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USPS shipping


LynnS
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I sent out a partial order a couple days ago.Love the flat rate boxes but having alot of problems and have no idea who to blame.I know my PO is just 1 person and I trust him. About a hour later this week a larger post office employee picked up our mail/ packages and takes them to the bigger location where they go by plane or truck.They have no idea which way my mailing went when I called them today. Why I called my PO and the larger one is my wholesaler had boxes smashed big time.No candles broken but the lids were badly damaged. She is sending me pics to let me see how bad it is. :sad2:

Where can I turn to keep this from happening???And can I find out where this did happen. ALL boxes were marked FRAGILE at least 5 times.Also you can read my return address. Candle Company. So a worker or workers are deliberately doing this. :angry2:

I have been shipping for 5 years and last year and this year I had the problem of damaged boxes with USPS. Will getting tracking numbers help???? I want to know where to report this problem if it takes 10 locations where the boxes may have been in transport.

Thank You

LynnS

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Where can I turn to keep this from happening???

Nowhere. Reevaluate how you're packaging your shipments.

And can I find out where this did happen.

No

ALL boxes were marked FRAGILE at least 5 times.

Frageeeely stickers are invisible to USPS, UPS & FedEx. You can put 50 stickers on a box and they won't see them. Even if they did they don't understand what it means.

Also you can read my return address. Candle Company. So a worker or workers are deliberately doing this.

Doubt that. Nobody reads the return address. Boxs get thrown around and further subject to damage when they get into the sorting equipment.

Suggest better packaging and add insurance to your shipments.

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Yes, nowhere USPS does not care...I had a bunch of outgoing packages smashed last year no notices, no excuses and my customers expected me to make good on it. If it wasn't insured USPS doesn't care...my mail lady can't even deliver the mail to the right houses anyways it's like she doesn't know how to read...so what do you expect.

I now ship most of my packages with Fedex their home delivery option is always cheaper than USPS and everything makes it fine. Plus their customer service is way better...

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I can tell you that USPS uses conveyor belts just like UPS and Fedex. The heavier the box, the more glass, etc., you need to pack like you are shipping eggs. I use fragile stickers and the double arrow labels for "right side up", but none of the services really look at them. Remember, depending on what the service has going that day, other heavy boxes can be put on top of yours.

You have no recourse for damage with USPS unless you purchase insurance. I can say, at least for my location, that if I print a scan form off the internet when I do my labels, and give it to the postman or the office clerk to scan when I give them the packages, that it becomes an actual tracking device instead of a mere delivery confirmation. Since I started using scan forms, I can go online any time of the day or night and see exactly where the package is along the way to the customer.

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Thank You for the input everyone. Fed Ex is a distance from us.Have no idea where they are.UPS is about 25 miles from here.They come by my house but when I asked for estimates a few times, the cost to ship was outrageous. I had to ask him to repeat it and was he sure.

My NC wholesaler has NO problems with her orders. She even e-mailed me last month and said the candles arrived safely and commented how well I pack them everytime. 5 years and no problems. Now there are.

I will get a tracking number and take out insurance but Hey this is alot of hours and work to do over and customers do want them ASAP. I always get the orders out soon.

I will check around about Fed Ex.Really the PO is just 1 mile from my house.It was convenient and like I said no Fed Ex anywhere near me.I would think maybe the closest is 30 miles. Will check their locations. In my area I never see Fed Ex trucks but UPS are all over the place till 9:00 p.m.

I have to agree with Bernadette.I am sure all these shipping places use conveyor belts etc. and they get banged around. UPS and Fed Ex aren't any different.I am sure it has happened to candlemakers etc. shipping that route also.

When I pack not 1 candle can move.I test the box and so does my husband.Took it to the PO and the Postmaster said these are packed tight.

LynnS

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another "they dont care" from me. Its up to us to package well enough that our box can be:

- dropped from 4 feet and not be damaged (off a conveyer belt into a bin or by a person into a bin)

- have tons of packages on top of them

- can be shook/jostled

of course sometimes extra damage is done (I've had packages arrive not only crushed but torn open) but thats truly.. not.. their.. fault as a whole.. its just one person somewhere along the line, or one machine. It passes through alot of hands, through alot of machines, through scanners, and gets sorted multiple times. We complain shipping takes forever.. but if they were to treat every package like it was a bomb, it would take a year to get from LA to NY. know what i mean? Yes its frustrating... but since I started packaging more carefully, i havent had anything go wrong.

