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If it was delivered as a parcel then collection would be from a far less convenient location but all parcel carriers leave a card if delivery is not possible and I have never had any problems arranging an alternative delivery date by phone with any carrier.
Sounds to me as if the customer was just being bloody minded about not making alternative delivery arrangements but you can't prove a thing.
I suggest any parcel / valuable items for delivery in the UK are sent requiring a signature on delivery. If the parcel is undelivered after 14 days you can make a claim the the post office will either find the item or pay compensation.
In the 1970's I ran a very small mail order part time business. Every item I sent out was sent signed for and some months I made more money claiming compensation (a fixed sum) than I did from the actual goods lost.
I don't think this would work now. And also the extra work invoved in filling in forms may not make it worth while.
[edited by: Patrick_Taylor at 10:50 pm (utc) on June 26, 2007]
The mailing of this post card counts as a "delivery attempt"... no one actually carries the package to the door until money exchanges hands.
Quite possibly, the two delivery attempts were nothing more than two postcards that may have gotten filed by your customer.
An unmotivated customer who doesn't pay their import taxes the first time isn't likely to change their bahavior if you re-ship the package. I'd refund their money and walk away.
I agree. I beleive our emails and the postal notifications were ingnored. I have doubts that a second shipping will produce better results. The postal is still showing the second attempt, but not that the package is enroute back to us. I think I'll wait for the postal to return the package and issue a refund.
numnutz - Perhaps I'll get lucky and they will lose the package! It was insured.
Thank you to all
As the item is still in the system (ie, hasn't disappeared with both sides claiming it's not with them) I'd go with the customer on this one and try and get the parcel back out again.
As has been said, Royal Mail offer a couple of service levels:
- Standard post which is pretty much down to luck whether you receive your mail on time if at all.
- Recorded/signed for which as it suggests, requires a signature however this can generally be signed for by anyone and will take days after it has been "delivered" before a signature can be found in the system. I'm lucky enough to have a decent postman who will leave recorded mail in a secure porch and sign for the item himself (obviously not possible in a lot of circumstances and likely to get him fired, but it's a good service for me).
There is also a small reimbursement for claims, but these are generally not worth it as they're unlikely to cover the cost of the item, the amount the customer has paid and the time spent going through the claims process. I believe the claim is also paid out in postage stamps (I may be wrong on this).
- Special delivery is pretty much the daddy of their post service and offers tracking through their network of depots and also needs to be signed for. You can also insure the item for realistic values to ensure neither yourselves or the customer are out of pocket.
Other options may be to use an International courier such as DHL or UPS (haven't UPS just bought out DHL? Or was that TNT? Anyway...) and have the same kind of service that you'd expect anywhere in the world.
It's an inconvenience for them to collect it, but you're not to blame and it shouldn't reflect on you.