Preferred shipper: UPS vs FedEx - AVS Forum
View Poll Results: UPS or FedEx or write in candidate
UPS 5 13.51%
FedEx 30 81.08%
DHL 1 2.70%
None of the above 1 2.70%
Write-in-candidate 0 0%
Voters: 37. You may not vote on this poll

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post #1 of 41 Old 10-06-2012, 10:58 AM - Thread Starter
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UPS just destroyed the Marantz 7001 I was shipping to Canada. I paid $80 to have them ship it only to have them destroy it! I even used one of their own boxes and they crushed the side of their own reinforced box! Yes, it was insured but that isn't th epoint to me! This was a very fine piece of audio equipment and UPS just destroyed it ude to either negligence or incompetence, or some combination of both! Logistics my @#$!

For comparison, I just had FedEx ship me (in Oklahoma) an RSW 15 from an individual on Minnesota. It had to be the worst packing job in the history of packing but somehow FedEx got it to me without any damage whatsoever, not a scratch! I have used FedEx for over 6 years without issue. I had simply decided to give UPS another chance and this is what I get.

My previous experience with UPS had them crushing an RW-12 (I did happen to take this out of storage recently and reconstructed the box so that it works perfectly now and I think looks even better, picture below) that I had shipped from Oklahoma to Texas. I had to fight them to even reimburse me with the insurance I had purchased! At that point in time I vowed not to do business with UPS again, yet here I am, 6 years later, in the same situation!

So, if you can't tell by now, I greatly prefer FedEx, I can't emphasize that enough. Any other stories out there that might help others make a good shipping decision?



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post #2 of 41 Old 10-06-2012, 11:04 AM
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Actually you are the shipper, they are carriers. They all take short cuts on handling (go watch from inside a warehouse some day) so you takes your chances with all of them. (I'm in the industry but not with any of these guys).

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post #3 of 41 Old 10-06-2012, 11:12 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovinthehd View Post

Actually you are the shipper, they are carriers. They all take short cuts on handling (go watch from inside a warehouse some day) so you takes your chances with all of them. (I'm in the industry but not with any of these guys).

Well they claim they are in the shipping business:

We run the tightest ship in the shipping business. - UPS

Regardless, that is simply semantics to the question. I have literally used FedEx to ship 100 items over the last 8 years, most of them fragile and have only had a couple issues and FedEx was prompt to reimburse the value of the item damaged. I have used UPS a total of 2 times in the last 6 years and they have destroyed exactly 2 items. That's NOT a very tight ship in my opinion. So, I am sure FedEx cuts corners at times but I haven't seen it negatively affect my shipments. No doubt FedEx has damages just like the rest of them but my experience has been far more positive with FedEx.
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post #4 of 41 Old 10-06-2012, 12:36 PM
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In my experience, UPS is a completely appropriate name... It can be pronounced "Oops" for a reason.
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post #5 of 41 Old 10-06-2012, 01:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dallas J Fuller View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by lovinthehd View Post

Actually you are the shipper, they are carriers. They all take short cuts on handling (go watch from inside a warehouse some day) so you takes your chances with all of them. (I'm in the industry but not with any of these guys).

Well they claim they are in the shipping business:

We run the tightest ship in the shipping business. - UPS

Regardless, that is simply semantics to the question. I have literally used FedEx to ship 100 items over the last 8 years, most of them fragile and have only had a couple issues and FedEx was prompt to reimburse the value of the item damaged. I have used UPS a total of 2 times in the last 6 years and they have destroyed exactly 2 items. That's NOT a very tight ship in my opinion. So, I am sure FedEx cuts corners at times but I haven't seen it negatively affect my shipments. No doubt FedEx has damages just like the rest of them but my experience has been far more positive with FedEx.

Them being in the shipping business doesn't make them shippers....the one sending is the shipper, the party the goods are shipped to is the consignee. Really a misnomer as UPS, Fedex, DHL and the other package couriers never operated "ships" (well, through purchases now they have some involvement with sea freight as forwarders, although I suppose you can call their planes "ships" to an extent). Your best bet is good packing so as to withstand mishandling. They all mishandle. They can all mangle and lose freight. Since they likely will never release accurate information externally about problems, hard to say who's better at any given time. Claims some at times are better than others, but that changes with personnel and time, too.