Of course.. I dont ship bath bombs anymore, at all, because they are just too fragile and waste packaging to make them safe... and its not worth the money, to me. There are some things, despite all packaging efforts, that will just never be 100% safe.

frustrating... yes. very much so.. but the "fragile" does nothing. nothin.. nada.. zip.

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Lynn, just one more comment...I'm sure you pack the glass tight so there's no movement, but these days you have to make sure that you have sufficient cushioning both above and below them too, so if something is dropped/put on top and the box gets smashed, the product doesn't get damaged. I've been shipping worldwide for over 12 years now. All three services use conveyor belts(they've told me so). USPS uses independent shippers occasionally. Things aren't always done the same. In all the time I've been shipping, I've had less than 10 shipments with problems. That's pretty good, I think. Just remember, nothing is perfect, and the law of averages says sooner or later, a shipment is going to get damaged, no matter who you use.:tiptoe:

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I disagree to an extent about packaging- which is why I started using Fedex this past summer.

Packing a package well IS important. However, it makes no diiference if you pack a shipment that can handle a 4 or 5 foot fall with a TON of battering taking place as well. All the packing in the world does NOT prevent damage to a package that has been totally squashed. I have had more squashed packages than I can count. My packaging is fantastic, but it cannot withstand the foot of a giant elephant smashing it. This evidently is what takes place on a regular basis at usps. Apparently, they have wild elephants roaming their facilities. :rolleyes2

Edited by Noodle
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I have had a few problems. Packages not showing up. One gal got an empty envelope. It had been opened and re-taped. One gal got her package with half the stuff missing. When I shipped it weighed 31#. When she got it weighed 25#.

I really hate to say this but theft is getting bad with USPS. They do it because they can. I would advise all customers to get insurance.

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I must be out of the norm with successful shipping with USPS. I've used them since I started shipping 12 years ago,, love the new flat rate boxes and I always get a confirmation of delivery receipt so I can track the package.

Make sure when you package you don't allow your products to rattle around on the inside... make everything snug and tight. Always cushion the bottom, tops and sides... inside packages and products should not touch the walls of the shipping box.

Do the sit test... if you can sit on your boxes and they don't squish, buckle or cave in... you should be ok. If packages can't pass the test,reinforcement is needed.. package tight, fill every nook and cranny.

NEVER mark anything fragile!!!! Its too big of a temptation... an accident looking to happen... gives some people incentive to drop it and throw it harder, per advice I received long ago from shippers.

I love USPS boxes,,, they usually reach their destination within 2 - 3 days... Fedex is too slow and takes 4 -57 from my area.....

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My wholesaler mailed some pics of the damaged lids and a pic of a few of the candles that melted. HOW I have no idea??? I've never had this happen plus the weather isn't that hot. My husband knows they were packed good and the PO said nothing is moving. Melted candles so she had to take the heat gun to the candles before displaying them.

I've thought about the FRAGILE thing and if it makes the Postal workers want to have fun with that. I am sure some of the workers love to play. I remember a while back someone said she saw the postal workers toss her boxes in the air.Two guys were throwing the box of candles and having fun doing it.

Our schedule is when my husband gets home from work he makes the candles.Let's them sit all night to dry. Then the next day,smooths the tops. Let's them dry also before packing. Then the 3 rd day I pack them. So far only 15 lids are bad and about 7 candles melted around the top. She said only one scent was damaged(melted) and the other scented candles that were in the same box were fine.

I mailed the new lids today.Not one lid could be heard being in the large flat rate. I use newspapers to pack and that is the best thing to wrap the lids and the candles.

LynnS

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We once had a claim denied because they stated newspaper was not sufficient packing material. When we explained that the damaged product was wrapped in newspaper "then wrapped in bubble wrap" (which we had to point out in the pics) they paid the claim.

As for Fedex and UPS - they both offer pickup service. Depending on the shipment Fedex can be cheaper then USPS. Fedex (like UPS) also offers $100 in automatic insurance and you get tracking info - 2 things you pay extra for with USPS.

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If possible double-box your stuff and pack between with peanuts. It helps insulate the candles too. Remember until last week it was still hot down South and temps in the trucks go well over 100 degrees. I ship a lot of glass and no problems with USPS when packed as described. Use a box marked on the bottom 200lb. crush test. Don't make your boxes too heavy no matter what they say they will take. Boxes get dropped, smashed, thrown, and run down conveyor belts. Pack for the worst and your odds are best for safe delivery. Good luck with it.

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