FTD.com Delivers Dead Flowers For Valentine's Day

We received several emails directing us to posts at Yahoo Shopping accusing FTD.com of making every mistake possible, such as delivering flowers before Valentine’s, not delivering flowers at all, and delivering dead flowers. FTD has a “Good As Gold” guarantee that states: “We guarantee fresh, beautiful floral arrangements and plants that will last at least seven days.” What could possibly go wrong?

Juan G. writes:

    “I ordered roses for my wife. To be delivered to her on Valentine’s Day- 2weeks before. When they arrived they were drying, everyone at her office was laughing at her receiving roses they were dead on Valentine’s Day.”

Dead flowers for Valentine’s? Surely FTD, with its “Good As Gold Guarantee,” is aware of the problem and proactively taking steps to aid wronged customers.

sanjeevkapoor2005 writes:

I sent at least 3 emails asking about the status and received no reply. It was very difficult to contact cust service. The one time I did get thru they informed me that they need to contact the local florist first.

Ok, we give up. FTD fails. A refund and an apology is in order. Maybe they could send everyone apology flowers?

Did your order for Valentine’s Day flowers make it to your Valentine? Tell us how you pulled it off in the comments. — CAREY GREENBERG-BERGER

Yahoo! Shopping (Thanks to Rich!)

Comments

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  1. MasonMacabre says:

    I had the same problem with FTD.com. I ordered a miniature rose bush for my wife since she loves plants. I thought, “This could be something she could keep in the living room and take care of instead of buying a dozen roses that die in a week.” The picture shows a bush of blooming roses on the web site, but when it arrived it was in a box that she had to assemble and there were only two small buds beginning to open on the bush. What a lousy Valentine’s gift. I contacted FTD about the issue and all I got was an automated message saying they would get back to me within 48 hours. It has been 4 days now. Needless to say, I am upset about it.

  2. Zoom says:

    I ordered a rose and lily arrangement from FTD.com like the original poster, two weeks in advance. I suppose it was partially my fault that I didn’t know that the arrangement was being sent from one of their vendors and not from a local florist, but the fact that it came the day after Valentine’s Day with dead roses really set me off. The worst part (besides my girlfriend’s disappointment) was that it was virtually impossible to get into contact with FTD.com customer service. Emails went unanswered and their automated phone system either hang up on me or gave a busy signal. Finally, on Friday I was able to get into the phone wait queue, at which point it was 60 minutes on hold before I was able to speak to a support rep. They must have been mobbed with calls because they refunded all of my money without any questions asked. Now if I could only get my time and sanity back… Monday I’m going to walk to the local florist before work and get some real flowers delivered.

  3. That Plain Boy says:

    I didn’t give anything for Valentine’s, but my mom’s birthday is February 10. I got on Google Maps, requested “florists in ___, Florida,” and directly called them.

    Everything turned out fine; I gave them mom’s address and told them what the occasion was and what types of flowers she liked. Plus, since it’s a local place and not a giant company, it’s easier to get someone on the phone if something does go wrong.

    Google Maps makes it to much easier to support independent businesses. Cut out the impersonal middleman, and life becomes easier.

  4. I admit there might have been the possibility my troubles with FTD.com could’ve been avoided had I not waited until the last minute (day before). Regardless, FTD.com did not deliver on it’s promise for me. I ordered my girlfriend 10 stems of purple and white orchids (5 of each) for the 14th and FTD.com said it was scheduled to arrive that day. The flowers didn’t show up until 3pm on the 15th and no white flowers were included, only purple. I don’t think they were as dead as other people’s orders, but I doubt they’ll be fresh for 7 days. Although she likes them, I had wished for better serrvice. FTD.com: Under-promising and over delivering works much better in retaining customer satisfaction than the other way around.

  5. homerjay says:

    I don’t know that I’m ready to blast FTD for this particular fuck-up yet. It HAS only been 2 days since “Overpriced Roses” Day. Thats like trying to get through to Toys R Us customer service the day after Christmas.

    Give them a few days to investigate… If they’re assholes about it or just don’t bother, then you can lambaste them. To me, its just too early.

  6. scoobydoo says:

    I stopped using FTD a few years ago. They are about as useful as a fart in a spacesuit.

    Several valentines ago they showed up at 8:30pm, and had to call 4 times asking for directions.

    I’ve switched to Kabloom and they have never let me down. This year my valentines flowers were waiting for my honey on the reception desk before 9am.