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post #6 of 41 Old 10-06-2012, 01:20 PM
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I used UPS for quite awhile but after a few issues with them only use FedEx now. I also like FedEx Ground for deliveries as I can normally meet the drivers in the morning. Thats for those items that one just has to have and can not wait till the end of the day for delivery (Oppo 103 for example) wink.gif.

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post #7 of 41 Old 10-06-2012, 02:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Once again, I wouldn't get too picky with the semantics:

Shipping has multiple meanings. It can be a physical process of transporting commodities and merchandise goods and cargo, by land, air, and sea. It also can describe the movement of objects by ship.

Land or "ground" shipping can be by train or by truck. In air and sea shipments, ground transportation is required to take the cargo from its place of origin to the airport or seaport and then to its destination because it is not always possible to establish a production facility near ports due to limited coastlines of countries. Ground transportation is typically more affordable than air shipments, but more expensive than shipping by sea especially in developing countries like India, where Inland infrastructure is not efficient.

Shipment of cargo by trucks, directly from the shipper's place to the destination, is known as a door to door shipment and more commonly multimodal transport system. Trucks and trains make deliveries to sea ports and air ports where cargo is moved in bulk.


So, those in the business may like to be called "carriers" the term "shipper" has been used by the "carriers" themselves to describe their business.

But, I certainly agree that good packing is certainly mandatory for the best odds of a trouble free shipment. But, that doesn't mean even the best packaging couldn't be mis-handled to the point that the merchandise is damaged. Of the three I have used, FedEx, UPS, and the USPS, UPS is by far the worst. I gave them 6 years to change personnel and procedures but the results were still the same. We will have to wait and see if they give me any problems with the insurance claim...
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post #8 of 41 Old 10-06-2012, 08:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dallas J Fuller View Post

Once again, I wouldn't get too picky with the semantics:

Shipping has multiple meanings. It can be a physical process of transporting commodities and merchandise goods and cargo, by land, air, and sea. It also can describe the movement of objects by ship.

Land or "ground" shipping can be by train or by truck. In air and sea shipments, ground transportation is required to take the cargo from its place of origin to the airport or seaport and then to its destination because it is not always possible to establish a production facility near ports due to limited coastlines of countries. Ground transportation is typically more affordable than air shipments, but more expensive than shipping by sea especially in developing countries like India, where Inland infrastructure is not efficient.

Shipment of cargo by trucks, directly from the shipper's place to the destination, is known as a door to door shipment and more commonly multimodal transport system. Trucks and trains make deliveries to sea ports and air ports where cargo is moved in bulk.


So, those in the business may like to be called "carriers" the term "shipper" has been used by the "carriers" themselves to describe their business.

But, I certainly agree that good packing is certainly mandatory for the best odds of a trouble free shipment. But, that doesn't mean even the best packaging couldn't be mis-handled to the point that the merchandise is damaged. Of the three I have used, FedEx, UPS, and the USPS, UPS is by far the worst. I gave them 6 years to change personnel and procedures but the results were still the same. We will have to wait and see if they give me any problems with the insurance claim...

I get picky with the semantics because I have to straighten people out all the time, not particularly with these terms but with many others people assume from the little exposure to the wide world of transportation they've been exposed to. Shipping and shipper aren't the same thing. I'm a professional freight forwarder and customs broker. I deal mostly with international transport, and of very large shipments, not small packages as are the usual realm of Fedex/UPS/DHL, but by necessity quite a bit of domestic transport as well. Door to door has a financial implication that is different in international than domestic (in that it may or not include the formalities and documentation differences inherent in international transport vs domestic transport). When you fill out a bill of lading, the person sending the shipment is the "shipper", the party it is sent to is the "consignee". Most carrier bills of lading are by necessity now multimodal. You can have an airfreight shipment but just because a carrier issues you an airbill doesn't mean they must fly it, much domestic "airfreight" has a significant truck component more due to capacity than anything. Usually it is a combination that makes sense for cost and time as a balance and is priced accordingly. Little domestic transport in any country is done by vessel, just not efficient, for example here in the US it is also limited by law as to carrier flag and is much more expensive than it should be accordingly. Maybe in India it might work, but few things work well in India in logistics...not yet, they'll get there.

