Tag Archives: parcel2go

Small Business Fed Up of Queuing at The Post Office?

Hermes direct:

Eventually we started using Hermes directly. Same bulk upload tools as P2G but a few pence cheaper.

Cons:

Hermes are great for low value items you can afford to give some away of – because you will be doing.
The drivers routinely lose/steal stuff or deliver it to random neighbours, sometimes other addresses entirely, leave it in their car for a week if they have flu, drop it in puddles or simply toss stuff over walls in the rain.
Because of the above, tracking will sometimes say delivered but customer says it isn’t.
We found Hermes to be more trouble than they were worth eventually and preferred to pay more to get a better service.
Put Collect+ and Yodel into the same category.
>>Read about Hermes/MyHermes here<< My preferred options: We use a mix of Post Office PPI and DPD courier. Royal Mail Business. You get in touch with Royal Mail business section and tell them you want an OBA (online business account) and want to use PPI. This allows you to book your own boxes online, select Recorded etc, and drop them off at the post office in bulk done already and walk out. You pay every month by DD. You are sat at home with a glass of wine rather than standing in the PO. Now they will make you buy a £250 printer to do this now (we use the old label system still) and the software is a bit of a learning curve, but once you are doing it, it is easy peasy and a bit cheaper than the PO counter. Cons: Your local post office might sulk at taking them in pre-paid this way – ask them. They are contractually obliged to take them but many still refuse citing lack of space. You may need to remind them they still get paid if they scan recorded mail (which they do from your book 10 at a time using the bulkscan tool on their screen). Continue reading

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Parcel2go and Hermes Overweight Parcel “Extra Payment Required” Rip Off.

Have you had the “Extra Payment Required” email from Parcel2Go?

As online sellers, we access the services of Hermes/myHermes sometimes direct, and sometimes through parcel2go.com – depending which platform we are booking from.

Years ago, everyone used to book everything at 1.99kgs and anything up to about 3kgs would go through without a hitch. That was never going to last.

In the last 18 months, Hermes have started routinely weighing everything, so weights must be accurate. No big deal and not rocket science to make sure which band your parcel falls into, right?

We only use Parcel2Go/Hermes for low value parcels (things you can afford to lose) under two kilos. So there are two bands: 0 – 1kg and 1 – 2kg.

We use digital mail scales, so we know our weights are right. Thus we know that we are booking the correct weight band.

So here is what happens. About once a week, sometimes twice a week, we get this email:

Parcel2Go.com: Door 2 Door Courier Service

URGENT MESSAGE
Failure to respond to this request could result in delays to your parcel delivery.

Dear [customer name],

Thank you for booking with us and using Hermes to send your parcel.

Unfortunately, Hermes have informed us that your parcel weighed/measured more than was declared when it was booked on our website. The parcel was declared as 1.00kg (20 x 20 x 20), however the actual weight/dimensions are 1.10kg (20 x 20 x 20).

We understand mistakes can be made and we operate tolerances to allow for small mistakes, however due to the size of this discrepancy, we unfortunately need to charge for this misdeclaration.

Also, due to the increased cost in processing misdeclarations, which include identifying and weighing the parcel, an additional handling charge of £2.50 is included in the underpayment total.

The total underpayment due is £ 3.49 + VAT. You can pay this charge now via the link below or find it in your basket and pay it the next time you check out with us.

Pay This Now
Kind regards,
The Underpayments TeamParcel2Go.com

Cute huh?

Occasionally human error happens, so those of us who send many parcels will expect to make the odd mistake and have this bite us in the arse.

However, I have noticed a pattern here.

It only seems to happen with the under 1kg band with parcels that are over 900g in weight, but under the 1kg threshold. The weight they say they are is always 1.1kgs.

If your parcel was not in fact overweight, how can you prove it? The answer is you cant, because they have your parcel, and Parcel2Go/Hermes have you over a barrel here.

We got another one of these a few days ago, so on the basis that the staff will start having deductions for these “errors” if they continue, I decided to investigate this one.

