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boristhemini
12th Dec 2007, 16:28
Had a postal delivery notification card pushed through my letter box today stating to collect an item as there was insufficient postage on it. Thinking it may be a heavyish parcel we were waiting for, I went to collect it. It was a Christmas card from a cousin. She had put a 1st class stamp on it. The card was 175mm square. Apparently the maximum for standard 1st class is 165mm x 240mm x 5mm. So just a piddling 10mm too "big" on one side then. The charge.... 1.06! Yup, 6p extra postage and a 1 handling charge. The chappie behind the counter said it was plain robbery. He reckoned they are currently getting about 200+ Xmas cards a day with insufficient postage, just in this one tiny little office. Nice little earner.
So, if you want to annoy Mother In Law, Ex Spouse etc this Xmas, you know what to do!

Wasn't a particularly nice card either.

G-CPTN
12th Dec 2007, 16:51
This was highlighted recently on the Beeb.
Apparently last year such shortcomings were overlooked 'in the spirit of Christmas', but this year they are taking prisoners (and collecting ransoms).

Practice Auto 3,2,1
12th Dec 2007, 18:24
Could they not issue a special Christmas Card Stamp that costs a few pennies more than our bog standard 1st class one? To be put on all enveloped cards?

Oh no, course not, they'd loose money :hmm:

airship
12th Dec 2007, 18:33
The bigger the card, the more sincere are those Xmas, B'day or whatever wishes... :}

chiglet
12th Dec 2007, 20:52
G/f got a brochure with the 1.06 sticker...she wasn't in, so just put through the door....:hmm:
watp,iktch

unclenelli
12th Dec 2007, 21:10
I received a Notice of Prosecution for speeding at the end of October.

I wasn't worried as W Yorks police stated in the letter that they realised I was not the driver as I traded the car in back in April, but I was still the last recorded keeper (Dealer sent the car to auction, and the scum who bought it never registered it, so if any one sees a black Citroen Xantia 2.0 HDi Exclusive W622RNM in the West Yorks area, let the police know - they probably don't have insurance either!!!!! - I'll stop the thread slip now.)

So I signed the form with the dealer's details on and posted it off 1st class on 1st Nov. Just over a week later I phoned to check they'd got it and I was definitely in the clear, but they hadn't received it. Luckily I'd copied it and was able to send another copy of the form again by 1st class post (and I was getting pissed off about being an innocent motorist having to pay postage for sorting out someone else's crime)

Then at the end of November, I got a blue (computer generated) final reminder (the original letter had said I should ignore this if I couldn't provide info on the driver), so I checked to see if they'd received it again - No, but they were aware I was not the driver, so I was in the clear.

I said I'd fax the form to them, and took it to work with me 2 days later (I don't have a fax at home). On the morning if the day in between calling and faxing, I got an envelope through the post.
When I opened it, inside was my original form sent to W Yorks Police which had been opened to obtain my home address and return it to me.
Royal Mail had seen that it was:
1. A police form
2. I had 28 days to respond or get fined/taken to court
but they had sent it back to me 30 days after I posted it - outside my reply time, and had stickered to outside with a 1.06 short postage sticker (6p short postage and 1 handling fee)

So, I've decided to do nothing.
The police now have their form by fax, and since I'd phoned them several times and they'd logged the calls, were happy that I'd taken steps to inform them inside the time limit.
Royal Mail haven't knocked on the door asking for 1.06.
Royal Mail haven't yet sent back the second copy of the form, but I'm expecting it soon with another 1.06 sticker.
How do Royal Mail expect to make any money by posting the letter anyway (back to my house instead of it's destination) and supplying a larger envelope to put it in - TWICE!!!

So beware of Royal Mail
In this case it could have cost me a fine of upto 1000, Points on my Licence, A day in court, Criminal reocord for failing to provide the drivers details (which I don't know) etc etc

I don't think I'll be sending much post in the future unless I post it at a Post Office (If I Can Find One!!), but even that doesn't work all the time.
In September I posted 2 identical letters recorded delivery. When I checked on line, 1 was delivered the next day and (according to the internet) the second still hasn't been delivered!! A phone call to the recipient showed it had been delivered the same day and the other letter.