    The nice thing about Kabloom is that you deal directly with the florist, the last time I emailed them I had a reply within 5 minutes.

    And no; I am in no way related to them, just a happy customer that got let down by FTD too many times.

  7. Keter says:

    Flowers suck anyway; they’re a huge waste of resources PLUS they’re bad feng shui because they’re dead. Take 15 minutes out of your day and go get a live plant, or a CD, or something else your sweetie will actually like 2 months from now. (Yes, this requires actual thought, and yes, I’m female. My sweetie gave me a small shell he’d picked up on a walk and a kiss. It was plenty.)

  8. bitplayer says:

    I think they put disclaimers on there basically saying what you see isn’t what you get. It’s a hussle and I don’t buy stuff from ftd or 1800flowers anymore.

  9. dazzla says:

    I ordered 12 Roses a week in advance for Valentines. They only delivered 11. I’m still waiting for a reply from customer service.

  10. qazwart says:

    FTD and 1800Flowers are networks of independent florist shops. It is very possible that both FTD or 1800Flowers will use the very same florist for delivery.

    My assumption is that most florists treat FTD and 1800Flowers customers with less flair than their “regular” customers. On Valentines day when the florist has 1000 orders and only 500 dozen nice roses, the nice roses will go to their good customers and the not-so-nice ones will be sent to the FTD or 1800Flowers orders.

    It’s also the reason why FTD and 1800Flowers can’t promise what is in their catalog. There’s no way for them to know if that particular florist has those types of flowers or that vase.

    My advice is to find a good local florist shop. For example, I called my Mom and asked her the name of the florist she uses. Now, when I want to send her flowers, I call that shop and order flowers directly from them.

    Even if you don’t have any contacts in the city where you’re sending flowers, finding a local florist via Google Maps or whatever is better than FTD or 1800Flowers although that might even be the florist that would be used if you called either FTD or 1800Flowers directly. Instead of the standard FTD or 1800Flowers label on the flowers, it would be the name of the local florist, and the person who received the dead roses knows who to complain to. Plus, you save the fee that FTD and 1800Flowers charges the local florist.

  11. snowferret says:

    Ahh guys if you don’t want dead flowers don’t order “flowers” ask for them to still have thier roots or whatever and be in a pot. Pretty much all bouquets of flowers are dead or dieing(you rip a plant out of the ground and it starts to die).Get them still in soil and not only will they still be alive when your wife or whoever gets them, they will still be alive next year too (if you remember to water them).

  12. defectiveburger says:

    a friend ordered some roses for me from FTD for v-day. 2 were droopy when I received them; all of them were dead and browning yesterday(a whole two days after receipt). good job FTD. way to ensure my business goes elsewhere.

  13. 44 in a Row says:

    It sounds like I’m in a minority, but 1-800-Flowers did right by me this Valentine’s Day. I placed the order Monday morning, the arrangement was delivered at 10am on Wednesday (this was in New Jersey, where the weather was pretty bad, and my girlfriend also lives in a new development that was built so recently that the streets aren’t in Google Maps yet, let alone in a phone book map), and when I finally made it there Saturday morning, everything was exactly as pictured, and still in relatively good shape.

    I think that, with your big networks like FTD or 1-800-Flowers, a lot depends on the particular local florist that they’re using. Last year, when my girlfriend lived in a different town, the service wasn’t so good (they didn’t deliver until about 8pm, and the flowers weren’t in great shape), but this year was much, much better. I definitely do second the advice to deal directly with the local florist when you can, but there’s certainly something to be said for the convenience of doing it all online. Plus you get 10 miles to the dollar!

  14. rachmanut says:

    i had some discover dollars and attempted to use them last valentine’s day for my girlfriend (cheap, i know, to spend fake money on flowers, but it’s the thought that counts, right?). I called the special ftd number for discover rewards members, got a very nice CSR, placed the order to have them show up at her work place, and because of the amount i spent, a few bucks were spent on the discover card too. Feb 14 came and went and to my chagrin, the flowers never showed up. I tried every day (starting on the 14th after I found she never got them) but couldn’t get through to FTD for days. Eventually I got fed up, called discover, and asked for a chargeback and for the discover dollars to be reinstated. They complied, no problems. But I won’t use ftd again.

  15. Maulleigh says:

    They shouldn’t guarantee anything of the sort. They take the order and then send it to Gary’s flowers on Main Street. They have no idea of Gary’s inventory. People should deal with Gary directly.