smile.gif Couldn't resist. Good packing will get you further than trying to narrow your choices among branded carrier/forwarder offerings (because like most "brands", after a while has nothing to do with the reality of anything but the brand, the aspects of which will change due to a wide variety of factors) for "best handling" in any case.
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post #9 of 41 Old 10-06-2012, 08:55 PM
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I will tell you this from Personal Exp, A Package is handled at least 30 - 60 times before it gets to the Destination. Packing is everything.. And they all THROW Packages!! that's just the way it is... I use UPS and never have Issues, I also Use Fed Ex Express and Ground.. I try to avoid Ground & Home whenever Possible. Only good thing with Ground is they are really cheap!! ..I don't trust them.. They are All Contractors!! They get paid by the Box.. Piece work!! They own there own Trucks,Routes etc!! Therefore They are not held to the Same standards as Fed Ex Express or UPS !! Put it this way.. The Fed Ex Ground here in San Jose has a Metal Detector that you must walk through when entering and leaving the Building.. This is for Employees..The Express Bldg does not!!! Lots of theft at Ground!! All freight shipped Fed EX Express goes on A Plane Regardless if its Priority or 2 day, and Express saver 3 day.. But that 3 day will be going to Ground soon... But in the OP situation that is fully on UPS cause they Packed it! But more than likely that box got crunched from being thrown into a Can or got crushed from being on the Bottom of a T Stack!!.. I just prefer pack my self!! And use the Shipper That is Available with best Rate at the Time.. I Also Use Snail Mail too, they have good rates and Deliver On Saturdays!! Also all there Over-nite Priority is Shipped on Fed Ex Exp!!
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post #10 of 41 Old 10-06-2012, 10:27 PM
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They can both damage stuff, but I've always found Fedex to be cheaper
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post #11 of 41 Old 10-06-2012, 11:08 PM
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UPS is the worst IMO. I bought an Infinity Cascade sub direct from HK. This is no lightweight sub at 110 pounds in the box. When I got the sub it looked like someone had dropped it from about 15 feet onto concrete - it hit right on the end. The box was split open and quite obviously crushed badly - the box was accordioned - shortened up by at least 3-4 inches. Further inspection revealed two of the four drivers were hanging by one or two mounting screws and were flopping around. The decorative plastic cover was split open and separated from the wood enclosure.

Not one damned person in the USP system had bothered to pull the damn thing aside - it was instead left to meander through their system - and left on my front porch in this very sorry state. I emailed HK who have wonderful customer service - they sent me a shipping label that day and put a new sub on its way the next day. Not one person in the UPS chain took it upon themselves to pull an obviously badly damaged package aside and inform the sender or receiver of the problem. While I'm sure HK has little problem in getting a claim paid by UPS for the average citizen - good luck with that! Ain't gonna happen!
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post #12 of 41 Old 10-06-2012, 11:22 PM
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ups (they do not deserve to have the name capitalized) - the worst carrier ever. I had a piece of flat ABS shipped from the states. I needed it for a tone arm base, nothing found in Canada.
ups was the shipper of choice by the seller, and we agreed, shipping for the 25$ piece was about 40$. A bit much for a flat piece 1/2" high by 10" x 18", but I needed it and the project was stalled otherwise.
When the part arrived I also received a further invoice from UPS - handling and the fee for the brokerage of salestax in Canada was another 80$.
The same had cost less than 20$ on previous shipments done by fedex, and none by USPS.

UPS are outright c....s when it comes to their fees, compared with any other carrier.