Don't trust them with anything!!!! Always call and check it got there!

west lakes
12th Dec 2007, 21:17
Local county council officer posted 12 identical letters at the post office, weighed & checked for size
4 of the recipiants got an excess charge for them


Absolutely don't trust them!

frostbite
12th Dec 2007, 22:44
They lost a package I posted a week before one of the early strikes. Fortunately, I obtained a certficate of posting, so I sent off their claim form.

That was about two months ago and, aside from an acknowledgement, I've received nothing. They'd better not send me stamps in payment!

takeonme
12th Dec 2007, 23:02
Here's a tip.

For free postage why don't you try putting your address on the front of the envelope, and the recipients address on the back. Then bung it in the post box without a stamp and viola, its returned to sender who is exactly who you wanted the letter to go to in the first place.

Never tried it so dont actually know if it works.

Crosshair
12th Dec 2007, 23:19
I think the state of our post offices is reflective of a larger trend.

Used to be, the post office was where you went to send things by post. They had quite a few businesslike, government-issue writing desks with pens on chains. They had some post code directories. They had stands containing applications for passports, information about government programs, the draft, that kind of thing. You got things done there and you got on your way.

Now, the one writing desk is hidden among the stacks of Chinese toys, crappy electronics, and the giant queue. There are plenty of people who still want to use it, so it's crowded. Of course, the post office is too busy selling Mickey Mouse neckties to actually clean the place, so the area is filled with scraps of paper and miscellaneous detritus.

If post offices are centers of (and reflections of) the community -- often the main ones in small towns -- how are we to have respect for our communities?

This is poorly written but you get my idea.

mary_hinge
13th Dec 2007, 08:25
For free postage why don't you try putting your address on the front of the envelope, and the recipients address on the back. Then bung it in the post box without a stamp and viola, its returned to sender who is exactly who you wanted the letter to go to in the first place.


Testing of this idea has commenced, will let you know:E

TBirdFrank
13th Dec 2007, 12:01
The "Peoples' Post Office" a Government rip off machine???

No - surely - that cannot be! :*

chrisivory
13th Dec 2007, 12:31
I work for Royal Mail, and indeed, the charge is to cover handling costs. However, at my old office, we used to ask customers, who came to receive their surcharge items whether they wanted them or not, and even gave them the item to look at. Sometimes at the naughty discretion of the person at fron of house, we would let the customer have the item, FOC (but you did not hear that from me!)

chrisivory
13th Dec 2007, 12:34
Here's a tip.

For free postage why don't you try putting your address on the front of the envelope, and the recipients address on the back. Then bung it in the post box without a stamp and viola, its returned to sender who is exactly who you wanted the letter to go to in the first place.

Never tried it so dont actually know if it works.

That would be surcharged initially, as it wouldn't have a stamp on it. So that does not work. I work for Royal F/Mail.

Upgrade Please
13th Dec 2007, 16:37
Even when you get the dreaded 'insufficient postage' notice, it doesn't always stop there. Went to my local collection office last Saturday to collect a parcel (admittedly from USA, not inland UK), but was informed that
"this office cannot process cash payments at the weekend - please return during the working week".

WTF?????:ugh::ugh:

lexxity
13th Dec 2007, 19:29
Royal Mail don't know their arses from their elbows. Anyone used ebay recently? When you list an item you can use the postage calculator to work out how much it will cost to post said item based on weight. I have used it six times in the last couple of months and it has been wrong everytime! The site says one thing so I stick on 50p to cover packing charges thinking that is reasonable. Take it to the PO and the price is under by 2-3 everytime, again based on weight! Madness.

And another thing, what has happened since the strikes? We now either get no post at all if there is not delivery before 2pm or when we do get post it is for us and the same number house on the next street on which I highlight that we are not the same road and put it back in the post box! I also keep recieving opened mail, once or twice each week!

