Fedex Abandons Package On Your Doorstep, Forgets About It

Fedex delivered a package to David’s house that was destined for a business on a different street, about half a mile away. He says that it took a ludicrous amount of time and effort on his part to get FedEx to come back and pick up the package. Did FedEx expect him to keep it? Did they expect him to get it to the destination himself? He’s not sure.

He sent this email to a variety of media outlets, and FedEx investor relations.

I’m now up to four calls, four days and being on hold for over 31 minutes over this time….

This is so appalling!

Last Friday, December 18, 2009 I arrived home to find a large box on my porch from FedEx Ground – it turns out that this box was delivered to the wrong address, mine.

Being a thoughtful citizen, I immediately called FedEx saying, “hey, you all have mis-delivered a package to my address and don’t you want to pick it up on behalf of your customer?” They assured me they would signal the driver and come get it.

It has now been four days and four phone calls (and two rain storms) with associated promises of “picking up the package” and they still haven’t picked up the box!

I feel pretty bad for the parties who relied upon the company to deliver their stuff! And I feel offended that I’ve tried to help and because of FedEx diffidence people are being ignored.

I wonder how dedicated the FedEx team is to ensuring they get “it” done?

I’m pretty upset that I’ve taken the time to be conscientious and our folks at FedEx seem like they can’t be bothered.

How terrible for their customers (as if I’d be one now into the future).

David reports that an hour after this email, a FedEx truck showed up at his home to take the package away. It’s true that this is the busiest time of year for delivery companies, but the 4-day delay is a bit over the top.

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  1. Rectilinear Propagation says:

    Did they expect him to get it to the destination himself?

    There’s been a story where a shipping company actually told someone to do that on this site, right? I’m pretty sure there’s a story where at some point the OP was asked to get it to the right place.

    • Megleris says:

      Dell did this awhile back with a monitor that was delivered many states away – though i’m not sure if they told the person who ordered it to pick it up, or if it was the person who received it..

    • srh says:

      There was a guy/gal a while back who had ordered 1 replacement widget from Dell (I think?) and instead they shipped him/her 1 *pallet* of replacement widgets. Or something equally ludicrous. And they wanted this fellow/fella to take the excess ones back to a shipping center, rather than pay the extra for the shipper to come to his/her house to pick it up.

    • Eric Jay says:

      A while back, a package I was expecting was delivered to a business several blocks away by UPS. I didn’t know that, of course, but the tracking system had the package marked as delivered, so one after another, customer service reps told me, “Good news! There’s no problem! The package has been delivered!” They refused to put a trace on a package marked delivered, even though the destination (a UPS Store, no less) told them repeatedly that the item was never there.

      Eventually, the other business called UPS to report the mis-delivery. In response, Brown told me that I should try canvassing the neighborhood in search of the package. Unfortunately, though, for “privacy” reasons, they wouldn’t tell me which of my neighbors had it.

    • Tommy says:

      If you knew how many calls FedEx gets daily during this time of year. This little incident is pathetic!I realize that people need to be perfect, however I am sure in you industry you never made a mistake. The amount of training ones needs to identify that someone would actually live at such a place is overwhelming. Here’s a suggestion…Get numbers on your house, or better yet, live somewhere were a Joe off the road could find.
      Put the package in your house..out of the rain….and they will pick it up, and stop your wining.

  2. snazz says:

    keep the package in your garage until they come back for it, dont waste any more of your time trying to get them to come pick it up. they will realize their mistake eventually. or call the business that it was supposed to go to and have them come pick it up.

    • Wolfbird says:

      Eh, that might not be the best advice.

      YES, this is FedEx’s problem. YES, the proper receiver should track their own packages and get in touch with their courier in case the courier goofs up a delivery.

      However… it has been known that a receiver can view a wrong delivery as some sort of “theft”, find the current receiver’s address via the courier (online tracking, agent on the phone), and then proceed to give them hell over it for being “dishonest” and “trying to keep something that isn’t theirs”. I’ve seen it happen :/ Most of the time it is easier to contact the person it’s going to and get them to clean it up themselves.

      If it were me, I’d get right pissed at FedEx, but I’d be damned sure to get that thing as far away from me as possible ASAP instead of risking the wrath of retards.

