Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Postal Rant

Bear with me here. So last week, a customer of mine purchases an item of small value. She pays very adequately for the shipping, and I send it off. Thirteen days later, she contacts me to let me know that she hadn't received the item, so I call the U.S. Postal Service to see what the problem was (usually things only take 3 or 4 days to get to the other side of the country), and they tell me that First Class mail can take up to 14 days, so I should wait. I contact my cutomer, and let her know that if it doesn't show up by the next day, to let me know. She lets me know that it still hasn't shown up, so I get into my workshop this morning, and I make another of the item to send, I package it, and I decide that I'll send it via Delivery Confirmation to make sure that I can track it. I get to the post office, and I wait in line, and I'm told that I can't send it delivery confirmation because it's not 3/4" thick, but I can send it via Certified Mail where my client will likely have to traipse to their local post office to pick it up because they have to sign for it. I'm a little confused because I don't see why it matters whether it's 1/2" or 3/4" thick, so I mention this to the man who holds up a package in a pantomime of my stupidity to show me what 3/4" looks like. I am incensed at this point, needles to say. He continues that my other option is to send it Priority Mail which costs quite a bit more, but is more reliable. So I repackage the item into a Priority Mail envelope, and I go back up and get to the counter where I ask about tracking, and am told that there is no tracking on Priority Mail packages, that I'll have to add Delivery Confirmation....I kid you not. So I sent the damn package via Priority Mail with Delivery Confirmation, and stalked out of the building. Needless to say, I am less than amused, and it's no wonder why they're losing business...after all, customer service is key in any face-to-face retail, and they lack it utterly. So, by the end of all this, I've spent nearly the price of the item in question in postage, and really, really hope that the item gets there, and my customer is happy. Anybody have any additions?

P.S. I feel the need to add this to clarify that this is the 10th+ issue that I've had with various post offices in the last month, and I understand that they're frustrated with their corporate practices, but so are the girl behind the counter at the bank, and the guy at the gas station, but at least I get a smile and a 'have a nice day' from them.


  1. Megan, I am so sad to hear about your recent issues with our postal service. My experiences in Longmont and Niwot have been pleasent but are limited to a total of 4 or 5 trips so far. It makes me sad to think I will soon be moving to another area where perhaps I wont receive as reasonable a level of service as I am now. However, don't get me started on the retail or waiter services in Longmont...

  2. Oh hell yes I have had issues. I had a girl contact me to say that her earrings had been stolen. They were the last of their kind so a equal replacement was not an option. Luckily I require purchace of insurance to get a replacement so I offered her a bogo deal. She took it without any complaints. I do recomend printing your shipping online to avoid the terrible customer service, and get easy/free tracking.

  3. Kris, I hope that wherever you move, you'll get great service both at the post office, and the restaurants ;)

    Vanessa, I know you feel my pain. Especially when we both offer OOAK and limited edition work! Do you require insurance on all of your items, or just limited edition/specialty items?


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