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Thread: USPS shipping delays at this time of year

  1. #1
    Insect Overlord Progatron's Avatar
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    USPS shipping delays at this time of year

    My annual birthday CD haul from Greg @ Synphonic was shipped via USPS Priority mail on November 30th, and it has now been a full week since the last tracking update (Dec. 4th) which was that it had left the L.A. sorting facility and is "In transit to the destination". Normally I would already have it in my hands several days ago (I order from there a lot - and other U.S. vendors as well, and they always arrive reasonably quickly, even to Canada). Usually I get the tracking update that it has arrived/cleared customs about two days after the sorting update, but this time all has gone horribly quiet.

    Now, I understand a slower delivery during the busy Christmas season, and I don't mind waiting for it, but I want to know *where* the package is at... to me, the whole point of the tracking # is to be able to know the progress, however slow it may be. I paid $40 U.S. for shipping, and it seems to be in limbo. Should I just shut up and not worry so much? Anyone having/had similar experiences?
    Interviewer of reprobate ne'er-do-well musicians of the long-haired rock n' roll persuasion at: www.velvetthunder.co.uk and former scribe at Classic Rock Society. Only vaguely aware of anything other than music.

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  2. #2
    Media mail. It arrives when they fucking feel like delivering it.
    NEVER UNDERESTIMATE THE POWER OF STUPID PEOPLE IN LARGE GROUPS!

  3. #3
    Insect Overlord Progatron's Avatar
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    Yes, apparently. But like I said, I can handle it taking longer... what I don't like is that they seem to have dropped the ball with regards to the tracking/scanning aspect. I'd feel a lot better about it if I could see that it is indeed moving through the system, rather than wondering if it's been lost somewhere along the line. If this was a common occurrence, I wouldn't give it a second thought. But I get packages every week from the various U.S. vendors with no problems or extended delays - and those that include tracking info are always updated every day or two.
    Interviewer of reprobate ne'er-do-well musicians of the long-haired rock n' roll persuasion at: www.velvetthunder.co.uk and former scribe at Classic Rock Society. Only vaguely aware of anything other than music.

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    Member frinspar's Avatar
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    I've had a few instances over the years where updates weren't posted, but not many. However, if it's been that long it's high-time you check up on that personally. I know the Canadian system can sometimes be kind of a "We'll get there when we get there, when we want to get there" kind of thing. But that's still too long for you to be waiting. The USPS doesn't really show the burden of the massive shipping demands until about this time on through the end of the year.

  5. #5
    Insect Overlord Progatron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frinspar View Post
    I've had a few instances over the years where updates weren't posted, but not many. However, if it's been that long it's high-time you check up on that personally. I know the Canadian system can sometimes be kind of a "We'll get there when we get there, when we want to get there" kind of thing. But that's still too long for you to be waiting. The USPS doesn't really show the burden of the massive shipping demands until about this time on through the end of the year.
    Yeah, that's the thing. I'm not sure if it is still in USPS hands or if it has hit the border and not dealt with yet. Canada Post has stepped up their game these last two Decembers, even delivering on Sundays. All I want is a tracking update, that would satisfy me at this point.
    Interviewer of reprobate ne'er-do-well musicians of the long-haired rock n' roll persuasion at: www.velvetthunder.co.uk and former scribe at Classic Rock Society. Only vaguely aware of anything other than music.

    *** Join me in the Garden of Delights for 4 hours of tune-spinning... every Saturday at 5pm EST on Deep Nuggets radio! www.deepnuggets.com ***

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    Member frinspar's Avatar
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    Damn, yeah. I hope you get your music soon.

  7. #7
    Since I'm in the shipping profession, I guess I should throw out a few possibilities:

    --it's stuck somewhere in the warehouse it was last scanned at; may have fallen behind something, or thrown into a wrong bundle of mail by accident.

    --it's actually making its way to you, but for some reason the tracking information is not being uploaded to the website. I have had instances where a package was MIA for an entire week...but when it was finally delivered, suddenly multiple package scans through that entire week were uploaded

    --it was handed off to Canadian customs, but that information was never scanned/uploaded to the website

    --the shipping label somehow came off the package or the barcode became un-scannable for some reason (unlikely because I know how Greg packages his stuff).

    the frustrating thing is there's no way of knowing which scenario it is. And USPS does not have any guaranteed time-in-transit for international shipping - not even their Express service (which is why I no longer offer this at my store, not after having an Express letter to London take 3 1/2 weeks to arrive and Customer Service refused to acknowledge there was a service failure).

    $40 seems pricey for shipping - how many CD's did you get? Could they fit in a flat rate envelope? I've mentioned to Greg before I can get FedEx International cheaper than Priority Mail in many instances, but looks like his patriotism keeps him faithful to the USPS

    Peter

  8. #8
    Insect Overlord Progatron's Avatar
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    Thanks for your insight Proglodite!

