Tuesday, February 28, 2006

USPS sucks rocks.

What can I say? The US Postal Service has to be the most inept "business" I've ever encountered.

I moved to California last year, for 5 months. I knew I was coming back to Pittsburgh, so I ordered a Temporary Change Of Address of mail from Pittsburgh to California, set to expire on December 31, 2005. Simple, eh?

Fast forward, 5 months. I'm beginning to move back to Pittsburgh, and I want to make sure that mail goes smoothly. So I talk to the post office. They say to submit a new change-of-address form, just to be safe. The Temporary Change Of Address should expire just fine, but there's no harm in being safe, they told me.

When I get home, it is clear that I'm not getting mail. So I submit a new change-of-address form, and submit it. This time, online. I have to pay a dollar. But I'm not getting mail. It's worth it, I think.

A week or two later, it's clear I'm still not getting mail. I have friends and family telling me that their letters and postcards are bouncing. I go to the Squirrel Hill post office. They tell me, that even though I live in Squirrel Hill, they don't deliver my mail. I have to call the East Liberty office. They give me their number, and I call and complain. The next day, I have a letter in my mailbox. Relief.

A week or two later, it's a little clear that I'm still not getting mail. Nothing has come since that solitary letter. A credit card company tells me that their mail isn't getting through. I send myself a letter. Four or five days later, my letter bounces. Now, I enter a world of hurt...

I go online, trying to find the phone number of the Squirrel Hill post office. The USPS.gov site has a fancy "Post Office Locator" tool, but the phone number it gives? Some automated 1-800-beastie that has no connection to my local post office. It takes 30 to 60 minutes to settle on the 800-number, and navigate to find my post office's number. Don't forget, that I'm trying to get the phone number of my post office, which doesn't even handle my mail. I call them, just to get the second number I need to call. I then complain. They promise that it will be fixed. The next day...A letter in my mailbox.

A week or two later, and again, nothing more is in my mailbox except for that one solitary letter. What on earth could be going on? Stupid me, I lost the phone number of my post office since I called them last time. I have to go through the automated-800-number-of-death to find the phone number again. This time, I tell my story to three people. Eventually, I get reconnected to somebody who says that they are my actual mail carrier...

The story that I am told is that despite my Change-Of-Address forms, and the fact that my first Change-Of-Address was temporary, the carrier was given no notice that I was back in town.
That's right. Even though he knew to deliver mail to me two or three days in the past two months when I complained, he still thought I was in California. He said that most people just move away from Pittsburgh, and don't ever come back. He figured I was just like them. I am pretty much speechless. He goes on for 5 minutes telling me and retelling his story, like I will, if he says it enough times, maybe even believe him.

Well, it seems that now I am finally getting mail again. It's a little bit convenient, I must admit. I still haven't gotten anything interesting...and I still expect it to stop again at any moment....but it's otherwise convenient. The entire process took 1 month and 27 days. Nearly two months to get my mail delivery working again, after 5 calls and 3 Change Of Address forms were submitted. How inept can the system be?

And I notice that, through all this, the USPS has decided to up their rates once more. Yep. Their service was so good that it simply had to be worth more than it was before. *sigh*

