Re: [CR] UPS Shipping - fedex major problem!

(Example: Events:Cirque du Cyclisme:2004)

Date: Tue, 27 Oct 2009 22:45:11 +0000
From: <hersefan@comcast.net>
To: <gear@xmission.com>
In-Reply-To: <20091027145746.jfqyrrz10cgkgcgo@webmail.xmission.com>
Cc: classicrendezvous@bikelist.org, crumpy6204@aol.com
Subject: Re: [CR] UPS Shipping - fedex major problem!


Perhaps I missed it, but there is a huge problem with shipping our vintage goodies by fedex. Regardless of any insurance you purchase, if the item is "vintage", they will try to refuse any claim made.

In the Fedex manual, it clearly states that Fedex will not insure vintage/collectible items for more than $100. So if the item is older, techically, they will give you $100 and send you on your merry way.

Now, I'm sure most folks if their Colnago gets destroyed in shiping will claim replacement cost for a new one, but if your invoice shows old colnago road bike, you are doomed.

How do we know? Because we had a package completely lost by Fedex a couple of years ago, and they demanded an invoice from our supplier showing replacement cost. There was some old parts in there, and once I said it was hard to determine value as the items were older, they tried to get out of the entire claim.

I pressed hard, and argued that one wholesaler (EuroAsia) still listed the items in their catalog. I made the analogy that if we were selling repair parts for old Maytag washing machines, the parts might be older, but they certainly should be insurable.

They finally relented, paid the claim, and made it clear that my account was noted that they will never make such an exception.

We still ship by fedex, but simply guarantee to our customers that the item will arrive.

Now if there is a high value item, we go to UPS and pay the higher rate, as their rulebook last I checked does not prohibit insurance on older items.

Now for USPS? We've had great luck. I think we've lost two packages with them (and only one priority one) in the past 24 months. That is really a great number considering our volume of shipping. A friend pointed out that steeling a USPS package is a Federal crime. So on average, it keeps things in line. Like the Ford mechanic who always complains that Fords (or whatever their dealer specializes in) break, the USPS folks probably only hear about the ones that are lost, and certainly not what is lost or destroyed with the other guys.

Mike Kone in Boulder CO USA


----- Original Message -----
From: gear@xmission.com
To: crumpy6204@aol.com
Cc: classicrendezvous@bikelist.org
Sent: Tuesday, October 27, 2009 2:57:46 PM GMT -07:00 US/Canada Mountain
Subject: Re: [CR] UPS Shipping


Hi All,

John, I've used that store (I believe it may be the same one that you used) often. Without fail the in-store cost is more than the online cost given by the UPS website. To be fair to that store, I've had the same experience with the other 'Brown' store in our town. Nowadays, I print the label at home, paid thru paypal, and drop off the package. If I can't do that, I take it to the FedEx depot a few miles north.

In years past, and for several years, my business shipped daily, a lot of bikes and whole bunch of frames. We always took these directly to the UPS Depot for drop off and occasionally got the 'we need to see the packing method' and had to open the box for their inspection. Never did we have to stand by while they repackaged something. A couple of times, they offered additional packing material if they felt nervous about damage. Usually a good experience, there, though.

However! It was a damage claim issue that made us switch to FedEx. And if I recall correctly, this subject has been discussed on these pages before - the UPS 'insurance' is actually a third party company (and I think FedEx is, too now iirc), and it is not in that company's best (financial) interest to honor and pay claims. I think the stubbornness over packaging is probably a result of unhappy UPS customers who have returned to their local store looking for satisfaction and getting none. In my own experience, as a business that shipped multiple items daily, there was a myriad of hoops to jump through and many calls that were 'dropped' while on hold to try to get finality and claims payments for damage from UPS's contractor. I'm talking weeks to months.

After the switch to FedEx, this was reduced by maybe half in terms of effort, time and headache. So, in answer (my own opinion) to your question 'which company is best?' There isn't one. I think FedEx is better, but I found myself frustrated with both, just for a lesser amount of time with FedEx.

And USPS? Seems quickest, more costly for sure. We were advised (by someone at USPS) to either not insure expensive items or to ship elsewhere as they have the most 'lost shipments' if items are insured for more than a couple hundred dollars. Apparently, there is a warehouse in St Louis, again iirc, where all of the lost items end up. Hmmm, wonder what all one could find in there?

Greg Overton my 2 cents, perhaps overpriced at that near Denver, Colorado

Quoting crumpy6204@aol.com:
> Thanks everyone for all the interest in this problem. Has anyone
> ever had a problem filing a claim against UPS for damaged goods and
> been turned down DUE to the method of packing. ie NOT boxed and
> packed by UPS, Also what experience filing claims against other
> carriers Fed Ex USPS Etc? Anyone ever actually got paid for a claim
> filed? With all the goods shipped these days who IS the best
> carrier and is customer friendly? I know we all ship our treasures
> back and forth probably without any thought as to them getting there
> in good nick! maybe we should ALL think a BIT before shipping,
> Cheers John Crump OldneverhadaclaimBrit. Parker. Co USA