No Proof Of Address? FedEx Curses You Out

UPDATE: Reader Receives Apology For Foul-Mouthed FedEx Employees
What started as a routine trip ended in verbal fisticuffs when reader Matthew went to go pick up his package at a local Fedex receiving center in NYC. He thought that his door ticket and identification was enough to get his package but Fedex said he also needed “verification of address” in the form of a utility bill or something similar. Matthew had never heard of this before, but when he questioned this new policy he received a barrage of foul language from an employee and her manager. His letter, inside…

I am writing to you today to share my horrible experience with FedEx. On May 2, 2008 I ordered a new phone through my carrier and had it shipped to my house in Jackson Heights, NY, a suburb of Queens. As many might not expect, Queens is a pretty difficult part of NYC to get through if one does not have a car. On May 5 upon discovering that FedEx was unable to deliver and leave the package at my home address without a signature, they left a door tag. When i got home i read the door tag which stated that I needed to travel to a receiving location across the borough of Queens to pick up my package. After reading this i immediately called 1-800-GOFEDEX, and they assured me that my package could and would be delivered to a location a few blocks away from my house (which as a matter of principle, they should have done in the first place but i digress) as of the next day May 6, 2008. Not only would they do me that “convenience” they would also notify me via telephone and email when my package would be delivered so i could come and pick it up. They did neither.

I called later in the day to inquire on the status of delivery and the operator informed me that not only did they not put a forwarding address and number to call, but yet again it was back on the truck to be delivered. FedEx only delivers 3 times and then returns it to the sender, which would have been a nightmare. So i decide to suck it up and make the trek to the Maspeth location. Upon arrival I was never greeted, and rudely asked, “What do you need?” I handed the woman my ID and the Door Tag. I stated that i had a package i needed to pick up. The woman promptly pointed the sign that read, “Customers Must Present Proof of ID and Verification of Address”. Then she yelled, “Next Customer”.. I couldn’t believe what i was hearing and reminded her who was the customer in the situation to which she responded, “I don’t give a SHIT if you are the customer or not, im not gonna be attacked by customers today, no i won’t”. Finally i asked to speak with the manager and received not only the same attitude, but this statement, “Unfortunately it is what it is. The policy between AT&T and our company is that we can’t give you the package until you show us a bill with your address. You’ll have to call them and work that out otherwise.” I asked him if he could show me such policy that he was quoting, and he said that it could be found at FedEx headquarters. I also told him that if it was of such GREAT IMPORTANCE that I need proof of address that they HAD TO HANG A SIGN, why was he unable to relinquish the FedEx/consumer policy he was attempting to pawn off on me? To which he responded, “Look, there’s nothing i can do God Dammit, now if you have any other questions call the customer service line, NEXT CUSTOMER”.

Furious, irritated, and feeling hopeless, I asked for the first employees name, his name and email, and his district manager’s information and all i got was his business card and a grin. COMPLETE NIGHTMARE. I will never go back, and now due to the fact that i will be at work when they come for the “FINAL DELIVERY” tomorrow i am forced to take off time from work just so i can get my package. PRINCIPLE:#1 If the FedEx employee was able to drop off the notice TWICE, at the listed address, why is isn’t that enough proof of address? Obviously they were at the correct address. #2 Why isn’t that “ID POLICY” stated on the door tag they left?
I spoke to an operator after i returned home and they stated that there was no reason they couldn’t have given me the package, and that there is no existing contract between companies and FedEx that states such policies. I have since complained to FedEx, which will probably get me nowhere, but at least my voice will be heard.

Thank you for taking the time to read my complaint
Matthew in Queens.

We’re not impressed, FedEx. If the telephone CSR’s aren’t familiar with these policies how are we expected to be? At the very least, this information should be left on the door tickets so that customers don’t have to waste trips coming to your pickup locations. Perhaps if this information were more readily available, your employees would be less frustrated and more able to refrain from swearing at the customers, even if they are in Queens.

(Photo: Maulleigh)


Edit Your Comment

  1. mrpenbrook says:

    Fed Ex should get some sort of honorable mention in the “Worst Company Ever” competition. Even if the package requires a signature upon delivery, their policy is that at the driver’s discretion, he can leave it unattended anyway. Staying home to receive your package won’t necessarily help, since they probably won’t buzz you anyway; they often skip right to the door tag. And if you do make the trip to one of their inconveniently located facilities, expect rudeness and confusion.

  2. madrigal says:

    I don’t understand why your ID wouldn’t be enough. I pick up stuff at the post office here in Boston with my FL driver’s license, and I am able to get a letter. That policy is stupid. What if you are visiting or having it delivered at work?

  3. buzzybee says:

    Doesn’t your ID have your address on it? Whenever I need to pick up a package they cross check the label on the package with my name, address, and photo on the ID.

    They are always very insistent on the phone with a reminder to bring ID with address to the depot.

    FedEx has justification for the policy, if you didn’t have your address on the ID, without additional proof, I’m not sure how they could verify that you were the intended recipient.

  4. EricaKane says:

    What this guy is not telling everybody is that his ID does not have the current address on it…that is why they need a utility bill.

  5. bohemian says:

    Hmm. I had new phones from Verizon delivered a few weeks ago. The driver left a door tag. I took said door tag and ID to the Fed Ex office. My drivers license doesn’t even have my current address on it. They looked at the DL, took the door tag and had me sign for the package. So why they gave this guy such a hassle seems out of the norm.