Other experiences include sending parcels back without notification, although a phone number was included in the freight slip, and it cost me several days delay to get the parcel back.
I do not buy from any seller anymore who ships UPS, and I will cancel any sale if the shipper does not respect my choice.
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post #13 of 41 Old 10-07-2012, 07:27 AM
 
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For me, it depends on where I have lived. In my current location, UPS is MUCH MUCH MUCH MUCH better than FedEx - AND faster. At my last house, it was the opposite. As for DHL, I used to work for them. We loaded a Cisco Router into the truck at one warehouse location and had it shipped directly to another warehouse (the truck's next stop) and it was lost in transit. This was a regular event...sad that DHL lost its own packages when shipping between two direct warehouses...
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post #14 of 41 Old 10-07-2012, 07:38 AM
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I actually like both of my regular drivers for both companies. Both work with me and make sure i get signature required items. My biggest gripe with ups is more of a procedure one. Sometimes if a package is a little early they hold it and wait for the expected delivery day. Fed Ex will just bring it early. I also like how they update the status if something is coming a day earlier than expected immediately. Ups should learn it's okay to deliver a package early. That might help cut down some of the destroyed boxes out there. smile.gif
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post #15 of 41 Old 10-07-2012, 07:42 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dallas J Fuller View Post

Any other stories out there that might help others make a good shipping decision?

Shipping is like the assumptions one makes when they get out of bed in the morning and that assumption is, they'll arrive safely back to their pillow that night.

I get a boatload of stuff from mostly UPS and some from FedEx. I've shipped both UPS and FedEx. With that in mind, never having a negative experience with either carrier, I have a higher personal opinion of FedEx. Now the USPS on the other hand, gets the lowest marks but I've only had one negative shipping experience and that was a stolen item that was not insured. The moral of the story, if using the USPS to ship anything of value, always have the receipt handy and always insure for the value on the receipt cause none of the carriers are giving away insurance money.

Yes, I've seen the videos of stuff being thrown about and other terrible stuff. With that in mind, being that I don't have much choice in the matter as stuff needs to be shipped and there are only so many choices, based on lots of positive personal experiences over many decades, I wouldn't hesitate to use either UPS or FedEx and when needed, I'll use the USPS.
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post #16 of 41 Old 10-07-2012, 12:16 PM - Thread Starter
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I have found the USPS is far more cost effective for items 3lbs and under, with an occasional 4lb package thown in when I am lazy (it is often more convenient for me to just print off USPS shipping labels.) With that said, I have never had any problems using the USPS, but they just cost too much the bigger and hevier the item. I figure it's because their delivery trucks are more tailored to deliver 1st class mail and small packages while the private sector guys have the larger trucks and don't have to deliver to every house every day.

I am a little surprised that FedEx is the preferred "carrier" by such a large margin over UPS. I just know I won't use them again, it's just not worth it.
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post #17 of 41 Old 10-07-2012, 12:39 PM
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This is one of the reasons I prefer retail stores over ordering things from Amazon. Friends may think I'm a fool for not always buying expensive electronics over the Internet where big savings can be found, but I like to be able to return something the same day if I find it defective. The retailer takes all the shipping risk.
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.....where big savings can be found,...

The above is what I consider to be a "MAJOR" understatement. I understand convenience vs inconvenience and yes, if one has terrible consumer luck, buying online is the wrong way to go. My father-in-law has terrible luck with anything that has a cord attached and this bad luck, somehow was passed to our son; that would be his mother's side of the family. tongue.gif OTOH (knock on wood) we have excellent luck with b-stock, refurbished items, et cetera, or if you will, anything that has a plug attached.

The point, I guess one has to go with the prevailing online winds and if they keep blowing one on the rocks, then that's not the market place to buy things.

(Sorry to read you can't take advantage of online prices.)

.................................frown.gif
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post #19 of 41 Old 10-07-2012, 02:33 PM
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I don't think Americans realize how good they have it with online prices.

I wanted to buy the Panasonic DMP-BDT500 blu-ray player last week and in the US Amazon sells it for $274 but in Canada they wanted $448. I couldn't find it retail anywhere in Canada except Toronto, which didn't help me. If I ordered it from the US the shipping, duty, taxes, and fees could easily add another $100.

What I did buy was the Panasonic DMP-BDT220 blu-ray player for $149.99 at Best Buy. Amazon's Canadian website had the same player for $148.00 so I could have saved $2.

Where is the understatement?

