With Christmas creeping up, delivery companies will be feeling the strain this time of year. More and more people are buying their gifts online, relying on the courier chosen by the retailer to deliver their orders in time. Whether ordering presents to their own addresses or sending them to the recipient, customers will expect delivery conditions as promised. However, some couriers frequently let retailers and their customers down. Due to the increase in demand, it’s likely to only get worse at this time of year.
The Problem With Yodel
Despite consistently negative feedback over the last several years, many retailers still use Yodel to deliver their goods. Yodel won the not-so-coveted title of Worst Parcel Delivery Firm in a poll of 11,000 consumers on MoneySavingExpert.com following the Christmas 2016 period. There’s been no end of news coverage for ridiculous scenarios involving incompetent Yodel workers. Sometimes there can be some humour in the situation, like leaving a parcel “under the doormat” as a safe place. Most of the time, customers are left dismayed by the shoddy service, and empty-handed as parcels often go missing.
The poor service even led to the creation of a website named “Yodel Hell” which documents the company’s worst offences. Recently, Yodel made the news yet again for more delivery driver shenanigans. These included dumping a parcel over a fence and shattering the contents, as well as carelessly trying to throw a parcel onto a balcony. It seems like Yodel drivers didn’t learn after one threw a parcel onto a roof two years ago. Last Christmas, a Yodel driver even stole other parcels when delivering to a customer’s address.
If the problem is the behaviour of the drivers, then should the company itself be getting all this bad press? Well, yes, because no matter how many customers complain, Yodel does not seem to care. The company doesn’t appear to have made any effort to improve either their delivery services or their hiring and training process. Many people who complain using the customer service helpline feel the response was inadequate. An apology or a bouquet of flowers doesn’t fix a broken or missing item.
Know Your Consumer Rights
So, when Yodel’s delivery service inevitably fails to impress, what do you do? A lot of the time, Yodel refuses to claim responsibility in the case of a missing parcel. If they refuse to help, what you need to remember is that your contract as a customer is actually with the retailer. When the delivery service damages the goods or fails to provide them, the retailer will be liable to refund you or provide a replacement.
The founder of MoneySavingExpert.com, Martin Lewis, says customers need to “complain to the retailer and make them justify why they use firms with dire reputations. If they won’t, we must stop buying online from firms using crap services.” However, this isn’t always an option. The specific item you want to buy may only be available from a retailer who uses Yodel. Retailers usually choose Yodel to keep their costs down. Yet in the long run, the amount these companies pay out in refunds and replacements surely must create a loss. Not to mention the poor service putting customers off ordering from them ever again.
Remember that you also have the right to return goods for a refund within the seller’s returns policy. Whether you ordered from Amazon, Argos, Boots, or any other retailer using Yodel, always contact the retailer directly to inform them of your situation. Even if the goods aren’t damaged, but the packaging was, you should still be entitled to some kind of compensation. Sometimes, unfortunately, retailers won’t accept your word that you never received your parcel. If Yodel marked it as delivered, even though there’s no sign of it, you may end up out of pocket.
In the case of a missing parcel and no support from the retailer, you’ll have to escalate your complaints. The website Resolver will give you information on your rights and how to complain to Yodel. If you’re not having much luck, follow MoneySavingExpert’s useful guide for complaints escalation. Even if you end up taking them to small claims court, you deserve compensation. Don’t let careless companies ruin your Christmas! If you need to make a complaint to a delivery service besides Yodel, you can find out how here.