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How long would you wait for a missing USPS package to resurface?


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Feb 25, 2012, 9:39pm   #1
mdmd's Avatar
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I bought an item on 2/13 with BIN and paid promptly. The tracking showed that it was shipped out and sorted through a USPS processing facility the same day via USPS Priority Mail. That's the last of the tracking by USPS. When nothing had shown up by 2/20, I emailed the seller. She told me to give it another day due to the holiday weekend and if nothing showed up, she would follow up with USPS. I've had to send her more emails asking for updates. Each time, she responds with something like, 'oh, I'll check on it today.' Finally, I sent her an email yesterday saying I would give it until 2/27 (14 days after payment was made), before I open a case with eBay.

Her response today is as follows:
"If you file a case with eBay, it will count against me as a seller. I am doing everything possible to resolve this. Also, the jacket is not lost - it will either end up getting delivered to you or returned back to me - and if it doesn't in the next couple of weeks, you will get a refund.

I know it is really frustrating having to wait but this is not my fault either. I appreciate your patience.
"

I've never had this happen to me, but it does seem that the package is lost at this point (maybe not forever, but definitely right now). Even if it does show up weeks from now, should she be allowed to keep my money during this time? Also, I feel like I've had to practically harass her to get updates, as it really has not been forthcoming.

I don't want to be a PITA buyer, so would appreciate some advice from you all. TIA.
Feb 25, 2012, 9:48pm   #2
BeenBurned's Avatar
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While I sympathize with her (and I'm assuming both you and seller are in US), I don't think you're unreasonable in opening a dispute 2 weeks after a priority shipment was made.

My response would be different if it were parcel post. I'm sorry this will ding her account but 2 weeks is a reasonable amount of time to have been patient.
Feb 25, 2012, 9:55pm   #3
mdmd's Avatar
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Originally Posted by BeenBurned
While I sympathize with her (and I'm assuming both you and seller are in US), I don't think you're unreasonable in opening a dispute 2 weeks after a priority shipment was made.

My response would be different if it were parcel post. I'm sorry this will ding her account but 2 weeks is a reasonable amount of time to have been patient.
Thanks, BB. And yes, we are both in the US. The package was going from LA to Chicago, so I was willing to give it some extra time, but I think at this point, it's officially lost.
Feb 25, 2012, 10:25pm   #4
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Did she insure it? If so, that may be why she wants to wait and see. I can see why you would file; maybe this will put a fire under her in order to avoid that.

In December, I shipped an item and it shows arrival at her PO and that is it. I am so grateful she did not file a claim. I am sure she received it (she never stated otherwise) and the PO messed up (big surprise, not).
Feb 25, 2012, 10:42pm   #5
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Once I purchased an item from a seller in Chicago. (I'm in Brooklyn, NY) And the tracking was never updated for 2 weeks since acceptance. Then it took an another week to reach to my zip code PO.

Sometimes I got packages whose tracking were never updated even after delivery.

USPS is very very bad with tracking but never failed to deliver packages to me. I'm fairly sure that your item is coming to you but I understand your frustration. You have the right to file INR claim by now. You can assume the seller you would close the case or resend payment (if the refund was made) in case you receive the package.
Feb 25, 2012, 11:13pm   #6
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I generally wait 3-4 weeks before filing an Item Not Received. I have had a few Priority packages take that long to get to me, and even longer on a few occasions. I don't file an INR if the seller is at all responsive answering my e-mails, and if by the 4-week-no-show deadline they have offered a refund. Unless the seller hasn't bothered to buy tracking for the package and there really isn't any way to find out where it went or even verify that it was shipped in the first place.

I once purchased a bag from Anthropologie and USPS kept bouncing the package between the sorting facility in my town and another sorting facility in another state. Like a ping-pong ball. I called Anthropologie and they said there was nothing they could do about it, and asked me to wait a couple more weeks to see if it eventually arrived. It did.

USPS is in the process of major downsizing, shutting down sorting facilities around the country and doing major layoffs. I've read USPS officials quoted as saying that Priority will not be as quick as it has been in the past.

Personally I would give it another week then file an INR if the package still hasn't shown up and the seller is balking at going down to the post office and raising a stink (sometimes that apparently does work) and refunding your money.
Feb 25, 2012, 11:47pm   #7
mdmd's Avatar
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I've been fairly lucky with USPS in the past, so I guess it was just my time.... Before TPF, I used to ship expensive items sold on eBay without signature confirmation and insurance all the time, so I'm also grateful that nothing bad ever happened to my packages as a seller.

This was less than $250, so I doubt that she shipped with anything extra like insurance. Though I really wouldn't know as I've only gotten minimal information from her. Not sure how much she's even pursued this, aside from making a phone call and idly waiting for someone to call her back all week.

I'll give it another few days...though doesn't an eBay case take some time to resolve anyway (i.e., seller is given some time to respond)? I just don't want to be waiting *months* for either jacket or money to finally show up.
Feb 26, 2012, 12:10am   #8
noshoepolish's Avatar
Addicted to Coach
21 days. Post office won't do anything until that time is up.
Feb 26, 2012, 12:21am   #9
jenaywins's Avatar
♥ Duh - winning! ♥
I had an Express package - yes Express - get lost for about a month, then out of the blue it showed up.

