Apple Makes Me Stalk The UPS Guy At My Old House

Samantha has moved since registering for an account on That’s not unusual. Her problem is that Apple is somehow unable to deal with this reality, and she isn’t able to change her address in their system. This means that they can’t ship her freshly ordered iPhone 4S anywhere but her old address. “Maybe I will show up at the house and ask them to please not steal my new iPhone,” she muses.

Here’s the original e-mail that she sent on Monday:

On Friday I went online to pre-order my new iPhone 4Gs. My account had the wrong shipping address attached to it and it would not let me change this online. I called and the representative asked for my order number. I explained I didn’t have one yet because I didn’t want to purchase anything that would go to a place I don’t live anymore. The guy insisted I have to purchase it first, with delivery to the wrong address, then call back to change it. He said this wouldn’t be a problem and I could call back anytime before October 14th (delivery day…hmm…). He said it would actually be better to wait as they were being inundated with calls about this.

So, I waited and day and called back to change my shipping address. The woman I spoke to put me on hold and came back with a big, juicy “UNFORTUNATELY”. I knew the rest of the call wasn’t going to go well. She explained that it was too late to change the address and that my phone will be shipped to the wrong address.

I asked if there was ANYTHING that could be done. She said she could submit a request to change the address, but there was no way to guarantee this would be done. She also said, no matter what, the carrier will try the wrong address first. If no one signs for it, they MIGHT try the new address – it depends how busy they are.

I asked what would happen if someone else gets my shiny new iPhone. She said we may
be able to get law enforcement involved. She also suggested I go to the address and talk to the nice people.

Not what I expected from Apple. Four days until delivery – I am hoping for the best. Maybe I will show up at the house and ask them to please not steal my new iPhone.

Thinking that perhaps Apple had fixed the situation for Samantha and the other affected customers, we asked for an update. Nope. Occupy Samantha’s Old House is on for Friday.

Nope. I’ve called almost every day since I placed the order. Everyday they tell me, no matter what, the first delivery attempt will be an address where I don’t live anymore.

So, Friday I will be sitting outside of my old house, stalking the UPS guy.


Edit Your Comment

  1. LostApathy says:

    Go to, click “Manage Your Account”, sign in and change your address.

    Obviously doesn’t fix the current package you agreed to have ship to the wrong address, but it’ll fix it for next time.

    • Apeweek says:

      She said she was unable to change it online. I’m sure the first rep she spoke to would have suggested this.

      I’ve been in a similar situation (not with Apple) with another business with a broken address update system.

      Just because there’s a process in place doesn’t mean it works.

  2. GMFish says:

    I don’t understand this. Maybe it’s because I never ordered anything from Apple. But I’ve moved numerous times and my Amazon and Newegg deliveries can always find me. I simply have to change my shipping address prior to completing the order.

    Does Apple simply not allow you to change your shipping address? Or are Apple users too ignorant to figure out how to change their shipping addresses?

    • AustinTXProgrammer says:

      I wanted to put my office address in, but I could ONLY ship to my AT&T billing address. Although I have heard of others getting away with it.

      It might be too late, but if she did it yesterday she could have used UPS’s shinny new UPS My Choice and paid a $5 change fee to redirect it, assuming she moved recently enough for the system to allow her to sign up the old address. It appeared to use my credit file to authenticate me, I answered the same types of questions as when pulling my credit report.

      • GMFish says:

        but I could ONLY ship to my AT&T billing address.

        That makes sense from Apple’s perspective because it eliminates ID thefts.

        But why didn’t the OP simply change her billing address? I sounds to me like it’s completely her fault.

        • AustinTXProgrammer says:

          I’m not sure it was immediately apparent that the address came from AT&T. It was just a locked out ship to address and I knew I hadn’t given that address as a shipping address to apple in the past (My iPad shipped to the office in the spring without difficulty).

          Oh well, an excuse to work from home tomorrow. Apparently I could have changed the address online on Saturday, but I didn’t know to try.

    • whgt says:

      There isn’t an app for changing your address yet therefore iPhone users are helpless!

  3. mauispiderweb says:

    Damn, if Apple can’t update your online information for you … well, that’s that.

  4. anime_runs_my_life says:

    Wait, what happened to them contacting the carrier and correcting the address? Or is that beyond Apple’s control now? Seems really fishy that everyone claims they can’t help her. I say start escalating. Keep calling and escalating until someone can and will call the carrier and fix the problem. It might mean a delay in getting the package, but you’ll get it.

    Besides, I thought UPS had that brand spanking new service where you could have it waiting for you at a depot and whatnot? Or is that just a pie in the sky thing?

    • Awesome McAwesomeness says:

      I had a package redirected to the store b/c I noticed after the company mailed it, it did not have my apartment number on it (despite me having put my apartment number in.) It was a piece of cake.

