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Amazon Prime - Has the level of service intentionally dropped ?


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Showing 76-100 of 488 posts in this discussion
Posted on 11 Jan 2011 18:19:06 GMT
M. Smythe says:
I've been a Prime member for a couple of years and, as I buy a lot from amazon personally and for work, it does save me money in the long term. I has a number of orders in December that were Prime eligible and ordered as such, but failed to arrive. This is completely down to the service provided by Citylink since December. At work we use Citylink for 50+ consignments per day and their network was seriously overloaded and compromised because of the snow, lack of organisation and lack of drivers turning up to work. They simply couldn't handle the workload. I get Citylink internal memo's about the depo's and at one point Gatwick had in excess of 10,000 backlogged packages, 8,000 at others etc... I think Amazon changed to Royal Mail delivery for a lot of orders as they didn't have the problems that Citylink have.

We are NO LONGER USING CITYLINK for our business as they simply take on too many contracts and do not increase their capacity to handle it. Last year they took on agency workers, which at the best of times aren't as good as employed drivers, but at least get the job done in 2-3 days, they didn't this year. I assume this was to make extra profit over the festive period - very short sighted as they now wont be getting ours.

In reply to an earlier post on 11 Jan 2011 18:31:19 GMT
Ian Wantling says:
Well spotted Caveman. I managed to get a copy of the cached page. I'm half expecting this discussion to be removed in the not too distant future. If it does I'll open a new one on HUKD (Hot UK Deals) if anyone wants to keep tabs.

Posted on 11 Jan 2011 21:28:24 GMT
N. Barron says:
Just to chip in and say I've had exactly the same sort of problems. In December I ordered several items from Amazon on the basis they'd be sent next day delivery. They were all sent Royal Mail first class, which even RM claim is "1-2" days so is hardly a "next day service". Partly due to the snow they arrived 11 days late, but stuff sent from other vendors Special Delivery arrived a couple of days after ordering. I complained at the time and got a stock "It's the snow" response, to which I commented that my concern was that they did no use a next day service, not that the items were delayed due to snow...

I've since had several similar experiences with "next day" items taking the best part of a week to arrive.

I am considering complaining to Trading Standards on the basis that you cannot claim to be using a "Next Day" service when using first class post. My gripe is not the odd delay, I accept that "Next day" is an aim not a guarantee, but the fact I have paid for Prime and expect my orders to be despatched via a suitable service, e.g. where the nominal delivery time is next day.

In reply to an earlier post on 11 Jan 2011 21:31:55 GMT
N. Barron says:
In my experience pretty much every order that's been sent RM Special Delivery or City Link has arrived next day; I use Amazon for a lot of work stuff so typically get 2-3 orders a week. Until December 2010 I've never had any problems. We are fortunate to be quite close to the local City Link depot and have good relationships with the drivers due to volume of orders so maybe I've just been lucky with them

Posted on 11 Jan 2011 22:55:42 GMT
Missy Me says:
I too am a prime member, here is a catalogue of my problems.

Ordered 7 items on the 27th November, telephoned mid december because no had arrived, they made me wait a few more days, nothing arrived, I called back and was told they would replace the 7 items and that they would be with me the next day.... We are now on the 11 January, none have arrived!
Things I have ordered from OTHER sites have arrived next day. Bought something yesterday at 2pm, this morning at 8am it was at the door.
Somethings gone terribly wrong with Amazon! What exactly am i paying £49 for?
Ordered the 7 things on Novemeber 27th - still waiting for them and the replacements.
Ordered some perfume in November, it turned up 2 weeks later with HDL, the box was dripping, perfume was half full, telephoned Amazon who arranged a replacement, took a further 10 days to arrive.
Ordered a toothbrush on the 19th December, items just arrived today 11th Jan!
This isn't prime service, it's not first class service, it's not second service, I could walk and fetch it quicker.
Somethings not right.
I'm happy to know that I am not the only one having to wait weeks on end for things that have been dispatched the same day apparently.

Posted on 11 Jan 2011 23:27:30 GMT
[Deleted by the author on 12 Jan 2011 17:51:33 GMT]

Posted on 11 Jan 2011 23:39:18 GMT
G Pearce says:
I've noticed this also - the service level has definitely dropped. I used to see everything come out by HNDL or someone like that, and now even the apple keyboard and mouse (£100+) order I had came out as RM first class - and that took a good week to arrive. I appreciate that I live in the sticks but still, I doubt I'll be renewing unless they solve the problem.