ShyTorque
13th Dec 2007, 20:27
Got a "not possible to deliver" card yesterday. Went to collect the parcel from "the local" post office today. This "local" is four miles away, despite the village post office being one minutes walk at the end of our cul-de-sac. Sorry, we closed at midday. :}

I wouldn't mind so much but there have been a number of times when these "unable to deliver" cards have arrived with a bunch of letters when we've been at home (on at least one occasion I've actually seen the card drop through the letterbox); no attempt was made to deliver the parcel in the first place.

We also went through two periods when we got no mail for weeks and some times young children were seen delivering letters. The new "postie" had about three months' worth all stashed in his garage when he was finally given the "sack"..... :*

Granite Monolith
13th Dec 2007, 20:45
And another thing, what has happened since the strikes? We now either get no post at all if there is not delivery before 2pm or when we do get post it is for us and the same number house on the next street on which I highlight that we are not the same road and put it back in the post box! I also keep recieving opened mail, once or twice each week!

Being a postie, as well you and others know, i take your comment regarding mis-delivered mail to the wrong street with a pinch of salt.

Scenario: You are a new start employee with RM. The run you do is littered with street names sounding alike or confusing at worst. ie..

Maple Ave
Maple Rd
Maple Cres
Maple Dr

9 out of 10 times you will post the correct letter/package through the letter box - the other one balls up you will do is reported by the customer. The customer is generally unaware that all the above street names exist within the vicinity. It's an easy mistake.

I've said this time and again on here, and elsewhere, the job of a postie is not as easy as you think (or view when watching soaps such as 'BellEnders or Emmerdale - there' s always some gobshite of a lazy postie on those shows).

I challenge YOU or anybody else to start from scratch in the job, learn the ropes and still not fcuk up after years of service.

It's interesting now watching agency staff come in thinking the job is a hoot/easy money etc - two days later and the faces visibly drop.

I promise you, anybody who slates the decent, hard working postie, does not know a teeny bit of how the job actually works.

frostbite
13th Dec 2007, 21:02
I am a serial complainer and rarely miss an opportunity to moan, but I must say that my regular postie(s) are ultra reliable & helpful.

Any small criticism I might make would be of their employers, not them.

Life's a Beech
13th Dec 2007, 21:09
How did my niece's birthday card take 4 days, first class? Useless shower!

M.Mouse
13th Dec 2007, 21:12
My postie is a star too, as are the staff at the local collection office. Friendly, helpful and open 0800 - 1800 weekdays and half-day Saturday.

Like my airline, which carries over 30m passengers per year, it is always the bad news which gets the publicity.

HILF
13th Dec 2007, 21:13
Frosty - I too am a serial complainer, but I must say that having moved home about six months ago that the regular postie in both old and new locations was reliable, friendly (and in the case of my old address a right little smasher who had just had a boob job!).

What galls me is that, due to the shifts worked, about one week in four or five, the regular guy or gal is off and you are plunged into an alternate universe of no deliveries/misdelivery for a week.

This didn't happen even a few years ago - is this progress?

HILF

G-CPTN
13th Dec 2007, 23:36
I challenge YOU or anybody else to start from scratch in the job, learn the ropes and still not fcuk up after years of service.
It's interesting now watching agency staff come in thinking the job is a hoot/easy money etc - two days later and the faces visibly drop.
What about instruction (or even training)?
Or do delivery staff get sent out without?

Our regular postie (Scots Don) is brilliant, whereas the relief guys drive the van from house to house (Don parks up and does a 'round') and sit in the van having a smoke (I thought that was against the law - if not the rules?).

groundhogbhx
13th Dec 2007, 23:54
Back in the 80's you could almost set your watch by our postie, 1st delivery at 8 and 2nd at 10 (jumping out of his white mini and off again in a flash). Now it is very hit and miss, any time between 10 and 2 with a good chance of someone elses mail and don't get me started on the amount that goes missing:oh:

What went wrong? How could a good reliable service turn into such a basket case? Unions with too much power? Weak management? I'm sure others can answer those questions but if the current management doesn't turn things round quickly I seriously doubt there will be a company left to run in 5 years time :eek:

csd
14th Dec 2007, 00:20
I recently posted some Christmas cards from Hong Kong to the UK by airmail. The cost was a miserly $3 Hong Kong each. That is about 20 pence Sterling. Cheaper than posting them within the UK with a first class stamp!