    • GMFish says:

      Because apparently Apple has a policy of only shipping to the buyer’s billing address. Which makes sense because it would eliminate ID thefts. Unless the ID thieves are brave enough to show up and try to intercept it from the victim’s mail box or front porch.

      It’s also quite clear that it’s the OP’s fault for not changing her billing address prior to making a purchase.

      • anime_runs_my_life says:

        She *did* try:

        “On Friday I went online to pre-order my new iPhone 4Gs. My account had the wrong shipping address attached to it and it would not let me change this online. I called and the representative asked for my order number. I explained I didn’t have one yet because I didn’t want to purchase anything that would go to a place I don’t live anymore. The guy insisted I have to purchase it first, with delivery to the wrong address, then call back to change it. He said this wouldn’t be a problem and I could call back anytime before October 14th (delivery day…hmm…). He said it would actually be better to wait as they were being inundated with calls about this. “

        Sure we can play the Blame the OP game, but in the end Apple is the one to blame for not letting her do it. The reason I find it fishy is that they “insisted” she place an order. Seems to me they’re more interested in getting sales than they are actually helping.

      • psm321 says:

        Yeah, because the person she talked to on the phone TRYING to figure out how to change her address was completely in the right for telling her to call back after ordering instead of telling her where the locked address came from. /sarcasm

  5. StarfishDiva says:

    inb4 Steve Jobs references, but …. isn’t that a normal part of the checkout process? The company end up with fees for undelivered merchandise or chargebacks or merchandise that the grubby hands at the old address helped themselves to, so it’s only logic to ensure the customer can confirm their shipping information.

    I guess it’s Apple’s way of protecting the consumer from unauthorized account breaches to change the address for products ordered…. but that …. also doesn’t make sense….. since someone’s going to have to pay for it.

    I give up. Thursday is the new Monday!

  6. StB says:

    When I place my order for the new iPhone on Friday, I noticed I wasn’t able to change the shipping address from my house to my office. I figured that they were busy with orders and I could always change it before it was shipped. On Saturday I logged into my Apple account and the Edit Shipping key worked. I put in the new address and it sent me a confirmation email.

    I can track it via UPS and it is being delivered to my office and not my home. This person could have easily changed her address the next day had she been patient.

    • apple420 says:

      I’m not sure. I was in the same situation as you and when I pressed the button on Saturday to edit my shipping address it refused to let me change it. I eventually let that one go to my home address. A second phone I ordered a little later for a friend gave me the same problem when I tried to change the address. I called Apple and the first woman couldn’t help me, but after she talked to her supervisor she could change the address.
      Still wasn’t too hard to change, but my first preorder had shipped out before I had a chance to call them.

    • ichiban1081 says:

      Same here. I ordered on Friday but the shipping address was my home and I couldn’t change it. The next day I went into the site and changed the address to my office and got a confirmation of the change.

      Also the OP should check with AT&T and make sure her new address is listed and not her old one.

    • MMD says:

      That’s great, but that’s not what she was told on the phone!

    • coren says:

      Then maybe their CSR should have told her that instead of telling her something else? How was she supposed to know.

  7. AustinTXProgrammer says:

    It’s not too late the have UPS hold the package (although I hope the OP has something with the old address. I don’t know if a name is enough).

    Sign up for a free UPS My Choice service, then select “Hold for Will Call”. Then go pick it up at the UPS facility. sucks, but less stalking.

    • thor79 says:

      Better yet you can get it delivered to a UPS Store nearby to wherever you are at. I did this recently with a package I knew would be way too large for my apartment complex to accept. Instead of being delivered to my apartment complex 45 minutes away from where I work, I sent it to a UPS Store within driving distance on my lunch hour…picked it up and was very happy with UPS’s new service.

      • thor79 says:

        Have to be honest, though I like the UPS My Choice service….I’m not too happy with my local delivery driver. My apartment complex has an agreement with UPS that they are to deliver all packages that can’t be delivered to the addressee to the leasing office so they can be picked up securely and not left on a porch at the apartment. Well much to my surprise last week I found 5 packages (about $300 in stuff, including my new Photon 4G), that were being delivered all on the same day, delivered with the location “front door”. I called my apartment complex and they offered to move them into my apartment fortunately.

      • thor79 says:

        Oh, forgot to mention…there’s a $5 fee for the redirection to a UPS Store. For me it was worth it to not have to run down to my closest UPS Facility to pick it up near my home.

  8. Gblues says:

    Normally, once you get the shipping notification with the tracking number, you can go online with UPS and change the delivery address. As long as you do it before 7pm the day before delivery, there shouldn’t be a problem. I’ve done this numerous times.

