Off Topic

Never, ever use DHL or Outpost

(Normally, I reserve this blog for positive, comforting, encouraging and engaging content. The following is a rant. You have been warned)

I am absolutely livid.

(If you are an employee of D H L or Outpost, I am sorry, but your companies have some of the worst delivery policies in the entire known world!)

Here’s my story:

Tuesday, August 29: I ordered a hard drive from The drive came with free shipping, which was a nice bonus. I was not expecting to receive the order in less than a week, so I made plans to go Thursday to pick up a smaller drive from a local store, which I would use until the new drive arrived from

Tuesday Afternoon, August 29: I get an email with my order number from, telling me that my order has been processes and will be shipped soon. Yay!

Wednesday Morning, August 30 (around 6 AM): I get an email stating that my item has shipped! Yes! I even get a nice little link to “track my package”…
So, I click the tracking link to go to the outpost site to track my shipment. When get to the tracking page, have to enter my ORDER NUMBER and my EMAIL ADDRESS, in order to get my actual TRACKING NUMBER. Guess what? The ORDER NUMBER is not listed in the email that that I JUST OPENED! Where can I find my Order Number? You guessed it… My order number is actually in the first email that I received… So, I finally found the order number, I entered it, along with my email address, and I am then given my TRACKING NUMBER. Yay! Right? Well, the TRACKING NUMBER is not “click-able” and there is no link to the actual shipping company. So, I scroll to the bottom of the page and I get the following…

Airborne Express delivers until the early evening, local time, Monday through Friday, and on Saturday mornings.

Then I scroll BACK to the top of the page and I get:

Shipped: ABX Ground delivery

So, now I have two ideas about who is actually shipping my package, but no link to click to enter my flipping TRACKING NUMBER.

So, I decide to google Airborne Express… Guess what? Airborne Express CEASED TO EXIST IN 2003. If you don’t believe me, click the wikipedia link and scroll all the way to the bottom! The were purchased by DHL!

As for ABX Ground delivery… ABX stands for Airborne Express, so, on ONE page, I get TWO references to a company that NO LONGER EXISTS BY EITHER NAME!!!

I finally found, via google, that DHL would be the company handling my delivery. That’s when the misery really, really began.

Wednesday Night, August 30: After finally locating the DHL site, I am pleasantly surprised to find that my package was sent out at midnight on the 29th, and that it is scheduled to be delivered to my house Thursday, August 31. I was so pleased. I would no longer have to go purchase another hard drive, my package would arrive on time. Yay!

Thursday Afternoon, August 31: I waited ALL day for my package. Literally, I put off things that needed to be done away from my home so that I could wait for my package. It never came. So, I thought, surely they will just deliver it Friday, no problem.

Friday Morning, September 1: I re-check the DHL site. Guess what? In bright red, it says, “Delivery Attempted, please call…” WHAT? Delivery Attempted. Not while I was here, and I was here ALL DAY LONG!!!

And thus, my nightmare truly, truly begins.

I called the national DHL customer service line, and I talked to a relatively nice lady, who promised to have the local Georgia station call me. They never called. So, I called back, and got the local number for myself. I spoke to a lady on the phone, and this is what she said:

The driver could not find your house…
Your phone number is not on the package, so he could not call…

I was furious. Listen, I live in a small town with less than 3000 people. I guarantee you, 8 out of 10 people know me, and 9 out of 10 know of me. Finding me would have been as simple as stopping by the post office, the bank, or just one of the TWO convenience stores. (That’s right, just one of the two…)

So, she got directions from me, and said my package would be here Tuesday, September 5.

Skip to today:

Tuesday Morning, September 5: I CALLED the local dispatch, which is 2 hours away, and made them give me a time that the package would arrive. I assumed, and I told them as much, that my package would be one of the first, since they messed up so badly last week. The lady on the phone says:

Nope, your package is a regular ground package, and will be placed on the lowest priority…

Seriously, that’s what she said…


Well, I insisted that she contact the driver, and get an exact delivery time. This was 8:20 AM. She called me back and stated that the package would arrive at 11:00 AM at the LATEST.

Tuesday, September 5 (Noon): My package STILL had not arrived. Seriously. Even after ALL that I have been through (and I’ve yet to even talk about the SEVEN calls that I made to the DHL headquarters throughout this process…) I STILL did not have my package. I called back, one more time, and FINALLY THE DRIVER CALLED ME.

She could not understand the directions. Seriously, she could not understand the directions:

Here are the directions. See if you could find me:

Go to the red-light. Turn left onto HWY xx North. Go 2.2 miles. My house is directly behind a big white church (name of church), across from a HUGE forestry tower, and in front of the AIRPORT. MY NAME IS ON A SIGN RIGHT BY THE HIGHWAY IN 18 INCH LETTERS!!!

So, at about 1 PM, the package finally arrives. And guess what? It’s a different driver than Thursday, and thus I could not say exactly what I wanted to say… but this young lady was… hmmm.. let’s just say that in 2 minutes she managed to say, to me, a complete stranger:

“Yeah, sometimes we keep packages on the van for 3 or 4 weeks…”
“Yeah, that other driver (name) is bad about not calling people…”
“Yeah, he wrote down here that he TRIED TO CALL YOU BUT COULD NOT GET A CELL SIGNAL…”

And that, my friends, is when I flipped the flip out. HE TRIED TO CALL ME! At what number? Didn’t the dispatch lady say that they DID NOT HAVE MY NUMBER. Guess what? My number is printed on the stinking package, DIRECTLY ABOVE MY ADDRESS AND THE TRACKING NUMBER.

So, either the driver was lying, and never called me, or the dispatch was lying when she said that they did not have my number. OR BOTH…

Never, ever, ever, ever do business with Outpost (which has outdated information on its site, or DHL which has the WORST customer service in the history of the country…!!!!)

Oh yeah, there’s more that I didn’t include in this post such as:

The woman in New York saying that I sounded like a “smarter Forest Gump”…
The guy at the dispatch saying that he “was sorry, but I should have clearer address…”
The woman (somewhere) saying that “we NEVER publish phone numbers on the outside of packages…”

Sue me.

Last thing…
I have worked in both delivery (for RPS, back in the day, and for a local furniture company in my old hometown) and retail (department / electronics store). So, I’m not some idiot who doesn’t understand that crud happens, and people sometimes can’t help it if a package is lost, damaged, or un-deliverable. That is NOT what happened in this case. The driver did not do even the most basic tasks involved in locating me, the local dispatch was rude and unhelpful, and the final delivery took place 5 days after it was scheduled.

(Oh yeah.. at one point the dispatch suggested that I drive, on Saturday, to pick up my package, from their location 2 hours away… and she did so with a straight face… seriously…)