  3. Amaras says:

    I expect the federal mail courier to maybe deposit the wrong mail for neighbours, etc. but for fedex 1/2 a mile is quite a miss.

    As to the OP, Why didn’t you call the business listed on the “to” label? I’m sure it would have ended in a better thank you then fedex could have provided.

    • admiral_stabbin says:

      The point of the article is that it should have only taken one, quick phone call to FedEx to get this sorted. It’s a FedEx mistake, and some people (myself included) prefer to let people clean up their own mistakes. While they may never learn, it’s the principal of the thing. ;-)

  4. sharkzfanz says:

    I can believe it but four calls.. May have made more sense to take it to the business .5 miles away… Would take minutes… Same amount if not less then the calls.

    • Red Cat Linux says:

      Yeah, I would’ve done that too, or rung the number on the label at least to give them a chance to pick it up. They might have been desperately waiting for the contents and stuck behind a wall of FedEx indifference.

      • soj4life says:

        And who knows what was inside. I work at a bank and we have been getting customer bulk gift card orders sent to us; if someone sat on that package for 4 days, a delaware trooper will be retrieving it for us.

    • jayde_drag0n says:

      Yah, I agree.. why did the OP let a package for 5 miles away sit in his house for 4 DAYS without contacting the business or taking it there himself?

    • MikeM_inMD says:

      If you “take it to the business” you’re making yourself liable for any damages. I can see calling the intended recipient after FedEx no-showed, but I wouldn’t move it except to keep it safe and dry.

  5. microcars says:

    FedEx Ground is a separate arm of FedEx and “technically” not “really” Fed Ex.
    Everything goes by truck, no airplanes.
    As possibly previously mentioned FedEx Ground will also contract out deliveries when it is “crunchtime” like…now. That could explain the delay.

    another example of Holiday service:
    Just the other day I was walking to the Post Office and noticed a Budget Rental truck parked on the street, guy gets out, opens the back runs up to a house, dumps the package on the steps (he could have put it in the enclosed porch but chose not to ?) He then looks at the house and can’t find an easily readable house number, checks the house next door, runs back to his truck and drives off.

    I walk up to the house and check the package. It is FedEx Ground Residential Delivery.
    I pick up the package and bring it into the enclosed front porch, knock on the door, no one home, I leave it in the enclosed front porch.

    I continue to walk to the Post Office.

    • lannister80 says:

      If it’s called “Fed Ex”, I’m pretty sure it’s “really” part of Fed Ex.

      • oneandone says:

        Yes, but it gets delivered in a completely separate system, and is absolutely horrid. FedEx has plenty of problems, but FedEx Ground is absolutely worthless. I’ll do anything I can to avoid it after 2 frustrating incidents (extreme delivery delays) which occurred while I was receiving regular FedEx deliveries.

  6. shepd says:

    Send FedEx registered mail indicating they have illegally dumped unwanted property at your home and that they have 14 days to recover it before it is destroyed at their expense.

    Then, on the 14th day, call up a junk cleanup service to destroy the item and bill FedEx for the cost. When they don’t pay, make a federal case out of it. I believe you will win.

    • Amaras says:

      Or just call the company that the package is for and not be an asshat.

      • shepd says:

        I’m assuming that he tried that already and it didn’t work, otherwise why is the item still at his door?

        And, if the OP is so braindead not to have tried that first, how did he manage to operate a computer to send this message out to others?

        But, yes, if he hasn’t called first, well–he probably should still do this, because it’d be a pretty embarrassing call to tell the owners of the package that you let it sit through two downpours before you thought of calling them.

        • soj4life says:

          if he called the business and they did not get it after 4 days of waiting, I would not spend any time or money with those geniuses. And the OP did not state he reached out to the business, because wouldn’t he be complaining about them also?

    • eyecon82 says:

      yea..that is if he was an attorney

      your average citizen couldn’t afford the legal fees, nor have the time for it

    • feckingmorons says:

      That is simply stupid. You don’t even know what Registered Mail is. You’re a complete simpleton.

  7. mbd says:

    I would have just called the business that the package was addressed to, and tell them to come get it today or it goes out with the garbage. The delivery companies mistake, which ever delivery company they are, is not my problem. Let them, or the original shipper, straighten out the problem.

    • NarcolepticGirl says:

      I agree. there have been a few times another business had called us saying they received a package that was addressed to us. We just called a courier to come pick it up and I would call Fed-Ex afterwards to get the delivery charge taken off the months bill.

