Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Delivery Problems

So I'm not really sure who to be annoyed with here...

This weekend I ordered a computer from Apple. It's a tiny little Mac Mini, and I got it mainly because it'll make a nice quiet desktop that won't keep me awake due to irritating fan noise. As an added bonus I won't have to screw with X-Windows on it, which is always nice. It was supposed to show up today, and when I got home sure enough there's a note from FedEx, but it's not the usual "Hey, your stuff is in the concierge office" note, it's the "You need to sign for this, we'll be back sometime tomorrow" note.

Naturally, the note has a spot you can sign to tell them "Just leave it here", but it also has the little box checked that says "You have to sign for this, we can't just leave it". I call FedEx and fight my way through their totally useless automated customer service thingy until I finally get to a human. The human proceeds to tell me that he can put in a request for the delivery guy to leave it at the concierge office, but since the office is in a different building from mine, and thus has a different address, they might not do it.

Apparently Apple pays extra so that you can't actually redirect the package, it has to be signed for at the location it's being shipped to, even if that's terminally stupid, like in this case.

So tomorrow my Mini might be here, or it might not. I've left a nice note on the door for the delivery guy, telling him that no really, it's ok, he can leave the fucking package with the office, like every fucking other delivery service is willing to do, but who knows if he's going to listen or not. If he doesn't, apparently I can either call Apple and have them redirect the package to my work address (since they paid extra to make sure I can't do it myself, idiots), or call FedEx and make them hold it at their warehouse somewhere so I can come pick it up myself.

The really amusing thing is that I ordered the Mini online so that I would avoid having to jump through hoops to get it, since the various places I had tried to purchase one in person hadn't had the exact one I'd wanted. The mind reels.

So I can't decide, do I get pissed at Apple for going out of their way to make sure I can't fix this problem myself, or do I get pissed at the FedEx guy for having an overly literal interpretation of the rules. I know, I'll get pissed at both, that'll be fun.


  1. I'm not sure about FedEx drivers, but I know that UPS drivers have to pay for packages they leave that subsequently get stolen. There may be a damn good reason for his reluctance. It's not any more helpful, but at least it's not irrational.

  2. what's more, apple has a very good reason not to allow shipment to another address: that's a very common fraud tactic...
    order something using fraudulent cc to an address you know nobody is there during the day, put a note on the door to "just leave the package at xxx" and wait there.

  3. I'm not disagreeing with the policy, I'm disagreeing with the enforcement of it when it doesn't make sense. The standard procedure for packages delivered to any building in this complex is for them to go to the concierge office, this shouldn't be any different.

  4. i see. but it's hard to include special cases like these into policy.
    and if soze is right and the drivers would have to pay for lost packages if the policy isn't adhered to... i wouldn't take the risk.

  5. I had a very similar experience[1] with my powerbook. This and several other experiences has been enough to turn me off of FedEx for good.
    1 - http://latentcontent.net/entries/186/fedex-rant-redux

  6. I had a similar issue with the delivery of my digital camera. In spite of my phone call indicating that no matter how many times they came back to my apartment during the day, I will never be there since I have a job, they continued to stop by to leave the door hangers. Ultimately, I had to go pick it up at the headquarters. Just a warning, you have to pick it up within a certain amount of time (2 days, I think) or they send it back to the shipper.

  7. Our local Fedex office is just a couple miles away and when I miss a Fedex delivery (rarely as I usually work from home) I can pick up the package there the same day between 5 and 7... (or wait for it to come out again the next day).
    - ask

  8. have you gotten it yet? you'll have to let me know how it is; there's about $100 difference between getting a mini and comparably upgrading my g4 tower.

  9. I also orderd a Mini...two weeks ago. According to Fedex it's still stuck in Shenzhen pending clearance from a regulatory agency - since July 28th. I called Apple, and the rep said, "oh, that's customs. It'll probably arrive tomorrow as scheduled." Yeah, but only if they buy it a first class seat on a commercial aircraft. This is what they call five day ground shipping. grrrrrrrrr.

  10. FYI this entry comes up #3 in results for 'FedEx Home Delivery problems'. Yeah, there's a reason I searched those terms.