Posted on 12 Jan 2011 09:51:24 GMT
K. Monday says:
Totally agree, using Royal Mail First Class for Prime is not acceptable in any form.
Still waiting for items with delivery estimates of Monday and Tuesday this week as an example.
This never used to happen.

Posted on 12 Jan 2011 10:57:56 GMT
Mel M says:
@ T Brotherton

"Royal Mail can no longer guarantee special delivery, this is why amazon can't send things special delivery.
Royal mail cant guarantee special delivery, amazon arent allowed to send special delivery = prime customers aren't getting things next day unless they are lucky enough to have it dispatched via citylink ( who are meeting some targets)."

Can I ask what you mean by Amazon 'aren't allowed' to use Special Delivery. It might not be guaranteed but it's more likely to be delivered next day than sending First Class, which stands very little chance of arriving the following day. Do you mean 'aren't allowed' or just that if it's not guaranteed then Amazon may as well save themselves a bit of money?

The customer's agreement is with Amazon. If there's an issue with the mail companies being able to provide a suitable service, that's Amazon's problem and they have a duty to sort it out on our behalf. As it stands, the Prime service offers no advantage over regular First Class postage and, as such, is a degraded offering to the scheme we joined. I think Amazon Prime is becoming untenable and they need to rethink the whole service.

The changes to the terminology mentioned above and the possibility of them being featured on Watchdog are interesting developments. There are clearly issues that need to be ironed out between Amazon and Royal Mail. The postal service has increasingly become an Amazon delivery service over the last few years and that throws up a number of issues. However, that is for Amazon to address and until they do, they need to be careful about how they market Amazon Prime and be clearer about what you are getting for your money.

In reply to an earlier post on 12 Jan 2011 11:06:53 GMT
Last edited by the author on 12 Jan 2011 11:07:15 GMT
D. Stevens says:
T Brotherton, where do you see that Amazon can no longer use Royal Mail Special Delivery because the Royal Mail no longer guarantee it? Are you just making an educated guess or do you have a source with this info? The Royal Mail website still says the following about Special Delivery 1pm:

# Guaranteed delivery before 1.00pm
# Guaranteed Saturday Delivery for a small surcharge
# 99%* UK coverage
# Online tracking
# Electronic Proof of Delivery
# Up to £2,500 compensation

Special Delivery wasn't guaranteed over Christmas, but now that the Royal Mail are operating back under their normal load (as stated on their site), what is stopping Amazon from sending things out by Special Delivery for Prime customers once again? The issue here is that Amazon have set a precedent by shipping items out by Special Delivery and other next-day courier services, which are all signed for, and now they've moved away from that and onto Royal Mail 1st Class which is turning up 2 - 3 days after being shipped, and Amazon have provided absolutely no communication to Prime customers for the reason for the switch. They're ignoring this discussion, and leaving many Prime customers annoyed because they are no longer providing an equal service to that which they were providing a month prior to Christmas without fail.

Posted on 12 Jan 2011 11:33:23 GMT
K. Monday says:
The Royal Mail Special Delivery guarantee was re-instated last week, so no reason not to use it,

Posted on 12 Jan 2011 11:45:27 GMT
N. Barron says:
I've mailed BBC's Watchdog (watchdog@bbc.co.uk) about this issue, maybe some adverse publicity will encourage Amazon to respond officially.

In reply to an earlier post on 12 Jan 2011 11:55:41 GMT
Indra says:
i emailed Amazon a few times but did not get an acceptable resolution, so, i have just emailed them again stating that I have complained to watchdog.

Posted on 12 Jan 2011 12:16:54 GMT
I live in Milton Keynes, and in the past 2 months I have had 4 packages go missing all from different companies. Royal Mail are a law unto themselves, the majority of people I have spoken to in various sorting offices when I have tried to track other parcels really couldnt give a rats about me or my packages. Granted they deal with thousands of parcels a day, but thats not an excuse to give out a "dont give a sh@t" attitude when you are waiting for something important in business.

I have just called Amazon to track a package that was sent next day delivery on 7th Jan!! The response I got is, "well all I have on my screen is that it was scanned by Rm when they collected it but they havent scanned it again so I have no idea where it is"...GREAT! So, Amazon are paying RM for a service that they are not getting...

UK customer service at its best!!

In reply to an earlier post on 12 Jan 2011 12:42:39 GMT
SAP says:
"... prime customers aren't getting things next day unless they are lucky enough to have it dispatched via citylink ( who are meeting some targets)."

Apparently if you place your Prime order late in the day it's sent out via City Link. I don't know what time is the cut-off time for next-day deliveries, but whatever it is, place your order within an hour or so before that time - the later the better.