  9. Bodger says:

    So her addiction to Apple is so strong that she couldn’t wait for her fix and had to order immediately even though she knew things were wrong? Fix address first then order if you must. If Apple isn’t capable of changing a simple address in their database then they probably aren’t doing much better with everything else.

    • theduckay says:

      How about you RTFA?

      “The guy insisted I have to purchase it first, with delivery to the wrong address, then call back to change it. He said this wouldn’t be a problem and I could call back anytime before October 14th”

      • Bodger says:

        I read quite well, thank you.

        How did the ‘guy’ force her to order the phone? She had the right not to order it. It is unlikely that she would have died or even suffered any permanent damage without it. The sensible thing to do (on more than one level) would be to avoid ordering the phone at least until her account information was correct. If the ‘guy’ was unable to correct the information associated with her preexisting account then he was the wrong one to deal with. There is probably at least one person at Apple with the ability to deal with a simple address correction.

  10. chizu says:

    I remembered just a few months ago, when my package was shipped to an incorrect address, I called up UPS and they said only the shipper can make the request to have the address changed. (My package was declined by the addressee — thank god.) I called up the shipper and they corrected it immediately, so within minutes, the shipping address was changed on UPS’s end and my package was delivered to me safely the next day. I think in my case, there wasn’t much I could do even though the package was addressed to me, but the address was not correct. So UPS required the shipper to put in that request since they didn’t want anyone to just claim the package is theirs.

  11. gspdark1 says:

    Apple defaults to your service provider’s shipping requirements. For example, I am an AT&T customer. If I pre-ordered, I would have to first change my address on my AT&T account then try to pre-order. If you change you “home address” in your AT&T account, it has no bearing on your actual service (AT&T even has a pop-up that explains this). When you go back into Apple, it should show the new address.

    • Skwidspawn says:

      This is correct. I also had the same problem, going to the AT&T Wireless website and updating the address THEY had on file changed the locked shipping location on my Apple order. She should contact UPS and have them hold it after the first delivery attempt.

  12. meowgal says:

    I had the same problem w/ Apple earlier this year with an iPod. What I did was go to the old address, and pick up the sticky note UPS left on the door saying they were there. I called the 800 number that was on the sticky note, gave them the new address. It took a day or so more for the iPod to arrive to the other address-but it arrived there fine. I sincerely hope this helps.

  13. blinky says:

    I agree that changing your apple ID info can be hard. It still thinks my name is “Foo Bar” despite repeated attempts to fix it. Makes it awkward when signing for service.

    However, she could just create another apple ID, couldn’t she?

  14. ClemsonEE says:

    What a foolish rant. The address is pre-populated from your cellular provider and you were not able to change it.

    • chargerRT says:

      I can’t speak for AT&T, but Verizon still has me at an address where I have not lived since 2005. It comes up each time I visit their store. They say there’s nothing they can do about it. Bills come to my current address, of course, but for eternity I am tied to an address three houses ago.

      If Apple insists on using such information from a cell provider knowing it may not be 100% accurate, and not give the end user a chance to correct it, APPLE is foolish.

      • november84 says:

        Are you an idiot? How is Apple foolish for this? There may be strange cases like this, but in the case of the phone orders the company providing the service is much more reputable than a one-off customer. Consider that people cannot be trusted most of the time and it makes perfect sense.

  15. Cat says:

    I told you that Apple would go to shit once Steve stopped handling every detail.

  16. Astur says:

    I am sorry but I have to place the blame on the buyer in this case. Why would you knowing place an order when the address listed was incorrect? That is absolutely asking for trouble. It doesn’t matter if some says ‘It’s okay!” because reality is that things just don’t work out that way. she should have waited until she could get the address changed and THEN placed the order. Why make more trouble for yourself?

  17. astraelraen says:

    Buy an Android phone.

    Someone had to say it.

  18. Charmander says:

    Cancel the order.

    Then, re-order it, making sure your new address is the shipping address.

  19. TonyK says:

    We had the same problem with the original iPad. My wife ordered it but forgot to update the mailing address. Even though Apple had a full week to intercept the package, they blew it. What saved us is the new owner refused the package from UPS.

    For those who think I fell down on the job, I called Apple multiple times a day to get updates. UPS would not talk with us and Apple kept indicating there was nothing they could do. UPS said Apple could recall the package but Apple never did.

    Go figure.

  20. aloria says:

    I don’t see how waiting outside your old house stalking the UPS driver is going to help. If I went to my old apartment and walked up to the driver and said “yo, I used to live here, that package is for me,” he’d probably tell me to piss off.