  6. johnva says:

    @EricaKane: Yep, I figured that out from reading between the lines. He doesn’t have a drivers’ license, since he doesn’t have a car, presumably. And probably doesn’t have an ID with address.

  7. henwy says:

    Do driver’s licenses even verify home address? Last I recall, I was just able to write in mine when I got my license renewed and there was no check or anything. That might be why they require a utility bill or something. I mean, it’s unlikely and all that someone would try to scam the system but I can see why they would want a verifiable address.

  8. Edge23 says:

    >> show us a bill with your address

    I don’t believe him on this. FedEx has never demanded a bill from me. They do ask for ID that has your address on it.

    Showing ID is common sense for picking up a package. Anyone can steal the tag form people’ doors.

  9. johnva says:

    @johnva: Although I should add that that guess is only correct if his ID’s address doesn’t match his current address. And it certainly doesn’t justify the foul-mouthed “customer service”.

  10. enm4r says:

    I agree with the above, having lived many locations the ID policy, in my experience, has been pretty standard. Especially as my driver’s license hasn’t had the actually place I live (my home of record stays the same, but current address changes) I have made it a habit to bring a power bill with me pretty much anytime I want to pickup a FedEx or UPS package.

    And seeing as though they never actually deliver packages here in Chicago but instead just throw the notices up as fast as they can, I’ve had a good deal of experience with this. The only difference is they’ve always reminded me on the phone to bring proof of address.

    If you want to grip about FedEx, let’s talk about packages being signed for by F. Rontdoor…I’ve had to file claims a handful of times because my packages that required signature verification that I never signed for. Mr. Rontdoor must be living the life with all these stolen packages…

  11. tcp100 says:

    The response from fedex seems disproportionate, to the point that I’m having trouble believing it, even from FedEx. To have two people curse you out, when you’re supposedly being perfectly polite?

    It also sounds like his ID doesn’t have his address on it. I’m sure in NYC FedEx has had their share of people taking door tags off doors and trying to claim the packages (I also know you can get a fake ID in about 10 minutes in NYC) – so I don’t really blame them for this.

    I’ve picked up tons of packages at FedEx with just a valid ID showing my address. They do match the address, though – that’s what they’re looking for.

  12. EricaKane says:

    Yes I live in Chicago and it is standard practice for both UPS and Fed Ex to require proof of current address to pick up items. If your ID doesn’t show it, then you are required to produce utility bills. This guy left off that very important fact in his story.

  13. katylostherart says:

    i <3 new york…

  14. Serpephone says:

    Where I live in Dallas, I show my passport–which definitely DOES NOT have my current address–and it works fine. They always give me my package(s).

  15. Lucky225 says:

    This is such B.S. I have had packages SENT to FEDEX’s own Shipping Hub address with c/o ‘Hold For Pickup’ when I don’t feel like having something shipped directly to me. What am I supposed to show for proof of address then? I’m not a fedex employee, just using their address to get my package, since I know it will get shipped to the hub and just sit there and wait for me…

  16. Lucky225 says:

    And as for the utility bills? When I lived in Arkansas ALL UTILITY bills were paid for by the landlord. Everything, phone, elect, cable tv, water. Not a single piece of mail was even going to my house.. This is a ridiculous policy.

  17. heavylee-again says:

    This guy should email Steve Jobs and tell him that he needs to give him an iPod.

  18. DeafChick says:

    That is no way to treat a customer. What’s wrong with Fedex?

  19. AT203 says:

    I can see how in an urban area, where anyone can (and probably do) rip a notice off a door and go down to the depot and try to see what package they can get, how there might be more strict requirements for ID.

    The verbal abuse however is inexcusable however.

  20. am84 says:

    WOW. Proof of address or not, the way you were treated was UNACCEPTABLE.

  21. EricaKane says:

    @Lucky225: There are different policies in effect for “Hold at Pickup” When you do that, the person shipping you the package has to put an address for Fed Ex to verify with you.

  22. basilb says:

    There’s certainly no excuse for the abuse. However, it should be “principle” not “principal” in both occurrences in your letter.

  23. Fivetop says:

    I once found two FED EX packages by the side of the road. One was from a jewelry manufacturer with $1000 in insurance and the other was from a blood bank. It took me an hour to navigate their system to reach a live person who could help me. They seem less than pleased to talk to me, even after I explained I had found some packages they had dropped. They sent someone to pick them up that night and he was rude. No one ever even thanked me.

    I was sorry I wasted my time, I should have held the packages overnight and returned them to the customers the next day. Then Fedex could explain to them why their packages were sitting on the side of the road.

  24. avenger339 says:

    I had this exact thing happen to me at this exact location in December of last year, although I was (admittedly) less than polite initially.

    I has about $1500 of computer parts sent to me via Fed Ex. I had initially called to have the packages dropped off at a Fedex location close to me. Of course, when I get home to pick them up, they tell me that they don’t accept packages (something that the rep never told me) and I would have to go to Maspeth. Great.

    I caught a cab out to Maspeth (there’s no subway that goes out that way). My Driver’s license is currently my parent’s address (I had just moved and I STILL haven’t had time to change it), and they refused to give me my parts (and were pretty rude to me when I asked why, they did the same thing to me that they did to Matthew, brushing me off before I was even done talking). I had a bad day and said a few things I shouldn’t have, unfortunately. I caught a cab back, and looked for ANYTHING with my name and current address on it, and found a rent envelope with my name on it.