I would cut the seller some slack if you can afford to wait and give it a couple of weeks. Things happen - USPS is far from perfect. In fact, I refuse to use them as a shipping service period. Too many issues and delays with zero regard/explanation.
Feb 26, 2012, 12:23am   #10
mdmd's Avatar
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Originally Posted by noshoepolish
21 days. Post office won't do anything until that time is up.
Hi noshoepolish, what do you mean by not "do anything"? You mean, they're not trying to find it, either? So the seller is stuck?
Feb 26, 2012, 12:26am   #11
mdmd's Avatar
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Originally Posted by jenaywins
I had an Express package - yes Express - get lost for about a month, then out of the blue it showed up.

I would cut the seller some slack if you can afford to wait and give it a couple of weeks. Things happen - USPS is far from perfect. In fact, I refuse to use them as a shipping service period. Too many issues and delays with zero regard/explanation.
Thanks for your response, Jenay. I saw your thread from awhile back and was wondering myself whatever happened to that package. So it showed up on the buyer's doorstep? Or back with you? Did USPS refund your shipping fees?
Feb 26, 2012, 12:40am   #12
jenaywins's Avatar
♥ Duh - winning! ♥
Originally Posted by mdmd
Thanks for your response, Jenay. I saw your thread from awhile back and was wondering myself whatever happened to that package. So it showed up on the buyer's doorstep? Or back with you? Did USPS refund your shipping fees?
Yes, they refunded my shipping fees in full. I had escalated to my local Consumer Affairs office, as I was understandably p*ssed. Luckily, I got the most patient, sweet buyer in the world. We were in daily contact and she never filed a case. In the end, I issued her a voluntary refund and figured I would deal with finding the package, recouping funds, etc. The tracking mysteriously updated two days after I refunded her, and the package was delivered. At that point she wasn't even sure she still wanted the item, but ended up deciding to keep it and re-issued payment. I got lucky all the way around.

Anyhow, from what the man at Consumer Affairs told me, a number of packages from my area to NY had gone missing and suddenly surfaced at the same time, so someone along the way dropped the ball. Packages do not become permanently lost very often, but the bins USPS uses for sorting can be very deep, and packages sometimes do get lost at the bottom.

Now, don't close the 45-day window you have to file a Paypal claim by any means, but again if you can live without the item & the money for a couple weeks, cut your seller some slack. I can imagine that she/he is just as stressed as you, and would be out the money AND the item if you were to file. It just sucks all around. I hate USPS.
Feb 26, 2012, 1:05am   #13
BigPurseSue's Avatar
Member
Originally Posted by jenaywins
Packages do not become permanently lost very often, but the bins USPS uses for sorting can be very deep, and packages sometimes do get lost at the bottom.
I've heard that from postal employees too! That and how when the bins are being lifted onto the trucks they sometimes tip over and everything scatters on the ground.

I once had a "lost" eBay package show up in my mailbox five months later. I shipped it back to the seller because she had since reimbursed me. The package got lost again on the return trip and didn't show up in her mailbox for three months.

Honestly though I've had few problems with USPS over the years compared to other shippers. It's FedX that I've had major headaches with. I always cringe when I see a retailer is using FedX.
Feb 26, 2012, 2:20am   #14
l
Member
Originally Posted by mdmd
I bought an item on 2/13 with BIN and paid promptly. The tracking showed that it was shipped out and sorted through a USPS processing facility the same day via USPS Priority Mail. That's the last of the tracking by USPS. When nothing had shown up by 2/20, I emailed the seller. She told me to give it another day due to the holiday weekend and if nothing showed up, she would follow up with USPS. I've had to send her more emails asking for updates. Each time, she responds with something like, 'oh, I'll check on it today.' Finally, I sent her an email yesterday saying I would give it until 2/27 (14 days after payment was made), before I open a case with eBay.

Her response today is as follows:
"If you file a case with eBay, it will count against me as a seller. I am doing everything possible to resolve this. Also, the jacket is not lost - it will either end up getting delivered to you or returned back to me - and if it doesn't in the next couple of weeks, you will get a refund.

I know it is really frustrating having to wait but this is not my fault either. I appreciate your patience.
"

I've never had this happen to me, but it does seem that the package is lost at this point (maybe not forever, but definitely right now). Even if it does show up weeks from now, should she be allowed to keep my money during this time? Also, I feel like I've had to practically harass her to get updates, as it really has not been forthcoming.

I don't want to be a PITA buyer, so would appreciate some advice from you all. TIA.
you should get her a chance. this happened to me; I shipped the item priority and the address was wrong. I got item return back to me. my buyer told me she wanted a refund and I gave her her money back.
Feb 26, 2012, 9:48am   #15
noshoepolish's Avatar
Addicted to Coach
If you walk into USPS and tell them your package is missing, they will not help you out until the 21 days have passed. There is not much you can do but wait. You can refuse the package and ask the seller for a refund if you wish but I think you should be fair to the seller and give it the 21 days. I had a package go from PA to Indiana, then out to California then back to Indiana where it was supposed to go. Took 3 weeks.
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