Using the P2G number, I traced the order, looked at what the item sent was (an item in standard retail packaging that we sell) and weighed another one. Better than that, I took another from our pending orders, taped it myself and added a label. The weight? 975g. I checked the weight stored on our system: 975g. I checked the manufacturers declared weight: 950g. So the 25g is tape and label.

The staff routinely weigh each and every Parcel2Go item because they are aware of this issue. On the day in question, everything that went out was checked.

This means our parcel was NOT overweight.

This probably means none of our parcels were ever overweight since the “Extra Payment Required” emails started arriving.

This smells to me like a quiet little scam by either Parcel2Go or Hermes.

But as we also use Hermes directly, and don’t get these penalties from Hermes directly, it would appear that this is generated at Parcel2Go – but we cannot be sure.

What I an be sure of is Parcel2Go have extracted by now several hundred pounds out of me with this little scam.

For “overweight” parcels that I reckon were nothing of the sort.

So what to do?

Well, here is the problem with Parcel2Go and Hermes. You get what your pay for. Its a cheap service. This means zero competent customer service of any description.

Both organisatons are set up to dissuade you from contacting anyone if something goes wrong. Daft email support (copy and paste replies) and dire “live help” that will have your dripping in cobwebs by the time you get anywhere.

Try and do a claim for a lost/stolen/misdelivered/undelivered item and you will see what I mean. If you have a spare few hours, you may eventually get your money back. The system is designed so you cant be bothered and will write their mistakes off.

Sure you can email “concerns@parcel2go.com” but nothing will happen. When faced with facts and logic, they will simply stop replying.

Customer service is not a hallmark of either Parcel2Go or Hermes – both are totally chronic in this regard. The fact is they simply don’t give a shit – they only want your money.

I estimate that between this “Extra Payment Required” scam and the few items that are stolen, lost, delivered wrongly or not at all, we will have issues with up to 5% of Hermes bookings.

Its probably time for us to start using a better courier or continue to self-indemnify against their mistakes as there are not enough hours in the day to chase them for losses and dishonesty.

So why is this out here?

I wanted to get this out here because I want to see if anyone else has had enough of being overcharged in this way by Parcel2Go and how big a scale this is happening on.

Parcel2Go and/or Hermes might be clawing quite a lot of money in from this little racket. And a racket is what I believe it is.

I suspect it isn’t only happening to us. I suspect there are other sellers out there writing off a fiver once or twice a week, assuming they or their staff made a mistake. Again. But deep down they cannot see how. And they will Google and land here……..

If this is happening to you, please use the comment box below to say so. Continue reading

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Warning About MyHermes – Delivering To a Nearby Random House is “Delivered”

If you are selling online and using MyHermes as your delivery service, here is a cautionary tale.

We send perhaps 50 parcels a day with Hermes, they seem to get most of them right. We get a few bouts of stupidity such as stuff delivered to completely different addresses, one customer found one on the road outside his house, the odd one gets damaged and the odd one has been stolen in transit (vanished).

But the numbers of those are quite low. MyHermes are as good as any other budget delivery outfit. What do you want for the price?

Anyway, here is a new one on me. A customer contacted us and said this:

This was delivered to a neighbour at number 15 who I don’t know & despite several attempts I have not been able to get a response when knocking at their door. I could have collected from the depot if they had taken it there. Can you help me resolve this please
Thanks

After an exchange where we suggested she try a little harder, she replied with this:

Yes but the house is up for sale I don’t even know if anyone actually lives there at the moment. I will try again this weekend but wanted to alert you as soon as possible in case I can’t contact them

So we decided to ask Parcel2Go who is the service provider we use to access MyHermes. More out of curiosity really in case said neighbour of recipient decided to keep the free stuff. Handy to know the position when couriers are delivering stuff to neighbours.

So here is the enlightening exchange with Parcel2Go on behalf of MyHermes.

It seems the courier has delivered it to a neighbour and the intended recipient cannot get it from them. How to proceed?

Oh dear 🙁 what is the reason why they can’t get it from their neighbor?