Haha. Sorry I just had to laugh at your post because I was just googling the squill post office to correct my own change of address problem and your blog post came up as a hit. I feel your pain. I've been living here for a few months now and all of a sudden some of my mail is being returned to sender. Gah
I also feel your pain - my road is closed and the PO won't deliver my mail because they would have to go around to deliver it. The postmaster is unwilling to compromise and find a way for me to get my mail. I am at work during their business hours and they claim there is no box to lend me for the duration which could go as long as long as 4 weeks. So much for customer service from that monopoly. My suggestion - use email, UPS, FedEx and DHL whenever possible. Most what we get from them is junk - the original spam. But it is tax document season and how else would we get them?
Well, it's been a while since you posted this, but things still haven't changed (and I doubt they ever will). I, too, live in the Squirrel Hill zip code, but my mail is delivered from the East Liberty post office. I'm a student here, and last week was spring break. My mailbox is tiny so it fills up rather quickly, and I don't have any neighbors I trust to collect my mail for me while I'm gone, so I filed a "hold mail" request with the post office (online) for the 5 days that I was going to be out of town. Delivery was supposed to resume on Friday. Well, needless to day, I received no mail Friday or Saturday. I got a few things Monday, but I still have not received a letter that I know for certain was mailed to me last week from a neighboring zip code, and should have arrived after a single day in transit. I went to the East Liberty post office in person, and the clerk assured me that nothing addressed to me was just laying around there in some sort of limbo, but I'm not sure I believe her. Now I don't know what to do. I am getting mail again, but that one specific letter has still not arrived (actually it was a reimbursement check, which is why I care so much). At this point I don't know whether it's worth going after the post office some more, or trying to persuade the sender to write me a new check.

On top of it all, my mail carrier doesn't seem to care about the handling of my mail. I regularly find envelopes, cards and magazines stuffed carelessly into my box, resulting in folds, creases, tears, etc. Now, I don't care if a credit card offer gets messed up in my mailbox, but it is pretty annoying when my magazine covers, official letters from school or prospective employers are ripped. Thanks, USPS. I never used to have these problems when I was living at home with my parents in a regular suburban neighborhood. Maybe city post offices and/or mail carriers who get stuck with "apartment delivery" just aren't as good. I'm sorely tempted to sign up for a box at one of those private mailbox places.
Oh, wow, I 100% understand your Squirrel Hill / East Liberty problem. I could go on and on, but suffice it to say that this problem doesn't seem to have a resolution forthcoming .... ever. In the meantime, any time I travel or live abroad temporarily (which is frequent, for grad students, no?) it is a nearly impossible headache to get it re-sorted. Thank goodness we had a good housesitter this summer. USPS, grrr!!!!!
Ever wonder why they publish US Flag stamps with no amount on them? To return your mail back for more postage! How the hell are you suppose to keep up these stamps that look all the same and have no amount printed on them!

What about packages shipped from Hawaii last Christmas (12/2006) and they still haven't arrived (12/7/2007). Insured? Hell no because the lame postal clerk said it was already covered to the first hundred bucks! Lie, cheat, steal, give every excuse in the book like every other federal government agency. I hope some lame postal clerk had a good Christmas.
I feel the same, these stupid assholes dont give any customer service even UPS gave me a better service , and their office hours are fucking stupid, tracking never shows mail mans are careless!
Know what would fix the problem... Force the union to be disbanded! If they want a freaking raise they will have to show they can actually DO THEIR JOBS!

I get a review of my performance over the past year and given a raise (or not) depending on how I did. If customers complained about me, if I screwed off, if I did anything substandard I know I won't be getting a raise or at least not one I'd want.

In the unions you get paid the same no matter how good or crappy of a job you do. You get paid by seniority and title PERIOD. Why go above and beyond if your going to earn the same amount and when threatening to bring the nations mail to a halt will get you the raise anyway? Its basically legal blackmail.