    I go back that night, catching ANOTHER cab. I apologize for my earlier actions and try again, this time with my envelope. Unfortunately, that wasn’t “good enough” for them, they still refused to let me take the package I go home (yet ANOTHER cab), and take a day off from work the next day to receive the package… only it never comes.

    I got a call about 3-4 PM saying that they tried to deliver the package to the original location I went to and they refused the dropoff. This was the next day, AFTER they originally tried. At this point, I figure that maybe Newegg (who I bought the stuff from) can help me. I talk to the CSR (who was very polite and helpful), she calls them and explains my situation to them, and they make a note of it in their file that I should be able to pick up the package.

    As I’m flipping through the day’s mail, I find that I received a credit card bill with my name and new address on it. It’s a good thing too, because when I go back for the 3rd time (ANOTHER cab), they told me that there was no record of the Newegg CSR calling (even though it had happened literally 2 hours before). I finally got my stuff.

    Yes, I was not nice in the beginning (and I really do regret it), but the people behind the counter were some of the rudest people that I have ever dealt with. I spent $120 in cab fares total, and wasted quite a bit of time dealing with these people. I’m never going to use FedEx again, I would actually rather use USPS than have to deal with this again.

    However, I have another story (not involving me, but what I witnissed) –

    I had a friend who shipped something via FedEx, and I volunteered to go with him to pick it up (I knew where the place was). I saw this same exact situation happen to another customer – she didn’t realize that she needed an ID that the ID on her license didn’t match the address on the package. The next customer was taken before she was done talking.

  25. enm4r says:

    @Lucky225: I’m sure you had some document showing proof of address; the utility bill is just a suggestion. A lease would suffice as well, as I’ve used that before.

  26. bms says:

    What can brown do for you?

  27. Three Word Chant says:

    I’m also in Queens..I’ve had similar experiences at both FedEx and UPS there. I ordered the Chocolate from Verizon the day it came out, and got there about 20 minutes before closing. They locked the door and wouldn’t let me in. I begged and begged since I wanted the phone, and they let me in, but I heard one of the other employees curse about me repeatedly (not to mention..the Chocolate wasn’t worth it)

  28. CityGuySailing says:

    tcp100: Believe it. I had a package delivery from Fedex, that required me to go to the Fedex location in Danbury, CT. I went there and was asked for my drivers license, and the CSR proceeded to start typing my drivers license # into her computer terminal. I quickly stopped her, retrieved my license, and asked to see the manager, inquiring about their computer security policies. I was brushed off, with the manager saying that it was their policy to record the Drivers License #, and that was that. I told them, fine, redeliver the package the next day to my house. I signed for the package next day, case closed. I complained but never heard back.

  29. BrianU says:

    It was a woman, maybe even a “minority” too. With that attitude and language, she knows that no company, especially one with deep pockets, would EVER fire her. And in the NY area it’s probably a piece of cake to find numerous government and private agencies and lawyers to help advocate any “discrimination” toward her. Just feeling like someone at work doesn’t absolutely like anything about you ever, or not getting every open promotion is all she needs for a “hostile workplace” or “employee or minority discrimination” suit. Hopefully she’ll eventually quit when she’s to burned-out from the having to do the barest minimum of showing-up most of the time and get government handouts for suffering what ever “medical condition” caused her not to want to go to work.

  30. crapple says:

    ‘he received a barrage of foul language from an employee and her manger.’

    It’s been awhile since college French, but I remember manger means ‘to eat’…I’m not a grammar-nazi, but I got a great mental image of oversized chompers behind a FedEx desk.

  31. ViperBorg says:

    @EricaKane: What fricken government-issued ID doesn’t have your address on it?!

  32. stephenjames716 says:

    sounds like that employee was having a fantastic day!

  33. LJKelley says:

    It doesn’t make sense. I can understand the Address needing to be verified but if you stole a doortag what are the odds you would have a matching ID with name on it?

  34. EricaKane says:

    If someone thinks the package is worth a few thousand dollars (say a laptop), it is quite conceivable that they could get a fake id and pass that off in order to get the package.

  35. enm4r says:

    @ViperBorg: What fricken government-issued ID doesn’t have your address on it?!

    A military ID or passport, to name a few.

  36. tevetorbes says:

    Too bad this isn’t confined to FedEx- I’ve had problems with ALL of the carriers, including UPS telling me that my package could not be re-delivered because it didn’t include an apartment number (ORLY? How did you leave the door tag the first time you incompetent donut?)

    I have been speed-buzzed by FedEx (the guy knocked on my door and in the 15 seconds it took me to get off the couch he was already on the elevator with my package having left a door tag. Lazy bum.)

    I also have put up with DHL, the Taco Bell of Package Delivery (I hope everyone who could take offense to that does) sending my package from the Dell Factory that is 20 minutes from Nashville ACROSS THE STATE TO MEMPHIS and then back to Nashville because they are apparently braindead fuckwits.

    So, consumers, what is the option? Its not like you can tell Amazon (or whomever) “Hey, could you like, use FedEx/UPS/DHL because I really hate FedEx/UPS/DHL and would prefer if you didn’t use them.” And, even if you could, is one really better than the other?

  37. BlondeGrlz says:

    I love UPS. I had a driver leave a note on my door and I called to ask if I could come pick up my package. The CSR said “Oh that driver’s still out, he’ll be picking up at the town hall in 30 minutes, do you want to meet him there?” I said yes (town hall is a 5 minute walk) and two minutes later the driver was at my door. He wanted to save the the trip so he just redelivered the package. Excellent customer service.

