AMAZON’S PRIME GETTING LESS PRIME

It’s a “thing.” A disease. Amazon has caught it. Your company is fine, no problems, so why not create a problem? Nothing livens up a customer relationship more than unsolvable problems. That’s what I always say!

They decided a while ago that they needed to cut delivery costs so they decided to get into the delivery business. Just when we finally got U.P.S. to find our house and know what to do when they get here. Exactly when Amazon decided to start using deliverers who haven’t a clue about — anything.

The new people clearly don’t know the area. They also don’t know the roads, so they send delivery trucks to our house. At night.

We live on a dark and winding road that runs through the woods. Houses are randomly placed on either side. A few houses are close to the road, but most are up or down a long, dark driveway. Even with lights on, our private drives are not easy to navigate. They are close to impossible to manage on ice and snow. At night, if you know the terrain well, you can handle it … but you need to know the place or you’ll wind up in the woods or a ditch. If you try to leave your truck on the road, the likelihood is it will get hit by another vehicle. There are no pull offs. You can’t safely park on that road.

The road doesn’t say “no parking” because it doesn’t need to say it. It’s obvious to any driver that unless you can pull into a driveway, this is a bad place to park. During the day, if your vehicle is big enough, you can leave it there for a few minutes, but it’s dangerous at best, lethal at worst. This road is one of the worst roads in the state — as in one the highest rates of death while driving. It’s the curves and turns.

The road twists and isn’t properly banked. There are no streetlights. Intersections and driveways aren’t marked. The road tends to iciness. The snow cleaning crews dare not use salt because the water level is high; everyone has a well. Salt in your well is the end of your well. It could be the end of the local aquifer, so we don’t use salt. The result are icy patches of two types: the regular white kind of ice and the ugly, invisible black ice that will twirl your car in circles before you hit a tree.

One year, Garry hit the ice, did a double roll, then climbed a telephone pole in my Acura. He got one ugly concussion, but because he was driving my Acura and wearing a seat-belt, he was okay. The Acura was not okay, not ever. It was the last really nice car we owned and it reminded me that ones car is not just cool wheels. Sometimes, it’s life or death.

Leaving digression behind …

I bought a new comforter and cover for our bed. Not expensive, but warm and wide enough so we can stop having desperate middle of the night battles for temporary possession of our covers. According to Amazon, it was due for delivery today. Before 8 pm. It gets dark by 4:30. After dark, it’s really very dark.

The oaks are tall and surround the road. Even when there’s a full moon, you won’t see much.



When we first moved here, one of the first things I said was “Wow, it’s dark here!” They’ve added a few reflectors here and there, but mostly, it’s still really dark and since most of us live a couple of hundred feet back from the road, not a good place to try to deliver packages. Not only is that a ridiculous idea, it’s also a dangerous one. I want my stuff, but I don’t want anyone dying to get it here.

As is typical of AMZL, Amazon’s “own” delivery service, they came by after six, sent the message that the package was delivered, and left. I was sure they had NOT delivered the package because the dogs didn’t go outside. If there had been a real delivery, they would have been outside telling the other neighborhood dogs all about it.

Garry said he’d go check and I said I didn’t think he would find anything, but he went and didn’t find anything. Amazon’s “Logistics” Service has done this at least five other times. They say they delivered the package but haven’t, but we search the property, in the dark, with flashlights, only to discover they were “just kidding.” Just messing with our heads. Maybe they’ll deliver it tomorrow. Maybe Monday. Maybe never. Hard to tell.

I called and said “Do not send those “logistics” people with our packages. They can’t find our house. Please use UPS.”

Because UPS knows the area, would never attempt to deliver anything here at night and have finally gotten it together to put the packages next to — or even INSIDE — the garage, which is really a shop, but I’m sure they don’t care. But they eventually explained that they couldn’t promise who would deliver the packages and we were just going to have to take “pot luck.”

Pot luck? Seriously? I pay for pot luck?

One of the things one of the many letters i got from their customer service this evening said they understood that delivery affects “the entire Amazon experience.” Not true.


Delivery is the entire Amazon experience.