    The whole thing blows. :(

  16. molasses says:

    I’ve long felt that the whole florist website thing is a racket. A good portion of flowers arrangements are sent which are never seen by the person who ordered them. Who is going to send long-distance flowers and then call up the recipient and ask, “Gee, I am so sorry about Great Uncle Henry passing away, but meanwhile, did you get exactly 6 yellow roses in the funeral arrangement I sent? And, what color was the vase?”

    Recently I was in charge of sending flowers from our family to an out-of-state cousin who had successfully completed breast cancer treatment. I dealt with a florist who was local to her, but I still had no way of confirming that she got what I paid for. Florists bank on the fact that my cousin and other receivers are not going to call up and double check with the giver about what exactly was ordered. They could have given her a fistful of carnations for all I know.

  17. lemur says:

    I think the overarching lesson here is “your mileage may vary”. I ordered an assortment of variously colored roses for my wife from proflowers.com. That was the first time I ordered flowers for her. I’m not too keen on sending something so ephemeral but I wanted to surprise her and I know she likes flowers. Another family member ordered for my wife a dozen red roses through FTD. The flowers that came through FTD were better than mine (from proflowers). They were better packed, came with instructions for care and just looked much more fresh. Fortunately, we know which local florist fulfilled the FTD order so I’m going to go with those guys next time around.

    But lest anybody think that this is a pro FTD post, my wife also said that in the past the flowers she got from FTD were often of low quality. So ordering from prowflowers or FTD is a crapshoot. Find a local florist, order from them, you’re likely to get better results.

  18. NoThru22 says:

    Why would you use FTD when you can support your local florists and even develop a relationship with them to know you’ll get quality the next time? Even if you have a great experience with one of the big companies, you have no idea who they’re going to use the next time you make an order. At least you can hold a local business accountable. I’ve used three or four local florists before I found one that I would consider to be reliable every single time. Plus, I’ve started picking them up myself instead of getting them delivered because that prevents any “nasty surprises.”

  19. Sudonum says:

    Having been burned before by FTD, AND the local florist, this year I tried one of the companies on the Consumer Reports article that Consumerist linked to previously. GrowersFlowers was a bigger dissapponitment that the others combined. While FTD merely shorted me flowers and the local florist screwed up the delivery, GrowersFlowers sent me flowers that were loosing petals when I received them. I e-mailed them pictures and have given me the full amount as a credit. I’d rather received a refund, but I guess I’ll use the credit to send flowers to my mother who I haven’t been able see in over a year.

  20. Lucho says:

    I had a similar problem with 1800Flowers.com. I ordered my arrangement and paid for “guaranteed delivery”, an extra $16, for a delivery on Valentines Day. Valentines Day came and went and my fiance never received her flowers. It was almost impossible to get through to customer service to see what was going on. The phone lines were all tied up and even when you did get through I would often get disconnected. When I finally reached someone they said they couldn’t call the florist to find out what happened and they would most likely get delivered the next day.

    Since their delivery hours were until 7pm, and they wouldn’t call the florist or refund any money until after that, I had to call customer service the next day and go through the same tied up phone lines again to find out what happened. They said the florist claimed that they could not make the delivery because the weather was bad and the roads were not clear. This was a lie since I live in the city of the delivery and all roads were cleared by rush hour on Valentines Day. Other flower deliveries were made to my Fiance’s building, leaving me looking like the jerk that forgot Valentines Day.

    The flowers arrived looking terrible with dead flowers and broken stems. It also arrived in an ugly vase and didn’t look anything like what I had ordered. I tried calling back and seeing what their 100% satisfaction guarantee was about, but I got tired of trying to reach customer service and figured it was probably just as good as their “guaranteed delivery”

    It seems to me that this “guaranteed delivery” is a scam. If they get it there they collect $16 for doing their job, if they don’t they just give it back and don’t lose anything. Don’t buy this guarantee its useless. It does not give your order any priority over any other orders.

  21. r81984 says:

    I had a terrible experience with 1800 flowers, but more so from FedEx who was to deliver them, but its 1800 flowers fault for shipping with them.
    I made a $60 order on Jan 14, 2007 for the day before Valentines Day.