  38. Charred says:

    I thought using a utility bill as “proof of address” was for people who didn’t have a driver’s license or other government-issued ID?

  39. BlackFlag55 says:

    Ah, the joy of living in sparsely populated territory. Not only do our FEDEX, UPS and USPS drivers know us by name, we know them and their families.

    Cities. Got one word … frack.

  40. Lucky225 says:


    The address wasn’t my address.. it was literally the address of the Fedex facility it’s self. And no, at the time I was living in Arkansas I had no proof of my ACTUAL address (tho I never had anything shipped there anyways) as everything was in the landlord’s name, and not a single piece of mail was going to my house at that time. I was being stalked, and the stalker was finding me through utility companies (through a practice known as social engineering), and through USPS change of address forwarding. So I specifically chose that residence since the landlord paid ALL the bills so nothing was in my name for the stalker to find, and I didn’t forward any mail to that address or receive anything there, not even my own mother knew where I was living at the time (as they were harassing family members for information.) I was stopped by a cop for speeding coming OUT of the town that was listed on my address, when he asked where I was going I slipped up and said home, which he then noticed I was going in the wrong direction of home and demanded my address, which I refused for fear that it would become public information if I was ticketed with that address. I ended up with a verbal warning to change my address. After looking up the statutes for change of address I noticed that I wasn’t required to give my residential address when I move but rather ‘an address’, so I sent a certified letter to the Dept of Finance(DMV in arkansas) citing the statute and updating them with a PO BOX address. Next time I got stopped I had my scanner on me, sure enough my DL # came back to a PO BOX, and that was all that was listed. It was pretty cool having a place to live without anything linking me to my residence for that year or so I lived there.

  41. NardaThriller says:

    Comment on No Proof Of Address? FedEx Curses You Out I’m sorry, but the fault is almost entirely with Matthew on this one. Get a
    freakin’ clue, Matthew.

    First off, anybody can steal a door tag. The fact that he has the door tag
    is not proof of address. Use your brain.

    Second, demanding a real, live signature from a warm body when delivering
    cellphones is pretty customary procedure, and has happened with every
    cellphone I’ve ordered in the last five years. Deal with it. Maybe have it
    delivered somewhere where somebody can sign for it? Nah, too logical.

    Third, get some friggin’ proof of address. What kind of transient loser are
    you? There’s Go Phones for people like you.

    That doesn’t excuse rudeness or profanity, but other than that, Matthew has
    absolutely NO grounds for complaint, none.

  42. ralphie99 says:

    I’m sorry, but the fault is almost entirely with Matthew on this one. Get a freakin’ clue, Matthew.

    First off, anybody can steal a door tag. The fact that he has the door tag is not proof of address. Use your brain.

    Second, demanding a real, live signature from a warm body when delivering cellphones is pretty customary procedure, and has happened with every cellphone I’ve ordered in the last five years. Deal with it. Maybe have it delivered somewhere where somebody can sign for it? Nah, too logical.

    Third, get some friggin’ proof of address. What kind of transient loser are you? There’s Go Phones for people like you.

    That doesn’t excuse rudeness or profanity on the part of Fedex, but other than that, Matthew has absolutely NO grounds for complaint, none.

  43. SchuylerH says:

    My most recent experience with OOPS involved two boxes of pretzels I’d ordered. For some reason, the shipper marked both as “1 of 1” and according to the receptionist, the delivery guy decided of his own accord that the second box was an error and that he should take it back. All this transpired while I was out of the building so I couldn’t come down and say yes, I did order two boxes.

    I use the shipping information on the box I do have an go online to see what’s going on. It shows “delivery refused,” which is utter crap – the receptionist said she attempted to have him leave the second box and let me sort it out and he made the unilateral call to take it back.

    So I try calling the customer service line. Options: track a package, send a package, find shipping locations, etc. Not one about “Your idiot driver took back a package that he shouldn’t have.” Eventually after mashing the 0 button, I got through and after explaining the situation got put through to the local office where they redelivered that afternoon.

    So it seems every shipping company has its share of asses and boneheads.

  44. @tcp100: Apparently you haven’t been at the Maspeth location. I have on several occasions.

    I believe every word he said in his letter.

  45. Edge23 says:

    Yep, Matthew is a frickin’ moron and intentionally left out the fact he did not show ID with his address on it.

    As for being offending by the cursing, grow some balls Matthew. The woman was probably sick of having to deal with morons all day long.

  46. ThunderRoad says:

    It’s New York. I thought attitude and cussing was a given?

  47. Edge23 says:

    @ venger339 – Your rant was quite boring and useless. You didn’t have time to change your address on your license, but you had time to take cabs several times to FedEx?

    The lesson is to show proof that you live at the address when trying to pick up a package.

    Who do you think would have to pay if FedEx gave out the package to someone who didn’t show ID and it ended up being the person was a thief?

  48. Lambasted says:

    Proof of address is not an unreasonable requirement. Otherwise, anyone could snatch a ticket off someone’s door and go to FEDEX to pickup the item. If he didn’t have an i.d. with his current address on it then I have no problem with them requiring a utility bill.

    I’ve been asked for a utility bill before. I was going to sign up for a library card and they required a utility bill for proof of residence.

    Asking for a utility bill is a bit overkill but not completely unreasonable.

  49. mk says:

    @enm4r: I live in Chicago and I’ve made many trips to the fedex location in Skokie, I don’t remember ever having to bring anything other than an ID. But let’s say he brought an ID that didn’t have the correct address and they said they needed proof of address – how does that justify swearing at him?