If they can’t deliver on time, there is no experience. It’s not like we shop at Amazon because we like strolling the aisles.

We shop there because they deliver. We live in an area where other kinds of shopping are hard to find. We’ve got Walmart. There’s a Target up in Millbury. You can buy clothing at Kohl’s. Otherwise, there are online shops and of course, Amazon.

But if Amazon can’t promise delivery within the 48-hours they have promised to Prime customers, then there is no Amazon either.

Amazon has never grasped this isn’t a suburban neighborhood. We lack those tidy, well-lit streets with convenient parallel parking, sidewalks and neat little driveways lined along the street. All the stuff you expect in a “neighborhood,” we don’t have. We are an area, not a neighborhood. I’m not sure they have a basic concept of “country.”

In the end, either I’m getting a refund (which isn’t exactly what I want), or they will deliver the products. Eventually. I’m frankly not sure which. I called them five times, was disconnected four times. They tried to call me back twice, but their calls wouldn’t go through. I talked to a lot of people and got different answers from each.

I’m pretty sure I’m going to get the package or the money. Moderately sure.

28 thoughts on “AMAZON’S PRIME GETTING LESS PRIME

  1. Amazon does not operate in Switzerland, I have to order through amazon.de which is Getmany. Books are no problem, either real books or upload on the Kindle. I can forget clothing „not available in Switzerland“ because we are not in the EU. If they deliver, then by post. The staff of Amazon went on strike in Germany on black Friday. You seem to be living in the twilight zone and it must be annoying.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It does feel like that. We live in a place that most Americans who don’t live in a similar place, don’t understand at all. They can’t even imagine a place without sidewalks or streetlights. Or tidy little houses on neat little plots all lined up along a curb. What curb? There are curbs?

      It is weird because not all that long ago, MOST people lived like this. How quickly they forget!

      Liked by 2 people

    • I was doing OK until they suggested we look further when they had ALREADY TOLD ME they hadn’t delivered the package. Poor Garry, out there in the dark with a flashlight trying to find a package that isn’t there!

      Like

  2. I haven’t had a problem specifically with Amazon’s own delivery service, probably because I live in a city. But I have had more “We’re sorry that your delivery has been delayed” emails from Amazon just this year than in all my prior years of buying stuff from Amazon.

    Like

    • They aren’t getting stuff delivered on time. I’ve noticed that at least half my stuff shows up late. The thing is, they won’t get away with this indefinitely. Eventually people will object to paying for a service they’re not getting Like me.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This post reminded me of a forgettable 80’s Chevy Chase movie called “Funny Farm.” One of the film’s running gags was that the farm Chevy and whoever played his wife bought was so far off the beaten path, that the mailman had to drive way out of his way just to deliver to their mailbox… and out of anger would always just pitch their mail out the window as he drove by without even stopping. I can see the Amazon delivery guy thrown miles off his easy peasy suburban route whizzing by your place and just slinging the package out the window at some random point along the way. Delivery confirmed.

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  4. For the cost of the Prime membership (I have one, so I know what you probably pay) they (Amazon) best step up their game. It’s too expensive to dick about like that and potentially have your merchandise flung in a ditch because the driver/deliverer was too frightened or stressed out to remember GPS and it’s wonderful benefits (most of the time) Maybe in your neck of the actual woods GPS doesn’t work too well? I live in an urban area and the delivery people (UPS, Fed-Ex etc) still have a difficult time finding my home. And you’ve explained why there was that odd noise on my porch the other night and I went out to find my Prime package flung at the door (it was lying on the mat, but from the previous racket out there, somebody apparently threw it at the door). Given it had electronic candles in it, I’m surprised they weren’t damaged. And I want to know why it’s become off limits to PHONE if one gets lost on a rural road or in the dark? I know the phone number is there, right on the shipping label. And cell phones are so common…well I suppose Amazon is going to become the victim of the growing lack of common sense and good customer service that has been covering the land. I’m just sorry you haven’t gotten your bedding…it must get cold in those woods at night..