    Here is my FedEx Tracking #929620713527
    Feb 12, 2007 – Package info sent
    Feb 13, 2007 – 4:51am depart Mephis, 12:30pm at Local FedEx, 12:30pm Package at station after truck left
    Feb 14, 2007 –
    Feb 15, 2007 – Delivery exeption “Delay Beyond Our Control”
    Feb 16, 2007 – Delivery exeption “Delay Beyond Our Control”
    Feb 17, 2007 – Delievered “Left at Front Door” “Release Authorized”

    I think they forgot to put it on the truck for VDay because I watched the FedEx truck drive past my g/f apt.
    On Feb 15, my g/f’s neighbor recieved a package from FedEx, so maybe they forgot it again
    Feb 16 was also not delievered for some unknown reason.
    Feb 17, the first day no one was home to recieve the package, fedex says “Signature Release on File” and leaves it at the door.
    We came home today and there is no package at the door, so either they lost it an lied or someone stole it. No one signed a signature release so I think they just lost it and lied.

    Also, to those who say why didnt I just go and pick up the flowers on the 13 from FedEx, I did not know it was shipped FedEx until I chatted with 1800 flowers on Feb 15. 1800 flowers website links my tracking number to UPS and UPS says “there was no record for the order”. So at first I though they did not send it, but I cannot get through on the 1800 number so I had no idea.


    So I try to call 1800 flowers to cancel the order on Feb 15. Their computer message says something like We do not have enough workers, so we will end the call goodbye”

    They actually hang up on their customers.

    So I search and find http://chat.1800flowers.com where I can chat. The Customer Service rep says she will cancel my order. I wait two days and get no refund on my card.
    I chat again with a new rep who says there is no record of me trying to cancel and there is no refund. I saved the name Crystal D and Session ID number of the first conversation so the new rep Susan P said she refunded my money and it will take 7 to 10 business days to get my refund.

    Will see if I actually get a refund, if I do not luckily I used my Amex and getting them to do a charge back is easy.

    I will never use an online flower shop again.

  22. timmus says:

    I’ve had it with both online and local flower shops… I tried doing local visits recently and both times I had to walk out as they were too disorganized and swamped. I pretty much plan on searching for alternate gifts on “flower” days, even if it means stopping at Lowes and getting a nice potted plant.

  23. beaners123 says:

    Really, after all these horror stories, I do have a good Customer Service story to share. My boyfriend (at the time) sent me flowers with 1-800-flowers, and the little bear that came with it had a little heart-shaped plush attached to it that opened with a clasp. The clasp was broken, and I called 1-800-flowers to complain. They swore they would take care of it. I kid you not, by the next day, I had an ENTIRELY new bouquet of flowers AND another bear. Like some kind of radical 2-for-1 deal. It was terrific. I love those people.

  24. Little Wooden Boy says:

    I ordered flowers for my girlfriend for Valentine’s Day 2 weeks before I wanted them delivered. They were delivered February 15th, a full day after Valentine’s Day. Kind of defeats the purpose.

    I emailed FTD, and all they offered me was 15% off a future order. 15% which I can easily find a coupon for anywhere online.

  25. Smoking Pope says:

    Got my wife some roses for Valentine’s Day, and they arrived dead and the vase was broken. She called FTD and was on hold for 4 hours before she had to go home. She sent them an e-mail before she left.

    On the 15th FTD “wasn’t accepting phone calls” (just no answer when she called). And on the 16th all she got was a fast busy signal. The e-mail has not been responded to.

    For some reason, the florist FTD used is 1,800 miles away (flowers were FedEx’d) so it’s not like going through the local florist will work. I’m done with FTD.

  26. Coronagold says:

    I don’t know which threat to humanity I should curl up in fetal position for…’conflict diamonds’ or ‘travel flowers’.

  27. SmoovyG says:

    I stick with ProFlowers for my wife’s romanital needs. The one time she recieved a bouquet that lasted less than a week, I made a single phone call and she had a new bouquet at her office in 24 hours. That was awesome and totally earned me extra “good husband” points.

  28. matuszek says:

    I ordered from ProFlowers.com on the 12th. I chose their “deliver on either the 13th or the 14th” option, since the tulips would be on her desk on V-Day either way.

    Then the big storms hit Maryland and she ended up not even going in on Tuesday or Wednesday.

    Still, UPS got it done:

    LAUREL,
    MD, US 02/15/2007 9:32 A.M. DELIVERY
    LAUREL,
    MD, US 02/14/2007 4:51 P.M. THE PACKAGE IS DELAYED DUE TO EMERGENCY CONDITIONS BEYOND UPS’ CONTROL
    LAUREL,
    MD, US 02/13/2007 5:00 P.M. THE RECEIVER WAS UNAVAILABLE TO SIGN ON THE 1ST DELIVERY ATTEMPT. A 2ND DELIVERY ATTEMPT WILL BE MADE
    02/13/2007 5:22 A.M. OUT FOR DELIVERY

    So despite the weather she had the flowers on Thursday when she went back to work, and they were still alive and pretty and she loved them.