  50. Lucky225 says:

    Apparently you people can’t read the friggen article


    “I handed the woman my ID and the Door Tag. I stated that i had a package i needed to pick up. The woman promptly pointed the sign that read, “Customers Must Present Proof of ID and Verification of Address”

    HE SHOWED HIS ID, IT JUST DIDN’T HAVE HIS ADDRESS. So what if he shipped to a friend/relative while on vacation and didn’t have proof that he lived there, because guess what, HE DIDN’T. Now he can’t get his package, when the whole reason he had it shipped there was because that’s where he was going to be during that time. I hardly doubt there’s some ring of thieves stealing door tags and then wasting material to make a fake ID to pick up random packages in a neighborhood.

  51. Uriel says:

    @ralphie99: If you had read the article I think you would have seen that the point was that all you need is proof of identification…not proof of address, as he’s proven by calling and finding that there is indeed no existing contract between companies and Fedex for this to be policy. It’s called The Consumerist, not BlameTheConsumerist. I am probably going to skip over your posts in the future. Have a nice day. *yawn*

  52. Lucky225 says:


    Thank you, it’s refreshing to see someone who actually gets it for once.

  53. avenger339 says:


    The point wasn’t so much that I didn’t have proof (I understand why they need proof which is why I regret being a jerk), it was more that I tried to rectify the situation a few times and I STILL didn’t get my package (bringing something that DID prove I lived there, calling the company and going through the correct channels). I’m not looking for sympathy or anything, I’m just stating an experience I had with these exact people and can agree with Matthew in Queens that they are jerks of the highest caliber.

    And yes, I didn’t have time to change my license and grab cabs. What’s your point? Last time I checked, DMV’s are closed at that time, and not only that, I had just moved a little less than a month ago. Even if I did change my address on my license, I doubt I would have received it by then anyway.

  54. EricaKane says:

    @NeroDiavolo: Local stations of Fed Ex and UPS can set their own darn policies. They are given that latitude by Fed Ex/UPS national

    Those in small towns/rural areas should thank Fed Ex/UPS for not instituting a national policy on this, because if they did, all these small towns would be forced in demanding proof of address.

    Talk about looking a gift horse in the mouth!

  55. EricaKane says:

    @melking1972: Yeah well Skokie is in the nicer part of Chicago. Try doing that at the UPS dump on Roosevelt or the Fed Ex location on Division (right next to Cabrini Green) and see if you get your packages.

  56. enm4r says:

    @melking1972: As EricaKane mentions, the two locations in Chicago proper are fairly strict about the address requirement. I’ve never been up to the Skokie location to know first hand, but like was mentioned above, it’s not unreasonable to have proof of address. But in no way does that excuse the rude behavior.

    @Lucky225: This should be admittedly an extreme example, but the point remains, people have things shipped to a location other than their home address all the time. Fortunately I’ve foreseen the problem and tried to avoid it, because I know what an issue it can be. If you’re having packages sent directly to the Fedex location there should be a provision that you take on liability if they give the package away to someone with proper (potentially fake) ID because they couldn’t verify address.

  57. Lucky225 says:


    I don’t think it’s to extreme. When I moved to Texas with my wife we didn’t even have an address at first, we were living from hotel to hotel, and my mom shipped packages to her mom’s house, where we weren’t living. I simply use a Private Mail Box now where I can accept FedEx, UPS, mail, and even freight, but I don’t think it’s such a stretch of the imagination for someone to ship something to somewhere they don’t live or have proof that the address is in some way connected to them.

  58. ralphie99 says:

    @NeroDiavolo: Yes, I did read the article. Did you?

    The requirement of a real, live signature upon delivery is based on the agreement between Fedex and the cellphone company. I’ve been told this by my cellphone company, every time I order a cellphone, that someone must absolutely, positively be home to sign for it, no exceptions. And indeed, for some reasons, cellphones seem to be the ONLY thing that Fedex WON’T leave at the door without a signature — they are forever leaving all my other packages unsigned for, even though a signature was ‘required’.

    And from what I’ve seen, requiring proof-of-address when going to pick up a package at Fedex is just standard practice — they even have a friggin’ sign on their wall to back them up. hey have the same sign on the wall where I pick up my packages. That part has nothing to do with the cellphone companies, and if the Fedex rep said it did, they were mistaken.

    They also have a sign on the door at my favorite restaurant that says “No Shoes – No Shirt – No Service.” If I try to walk in barefoot and topless, I don’t have much grounds to complain if they send me packing, do I? I might even halfway expect them to be rude to me for being such a clueless yutz. I certainly don’t have any grounds for crying to The Consumerist if they don’t let me in.

    I don’t know how this could be any clearer. He ordered a cellphone — signature required — then wasn’t home to sign for it. He went to pick it up — proof-of-address was required — and he didn’t have it.

    I know it’s called the Consumerist. It’s just that sometimes consumers are the ones that are stupid.

  59. radio1 says:

    @Serpephone: Passports are more secure than driver’s licenses or state id’s… This is why when you get a new job, and you need to fill out an I-9 form you can use a passport OR driver’s license and social security card…

  60. Edge23 says:


    Well said.

    I ship products using UPS and do mark that a signature is required. If UPS chooses to leave it without a signature and it is stolen, UPS will be liable.

    Now FedEx has chosen to not leave cellphone packages at all. They make leave other packages, even if the shipper requested a signature. That is a liability FedEx has chosen to take.