    Like

    • In this case, the driver got here. Looked at the long, dark driveway — and that was WITH the lights on — and knew he couldn’t do it. Of course he couldn’t. UPS would have known not to send a truck into this area at night. It’s very dark, roads are narrow and twisty and we all live pretty far back from the road — often our houses are essentially invisible. It can be complicated during the day, but it’s ridiculous and possibly dangerous at night.

      I would have been OK even given that this would bring the package to me a couple of days late. Again. But then he clicked it off as delivered. Which meant Garry was up searching the woods with a flashlight and THAT was not okay, especially since Amazon knew it was not true. Since when did lying to your customers become the right thing to do?

      They’ve got a monopoly — but it isn’t a monopoly. They have no “legal” grip on their customers, so they can become non-monopolized pretty fast. We are customers and we aren’t on contract like we are with cell phones. This IS a free market.

      They could have called us. Emailed us. This isn’t the first or fifth time. We’ve been out there in boots and coats in the snow and slush searching for packages that aren’t there. If they can’t hire people capable of doing the job, we will somehow manage to find other ways to get our stuff. And I’m still unclear on what’s going on. After I don’t even KNOW how many emails from Amazon over the past couple of days.

      Like

  5. On Friday and Saturday, I placed two orders through Amazon. They combined the two into one, and at that time they promised delivery today (Sunday) by 8 pm. Tracking shows that it’s been “out for delivery” with AMZL since 7:39 am — it’s now 8:20 pm and the package still has not arrived. Tomorrow I’ll have to figure out how to get more info, complain, etc. I live within 3 miles of a UPS regional distribution center, and they know the area well — AMZL looks as if it is coming from LAX, and they don’t likely know the area, particularly in the dark (even though it’s easy in the daytime, the streets and homes are not well marked at night). I wonder if the package will arrive in time for me to take it with me at Christmastime!

    Liked by 1 person

    • And now, at 8:30, I’ve finally received the following message:

      “Now expected November 27 – November 29
      We’re sorry your package is late
      We’re working to get your package back on track.
      Please come back Thursday if you still don’t have it and we’ll help you out.
      Was expected today by 8PM”

      I’m glad I didn’t need it today! Will look for it between now and Thursday (black eye and all!)

      Like

    • Yup, that’s MY story too. PLEASE complain. Make them refund your money AND deliver the products. If we don’t fight back on this, they will become increasingly useless. If they can’t deliver, they are worthless to all of us. But do complain. I know it’s a pain in the ass, but if you don’t, they don’t get it. I got my money back — twice — and I think I’m still going to get the delivery, should AMZL actually ever find my house.

      You”re lucky they admitted they didn’t deliver it. I was told they HAD delivered it … and we spent a lot of time looking for it.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I don’t think I can complain just yet — the original delivery promise was for 11/29 – 12/4 — not prime or even 2-day. It wasn’t until I placed a second order with the same unspecified delivery request that they combined the two, updated delivery and promised today. So much, though, for their improved delivery service that’s supposed to be better than last year;s!

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        • Well, if they keep this up, I’m going to be looking for other sources for stuff. There ARE other places, but it was nice having everything under one roof, so to speak. But they can’t keep playing these games with me and I really resent the lying.

          Liked by 1 person

          • I totally agree, although they did at least tell me what to expect now, rather than simply not delivering. I could have ordered both orders through Barnes and Noble and picked them up there (or maybe even had them delivered to my home) with no delivery fee. And both UPS and FedEx deliver here daily without problems! Amazon is building a huge distribution Center and hiring something like 3000 people in San Bernardino, about 50 miles from here — maybe that will help?

            Like

  6. I can definitely understand and appreciate your problem, though I’d still enjoy living someplace like yours. We can never get regular mail and I’ve had to rent a mailbox in a local shopping mall UPS store so I can get my netflix and bills. I don’t care about the bills but I NEED MY NETFLIX!

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  7. Amazon is set to launch here any minute. They have meanwhile collected ‘pricepoints on everything’ so they can set their own prices 30% lower, saying quite openly, ‘We are going to destroy the retail environment in Australia’. And then without question avoid paying Australian taxes, as does Google among many other multinational companies. Nice for Jeff Bezos, not so rosy for the Australian economy.
    This is the sort of thinking that makes me glad I’m old and will be gone.

    Like

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