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Bad Ebay shipping service- how it works

  1. Syrte

    Syrte Aug 14, 2019

    So I just bought a tiny watch from the UK and the nice lady who was selling it wanted to use the Ebay delivery service. Cost 20 £ instead of 13£ for the usual Royal Mail International registered mail with signature. She agreed to my reasonable offer in which I kind of factored in the high shipment costs- so I decided to go along and not argue over the shipment method, so long as it was packed well, signed and insured. She said not to worry Ebay is taking care of it all. Fine.

    I got an email notice on Saturday morning from both Ebay and the French post indicating the package was «delivered » to the guy who is the French equivalent of building superintendent.
    Turns out he’s just filling in for the summer. No sight of him on Monday and Tuesday, I leave a note- no reply— call the management company and finally talk to him on his cell.
    He says a packet showed up on Monday not Saturday ( he could be lying).

    Finally I get the watch and what do I find out? Ebay’s shipment company Pitney Bowes just threw the packet in the regular French mailing system with tracking but NO signature service.

    The seller explained to me the point of that system is to protect the sellers from buyers who say they didn’t receive the package.
    So the seller packs up the item (that’s the hard work), sends it to a country center for Pitney Bowes- and then Pitney Bowes handles the shipment to the buyer.
    However they clearly do not check whether the buyer did put the item inside because all they are is a forwarding service. This means no protection of course against sellers who scam by shipping another item than the item actually purchased.

    So Pitney Bowes used a provider call wnDirect to ship the watch to France. And that provider from a local station remitted the watch to the French postal service packet delivery service «Colissimo», which I usually find excellent— except they choose the cheaper and less secure option of tracked shipment — instead of registered mail which requires signatures at all ends, and if you’re not around when they deliver they hold the item at the Post office. In this service, they just drop off the watch wherever- and you’re got to scramble around for it.

    Never again.
    Here’s a picture for the record

    STANDY schizophrenic pizza orderer and watch collector Aug 14, 2019

    FedEx priority hands their mail to a third party road transport (snail mail that takes 7-9 days ) From Sydney to my place and still charges priority.

    Last time I caught them out they said sorry and sent me a gift.
    KingCrouchy, EdtheAussie and DaveK like this.
  3. Rochete

    Rochete Aug 14, 2019

    I find it ludicrous to use ebay expensive, slow and inefficient shipping service for intra-UE transactions. I normally walk out if seller insists.
  4. JimInOz

    JimInOz "Helpful Hints from Heloise" of bracelet cleaning. Aug 14, 2019

    I agree, the eBay shipping service is a joke. I bought a watch from a seller in Oregon, it was shipped to Memphis (about 2000K) and then to Jamaica New York before heading to me in Australia. So many opportunities for it to become "lost".
    Luckily it eventually got to me (left at my front door).
  5. glownyc

    glownyc Aug 14, 2019

    If you go to the ebay forums you'll see this is pretty common. Also reports of broken items because Pitney Bowes will repack items with less protection to save themselves money.
  6. gatorcpa

    gatorcpa ΩF InvestiGator Staff Member Aug 14, 2019

    Must have used FedEx. All of the express services work that way. Doesn’t matter if you are shipping something within the same city, it has to fly to Memphis (or Atlanta, if using UPS). There it gets sorted and put on another plane.

    Then when it arrives in your country, it goes to a national hub (probably Sydney for you), where it is again sorted, customs cleared and billed, then flown to your airport. From there, it is sorted yet again, and then put on a truck for delivery.

    It’s a wonder anything makes it one piece after that. But your postal service does pretty much the same thing. The major difference is that the postal service rents space on regular commercial flights, so they use multiple hubs, depending on the airline.
  7. JwRosenthal

    JwRosenthal Aug 14, 2019

    Wow- they sent you a Certina!!! Now that’s an apology! ;)
    noelekal and DaveK like this.
  8. Larry S

    Larry S Color Commentator for the Hyperbole. Aug 14, 2019

    Fed Ex is the best. DHL os OK ...anything else is asking for trouble. This I have learned.
    Darlinboy likes this.
  9. abrod520

    abrod520 Aug 14, 2019

    FedEx's centralized base is in Memphis, which could have been a factor. And Kennedy Airport is in Jamaica (part of Queens) where it likely would have had to have been exported from since that's where US Customs has a large operation.