April 22, 2005

FedEx Issues

So I ordered an amplifier from Outlaw Audio that was scheduled for delivery today via FedEx. However, I was not able to be at home to receive this package, which the drivers are instructed not to leave at the house when there is a signature required. Even if a note is left at the house asking them to do so. I called FedEx a number of times to see how I can get my package, and I never got the same answer.

So I call up the first time and ask some things like if I can pick up the package tonight at the terminal because I am flying out tomorrow morning. They said that I would not be able to because the truck will not get back until after it is closed. They won't hold it long enough for when I get back from my business trip because that is more than the 10 days maximum. That my best solution is to get Outlaw to tell FedEx it is okay to leave it without a signature. Otherwise it will get sent back. But Outlaw is closed, so I can only leave them a message.

So I call back again, and ask if I can just wait there after it is closed for the truck and get it from the driver if I show my driver's license. This lady is a little more helpful and calls and finds out that I could do this, but the truck is not scheduled to return until 8pm or later, and the terminal closes at 6pm. She gives me the address of the terminal. I would have to wait there and just see if I can grab it from the driver.

Szu-Huey asks if I can pick it up tomorrow morning. I call FedEx again and get a man this time who thinks I am in Virginia so first gives me the opening hour for a terminal in Virginia. After I give him my tracking number, he tells me that it is a residential delivery and I cannot under any circumstances pick up the package from the San Jose terminal because it is not a customer pickup place.

I call again to get a different person and a woman tells me that what I heard from the first two women are wrong because: 1) FedEx drivers are contractors. The drivers will not even return to the terminals at night but just take the trucks home with all the packages in them. 2) They will not hold packages at the terminal for customer pickup unless three delivery attempts have already been made.

But, after I explain my situation, she says she will call the terminal and leave notes asking that the package be made available for pickup tomorrow morning (but she cannot guarantee it because the driver is a contractor and the package may not even be there) and if I am unable to pick it up tomorrow morning, then to hold the package until the 5th so I can pick it up. I tell her that I really appreciate this.

So, the short story is that if FedEx actually uses contractors, that is not very good. And their customer service representatives all had a different story/different information. The male customer rep was not helpful at all. The female customer reps tried to help me but I guess it depends on what they try to do as to how effective their helping will be.

At least UPS has all their trucks return to their delivery terminal. I was always able to drive over to the North Carolina terminal later on and pick up my package. Even late. But this FedEx terminal closes at 6pm and is only open Tuesday through Saturday. A number of years ago, I was disappointed that UPS destroyed my two monitors and were arguing over the insurance. I was happier with FedEx because one time I talked to the local dispatcher and he was willing to deliver on a Saturday anyway, and also because another time they were willing to make a second attempt the same day when I didn't hear the doorbell or knock. But apparently FedEx won't do that sort of stuff anymore.

Posted by josuah at April 22, 2005 11:48 PM UTC+00:00

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Author Profile Pagehey dude says at April 25, 2005 3:41 AM

Just recently I had to ship a small package overseas using FedEx. I dropped off the package in the FedEx Box at the Postal Office.About 7:50PM a guy from FedEx called, informing me that I needed to have custom form accompanying the package. The office was going to close in 10 minutes and not to open until Monday. I told him it was very important that the package be shipped out the same day and there was no way I could get there before the closing. Finally, he suggested I fax the paper work. Unfortunatly, my FAX machine could not communicate with the FedEx fax machine. After several tries, it was already 8:15PM. I told him I would want to drive there to hand deliver the paper work. He gave me the instruction to get to the loading dock. I got there at 8:40PM and the FedEx guy was waiting for me at the parking lot. I think it is all about locations. San Jose is a big city, that is all. Some people lose the friendly feeling in a big city.

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