The shipping risk and wait needs to considered as well as the potential savings to make it worthwhile.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mbfleming View Post

I don't think Americans realize how good they have it with online prices.
I wanted to buy the Panasonic DMP-BDT500 blu-ray player last week and in the US Amazon sells it for $274 but in Canada they wanted $448. I couldn't find it retail anywhere in Canada except Toronto, which didn't help me. If I ordered it from the US the shipping, duty, taxes, and fees could easily add another $100.
What I did buy was the Panasonic DMP-BDT220 blu-ray player for $149.99 at Best Buy. Amazon's Canadian website had the same player for $148.00 so I could have saved $2.
Where is the understatement?
The shipping risk and wait needs to considered as well as the potential savings to make it worthwhile.

Based on your above, you seem to be misunderstanding the intent of my comment. When someone in America says that someone is making an understatement in the fashion I did, they're agreeing with you in a big way. It's much like someone coming out and making a bold statement how they feel on a situation and another person coming back and saying: "Now, how do you really feel."

Again, sorry you don't feel comfortable with online purchases as my comment is intended to be understanding and supportive of your lament. My apologies if my comment was found offensive or insensitive to your plight.

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post #21 of 41 Old 10-07-2012, 11:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mbfleming View Post

I don't think Americans realize how good they have it with online prices.
I wanted to buy the Panasonic DMP-BDT500 blu-ray player last week and in the US Amazon sells it for $274 but in Canada they wanted $448. I couldn't find it retail anywhere in Canada except Toronto, which didn't help me. If I ordered it from the US the shipping, duty, taxes, and fees could easily add another $100.
What I did buy was the Panasonic DMP-BDT220 blu-ray player for $149.99 at Best Buy. Amazon's Canadian website had the same player for $148.00 so I could have saved $2.
Where is the understatement?
The shipping risk and wait needs to considered as well as the potential savings to make it worthwhile.

We're lucky out here in Lotusland... If I want to order stuff from the states, I can just have it shipped to Point Bob (Roberts) and run down there on my lunch break to pick it up. Sure I pay the HST, but even that's been waived a few times. The amusing thing is that in order to get to point bob, It's got to be driven across the border, through Surrey/Tswassen, and back down into the US, yet we pay US shipping fees, and none of this silly brokerage.

For UPS, one way to avoid brokerage is to clear the package yourself. When you order it, call up UPS and tell them you want to clear it yourself (You'll need to provide the tracking number). When it arrives at the facility at the airport, you then have to go down there, get the documentation for the item. YOu then take it over to the CBSA office at the airport, pay your taxes and have them stamp the paperwork, then go back to the UPS office with the stamped paperwork to collect your item. Note that UPS hates you doing this, and will make it hard for you to do so, but it's within your rights to do so.
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post #22 of 41 Old 10-08-2012, 03:39 PM
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Fed Ex. I've had too many packages damaged by UPS. I've always gotten money back for that, but it's a hassle.

For small stuff though, I now use priority USPS.
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post #23 of 41 Old 10-08-2012, 04:31 PM
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Definitely FedEx, UPS leaves packages without even ringing the door bell. When I ordered my Pioneer receiver I found it in the back of my pickup truck by accident after UPS left it there. I was home at the time of the delivery and was expecting it. It was getting late for a delivery and I checked tracking on the package. It said it was delivered, no box on back porch, front porch. I only noticed that there were clean spots on the tailgate of my truck where it had been opened and closed recently. If I had not noticed it who knows how long it would have sat in the back of my truck. I was pissed. If I have a choice I will NOT use UPS.
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post #24 of 41 Old 10-08-2012, 06:51 PM
 
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Did you call and complain?
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post #25 of 41 Old 10-10-2012, 06:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cybrsage View Post

Did you call and complain?

What is the point, they don't give a sh!t. The last time the UPS driver left a package on the porch without ringing the doorbell(that is why I have one, use the damned thing) when I was home, I opened the front door and yelled at him while he was climbing back into his truck. Just gave me a stupid, "whats the problem?" look and continued on his way. I have complained before. I even called the UPS office and told them I wanted them to get a signature for ALL deliveries to my address, that didn't work either. UPS blows, I believe that they specifically tell drivers to NOT knock on doors and have them on such a tight schedule that any kind of customer service is impossible. I have had NO such problems with FedEx, the drivers in my area ring the doorbell, and do not seem to be in quite as much of a hurry as the local UPS drivers.