  61. Cliff_Donner says:

    It seems to me that it would be incredibly easy to mock up a fake utility bill.

  62. DeanCodrus says:

    Comment on No Proof Of Address? FedEx Curses You Out I have also had the same experience with UPS. Have my ID, the door
    tag, shipping information, etc… I had to bring in my lease
    paperwork to “let them” release my packages. Two trips, 33miles, and
    3 hours of my life I will never get back. This is all after asking
    the CSR at UPS what I would need to pick up my package from the UPS

  63. Edge23 says:



    But the person would have steal a tag, create a fake ID and create a fake utility bill.

    Or he could just fake a driver’s license with the right name and address.

  64. enm4r says:

    @Lucky225: I meant more specifically your example of actively trying to separate yourself from any proof of address was fairly extreme. Not that it’s not a stretch to send something to somewhere that isn’t necessary your permanent residence, as I have done that numerous times.

  65. salguod_senrab says:


    I’m amazed by people like you who essentially act as unpaid shills for the companies criticized here. What do you get out of this?

    To everyone who keeps posting that this is a reasonable security measure, note that someone would have to BOTH:

    – Rip off the door tag, and
    – Have a fake ID in the name of the resident

    Given how easy it would be to dummy up a utility bill compared with making a fake ID, it’s clear that this policy adds no security whatsoever.

  66. tevetorbes says:

    Um, all you people climbing all over the OP for not having proof of address are missing the point, either because you enjoy blaming the consumer or you just absolutely REFUSE to listen to reason.

    If my name is Teve Torbes, and I have a package shipped to me, Teve Torbes, which, incidentally, if you have ever been shipped a package you realize that it goes TO A PHYSICAL PERSON and NOT A PLACE, then why in the FRICK do I need to prove what my address is?

    Case in point: I have a ticket for package addressed to Teve Torbes that Carrier01 has left on my doorstep- I have an ID that says I’m Teve Torbes. It doesn’t matter if I had it shipped to my downtown apartment or the FRIGGING TAJ MAHAL, I’m Teve Torbes and I’m here to get my package.

    I’ll spell it out for you people who aren’t getting it:

    It shouldn’t matter where I had it shipped (my home, my business, the McDonald’s on the corner, etc). It was shipped to ME. Now I am here with my ID that says that I am ME.

    End. Of. Story.

  67. Uriel says:

    @ralphie99: once again ralph, read the article. *sigh*

    “I spoke to an operator after i returned home and they stated that there was no reason they couldn’t have given me the package, and that there is no existing contract between companies and FedEx that states such policies.”

    standard practice doesn’t mean it’s policy, as stated by the operator, that was not policy. Thanks for a laugh,
    love, everyone.

  68. metaled says:

    I can fully understand the company not accepting the OP’s ID for no address. They need proof they delivered it to the addressee at that address, not just someone named on the package. Try picking up mail with an ID that shows the address, but in a different name! (Room-mate unrelated, same address, but different last name). I had that problem for years with UPS, USPS, Fedex, etc… My room-mate or I would try to pick up a package or mail addressed to the other person, never went well! To bad they only leave the slip on the door telling the address, not the name that is on the package. Take the slip down to pick it up, find out it is addressed to the other resident, there is no end to the number of trips we had to both take over the years, trying to explain “I know it is addressed to the other person, he is my room-mate and wants me to pick it up.” or “Why wouldn’t you put a name on the pick-up order if you wouldn’t let anyone from that address pick it up!” Talk about an exercise in futility!

  69. Lambasted says:

    Oh suddenly UPS is the chosen one. A couple of weeks ago UPS was crap and FEDEX was king.

    @bms: Where do I begin?

    Makes me wait all day for a delivery that will be likely be rescheduled.

    Shows up only to put a note on my door and make a quick getaway without delivering my package despite the fact that I am home.

  70. Lucky225 says:


    I have to disagree with you, big difference between WHO and WHERE. The package was properly addressed to the OP. The OP showed ID showing that he was the person addressed. The fact that it was mailed to an address he didn’t have “proof of” (besides the fact that he was holding the door tag for that particular ADDRESS!) should have no bearing. But if you are NOT the person the package is addressed to that is totally reasonable for refusal, but this is why good use of ‘Care of’ or c/o your room mate’s name on the package would have took care of that problem. I’ve used a service Called General Delivery in the past, where mail is mailed directly to your post office with no address whatsoever, tons of people get mail for general delivery, but only letters with YOUR name on it will be given to you with YOUR ID. The fact that he was proved he was the addressee and had physical evidence that he was indeed at that address(the door tag), should have been enough to suffice.

  71. Edge23 says:


    Instead of accusing others for being “shills for FedEx” how about you actually make a rational argument?

    Calling someone a shill for having a different viewpoint does not make your nonsense any more logical.

    A photo ID with no address is meaningless.

    Many times packages are shipped to an address, not a person.

  72. Lambasted says:

    @Lucky225: If no one was stealing packages, FedEx wouldn’t have to require proof address in the first place. I think it would be rather evident that the reason for these extra measures are in part resulting from past security breaches.

    It’s not about consumer convenience but about security. When you purchase something online to pick it up in the store, the store requires photo id and the credit card used to buy it. Thus limiting pickup to only the person who bought it. I wanted to buy a gift for someone and have them pick it up at the store to avoid shipping costs. No can do.