    Quote Originally Posted by Proglodite View Post
    --it's stuck somewhere in the warehouse it was last scanned at; may have fallen behind something, or thrown into a wrong bundle of mail by accident.
    This is the scenario I am fearing. Not because I don't think it will ever get to me, but because of how long it may take. I've been reading horror stories online from people who waited months when this happened.

    Quote Originally Posted by Proglodite View Post
    --it's actually making its way to you, but for some reason the tracking information is not being uploaded to the website. I have had instances where a package was MIA for an entire week...but when it was finally delivered, suddenly multiple package scans through that entire week were uploaded

    --it was handed off to Canadian customs, but that information was never scanned/uploaded to the website
    ... but I've also been reading these two scenarios happening just as often. So fingers crossed that one of these is the case. I've also been reading that they do not scan as often as they should, particularly during this busy season.


    Quote Originally Posted by Proglodite View Post
    --the shipping label somehow came off the package or the barcode became un-scannable for some reason (unlikely because I know how Greg packages his stuff).
    Possibly, but as you say, he's good at what he does and I've ordered from him countless times over the years with zero problems. Including a couple of weeks ago, when the package arrived in about 8 days total, with all the proper scanning along the way. In all of those cases, the Canadian customs scan was there, and what worries me is that absence in this case.


    Quote Originally Posted by Proglodite View Post
    $40 seems pricey for shipping - how many CD's did you get? Could they fit in a flat rate envelope?
    Fifteen, including a boxed set. Greg said the package weighs four pounds, so the shipping was pretty high. I think this is the sixth year in a row I've ordered a whack of discs in December, and it's always arrived in decent time, perhaps a day or two later than at other times throughout the calendar year. But I've never seen eight days go by with not even an update since it left the sorting facility in L.A....

    I know that every year there is an increase in e-commerce, especially now with Cyber Monday, etc... but I had hoped that all the extra manpower that both the USPS and Canada Post claim to have hired would have offset that somewhat.
    Interviewer of reprobate ne'er-do-well musicians of the long-haired rock n' roll persuasion at: www.velvetthunder.co.uk and former scribe at Classic Rock Society. Only vaguely aware of anything other than music.

    *** Join me in the Garden of Delights for 4 hours of tune-spinning... every Saturday at 5pm EST on Deep Nuggets radio! www.deepnuggets.com ***

  9. #9
    FYI - if it didn't fit into a flat rate envelope, then $40 is about right for going to Canada at 4-lbs. To the inexperienced, it may look like Greg's pulling a fast one on the shipping charges, but he really isn't. [At my store, I'd have to mark-up the USPS price to my customers...so I usually switch them over to FedEx - technically I will make less money doing the price-match, but far less headaches with FedEx makes it worthwhile to me.] --Peter

  10. #10
    Insect Overlord Progatron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Proglodite View Post
    FYI - if it didn't fit into a flat rate envelope, then $40 is about right for going to Canada at 4-lbs. To the inexperienced, it may look like Greg's pulling a fast one on the shipping charges, but he really isn't.
    No, he isn't. The USPS is.
    Interviewer of reprobate ne'er-do-well musicians of the long-haired rock n' roll persuasion at: www.velvetthunder.co.uk and former scribe at Classic Rock Society. Only vaguely aware of anything other than music.

    *** Join me in the Garden of Delights for 4 hours of tune-spinning... every Saturday at 5pm EST on Deep Nuggets radio! www.deepnuggets.com ***

  11. #11
    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Proglodite View Post
    FYI - if it didn't fit into a flat rate envelope, then $40 is about right for going to Canada at 4-lbs. To the inexperienced, it may look like Greg's pulling a fast one on the shipping charges, but he really isn't. [At my store, I'd have to mark-up the USPS price to my customers...so I usually switch them over to FedEx - technically I will make less money doing the price-match, but far less headaches with FedEx makes it worthwhile to me.] --Peter
    If it was split into a number of flat rate boxes and sent that way, would it be cheaper?

  12. #12
    Insect Overlord Progatron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by moecurlythanu View Post
    If it was split into a number of flat rate boxes and sent that way, would it be cheaper?
    Possibly, but probably more of a pain for him to do it that way. I just think that with the amount that I paid, they can damn well scan the thing and move it along like they're supposed to. Yeah, it's busy right now, but THIS busy?
    Interviewer of reprobate ne'er-do-well musicians of the long-haired rock n' roll persuasion at: www.velvetthunder.co.uk and former scribe at Classic Rock Society. Only vaguely aware of anything other than music.

