deliverer


Ngram pizza deliverer

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