In response to yesterday's post about how not to get an Indian visa on time, I got email from a FedEx employee (who will remain anonymous) saying:

Hi, I read your weblog, and I am a courier for Fedex. I'm kinda writing to apologise for how screwed up it sounds like your visa package got, and to offer a little more info for you.
When I look at the scan information you posted, it looks like the courier in that area looked at you package, and said 'there's no way that guy will be there, and I can't leave it with no signature, so I'll leave it at the station'.
Fedex did work friday (I know I was there).
I'm not sure when your flight is, but if it is Monday morning, I'd call the 1-800 number at about 5:30-6am (800-463-3339) and tell them what the package is and is for, and ask for a manager at the Santa Clara location. There are managers there at about 5am, starting the morning package sort, so there will be one there to take the call, no matter what the 800 rep tells you. Be persistent, and they will probably allow you to pick up the package this morning (even before the center opens at 9am). It looks like your local center is 335 Brokaw Rd Santa Clara, CA 95050.
If you don't get to/want to do that, investigate why the package was not even attempted for delivery friday. Based on the times the scans are shown in your image, it appears that it never left your local center on Friday. Most centers launch their couriers at about 8:30 am, and with it being Black Friday (very light delivery volume) this scan happenning at 8:30 supports this. If they didn't even try to deliver it, then whoever sent the package can file a claim for consequential damages (you not getting to fly).

The plot thickens. (Emphasis mine in the above paragraphs.)

I wonder what the FedEx response is going to be.

Posted by jzawodn at November 27, 2005 07:00 PM

Reader Comments
# Anjan said:

That doesn't surprise me. Are you? I distinctly remember your previous experiences with Fedex especially when ordering from Apple, back when you have better tastes in personal computing ;)

on November 27, 2005 07:08 PM
# Greg said:


I'm surprised Steve Jobs hasn't emailed his apology yet...

on November 27, 2005 07:11 PM
# Matt said:

When is your flight suppose to leave?

on November 27, 2005 07:31 PM
# Jeremy Zawodny said:

My flight left earlier today.

on November 27, 2005 07:46 PM
# Tim Converse said:

Yeah, I wondered after reading the first post whether "Business closed" really meant "(I assume this delivery is to a) business (and it's probably) closed."

on November 27, 2005 08:08 PM
# Jeremy Zawodny said:

Yeah, apparently I need to put a "business hours" sign on my front door... or something.

on November 27, 2005 08:14 PM
# Joe Hunkins said:

Jeremy's Business Hours:

NOON to 7:00AM daily?

on November 27, 2005 08:33 PM
# The Foundation Guy said:

Just for the record, you can call 1.800.GO.FEDEX (24x7) and provide alternate instructions in cases like this.

I am often sent packages with "signature required" (there is a blanket waiver available, but won't sign it).

In cases where I'm not in my office (nor is my admin), they put tags on the door of our suite indicating that a delivery attempt was made, and that they'll be back, again, tomorrow.

I usually call, ask FedEx to hold the package(s) at the local depot, and show up there with ID. I have yet to have a problem with this procedure.

The only glitch I've had, in general, with FedExm is with web tracking indicating that packages haven't been delivered which *have*. This has happened about 3 times in the past 5 months, and it's very annoying...

Best of luck with your trip; with any luck, you'll be able to get the doc, tomorrow, and be on your way.

on November 27, 2005 08:36 PM
# Mark Denovich said:

This same things happen with UPS, and I would give the same advice. You'll have to fight to get it, but get the center phone number. They can generally sort things out.


on November 27, 2005 09:31 PM
# Kalyan Varma said:

So when are you landing here and how long are you gonna be here ? Really sucks this had to happen.

on November 28, 2005 12:19 AM
# Sheeri Kritzer said:

Wow. Make sure you file a claim for lost $$ spent on the flight as well as the visa (fedex charges plus any administrative handling), plus any lost speaking wages. As much as you can provide alternate instructions, etc. you should NOT have to figure out that FedEx is going to ASSUME that you're closed.

Use the word ASSUME, too. They did not even attempt to deliver it. And honestly, they're a service that PARTICULARLY caters to folks who NEED their stuff NOW. Why would they assume that when you wanted NEXT DAY DELIVERY you wouldn't want it THE NEXT BUSINESS DAY?

Sigh. How annoying.

on November 28, 2005 06:36 AM
# Jacques Marneweck said:

Doesn't sound like Jeremy's going to India. He's going to be hunting down FedEx staff with his paintball gun ;)

on November 28, 2005 06:52 AM
# Jeremy Zawodny said:


I'm not. :-(

At this poitnt, the trip simply isn't worth it. I'd arrive on Thursday and still have to return on Monday. I've got stuff going on next week that makes it hard to move my return time. And I'm really hesitant to spend 40 hours in 747s for 4 days in Bangalore. If it was still 8 days, I'd do it of course.

on November 28, 2005 07:36 AM
# Matt said:

Couriers are cool. My wife runs a mail order business combined with a retail store, and UPS gave us the run around on some discounts for high package volume. So we switched to USPS to send a message - and it was our driver who noticed that we'd stopped shipping UPS and started using USPS, and next thing you know, 4 people from USPS, including a regional VP, show up to "make things right". And sure enough, we got what we wanted. And it was thanks to our driver. Don't have much experience with fedex, but I'm consistently impressed with the attitude and professionalism of the UPS drivers we've had. From this post, sounds like fedex is the same way.

on November 28, 2005 09:23 AM
# Dustin Diaz said:

I worked at FedEx and it sucked. I spent no more than three months and I was out.

All I could tell my friends was this: "Don't ever ship anything to Frezno"

on November 28, 2005 09:23 AM
# Fred W. Smith said:

I'm a FedEx courier here in So Cal and maybe I can give some insight. At our station, us couriers compile what we call a 'closure list' of business's that will be closed or open the day after Thanksgiving. The key is to get a contact name, i,e; Joe Blow's law Office closed per Joe. Obviously the retards at this FedEx location lagged. 'When in doubt, take it out'. As this such incident can illustrate.
File a claim, you have every reason too. For as much crap as they cram down our throats about customer service, etc, this idiot courier and his management staff need to feel the heat.

on December 3, 2005 06:36 PM
# don gaillot said:

I had a package left along the rd in front of my house. There is no mailbox there since i get my mail at the postoffice. If my daughter han't visited and found it, it would not have been there in the morning., What happened to home dfelivery?

on December 4, 2005 09:27 AM
# Lara Aspedon said:

Hey Jeremy sorry about your bad experience with x-press:( I am a contractor w/fedex ground and I have worked for all the big dogs( ups,usps) and take my word for it they all have the lazy's who hate working a holiday and will do what ever it takes to go home early. I also suggest file a claim, they are good about paying out and that driver needs to be called out cause stuff like that makes us great drivers look bad. Have a great one and use ground next time. LOL

on December 6, 2005 05:44 PM
# Bill said:

Seems I have a Fed Ex driver in the neighborhood who enjoys lying about all his attempted delivers so I took it to the next level and wrote corporate about the situation after not getting anywhere with 1-800-GOFEDEX. Seems Corporate doesn't know what they're doing either because a female in Customer Service at Corporate was forwarding my letter of dismay to Customer Service at Corporate. Go figure! Talk about a dog chasing his tail! Anyway, I decided to relieve the blood pressure and pick up the parcel mayself at the distribution center. "NOBODY CARES ANYMORE!". But I promise I will never order anything that has to be shipped FED EX. I'm FED UP with FED EX. UPS has got them beat by a mile!!!!

on April 17, 2008 10:09 AM
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