    I don’t know where some people live but here in the Washington, DC area, we have crime and people actually steal things. I hate all these extra security practices too but at least I understand why they are necessary and don’t cry every time I encounter one.

  73. Edge23 says:

    Also if your ID does not have an address, FedEx requires BOTH the ID an a utility bill.

  74. Lucky225 says:


    It seems rather ridiculous to me. If someone steals a door tag they know the address and can make a utility bill in photoshop, but I highly doubt they’ed go to the lengths of manufacturing a fake ID to pick up a package unless they actually KNEW what was in the package.

  75. Lucky225 says:


    Also if the door tag doesn’t have the name on it(as others have pointed out), how would they know what name to put on the fake ID? Certainly they’ed know the address as that’s where they stole the tag from. Seems like the name would DEFINATELY be more important.

  76. Edge23 says:


    Yes, it doesn’t mater where you have the product shipped to but you just must be there to receive it.

    Items are shipped to a person AND and address. Not just a person. If your point was valid, then why even list addresses on packages? Why not just list a name, city and have FedEx track people down and hand deliver it to them? That is nonsense.

  77. tevetorbes says:


    Can we all just agree that Best Buy sucks and get back to our regularly scheduled programming?

  78. tevetorbes says:


    Um, I’m assuming that you’re using a clever tool called ‘rhetoric’ when you say “Why even list addresses on the packages?”

    My point wasn’t that you could just slap Teve Torbes on a box and throw it out the window and it would magically find its way to me via the FedEx fairies.

    My POINT is that if my name is on a package, it shouldn’t matter (and doesn’t matter! not just shouldn’t!) if the address is 1234 Any Street or 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue or 555 FedEx Blows Donkey Lane.

    The package is CLEARLY mine, as is evidenced by my name being on it, and I am clearly me, as evidenced by the fact that I can present my photo ID, so the hangup is with the bullshit policy that FedEx has. I shouldn’t have to prove to FedEx where I live if the package has my name on it and I can prove that I am who I say that I am.

    Let’s try it another way so that you can understand:

    If FedEx shows up and I’m actually there, they don’t need me to prove to them that I live there. What if I broke into the person’s house because I knew they were receiving a new iPhone, drugged them, and received the package?

    Sounds absurd, no? No more absurd than a guy who cruises neighborhoods scouring for Delivery Notices and then forges fake IDs with pictures and names but not addresses to pick up undelivered packages.

    That is nonsense.

  79. MMD says:

    @ralphie99: Proof of address = an ID. He presented it.

    Your tone isn’t much better than the FedEx employees’. Relax, dude.

  80. Lucky225 says:


    And by the way, that’s how General Delivery works with the Postal Service, someone sends you a letter to:

    Your Name
    General Delivery
    City, State ZIP+9999

    You go to the post office, wait in line, show your ID and say General Delivery, and they hand you the letter, they don’t ask for proof that ‘General Delivery’ is your address, they know why you’re there.

    As well as fedex, I have my packages shipped to:

    My Name
    FedEx Main Hub
    My City, State, Zip

    Never had any problem or have them ask me to prove that their main hub is ‘my’ address.

  81. Edge23 says:

    It does matter. Ever heard of AVS? I have a small business and do not ship to addresses not on the person’s credit card file.

    What you are proposing is that the customer (or possible thief) be able to receive their package other than the address they specified on their order and the shipping label.

    “If FedEx shows up and I’m actually there, they don’t need me to prove to them that I live there. What if I broke into the person’s house because I knew they were receiving a new iPhone, drugged them, and received the package?”

    If the package requires a signature, the thief would need to sign. In that case, the rightful owner can file a police complaint for being drugged/robbed and then work with FedEx or the merchant to get refund or replacement.

    If the package is left at the door, anyone can take it. So it doesn’t require the thief to break in and drug the owner.

    As far as the USPS, so what? Since an expensive gadget like the iPhone is not sent via a letter.

  82. Lucky225 says:


    Yes, I’ve heard of AVS(Address Verification System). I hardly see how it is relates to this particular person’s problem. He proved it’s his address by the door tag, He proved it was HIS by his name and ID. In any event there are several problems with your analysis. I used to live in a private community that did not accept packages from FEDEX/UPS, and would be held for pickup at the FedEx location, so yes, the person should be able to pick up at their FedEx location if they can prove that the package is addressed to them. There is a signature, you still have to sign at the fedex location, and they’ve seen your ID, so they know the rightful addressee has received the package. As far as USPS, was making a comparison, that yes, all that needs to be on a package is your name to identify it as YOUR package. I hardly doubt John Smith from New York is going to take a flight to California to pick up your iphone that he has know knowledge of in the first place. And finally, as for AVS, I have added UPS and Fedex as shipping addresses to my credit card. Most card issuers will allow you to add 2 or 3 shipping addresses in addition to your billing address, that doesn’t mean you actually live there.

  83. Lucky225 says:

    Hell, Vonage told me they were going to ship via UPS, and then shipped via DHL, so I gave them UPS main hub address, and then had to pick up at DHL, If DHL had one of these ridiculous policies I would have never got my Vonage device.

    Order information below:

    Shipping Information:

    Street No. and Street Name: 3480 Jurupa Ave
    Apt., Suite, Room, etc: HOLD FOR PICKUP
    City: Ontario
    State: CA
    Zip Code: 91761
    Country US
    Shipment Carrier: DHL
    Delivery Method: DHL Ground (shipment originated in US)

  84. Charred says:

    @ralphie99: Anger management much?