  8. StatusfriedCrustomer says:

    Then David opened the package and inside was…
    … the non-working clock that his coworker had stolen from inside his office at work!

  9. RockaRolla says:

    Sounds about right for fed-ex. A couple months an online retailer shipped my order fed-ex. According to their online tracking, my package made 18 trips between Grove City OH and Indianapolis (and vice versa) over a months time. The shipment originated in WI and was going to KY. After the first few trips back and forth, I called fed-ex. since there was obviously a problem. The csr said that since the estimated delivery date shown on the tracking page hadnt passed yet, there was nothing she could do. I explained that the original date was a week earlier, but it kept changing so as to always be 4-5 days away. She said to see if the merchant would reship the order, there was nothing she could do. They claimed to know exactly where my package was, they just couldnt get it to me. It finally arrived one month and 2 days after fedex received it. This company obviously has problems dealing with mistakes.

    • dohtem says:

      If you still have the tracking number, I’m sure a few of us would appreciate a screenshot of the tracking progress.

      Of course, remember to black out personal identifiable info.

      • RockaRolla says:

        Here it is – http://img704.imageshack.us/img704/8749/13066486.jpg – I already had a screenshot saved because it is so bizarre.

        This was shipped with a new (to me at least) service called fedex smart post. It gets delivered to the local USPS office who does the actual home delivery.

        • dohtem says:

          lol, this is amazing!

          • RockaRolla says:

            What’s amazing to me is that I told them about the problem and they were unwilling/unable to fix it.

        • xnihilx says:

          My experience with SmartPost is that is is not so ‘smart.’ Woot! uses it and the packages seem to get lost between FedEx and the USPS. Hubby lost three hd webcams when they went MIA between FedEx and USPS. I’ve read quite a few other tales about lost packages and other problems with it. Though, we have not had another lost package instance I still like to call it SuckPost.

  10. bkdlays says:

    Fedex has no regard for the correct address. I have always had a mailbox at the UPS store. All my mail and packages go there. Well except Fedex. One time Fedex brought the package to the address that I was physically at, 3 miles away, and lt was thrown in the back room that we shared with another business. We found it 3 years later after disputing the paypal and screwing over the seller unless they got paid by Fedex.

    This week Fedex reported my package to be left at “front door residence” which is interesting since the UPS store is always attended by people and is not a residence.

    Over $700 of merchandise got left on someones front steps and I got a refund. I don’t get it Fedex.

  11. Opie says:

    I feel much sorrier for the puppy that was in the box.

  12. Android8675 says:

    OR you could just take the package to the business in question?

    OK, if you’re handicap or it’s a HUGE box (Freight delivery) then yeah, but if it’s a small box, toss it in your car and take it to the business. I know if some random person showed up with one of our packages, I’d thank them appropriately for saving us and probably our customers, time and hassle.

    • AdvocatesDevil says:

      Yeah, and then when you find out something is missing from the box, you have that good Samaritan arrested and thrown in jail. No thank you! It’s your package and your delivery company,you work out the arrangements.

  13. LESSTHANKIND says:

    What’s with the reference to “two rainstorms”? Does this mean David actually left the box outside through all this? I understand “it’s the principle of the thing,” but all this just to prove the point that FedEx was wrong, when the intended recipient was easily identifiable and a few blocks away? Honestly… just be a f**king human, dude.

    • srh says:

      My uninformed guess would be that he called Fedex and they said they would come pick it up. So he put it outside, and they failed to come pick it up. So he brought it inside and called Fedex and they said they would come pick it up. So he put it outside, and they failed to come pick it up.

      Wash, rinse, repeat.

  14. HogwartsProfessor says:

    Sounds like Ground. It’s all subcontracted. Express gets nailed if you call them on something like this, but with Ground no one really does anything.

    I’m lucky my Ground pickup guy is so awesome. We ship a lot through it.

  15. eyecon82 says:

    I just had 2 fed ex packages marked as “address incorrect” and had to take time off my schedule to pick up the boxes

    I was astonished to see that of course, the address was correct on both packages

    • brianguyy says:

      guy had wayyy too many packages that day, and figured out a way to prevent an extra stop out of his way. it’s called cheating.

