When I moved to low sec, one of the things I'd given up for life in EVE Online was planetary interaction. Low sec is a very dangerous place and using a customs office looked like a sure way to run into someone who wanted to do violence to my internet spaceship. But at that point in my EVE career, I strangely was not upset at leaving the activity behind. Fast forward to today and I'm looking for an extra revenue stream so I decided to take the plunge.
In low sec, tooling around in a tech 1 industrial ship servicing my colonies isn't a real good idea. So instead of making the most valuable PI products I decided to make something useful: nanite repair paste. Nanite repair paste is something small and valuable that easily sits inside my Prowler. Also, the PI products used to make nanite repair paste are low volume goods so I only have to make one trip with the finished products to the factory station where I make the paste.
The only drawback to my plan was that I discovered that the best way to make the two main P3 products, Data Chips and Gel-Matrix Biopaste, involves moving around processed materials (P1 products) instead of refined commodities (P2 products). That means transporting a larger amount of materials and more runs between planets. The amount of materials wouldn't matter in high sec. After all, the chances of having a tech 1 hauler suicide ganked transporting P1 products is pretty slim. But in low sec? That's a free-fire zone.
Once again, my Prowler comes to the rescue. While not possessing the largest cargo capacity, putting one Expanded Cargohold II in the lows does give me 5100 m3 available and a nano in the other low gives me good speed and an align time under 5 seconds. But it's the sub-warp speed that I really use. The align time is useful only if I make a mistake.
Since if I waited for all neutrals to leave the system I'd never get anything done, I have to take the approach to the customs office seriously. I land some distance, depending on my level of nervousness, from the POCO and align to a celestial in a path designed to take me withing 2000 meters of the POCO. Yes, bookmarks are useful for this task. Why 2000 meters and not just the 2500 needed to open the POCO and take items from it? Because I let the ship's path naturally decloak the ship. What I do is have both the POCO cargo and ship cargo windows open and the items highlighted. Then, when the distance indicator shows under 2000 meters, I just drag, drop, and warp off instantly since I'm already aligned. For best results, I turn the tracking camera off.
Is what I do dangerous. A little. I do have frigate pilots drop on grid from time to time looking for something to shoot. Once I had to abort the approach 3700 meters away from the POCO. Another time a frigate was heading directly at me and I sheared off the approach before he got within 7000 meters. The only thing I'm really worried about is a stealth bomber tackling me, since they do not have a targeting delay after decloaking. But if I wanted the illusion of absolute safety, I'd stay in high sec. Since I'm in low, I just make sure I take calculated risks and stack the odds in my favor as much as possible.
I should add that despite the brave talk above, I still get a small rush of adrenalin every time a Kestrel drops on grid. This low sec PI thing is still pretty new and maybe over time I'll get used to having ships come on grid. But I'm not so scared that I'll stop.