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Sh*tfit of the Day: Crap Delivery Services

crap delivery van uk

I’m getting seriously, seriously disgruntled with some of the parcel delivery services in the UK at the moment. I’m not talking about Parcelforce or Fedex (though they have their moments), I’m talking about these shoddy little local services that employ people in unmarked vans who post scraps of photocopied paper through the letterbox without ringing the doorbell to see if you’re in. The people that collect in my area for a certain huge clothing etailer can barely be bothered to leave their vehicle half the time – I once saw the little van stop, look at my house and then drive away. I had ordered a collection, and I knew it was them because they had picked up before! They didn’t come back, and they didn’t return for the subsequent three collections – the etailer informed me that the couriers had stopped coming to my address because I was never in. (Though on all three occasions I had been in all day accepting deliveries, including from – wait for it – that very same online clothing store.)

And then we come to the delivery service who won’t be named. I’d like to give you a clue and say “rhymes with”, but it doesn’t rhyme with anything. Ironically, it looks a bit like “model” but it definitely doesn’t rhyme with it… Anyway, they didn’t deliver on the right day with my huge Amazon order, and then on the day that they did try to deliver, they told Amazon that I had refused the delivery! Funny, when I was IN PARIS THAT DAY. Lies annoy me more than anything, especially when I have to sort out the mess that results from them. I tried to phone them, but couldn’t get through on their ridiculous phone system because I didn’t have the 8-digit code that the driver had failed to write on the slip. Frustrating? You bet! I can tell you, it’s a good job that they don’t have a face-to-face service centre because people would have riots in it. I feel truly sorry for their Twitter people – it’s not their fault. They seem to do quite well at keeping tempers relatively soothed, but boy – I hope they’re paying them handsomely.

What annoys me most, I think, is the fact that these big companies are employing these rubbish delivery services in the first place. Because, no doubt, they are dirt cheap. I can understand, to a certain extent, that you’d want to keep delivery charges down for your company if you’re offering free delivery on orders, that makes sense. But when a customer is paying a yearly fee for prime/premier delivery services? No. If I pay, then I expect the deliveries to be smooth and efficient. I’m all for supporting the smaller businesses but only if they can actually deliver the goods! I have a feeling that this cheapo delivery strategy is going to start backfiring – the girl at Amazon seemed completely unsurprised that there had been a problem with my “doesn’t-rhyme-with-model” delivery.

Your own stories below, please, I very much enjoy hearing them. Mattress through the letterbox? Lost sofa? Parcel left in the recycling bin? Get typing…

(Image from freedigitalphotos.net, artfully altered by Yours Truly, using the Mac equivalent of PC Paint.)

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  1. An excellent post, well delivered. I placed an order online at Selfridges. The delivery note was scribbled on the back of a photocopied map. No identifying marks, I had no idea where it was from as I buy most things online. Absolute rubbish and it cost £4.95. I have complained but not holding my breath. Hermes are terrible, as are local couriers for h&m. They hold onto your Parcel for weeks and one even asked me to drive to her house to get it…er isn’t that your job? Raaaaaaahhhh

  2. I can totally relate to your post. I have zillions of angry stories about the companies you mentioned. I now try to shop with companies who have a collection service. John Lewis are amazing for this, within 24hrs they will have your order waiting for you at a local Waitrose store. I find this really convenient – and it’s a FREE service! I always check if they stock the products I’m planning to buy before ordering elsewhere.

  3. Ruth, come back to Japan :)

    Delivery heaven here! Even no need for prime memberships because stuff will appear on your doorstep the next day for free! If you aren’t in, drivers will bring it back again at your desired time.

  4. Well I had ‘doesnt rhyme with model – yodel’ deliver poorly on a few occasions, but the last time they decided to leave my package on my doorstep! I do not have a big front garden nor anywhere to hide anything so it was left in full view…after being delivered 3 days later than it was due (after paying for next day delivery early morning on a Friday I at least expected it on a Monday…nope it was Thursday!!) I now actively avoid any companies that use their services for delivery. Makes life more difficult for me but I’d rather not give them my money!

  5. My favourite was when ‘model’ left my parcel in a ‘safe place’ which they thought was our basement garden – a 10 foot drop onto concrete from the front door. It’s happened twice since then but definitely worth reporting to Amazon – I’m compiling my dossier now…

  6. Finland’s quite good at this, you can get sms & email with notifications, if not home, they call to ask when you are available.. I’ve never had any issues, for any kind of orders, from cosmetics to furniture.

  7. Ooh don’t even get me started. After 6 months of non delivery of a very expensive annual subscription because get it I wasn’t in??? Apparently I had to sign some paper, whereas funnily enough I was in most times as far as I can remember, plus there was no slip informing me that anyone had come to deliver. One day in a fit of temper I called up the subscription company and categorically told them I am going to sue. Something must have been done right coz I got my deliveries the very next day while I was out:)

  8. The stuff that goes missing or rather is left at a nearby address that does not exist is another recurring problem.

    Also the delivery that is allegedly “too big for your letterbox”. Grrrr!

  9. I think it’s the same company that you mean, they have left a parcel in the recycling bin a couple of times with no note through the door so it was only by chance that we put some more rubbish in their and saw it! They also have left parcels in my back garden which means they would have had to drop them over a 6 ft fence onto concrete and again, they never left a note through the door. One of them was out there in the pouring rain for days and the box disintegrated! xx

  10. If they’re going to call to delivery at 11am on a Tuesday and then on a Wednesday as well you can pretty much be certain I won’t be in at 11am on Thursday either. Cue me driving to the other side of the city on a Friday evening after work to wait 30 minutes while they searched for my package. Not impressed “looks-like-model” delivery company.

    How do we know what courier services online stores use? Maybe if we knew which companies were used by who then it might help with our shopping experience?

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