  16. pylbug says:

    I’ve had terrible experiences with FedEx Home Delivery, and they never seem to care when I call to complain. Once they “delivered” a $400 Mackie sound mixing board by leaving in a pile of snow next to my house, complete with a set of footprints showing would-be thieves exactly where to grab it. If I hadn’t come home early that day, I’m certain it would have been stolen if not damaged by the snow it was shoved into. FedEx told me that “Home” drivers are allowed to “make the call” whether or not to leave a package. Their judgment is, apparently, always bad.

    The second incident was a small appliance – toaster oven – sent as a wedding gift to my fiancee and me. I came home from work to find a FedEx note stuck to our front door reading only “back yard” — the driver had thrown the box over a six-foot fence, letting it crash down in a bed of gravel. Again, calls to FedEx yielded not so much as an apology. In both instances, the items were packed well enough that they didn’t break, despite the FedEx driver’s best efforts to undermine his own job.

    I will never willingly ship anything by FedEx. I have gone so far as to cancel orders once I learn they only ship via FedEx. Point is, this post’s subject is not an isolated incident; FedEx is insultingly bad at it’s job.

    • brianguyy says:

      Re: back yard. same here years ago, but it was UPS. it was a textbook I badly needed, and found it 4-5 days later in the bushes. not even so much as a note left on front door. I had been calling them every day to explain I never got the package, then got so annoyed decided to dig around outside and voila. they were good enough to have a local supervisor call me, who got a piece of my mind and was pretty apologetic about it.

    • DJ Charlie says:

      Lucky you. They left a computer I ordered in the STREET. Not in my driveway (UPS does that on a regular basis), but in the STREET in front of my driveway. Luckily, we see little traffic here, and a neighbor was good enough to stop her car and bring it to me, rather than run over it.

  17. brianguyy says:

    this has happened to me before, but usually USPS. usually it’s a problem between the same street, designated as North and South, or East and West (which often results in a location miles away), but occassionally it’s like the same house number, but next street over or something.

    FedEx just delivered a package last week to my previous address, so I can relate. boy, what a disaster. I called customer service, and Fed Ex Lequisha told me they could only pick the old one up and return it to the shipper. yeah, like THAT would go over well for Christmas. thanks a lot!

    reason: shipper got my info wrong, even though I’d already supplied them with a new address (thanks a lot for double checking while completing my price-match phone order!)

  18. LaRefugee says:

    Folks, I’m the OP. For those for whom their diligent observations allow them to feel compelled to read into the situation:

    1.) I called the people for whom the package was addressed (it was a day-care center).

    2.) Client was unable to come today (after giving up on FedExG, I did call them after trusting the professionalism of FedExG to do their job). As they are a day-care center I cannot imagine they, or in all possibility, the one person could up-and-leave her charges to pick up a box.
    3.) During the rain-storms, the package was underneath the porch (the box was moved from the portico onto the front to help our FedExG personnel “see” the package (didn’t help, obviously).
    4.) Regarding my delivery: The last-time I looked, my name and profession has nothing to do with FedEx Ground.

    Quite actually, I should be getting paid for providing this opportunity for any service-company to learn from this case-study/experience of weak strategic execution of outsourcing, planning/communications and diffident CSR’s within an organization.

    Regards.

  19. felixgolden says:

    A UPS driver left a stack of boxes at my door last week. Except none of them were for me. There are four buildings on my block, and mine is the first one as you enter the parking lot. Each bulding has a unique, though sequential, street number. All the packages were for the same unit number, but different buildings. I was working from home all day, but the driver never knocked or rang. I took the packages and left them at the proper units. I assume the driver had to scan the packages to confirm delivery, so I don’t know how half a dozen boxes with different names didn’t register in his head.

  20. coren says:

    I kinda wanna know what it was…

  21. wickedpixel says:

    The appropriate resolution would have been to open the package and either keep its contents or sell them on eBay. Kidding, kidding…. sort of.

  22. tbax929 says:

    I’ve found that the level of service you receive from a delivery driver varies wildly from driver to driver. So you may have a great UPS driver and a shitty FedEx driver or vice versa.

    • scoosdad says:

      In my case I have a great UPS guy and a lousy mailman. I have a big plastic bin with a cover sitting next to my front door with a note on my front door asking them to put packages inside the bin out of sight and out of the weather.