I also wonder why I must pay postage at all if my tax dollars are already going to them...
I hate them so much. My mentally ill mail handler looks through my packages and steas my flyers with coupons. Besides that when I do complain or send a formal complaint they do absolutely nothing except act stupid. Yes we do pay a ridiculous amount each year for these people to be nosey and disgruntle. I would love to get every single person in the country that hates them together to contribute five dollars each in a lawsuit for their obvious MONOPOLY. How many people do you know would choose an alternative mail carrier just from their bad experience with USPS? That is not capitalism and P.O. boxes should be free as well. If there was an alternative mail carrier the USPS would be out of business but instead we get these little morons coming to our inhabited locations bringing us personal items and also carrying them out. They are absolutely untrustworthy and beyond incompetent. Many of them should be in jail just for their grubby hands. It is a federal offense to mess with the mail.
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So I get USPS Form #3849 left on my front door and I take a look at it. The title (in bold) says "Sorry We Missed You! We Re-Deliver for You". I'm an IT Engineer, so I'm not a complete moron (unless you ask my wife...LOL!!), but after reading and re-reading several times I can't make heads or tails out of what the CRAP the form's trying to communicate, so I called the local PO# on the back of the form. I asked 'Bill' (who was as grumpy as EVERY OTHER PO EMPLOYEE) what action needs to be taken, if any? Bill replies with one, monotoned, reply "We never re-deliver". That's IT??!! Nothing more, Bill???!!! You leave me a form that says "We Re-Deliver for You", but then you clearly tell me you DON'T re-deliver???!!! WOW!!! Just sums-up the entire organization...HOLY-FRIGGN-CRAP!!! So, it sounds like I'll be making a trip to my friendly local Colorado Springs, CO post office this afternoon...oh JOY!!! ;-)
I was threatened with being arrested because I wrote to the customer service that is listed on USPS.com because I paid to have a package shipped Express mail and paid extra for Sunday delivery, and I got a notice at 0730 AM saying they missed me. I was wide awake, and there was also 2 other adults and my 10 year old nephew watching t.v, and even though the carrier said she pounded on the dorr for 10 minutes, then waited a few minutes and pounded again for 10 minutes, and my dogs did not bark, and we did not hear a sound. I wrote and told the customer service that I did not want those morons to say they will deliver my package again, and 6 hours after I got my package which was a $2000.00 Gold Coin, some guy from the local post office and said he got 2 emails from me and that the woman was nice enough to come in on her day off, and bring the package out, I told him I paid $13.00 on top of the $22.00 for Sunday delivery so she was not doing me any favors, then he said he had a problem with me, I said I have a problem with you, and he stated several times I know where you live, I have your address right here, and I told him if he wants to meet me, I will meet him anywhere, then he said "I can have your butt drug off to jail,do you understand" , I said that works 2 ways, you called me,6 hours after I left the office that you work in, and he repeated that he can have my butt drug off to jail, and I said go ahead. I never threatened anyone, I just wrote to customer service all I got was priority service at best, and I will pick up the coin myself, I do not want those damn morons coming out again and not even tapping on the door. I did not call the local post office. I wrote back to customer service and told them how I was threatened, and I got someone elses mail in my box today, and I kept it to give it to a postal inspector. The USPS is full of liars and theives. They do not bring insured items to the door. I live in a rural area, and they drive from the right side of the car and they do not like getting out or making turns.Yet they raise the cost of postage ever few months. I will be using Fed Ex, or UPS for overnite delivery. They are cheaper and much more reliable. I really feel for the guy who cannot get his mail. I had to find a 4 year old phone book so I could call the local post office to ask if my Express Mail Item Was There. I can only get a toll free number that you can only get a computer generated voice, you cannot get a live agent.
Oh my god. They absolutely suck! I ordered a plant two weeks ago and it’s still not here! It shipped last friday and the place i ordered it from is only one state away! it doesnt take almost 7 days to get here! ive been tracking it and it took 3 days to get from one town to the next town over! im so pissed off right now i want to march down there and be like ‘WHERE IS MY PLANT!?” its probably dead by now! ugh i HATE USPS!
Tell me about it!

Cars run on gasoline, jets run on jet fuel and the post office runs on apathy and stupidity. A bad combo for those of us on the civilian side of their counter top.

I have been shipping for 30 years, but what I am about to tell you made me madder than I have ever been.

I own an online business and I pride myself in same day shipping. Up until very recently, I offered USPS Express as a shipping option, but the headaches from the way the post office handles their "express" packages finally forced me to remove it as an option for shipping.

25% of the express overnight packages show up a day late, either taking 2 days or 3 days (to a beyond point) when it should take 1 to 2 days.