    *** Join me in the Garden of Delights for 4 hours of tune-spinning... every Saturday at 5pm EST on Deep Nuggets radio! www.deepnuggets.com ***

  13. #13
    Member -=RTFR666=-'s Avatar
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    For ne, USPS's dependability where it comes to tracked deliveries has been on a downward spiral for the past year and a half. I typically use the Electronic Signature Confirmations with my shipments and certified mailings, and maybe a third of them fail to process. And getting USPS to look into the snafus is typically an exercise in futility - no accountability whatsoever.
    -=Will you stand by me against the cold night, or are you afraid of the ice?=-

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by moecurlythanu View Post
    If it was split into a number of flat rate boxes and sent that way, would it be cheaper?
    It is almost always cheaper to mail stuff in one box. --Peter

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    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    Parrots Ripped My Flesh Dave (in MA)'s Avatar
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    I got two deliveries today (Sunday). One was on my front stoop dropped off by a guy in a pickup that said "Amazon" on the side, and the other was in my mailbox from the USPS. I never would have checked the box until tomorrow if I hadn't gotten notified online. The shipment that was left at the front door was posted as "Your package was delivered. It was handed directly to a receptionist or someone at a front desk." on Amazon. It was only 2 years ago the USPS was threatening to drop Saturday mail delivery and now here they are working for Amazon on Sunday.

  17. #17
    Insect Overlord Progatron's Avatar
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    Yes, apparently both the USPS and Canada Post are delivering on Sundays in December. We don't get Saturday delivery here though. Although they do work in the sorting facilities on Saturdays.

    Now 10 days with no update and no clue where my package is.
    Interviewer of reprobate ne'er-do-well musicians of the long-haired rock n' roll persuasion at: www.velvetthunder.co.uk and former scribe at Classic Rock Society. Only vaguely aware of anything other than music.

    *** Join me in the Garden of Delights for 4 hours of tune-spinning... every Saturday at 5pm EST on Deep Nuggets radio! www.deepnuggets.com ***

  18. #18
    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Progatron View Post

    Now 10 days with no update and no clue where my package is.
    I recently had a package from Italy which was sent registered and tracked. The Italian website showed it at the departure location and was never updated at any point. Then one day, it arrived. I had another parcel which was sent registered from Italy, whose tracking information showed it making it as far as Italian customs. A month went by. No update. The seller went from assuring me that everything was fine, to worrying that something was wrong. (It was an expensive record.) He had to go down to the IPO and bitch, and lo and behold, a week or so later, it arrives at my place, unopened and undisturbed.

    Btw, everything today is tracked, whether you pay for it or not.

  19. #19
    Member Dave the Brave's Avatar
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    Canada Post does not deliver mail any day now.

    They just drop it off in some"community box" that some people have to walk a half mile to get to.

    DtB A former letter carrier.

  20. #20
    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave (in MA) View Post
    It was only 2 years ago the USPS was threatening to drop Saturday mail delivery and now here they are working for Amazon on Sunday.
    Desperate little bitches...

  21. #21
    Even I'm not immune to the 'black hole of shipping' - my Fragile blu-ray was last scanned on December 7th. Ordered from ImportCD's via Amazon - I know a lot of people like ImportCD's, but this may mark the third time I've had issues with them this year (the other two were quality control on their end - and the company is a real pain to deal with when things go wrong).

    Amazon does give a generous amount of time before I can officially report this as lost (12/29 in this instance).

    Peter


    Tracking Number: 92748999963860000169582019
    Image of a progress bar displaying pre-shipment status pre-shipment
    Product & Tracking Information
    Postal Product:
    Parcel Select Lightweight
    Features:
    USPS Tracking™
    DATE & TIME
    STATUS OF ITEM
    LOCATION
    December 7, 2015 , 8:07 pm
    Departed Shipping Partner Facility
    HEBRON, KY 41048

  22. #22
    Insect Overlord Progatron's Avatar
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    Package arrived today! (Sunday Dec. 20th)... In perfect shape (thanks to Greg's packing job). I now have a huge stack of new CDs to enjoy over the Christmas holidays.

    I'll try and be more patient next time.
    Interviewer of reprobate ne'er-do-well musicians of the long-haired rock n' roll persuasion at: www.velvetthunder.co.uk and former scribe at Classic Rock Society. Only vaguely aware of anything other than music.

    *** Join me in the Garden of Delights for 4 hours of tune-spinning... every Saturday at 5pm EST on Deep Nuggets radio! www.deepnuggets.com ***

  23. #23
    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    Sometimes, it's really stupid shit. I'm watching one of my packages that's on the way. They show it going through the sorting facility in Chicago twice...Four days apart.

  24. #24
    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    It's my turn now too! Waiting for a package from Amazon (the new Roger Waters Wall CD/BR set) - it was sent the 16th via FedEx, FedEx delivered it to MY LOCAL post office on the 19th, then my local post office completely screwed up for some reason, and sent it to a different city instead of delivering it to me. Four days later, it's still in that other city (Yonkers, NY) and the USPS estimates the delivery date as Dec 26th. So that would be 10 days for a package that was supposed to be 2-day delivery.

    Nice work, considering our mailman leaves cards for us soliciting tips, which I'm pretty sure is against USPS regulations. Does anyone else get those cards from your mailman?

  25. #25
    Studmuffin Scott Bails's Avatar
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    Yep - add me to this list now, too. Ordered an item that was shipped FedEx. FedEx says that it was delivered to my doorstep yesterday. Someone was home all day, but no package. Ugh.
    Music isn't about chops, or even about talent - it's about sound and the way that sound communicates to people. Mike Keneally

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