      My UPS guy does it 100% of the time, and the USPS guy never does. His excuse is that it’s not an “approved” USPS mailbox and he’s not allowed to put anything in it. So he leaves my packages out to soak in the rain all the time.

      This is the same guy who once told me it was “illegal” for me to put my outgoing mail in my next door neighbor’s mailbox. My mailbox (one of those locking mail vault types) has a tray for outgoing mail that is only big enough for a business sized #10 envelope, and so greeting cards in larger envelopes hang out of the box exposed to the elements. So I put them in my next door neighbor’s regular mailbox (with their permission). I have to remember to not put my return address on anything I need to put in my neighbors box so the mailman won’t have a fit. Typical brain-dead government employee.

  23. Stuey says:

    Sure does sound like FedEx. They once misdelivered one of my orders: an order I was waiting for and tracking suddenly showed as delivered. I called FedEx and it was determined that the package had been misdelivered, i.e. it was left somewhere without a signature.

    After the FedEx driver never showed up, I called again. This time I was told that someone would investigate. The same happened the next day. And again the next. And then I simply gave up and contacted the shipper.

    This time of year, FedEx would probably prefer to have a claim filed for a missing package rather than have a driver double back.

  24. Daemon Xar says:

    I got a Fedex package the other day for someone two streets over, with the same numerical address. While it’s certainly not my job to, I thought it would be neighborly and save some time to drop it off the next time I left my house (though it was in the wrong direction). Am I the only one who thinks it’s not a bad thing to earn a bit of karma instead of fighting with the delivery company?

    Not to blame the OP. FedEx messed up, and it’s not his or her responsibility to do their jobs for them. But still. It’s Christmas time.

    • floraposte says:

      Which may be why the OP doesn’t have time to take stuff across the town. I could probably do it where I live now, especially since I now have a car, but previously? I would have needed to take time off from work to do it.

    • Ragman says:

      Thing is, do you take it over yourself and effectively condone FedEx’s mistake, or do you call FedEx and tell them to get their crap together? USPS has mis-delivered mail to my house 3 times this month, but I brought the mail to the PO because I want them to be aware of the mistake and pay attention to the addresses on the mail.

  25. outlulz says:

    He should have called the business it was addressed to first and asked if they wanted to come pick it up rather than wait four days for FedEx to take it half a mile away. Or just taken it himself.

  26. Carlee says:

    Though I probably would just take it to the correct address – it’s not the OP’s responsibility to do so. It’s FedEx’s responsibility to make sure the package is delivered to the correct address. Given that they failed that, it’s their job to fix it.

    I tend to fix things when people make mistakes (at work), but I realized that when I do this – they never learn. Of course, FedEx will probably continue to “make mistakes” like this…

  27. bostonguy says:

    Sounds like the flip side of an experience I had in September: Fedex managed to deliver a package to the wrong house number. The shipping store I used fat-fingered the house number, but since it was going to a small town, the wrongly-super-big house number didn’t even exist.

    That didn’t stop Fedex from delivering it SOMEWHERE. This happened on a Tuesday, and I spent all week asking Fedex how they could deliver something to an address that didn’t exist. Finally, by Saturday Fedex told me they would send someone out to try and find where it was dropped to redeliver it. Never mind that the person that got the package brought it upon themselves to bring it to who I had tried to send it to, on a Sunday.

  28. dg says:

    My first and last name is shared by several other individuals in the general area. Over the years, whenever someone ships a package to one of us, and FUBARs the address – UPS or FEDex or whatever do their best to get it delivered. Sometimes they pick one of us at random and drop it off.

    This has happened so much that we all just call one another and say “Hey – did you order something from XYZLand? I’ve got it here…”. Sometimes I bring it there, sometimes they get it. It’s always pretty funny…

    As for the OP’s situation – it was 1/2 mile – Call FedEx once. The 2nd time, drop it off at the intended address. Maybe they have a cute receptionist you can talk with? Maybe you can chat up the owner about your mad skillz and get a job… Maybe you can just make a friend…

    But this time of the year, FedEx and every other shipper has a plethora of temps on-board, and NONE of them know what the hell they’re doing… It’s simply INSANE in these places, so give ‘em a break for the holidays…

  29. evilpete says:

    I have has FedEx misdeliver packages for me several times in the last 2 years, lucky for me the person who revived it was only a few blocks away and was nice enough to call me to come pick get it.