Regards csd

frostbite
14th Dec 2007, 13:24
My regular postie normally delivers between around 10 and 2 also - except when he has something to be signed for, when he inevitably arrives before I've got up.

Can't deny him a sense of humour.

lexxity
14th Dec 2007, 13:34
Scenario: You are a new start employee with RM. The run you do is littered with street names sounding alike or confusing at worst. ie..

Maple Ave
Maple Rd
Maple Cres
Maple Dr

9 out of 10 times you will post the correct letter/package through the letter box - the other one balls up you will do is reported by the customer. The customer is generally unaware that all the above street names exist within the vicinity. It's an easy mistake.


So Sandringham and Windsor, one leading off the other, are similar then? Nope, not having that. Deliveries around here are never 9/10 they are more like 5 or 6 at best. When recorded items are delivered they are just dumped in the porch, unsigned for. Our local post office is great, but the actual posties are not. If these were new errors it would not consistently happen all year every year and get worse and worse. Also if a new postie is confused by road names he could check the street/road name sign as he enters a road.:hmm: Maybe I don't know much about the Royal Mail, but having read all your posts on the subject GM you would hope that I would have learnt something.:suspect:

Granite Monolith
14th Dec 2007, 14:04
So Sandringham and Windsor, one leading off the other, are similar then?


No, but Maple Ave, Maple Rd, Maple Cres, Maple Dr are.

You weren't really following the logic, were you?


When recorded items are delivered they are just dumped in the porch, unsigned for

Not supposed to happen. However, would you prefer a trip to the local post office to collect your stuff, or would you be happy with a mistake the postie made enabling you not to move out your house? Or would you just complain regardless?


If these were new errors it would not consistently happen all year every year and get worse and worse.

Agree - i do think a complete overhaul of training is needed.


Also if a new postie is confused by road names he could check the street/road name sign as he enters a road.

Often a bit difficult considering new housing development is springing up everywhere; with plots/streets still to be named/numbered. Also a pain when the local council can't be bothered to maintain or fix street names, affixed to houses.


Maybe I don't know much about the Royal Mail, but having read all your posts on the subject GM you would hope that I would have learnt something


I'll stay on here until exhausted if i have to defend my job, and the way it's done. Like pretty much every other job, nobody has a clue until actually settled in for a while, taking note, and realising "sh!t - this isn't as easy as it looks".

People really have no idea - they think you turn up at the local sorting office, collect your mail and off out you go for a few hours! :ugh:If only!

lexxity
14th Dec 2007, 14:42
Not supposed to happen. However, would you prefer a trip to the local post office to collect your stuff, or would you be happy with a mistake the postie made enabling you not to move out your house? Or would you just complain regardless?

I would prefer a trip to collect my stuff rather than it left in plain view. It's not just a one off, it's a regular thing, THAT is why I am complaining.

No, but Maple Ave, Maple Rd, Maple Cres, Maple Dr are.

You weren't really following the logic, were you?


No, I was pointing out the two roads that get each others mail all the time. Namely mine and the one leading off it. Not really defensible is it? If they were similar, then perhaps it could be.

Often a bit difficult considering new housing development is springing up everywhere; with plots/streets still to be named/numbered. Also a pain when the local council can't be bothered to maintain or fix street names, affixed to houses.

That's right, blame everyone else. I find that all the new housing developments around here are named and numbered before the first purchaser moves in.

How about saying, you know what the Royal Mail is a mess. The management are blatantly incompentant and it needs sorting, fast. How about they all work together as one company? How about making sure the price on the website is the same one as in your post office? How about making sure that the price you pay is the real one, not one that suddenly becomes more expensive by the time it arrives at the recipients address? How about trying to reduce the number of errors made daily by the delivery personnel rather than trying to constantly defend and make excuses for them? How about Royal Mail moves into the 21st Century and tries to operate an efficient, cost effective business? I would dearly love to defend the Royal Mail, but I can't GM.