  85. catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

    i always take extra ID and printouts of my tracking records when i have to pick something up after a situation i had at DHL.

    my online pharmacy shipped my insulin syringes and meds [which i had ALMOST RUN OUT OF due to a pharmacy paperwork delay] and i absolutely had to have them that day because it was a friday and they were closed for the weekend, by which time i would be out of medication.

    i was at work, 35 miles from home and checked the tracking records online to make sure my package was delivered but it showed they declined to deliver it, due to signature [never required before?] and had taken it back to the hub, which was fortunately only 10 miles from work.

    luckily for me, i printed that page out and took it with me.
    when i got to the hub after work, half an hour before they closed, they couldn’t find my package by by name in the computer and said they wouldn’t go look for it manually because they were almost closed.

    so i went to my car and got the tracking page. when i went back in the desk was unmanned and i had to call several times before someone came to help me.

    i provided the page, she looked it up in the computer and said ‘yep, it’s here’ and went to look. ten minutes later she said she couldn’t find it and went to get help.

    5 minutes before they closed someone realized it was the BIG box that i could actually see from the lobby, next to the doorway of the back room, sitting on the floor because it wouldn’t fit on their shelf

    i NEVER go to pick up a package now without documentation that it’s there, i’m me, and i am prepared to camp out to get my box!

    at least the folks at DHL weren’t rude to me, just a little less than bright

  86. The UPS vs. FedEx vs. DHL vs. whoever is an irrelevant argument. Every company has its problems. I can’t say I’ve been unfortunate enough to have to verbally eviscerate an employee for daring to swear at me, but all of these services are founded on a bureaucracy that will sometimes prove inefficient and downright aggravating. It’s been that way since man had to move thing from Point A to Point B, and it will remain that way.

    That having been said, it sounds like this particular location is lacking in the customer service department and needs a boot to the rear from HQ. Sorry to hear you had a bad experience.

  87. mattinqueens says:

    Hello, i would like to inform everyone that posted or read my article especially “NARDATHRILLER”, that I recieved a call from a corporate executive from FedEx in Memphis, TN who acted very promptly on the matter concerning my recent article and complaint that i filed with FedEx about the Maspeth location. He offered to have someone pick the package up for me right at that time, and deliver it to me at my place of employment. I reitterated to him that the service provided to me at this location was highly unconscionable, and my main concern was that if in the future I needed to go back to this location would i receive the treatment?? He informed me that their actions were totally uncalled for and that there is an existing investigation regarding not only my complaint but at least 50 other similar issues with this branch, and that they are currently working on providing the customer with policy information on notices, i.e. doortags,emails, etc. also providing me with his email, and direct line in Memphis should I have any further issues.

    I have to say that it was very comforting to know that my story was heard and acted on in a way that every customer should be treated on a daily basis.

    NardaThriller: If i was a ‘transient loser’ would i be living in New York taking cabs?? Or having a brand new phone sent to me?? Nah, i dont think so. Please, do everyone a favor on this site and block it from your web browser so that no one else has to hear you.

    Thank You :)

  88. Jay Slatkin says:

    @mattinqueens:That’s great to hear, Matt. Thanks for the update!

  89. Lucky225 says:


    I’m very glad to hear that, what are the naysayers going to say now? Anyone with that door tag could have had it ‘resent to ‘your’ place of employment’ and not actually live at your address, oh the horrors of those sly FedEx thieves! //sarcasm.

  90. Consumer007 says:

    Hey OP:

    I went ahead and researched a bit on this for the OP. When I called Fedex at (800) 463-3339‎, I demanded to know the name of the district manager for that location. She wouldn’t give me that but she did say the store manager’s name was Kenneth Troy, and if you call the number above during normal busines hours and ask to speak specifically to the customer advocate team, they will escalate for you and get this resolved. Give it a shot and post what happens.

  91. SolidSnake1118 says:

    I’ve had a similar experience… the bitch didnt curse me out, but she was incredibly curt, and refused to listen to anything i said, simply pointing at the fucking sign and explaining that i don’t have “propa eye-dee”. i left SO miserable. all it was was a god damn BOX so i could ship my iphone for repair, and i needed it that day so i could ship it, as i had to leave the next day for L.A. FUCK fedex, and their retarded policies. i’ve never had a worse experience. to add insult to injury, there’s a sign on the wall that says something along the lines of “fedex- making every experience a joy” or something. FUCK FEDEX!!!!!!!!!!!! THEY DELAYED ME BY A WEEK BECAUSE THEY COULDNT GIVE ME A FUCKING CARDBOARD BOOOOX

  92. SolidSnake1118 says:

    ^^^^ same place btw, in maspeth ^^^^^^

  93. Anonymous says:

    Please check your branch of Fedex in Nigeria, as Ive been force to pay amount of US$206.=for the shipping charges by Fedex in Nigeria-and after sending the money to them they demanding for US$1500,= then to US$850.=then came down to US$530.=and it came down to US$205,=whats going on??? the person who told me was FedEx Delevery Post Mr.Tom Cole, Executive Secretary and money receiver of US$206.= called Mr.Egbe Owen,Address 5 Airport Road,Garki,Abuja,NIGERIA and the payment made thru Western Union Bank. Please note the telp Nr.of Mrs.Tom Cole is +234-7057371024 if the money which I send is not return Ive to handed over to the GERMAN Authourity. Please be kind enough to act on this, and if you more detail I will forward the mail which they send to me, thanking you for your understanding and cooperation thank you-