Nobody ever home it seems, they don’t know them and have no number. But ultimately it has been delivered wrong so driver needs to fix it?

Is the neighbor not within their apartment blocks?

Apparently not, it’s number 15 and I think she is 8

She will need to try and contact them as Hermes can deliver to neighbors if the recipient cannot be reached.

That isn’t really a solution. I cannot tell a customer that. It is our job to deliver to customer, not a random house nearby. The driver needs to retrieve and deliver it.

I’m afraid that Hermes can deliver to a neighbor on the same street if the consignee cannot be reached.

So basically with Hermes, we have to accept the possibility we will be giving it away to a neighbour?

This of course is illegal if the neighbour was to take this as it would be theft by finding.

Well isn’t that jolly?

Of course, as an experienced online seller, I know why Hermes deliver to neighbours, and I am sure the vast majority work out just fine. I have no particular complaint about Hermes or Parcel2Go.

I take stuff in for my neighbours, and they for me.

However, not everyone lives somewhere pleasant. Not everyone has nice neighbours.

Some people will have dishonest neighbours who will gleefully accept the free goods, sign with a squiggle and/or a fake name and deny all knowledge and have your stuff on eBay ten minutes later.

So I decided to delve into the legalities of this a little. More for future reference than anything else.

Here is what Which, the consumer rights outfit says about this:

Where do you stand if the delivery company leaves the item you ordered with a neighbour who then denies having it?

Whether you have any legal rights will depend on the delivery instructions you did or didn’t give at the time of purchase.

If you give instructions for your parcel to be left with a specific neighbour and the parcel is delivered to them, the seller is not responsible if something goes wrong.

If you agree more generally that your parcel can be left with a neighbour without specifying which one, then in practice you’ve said you are happy for anyone in close proximity to your home to accept delivery on your behalf.

Well, that seems fair enough but doesn’t cover our situation. But there is more.

If you’re parcel is left with a neighbour without giving instructions to do so, you can argue that the contract said the goods were to be delivered to the address specified, and that by leaving them at a different address the company is in breach of contract.

If you bought your goods online, you’re covered under the Consumer Contracts Regulations.

So, back to us (and you) and MyHermes for future reference.

Your customer by default will not have given permission for their purchase to be left at a random nearby house.

If the courier that you as a seller employ to deliver, leaves the parcel at a random nearby house, and occupants of said random nearby house do not give the parcel to your customer, it looks to me like this is the sellers responsibility.

During the courier booking process, you will have ticked a random box agreeing to some terms and conditions nobody ever reads. I haven’t read them, and I am sure you haven’t. I have no intention of doing so and I bet you have neither.

But you can bet your bottom dollar that there is a term in there that absolves them of responsibility for this type of thing.

The Synopsis.

As I said above, its obvious why couriers need to leave stuff with neighbours. And I have no particular complaint about MyHermes. All couriers sometimes get it wrong, so my thinking is you may as well use a cheap one, as even UPS smash stuff up and lose stuff too nowadays. Parcel2Go are a reasonable outfit to deal with as well. MyHermes are actually much better than they used to be FWIW.

But the take away is this: If you send something that matters, or is expensive, by the bog standard MyHermes service, and the local driver gives it to someone else, and for whatever reason the intended recipient doesn’t get it, you are liable.

If an eBay or Amazon sale, or transacted through Paypal, the tracking will show “delivered” so in the event of chargeback, seller protection should cover you. The platform will cough up to the buyer without debiting you most likely.

On your own site, unless using Nochex that cannot be charged back, you will pay for the loss or theft of the item.

However, as an honest seller, you don’t want your customer jumping through hoops and having to try to do chargebacks do you? That isn’t going to help your reputation at all. Your courier didn’t deliver it, so you have got to make good on that by sending another item by another service to an address the customer nominates where somebody actually will be.

The take away is this: When using MyHermes, KNOW that the driver can leave the item anywhere he likes. With any random neighbour, in a porch, shed, bin or wherever. SO do not send anything expensive or that matters with the basic service. Continue reading

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