  29. adamondi says:

    I also ordered a mini rose plant from FTD.com for my wife, like MasonMacabre up at the top of this comment thread. While it was delivered on Valentines Day, there was only one actual flowering rose bud on the plant, and that one had been broken so that the stem was only hanging on by a thread. The girls at my wife’s office were all laughing about it. One of them finally did come over and touched the broken one, and it fell off altogether.

    Luckily, my wife has a really good sense of humor about it, and knows that the plant will bloom a lot over the coming weeks, but it still ticked me off a lot when I found out.

  30. Manorville says:

    Being a Real Florist it is distressing to hear these horror stories about Mega Corporate Footprints like FTD, Teleflora, 800Flowers and Pro Flowers but we hear the stories everyday.
    The Real Florist almost always has the negativety directed at them, when in fact, the majority of the time, they are innocent victims, just like the consumer.

    Back in the day, the wire services promoted the florists, at a substantial cost of course, but for many decades the system seemed to work well.
    Now, in 2007, FTD says in their S.E.C. filing back on 2-21-07 that they are essentially fazing the real florists out as they have a better way to make money for their stockholders.
    Same goes for the rest of the wire services and order gatherers who are eating up consumer money.
    Many florists are going cold turkey, or trying to dump all of the wire services in addition to a valient attemp to educate the consumer to stop supporting them.
    Many Mom & Pop Real Florists will inevitably go under as a result, but being ripped off each month has come to an end for many.

    When consumers need flowers call a REAL FLORIST if you can find one in the deceptive advertising mix.

  31. Neuro223 says:

    I went to http://www.ftd.com on Valentines Day , wondering if I would be too late to get flowers delivered to my Fiances’ workplace. All over FTD’s website there were banners that stated “Its Not Too Late For Valentines Day Delivery”, I made sure I picked flowers that would be available for same day delivery and placed my order well before the 2pm cut-off.

    The flowers did NOT get delivered on Valentines Day , So she comes home from work, thinking I had not done anything for her for Valentines Day. Which was absolutely horrible for me, as you might imagine. I explained that I had ordered flowers, and that she should call her work to make sure that someone had just forgotten to tell her, but flowers had not been delivered for her.

    Needless to say, I am pretty upset about the whole situation, and paying over $70.00 for flowers that according to FTD’s website would be delivered ON Valentines Day really stings. When I found out that the flowers had not been delivered on February 14, 2007 I took the following actions around 5pm on Valentines Day:

    1.) I called the 1-800 Number to cancel the order, and the message told me that I could not cancel my order unless it could confirm that that the order was not in the process of being delivered.

    2.) I attempted to do that and an automated message stated that due to the holiday, FTD’s phone system could NOT verify that the order was not in the process of being delivered, but that the Website could.

    3.) I got back on FTD’s website and tried to verify that the order was not in the process of being delivered, since that is what FTD’s automated phone system told me to do, then I received an email stating that due to the holiday the online site could not verify if the order was in the process of being delivered, so that I could not cancel my order that way. That all took place on the Feb 14th. The flowers ended up arriving at almost 1pm on 2/15/2007, and she had to drive to work on her day off just to get them. Clearly the order was not in the process of being delivered since it did not arrive until Feb 15th.

    4.) I should have been able to cancel my order, however since FTD’s website and 1-800 Number are inadequate it would not allow me to do so. I had tried everything in my possible power to cancel the order well within the time frame that I should have been allowed to do so.

    I have been trying to resolve this with FTD’s customer service department for the last 2 months to no avail. I was given $8.00 off of my order for my inconvience, however I do not feel that this is enough. I should have been able to cancel the order all together, however because FTD’s website and phone systems are inadequate and I was unable to do so, I believe my entire purchase should be refunded. I also opened a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and FTD Offered me a “coupon of a future purchase.” How is this going to help me if I NEVER want to do business with FTD ever again. However the Better Business Bureau seems to think that this is the appropriate way that a business should treat a consumer and they have since closed my claim, saying that FTD did everything they could to fix the problem. So I am hoping by posting this here, that even if FTD does not take care of me nor the Better Business Bureau, at least I can save someone else the hassle and warn anyone who reads this, Not to do business with FTD.com. Your flowers will Not be delivered on time, and they died 2 days later anyway… Horrible Experience!