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post #26 of 41 Old 10-10-2012, 11:32 PM
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Originally Posted by SRussell View Post

What is the point, they don't give a sh!t. The last time the UPS driver left a package on the porch without ringing the doorbell(that is why I have one, use the damned thing) when I was home, I opened the front door and yelled at him while he was climbing back into his truck. Just gave me a stupid, "whats the problem?" look and continued on his way. I have complained before. I even called the UPS office and told them I wanted them to get a signature for ALL deliveries to my address, that didn't work either. UPS blows, I believe that they specifically tell drivers to NOT knock on doors and have them on such a tight schedule that any kind of customer service is impossible. I have had NO such problems with FedEx, the drivers in my area ring the doorbell, and do not seem to be in quite as much of a hurry as the local UPS drivers.


Dude you have no clue, Ups drivers are union and fedex is not union. Ups drivers dont give a f**k about what you bought on ebay cause you had to save 20 bucks also now that guys know you so if that was me i would be kicking and throwing your crap next time. He could of rand your doorbell but was probably being lazy.. ups will be around a lot longer then you will be so qiute your crying lifes too short..

you do see my name been with ups for 28 years.. if you piss me off you get your packages at the end of my day... some rules you dont piss off your mechanic, postmen, ups, fedex and anyone at a resturant...
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post #27 of 41 Old 10-11-2012, 07:51 AM
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Originally Posted by upsfeedr View Post

Dude you have no clue, Ups drivers are union and fedex is not union. Ups drivers dont give a f**k about what you bought on ebay cause you had to save 20 bucks also now that guys know you so if that was me i would be kicking and throwing your crap next time. He could of rand your doorbell but was probably being lazy.. ups will be around a lot longer then you will be so qiute your crying lifes too short..
you do see my name been with ups for 28 years.. if you piss me off you get your packages at the end of my day... some rules you dont piss off your mechanic, postmen, ups, fedex and anyone at a resturant...

Well that really makes me want to use UPS rolleyes.gif

For me, Fed-Ex has been consistently better service and far superior handling packages and the rare damage claim.
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post #28 of 41 Old 10-11-2012, 09:12 AM
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upsfeedr also said he works at Best Buy:
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Originally Posted by upsfeedr View Post

we got the 65vt30 in today and its selling for 3699.99 also gott in the 500 blu ray player. the vt50 looks great much better then the the 64e8000.


Im a magnolia employee in san jose ca..
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post #29 of 41 Old 10-11-2012, 12:58 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by upsfeedr View Post

Dude you have no clue, Ups drivers are union and fedex is not union. Ups drivers dont give a f**k about what you bought on ebay cause you had to save 20 bucks also now that guys know you so if that was me i would be kicking and throwing your crap next time. He could of rand your doorbell but was probably being lazy.. ups will be around a lot longer then you will be so qiute your crying lifes too short..
you do see my name been with ups for 28 years.. if you piss me off you get your packages at the end of my day... some rules you dont piss off your mechanic, postmen, ups, fedex and anyone at a resturant...

UPS will last but bad attitudes get terminated.
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post #30 of 41 Old 10-11-2012, 05:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by upsfeedr View Post

Dude you have no clue, Ups drivers are union and fedex is not union. Ups drivers dont give a f**k about what you bought on ebay cause you had to save 20 bucks also now that guys know you so if that was me i would be kicking and throwing your crap next time. He could of rand your doorbell but was probably being lazy.. ups will be around a lot longer then you will be so qiute your crying lifes too short..
you do see my name been with ups for 28 years.. if you piss me off you get your packages at the end of my day... some rules you dont piss off your mechanic, postmen, ups, fedex and anyone at a resturant...

Wow, great advertisement for UPS (and for unions) I knew there was a reason I didn't like either. If I am paying for a service I expect to be treated like it. I will definitely drive the extra distance to the FedEx office from now on, thanks for the enlightenment.

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