  21. DanKelley98 says:

    Hope the UPS guy give it to you, since you won’t be in the house. OTOH, he might just throw it on the porch and you can retrieve it…

  22. wrbwrx says:

    who do you know that is hooking you up with the 4G’s? us mere mortals are only able to get the 4s.

  23. narq says:

    It sounds more like her mistake was in ordering a product from Apple’s website or moreso ordering an iPhone 4S. There are other places to pre-order and only a pathetic Apple junkie would need one before updating their address. I update my addresses a week before moving. Why would you ever leave it to chance?

  24. JonBoy470 says:

    I call shenanigans. I just checked, and found that the several methods available for changing my address with Apple all work. I could also change my billing address and form of payment. I ordered a new iPhone 4S and an iPod Nano last Friday. Both are coming straight from China. The iPhone is via UPS, and when I click through my Apple order to see the UPS status of the iPhone, there’s a link there to change the delivery address. When I click through to Fedex to see the iPod status, same idea applies…

    • JonBoy470 says:

      In addition, it’s my recollection that I was presented the opportunity to confirm/change billing and shipping addresses during the order process…

  25. dogmaticman says:

    Actually it’s a security precaution at Apple because they often get people who call and try to change package addresses so they can steal iPhone/iPads by having them delivered to a falsified address. I recently had someone try to use my acct to ship stuff to Canada in an attempt to commit fraud, so Apple commonly takes precaution from consumers calling in.

    • dogmaticman says:

      Also in this case- as most other commenters have mentioned your package is probably already ready to ship- my iPad shipped directly from China when I ordered it.

  26. LogNoggin says:

    This happened to me with NewEgg but it was my fault. I drove 10 miles to my old address and took my package from their doorstep. It was easy, almost too easy….

  27. nodaybuttoday says:

    When my husband and I got married/were engaged, we accidentally had several packages sent to our old address because Target’s website sucked. Apparently changing the address on your profile doesn’t change the address your gifts are sent to. Luckily we had nice neighbors who intercepted the packages for us so we could retrieve them. Our old address is about 20 minutes away so not too bad. I can’t imagine though living further away, especially across the country!

  28. HogwartsProfessor says:

    She also suggested I go to the address and talk to the nice people.

    Oh, like THAT’LL work. “Excuse me, I know you don’t know me from a hole in the ground, but I have a shiny new expensive tech device coming to this address. Would you please call me when it gets here? Thank you so much!”

    Missing iPhone and / or completely freaked out people.

    If it’s still in transit, they could have it delivered to the UPS terminal and she can go pick it up. I know you can do this with FedEx but I don’t know about UPS. It’s worth a shot.

    • farker says:

      This can be done with UPS if it’s done within a timeframe (specified on their website, i don’t recall) before the delivery date. For example, have it held at the local shipping facility or a UPS Store.

  29. dush says:

    How stupid is Apple’s ordering system if you can’t put in an alternate address at the time of purchase?
    Every other online ordering system I’ve used stores your address but gives you the option of using an alternate.

    • coren says:

      It makes a certain sort of sense – if your account was compromised, would you want someone ordering iphones or ipads or ipork to some alternate address? At least if it goes to the one on file you have a greater degree of security

  30. Reverend Mike says:

    I ordered my 4Gs and called and changed the shipping address to my work address from my home address the same day. No problems. Had to wait for the order to hit the CSR’s system, but got a change of address confirmation that evening. Got a shipping confirmation with my work address last night. Their policy is that billing and shipping addresses match in their system. A quick phone call takes care of it — no big deal for me.

  31. Froggee285 says:

    If someone rang my doorbell and thru the window (not opening for some random stranger of course) explained the situation, I would agree to refuse the package. I dont think i would agree to hand it over, because it might be some stolen credit card thing…but I wouldn’t steal someones stuff…much less an Iphone because I don’t own anything apple and don’t plan on it in the future. too restrictive.

  32. coren says:

    Bullshit. I’ve had packages being sent to Texas, New York, and other locations rerouted to Washington just by calling customer service (and having all the required info, of course). UPS, Fedex, USPS – it doesn’t matter, it can be done.

  33. farker says:

    What’s an iPhone 4Gs?

  34. scottd34 says:

    There is so much fraud with iphone and ipad that i am not surprised to hear it. Ask anyone who sells apple products especially in call centers and it would shock you the amount of fraud for these products that happens daily. For them to lock shipping address to an address that was confirmed prior to the order and not allow for an alternate address is pretty much standard procedure now for most cell carriers especially with iphone/ipad orders. heck most of them are held for manual fraud checks nowadays.

  35. dibarnu says:

    I blame OP. She didn’t have to use her previous account to order. You can order from Apple without using an account at all, it will ask you to enter your billing and delivery address. OP is an idiot for ordering something to be shipped to the wrong address and hoping to fix it later.