Out Of Trim
14th Dec 2007, 15:23
My Postie is useless too. Had a couldn't deliver card through the door for a small parcel I was expecting; I was in and never heard a thing!

Card said; either wait four hours and collect from depot or phone to arrange re-delivery.

So I waited four hours and drove off into town. - Show card and ID - Postie at depot goes off in search into back room and 20 minutes later still can't find it! He takes my phone number and says he'll check with my postie and call me.

Phone rings next day at 10:30am - He's found it! Yay! Postie had left it in his pouch by mistake. So another trip to the depot to retrieve it.

I get mail for number 20 about every two weeks despite living at number 22. All clearly marked. :}

hmmm. perhaps he's dyslexic.

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh!
14th Dec 2007, 18:41
Being a doctor, as well you and others know, i take your comment regarding medical malpractice with a pinch of salt.

Scenario: You are a new start employee with the hospital. The operation you do is littered with body parts sounding alike or confusing at worst. ie..

Arm, Right
Arm, Left
Leg, Right
Leg, Left

G-CPTN
14th Dec 2007, 18:55
It's not unknown for surgery to be performed on the wrong side - I recall some unfortunate person having the wrong (healthy) kidney removed with disastrous (ie fatal) results:-
http://news.independent.co.uk/health/article73353.ece

and:- http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/article41447.ece
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/news.html?in_article_id=387223&in_page_id=1774&ito=1490
and one from USA:-
http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9C0CE6D8173DF930A15750C0A9669C8B63

supramkiv
17th Dec 2007, 00:59
Hi people, feel I need to jump in here and say a few things....

First of all Post Office Counters PLC is part of the Royal Mail group but is seperate from "Royal Mail", i'm guessing that most of your problems experienced are from a Royal Mail collection office not a post office.

The logistics surrounding the postal market in the UK is a huge task and I believe that no one can do it as well as the Royal Mail group. Many private companies have entered the home delivery service market such as TNT but have failed miserably, failing to cope with what Royal Mail deliver in one day in just one year themselves.

The group have been trying to be profitable for many years now but have made mistakes (marketing - Consignia anyone?) and also been victims to extremely strong unions (eg CWU) who would rather protect the T & C's of workers to a level far higher experienced by any ltd competitor company at the expense of the success of the company.

Don't have the stats to hand but the percentage of lost/damaged mail is significantly below 1%.

Why should they handle mis-paid mail at a loss? As the recipient you have the choice of accepting it and should be complaining to the sender not the handler.

This thread just sounds like a bunch of minor bitching while failing to offer how such a huge national company could improve, while it continues to be the market leader and virtual monopoly in the delivery market, as no other company could take the task on, and don't forget its chairman (by my last information) was the ex-ASDA chairman, good crudentials considering the WALMART subsiduaries success in my book.

supramkiv
17th Dec 2007, 01:05
I recently posted some Christmas cards from Hong Kong to the UK by airmail. The cost was a miserly $3 Hong Kong each. That is about 20 pence Sterling. Cheaper than posting them within the UK with a first class stamp!

Regards csd

Have you considered that this could be due to the value of the hong kong $ versus the value of sterling, rather then the efficiency and value of their postal system?

No thought not :rolleyes:

Capot
17th Dec 2007, 12:05
Granite Monolith

Going back a bit, I know, but in an otherwise lucid and well-argued post you said

9 out of 10 times you will post the correct letter/package through the letter boxWell, I knew things were bad, but surely not that bad!

100 out of 1,000 items get mis-delivered? Is that right?

We used Special Delivery a lot - until recently - to send technicians' original certificates back; these are truly priceless, as they represent a lifetime's worth of qualifications and training, often with institutions that no longer exist. 3 such mailings were lost without trace out of 200 or so in 12 months; another 30 - 40 were delayed for over 3 days, 10 or more in some cases.

The attitude of Royal Mail to the losses was dismissive; "what's the problem, you'll get your compensation". The fact that the loss could destroy someone's life meant nothing. We don't use the service any more, we use courier companies.