To make matters worse, and why I am angry is, my post office unit manager actually told me "we can't pay you refunds on all these packages". They actually stopped paying the refunds on their "money back guarantee" for late deliveries. I obtain the refunds for my customers because it's part of my customer service. It's easier for my customers if I do it for them. So since the PO stopped paying out on their refunds, for the last year I have been covering the refunds myself, out of my pocket. Well, no more of that!!

To add to the insanity, check this out.

In August of 09' a new problem arose, that still continues to this day. My customers were getting a postal notice in their mailbox instructing them that they must come to the PO to pick up their express package. There is no reason my customers need to anything but sit back, relax and wait for the mail to arrive IN THEIR MAILBOX. I was obeying all the PO rules for delivery. Correct labeling from my online postage company (endicia), correct postage paid, a "Sender Has Waived Signature Requirements-Please Deliver" sticker (in fluorescent yellow), a known safe place for delivery (mailbox). Yet my customers are being asked to come to the PO to pick the express package up. Why?? Ready for the answer?

When the postal delivery person attempts to make a delivery of an express package after the noted delivery time (noon or 3pm), they use the "no one home" escape letter (postal notice to pick the package up)to get out of paying the refund!

It's hard for me to believe that our United States Post Office looks at their customers as "the enemy" but that is exactly how we are treated.

Personally, I think the USPS should simply get rid on the Express refund, and treat it like USPS Priority.... delivery time is simply an estimate. Get rid of the refund policy and stop the expectation by the customer that they are competing with FedEX or UPS. Because there is no way they can come close to FedEX or UPS.
I used first class mail it took one day to get to st.louis! it was a package.

Here is the tracking confirmation:

Label/Receipt Number: 0309 0330 0000 2029 3440
Scheduled for Delivery: Saturday, May 15, 2010
Class: First-Class Mail®
Service(s): Delivery Confirmation™
Status: Delivered

Your item was delivered at 4:17 AM on May 15, 2010 in SAINT LOUIS, MO 63166.

Enter Label/Receipt Number.

Detailed Results:

Delivered, May 15, 2010, 4:17 am, SAINT LOUIS, MO 63166
Arrival at Post Office, May 15, 2010, 4:16 am, SAINT LOUIS, MO 63166
Processed through Sort Facility, May 15, 2010, 1:52 am, SAINT LOUIS, MO 63155
Processed through Sort Facility, May 14, 2010, 3:28 pm, SPRINGFIELD, IL 62703
Acceptance, May 14, 2010, 10:47 am, MACON, IL 62544
Acceptance, May 14, 2010, 10:09 am, MACON, IL 62544
Sucks bad for eBay right now.

The USPS does suck. I order a lot of books off of half.com. Once, they attempted to deliver a book while I was away, and left a notice for me to leave instructions. So, I went online and stated that I would pick up the package at the post office. However, they carrier just came back the next day to deliver it, AND LEFT IT AT THE DOOR OF MY UPSTAIRS NEIGHBOR! So, I didn't get the $90 book until 2 weeks after I was supposed to, when my neighbor threw it at my door. Today, I found out that another book I ordered, which was marked 'delivered' by their tracker, was shipped back to the seller. The carrier had scanned it as delivered, but did not leave the package. The post office then says the carrier 'should have left a notice.' However, I never received a notice, and now have to re-order my textbook 3 weeks into class.
I'm adding to the list. The Carnegie Post Office sucks as well. Within a space of about 3 weeks I am missing 2 packages that when tracked it shows delivered. I'm fighting to get information on the second one now. Oh and when it happened the first time I spoke to someone at the post office they were supposed to call me back after they spoke with the carrier and never did. I called back to follow up and still no one called me back. When I spoke with the main customer service number today and informed them of this they said if it happens again to call them back and have an investigation. So far my mail is ok but my packages are not always being delivered and these are items I'm paying for. From now on I will pay the extra shipping charges for UPS. And they wonder why their business is slow! And my mail is put in secured locked boxes so no it's not being stolen off my doorstep. They are just horrible.
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