Posted on 12 Jan 2011 12:50:42 GMT
Last edited by the author on 12 Jan 2011 12:51:42 GMT
tinkerbell says:
T. Brotherton. What nonsense.

You do know that over Christmas, more parcels were being sent by RM rather than City Link, as the latter really couldn't cope and it was infact RM, picking up the slack. A lot of CL parcels are untraceable from that time, why? Because they gave up and dumped them in the RM system, this is from John Lewis that nugget of info.

Posted on 12 Jan 2011 16:17:59 GMT
D. Stevens says:
Ironically, I've just placed an order for 2 DVD boxsets, and for my delivery options I got the following:

FREE First Class (up to 2 business days)
FREE One-Day Delivery : get it tomorrow, Thursday, January 13
£4.49/item Express Delivery : get it guaranteed by 1pm tomorrow, Thursday, January 13

Then under the items it states:

Quantity: 1 - In stock - Amazon Prime: One-day Delivery is free

Given that everything on Prime is coming through 1st Class at the moment (I received a game today sent as a 1st Class Prime Large Letter), I find it rather funny that I actually get an option to select First Class which specifically states 2 days alongside the auto-selected "One-day Delivery" option that Prime selects as default. What's the point in having this option there when now it would appear to be selected as the default One-Day delivery method for all of us Prime users?

Posted on 12 Jan 2011 17:19:26 GMT
[Deleted by the author on 12 Jan 2011 17:52:05 GMT]

In reply to an earlier post on 12 Jan 2011 17:24:39 GMT
D. Stevens says:
Nobody is insinuating anything, we're asking you to provide a source for your statement, as the RM website clearly states that Special Delivery is still widely in use, and as a matter of fact I've sent an item out this week that went out Special Delivery and it was all good. Show us where you've seen this bit of info and we'll gladly accept it as fact if the source is valid.

Posted on 12 Jan 2011 17:34:39 GMT
[Deleted by the author on 12 Jan 2011 17:52:25 GMT]

Posted on 12 Jan 2011 17:54:39 GMT
K. Monday says:
Hi T Brotherton,

Just to clear up, are you saying that Amazon "can't" send RM special Delivery because RM wont let them, or that Amazon "wont" send RM Special Delivery due to RM not being able to gaurantee Amazon Next Day or for cost reasons.

Is the problem with Amazon or Royal Mail?

Amazon cant send Special Delivery implies that RM wont let them.

Just wondered

Cheers

Posted on 12 Jan 2011 19:38:13 GMT
tinkerbell says:
Some facts. Rm suspended the SD gt'ee over Christmas on some days with the really bad weather. It was reinstated. SD is a fully gt'ed service.

The way you are getting your packages now and indeed me until I cancelled prime, is called 1st class tracked. More and more retailers are switching to it. It's cheaper than SD but is still tracked on delivery or should be. Basically you don't sign but the barcodes are scanned by the delivering postie, they confirm the delivery.

It's bulk trackable CHEAPER postage for companies, the company can or should in most cases can track the actual delivery. It's basically no better then 1st or second class though, 24hr and 48 hr options but it's not gt'eed, unlike SD, which is.

If you want the extras such as signatures etc, it costs morE money. It's a no frills tracked service basically and you add what you wish as a company.

It's nothing to do with RM and everything to do with Amazon using the cheaper but not gt'ed alternative to SD.

In reply to an earlier post on 12 Jan 2011 19:46:39 GMT
[Deleted by the author on 12 Jan 2011 20:20:52 GMT]

Posted on 12 Jan 2011 19:54:59 GMT
Last edited by the author on 12 Jan 2011 19:56:28 GMT
Ian Wantling says:
After several more emails Amazon finally conceded and have issued me with a full refund, so the tide seems to be turning in our favor. That said, I'm not sure if it was my emails that swayed their u-turn or the email I sent this morning to Slough trading standards outlining the problem and asking them to take up the matter......?

Either way, I feel no sense of victory. I feel quite sad that the brilliant Prime service I enjoyed for three years has suffered its demise....(R.I.P. Prime.....) and annoyed the way "the worlds most consumer centric company" (as they state their aim is to be) have treated such a loyal group of their customers so shoddily..

In reply to an earlier post on 12 Jan 2011 20:01:12 GMT
Mrs FT says:
Couldn't agree more - very sad indeed, and as you say, such a loyal group of their customers. Very shoddy and underhand I feel . . Have also declined to renew my own, also after three whole years.

Well done on your course of action - how sad that it should come to this.
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Initial post:  3 Jan 2011
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