  30. soj4life says:

    How about you just deliver the box yourself or call the business? How much lack of common sense is it to keep calling fedex for four days and not reach out to the recipient? When a fire starts to burn, I hope you are not at the front of the line trying to pull on a door that is marked push, and waiting for someone to fix the sign.

  31. soj4life says:

    Hey Laura, posting this a bit over the top.

  32. feckingmorons says:

    Why not just call the recipient? It seems David just wanted something to complain about. It must be nice to never have made a mistake.

  33. JulesNoctambule says:

    I’m a little surprised with FedEx here; I’ve had consistently good service from them. Now, UPS I’d believe in an instant. They once delivered a package of mine to some random house somewhere in my city, letting some random person sign for it, and then when I called about it they said that they considered their job done and retrieving the misdelivered package was *my* responsibility! Not that they could tell me where or to whom it had been delivered, of course.

    I called the company who sent it, as the contents were several pieces of (fairly pricey) sheet sterling and they have a replacement policy. They called UPS and it was on my doorstep that afternoon. That UPS thought it was my responsibility to fix their mistake astonished me at the time, but subsequent bad experiences every time I’ve had the misfortune to deal with them has taught me that poor service is pretty much standard with that company.

  34. meltingcube says:

    Oh come on, really? If the USPS puts a letter in your mailbox that was meant for your neighbor, do you keep calling the postal service to have them pickup that letter to deliver it down the street? Just wow. This simply shows how lazy the OP was. If this had happened to me with the business being half a mile down the road, I would have simply been nice and taken it down to them.

  35. dannod says:

    I am really surprised that only a handful of people suggested he take it there himself. It appears that our society’s definition of being a “thoughtful citizen” extends no further than making a telephone call. True, this was not his job but it’s not like packages are arriving at his doorstep every day.

    This could have been over and done with in 10 minutes with a quick trip a louse half-mile to the business. He could have walked with the box and gotten back in less time than he was on hold for one of those calls.

  36. jdtrans says:

    Fed Ex ground is apparently the fertile grounds for the Village Idiot’s. I actuall have two covered porches on the front of my house and a deck on the back as well as a small porch and stairs from my garage. These idiot’s repeatedly either leave packages behind my garage door. I wam here as I work from the house. So if I leave and don’t look I back out over the package.The Moron’s have actually left packages behing bushes??? Nothing would surprise me. Why would you not use UPS. UPS folk’s are quite proffesional and smart. Delivering stuff is not brain surgery. I have driven a truck most of my life, delivering stuff. Fed Ex Ground and the Post Office are full of lazy, incompetent, inconsiderate NitWit’s. Hate to generalize but facts are facts. Just the way it is.

  37. Spare_Change says:

    This sounds really familiar…wait, my friend called me last night with identical Fedex fiasco!
    2 exceptions on the tracking info…
    Driver states road to house not passable…
    Road to house clear since Sunday…(it was Tuesday)
    Customer Service realizes driver fibbed but then puts customer on hold without informing…
    Callback gets through to Manager/Supervisor…gives excuse than promises to have driver return in 30 min.
    Hour later, no driver, callback results in Manager willing to get package and deliver in 45 mins..
    45 Mins later call to Fedex find Manager hasn’t left yet…
    Manager shows up hour later, meets on other side of shopping center…
    3 Days to get package (for client’s pet with terminal tumor)…horrible customer service…
    Fedex corporate to get scathing letter with names and events.

    SANTA doesn’t use Fedex!!

  38. ElizabethD says:

    Dude, just drop the package off yourself. Is the principle really worth all this aggravation? Be a neighbor!

  39. Japheaux says:

    At least it didn’t end up on a deserted island with a lone survivor of a plane crash, only to be delivered years later…because that would sound like a stupid movie plot.

    On a related delivery note, I was in the post office yesterday waiting in line when a guy was returning a box (listed as containing cheese) they delivered to his residence by mistake. He was doing the right thing and did not know the intended recipient, but the two post office personnel seemed very ‘put out’ that it was now their problem.

    I was wondering at what point does everyone not care and just open the box and start eating the cheese? There must be thousands of delivery screw ups over the holidays. If the address is written wrong that’s one thing, but if the delivery company screws up,they need to make it right as soon as possible.