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Old 04-11-2012, 02:04 AM   #16
AaronT
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Originally Posted by ElBoltonero View Post
It sounds like your postmaster is tired of dealing with all your packages.
Agreed. This is your postmaster's preference as I'm sure he or she is tired of dealing with your packages. It's their job and I would consult their higher up. My old post mistress used to give me a hard time too because I would constantly bring in 9-10 packages a week. I always used the click n' ship method so I don't see what the big deal was.

There is a reason for the saying "going postal."
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Old 04-11-2012, 04:41 AM   #17
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Boy, I'm glad my postmaster doesn't have this attitude! He's about 70 years old though, and now you guys have me worried about what happens when he retires! I ship 30-60 packages a week and he only gives me a hard time when I come in for my express refunds. He usually says "You coming to pick up your paycheck?", and we both laugh. I'll have to butter up his replacement when he retires :P
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Old 04-11-2012, 11:59 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by somewhatshocked View Post
P.S. Just checked. Neither the USPS rules nor the U.S. Code have been changed. No enforcement directives, either, that would make your shipping job more difficult.

Express has always had that sort of disclaimer re: live animals. So I called my postmaster to confirm and re-confirmed by checking requirements myself. There's no requirement for labeling tropical fish as "live" or "perishable" and no reason shipments should be delayed for more than the standard 24 hours. Postmaster says that's for reptiles like alligators.

The requirements:
  • Fish must be held in a securely sealed primary receptacle.
  • Primary receptacle must be cushioned with sufficient absorbent material to take up all liquid in case of leakage.
  • Primary receptacle and absorbent cushioning material must be sealed within waterproof outer (shipping) packaging.

I think they're being difficult with you.
That information is for the fish to be ALLOWED to ship, not the timeliness for express delivery and ability to gain refunds for failure of service.

I got a new postmaster in teh last few weeks. I think the fact that I have gotten almost $1000 in express mail refunds (since January) is why they are being difficult.

The next closest post office is a 20 minute drive, unless I am going to start charging a gas surcharge, or shipping only one day a week- switching offices is not a possibility.

These rules are not new, they are just newly enforced for me.
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Old 04-11-2012, 01:22 PM   #19
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Sounds like you have been flagged as a trouble maker (what a surprise!!)

I'd add a gas sur-cgarfe and start going to the other PO. Ship as you always have W/O the "live" label. If you consolidate your trips you can keep the surcharge low enough where it won't affect sales.

If you do go the private route consider Fed Ex. UPS is notorious for not honoring their insurance. I'm filling on them myself. A google search will tell the story. To me the measure of a company is not when things go right, it's what they do when things go wrong.
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Old 04-11-2012, 01:33 PM   #20
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If the new postmaster is going to be difficult, it's time to reach out to their superior and talk to them about how you'll likely be taking your business to a private entity. USPS, while it gets a bad reputation from people like me on many occasions, will likely be really attentive to your issue.

That said - I'll gladly pay an additional charge to help you have a better shipping experience if it ever comes to that. Some people will scoff but I've had enough experience with you to know that it'd be more than worth it. That's not a vendor review but in this hobby? It's worth it to me to support people who are ethical and caring.
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Old 04-11-2012, 01:35 PM   #21
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If you're filing a lot of claims for refunds it means they are going through a postal inspector. Asking to speak to them is important too. I'm flagged here with the postal inspector for using postage older than 1 day. I print using multi order and sometimes it takes 2 or 3 days to actually get the package out. They tried to say I couldn't use the postage.

After a lengthy conversation with the regional inspector we sorted it out. Problem solved.
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Old 04-11-2012, 03:23 PM   #22
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I received my order today no issues... well packaged thank you
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Old 04-11-2012, 04:59 PM   #23
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Have you asked him for this policy in writing? Bet he can't produce it...

Seriously, I'd go over his head. Since it deals with interstate commerce and you're a small business owner, I'd be standing on somebody's desk... probably at your local Federal Building.
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Old 04-11-2012, 08:25 PM   #24
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They did produce it. I stoppped in a few other local post offices today, apparently a new memo was sent out to every office in the area (which they also let me see) which is nto about ME specifically, just the change in live guarantees for express shipping (which was actually done almost 2 years ago, they are just now catching up). The good news is most of my packages are arriving as usual. It just stinks that if they are 3 days late, I can no longer reship for free should their be DOA's. I have always prided myself on my policies and ethics, and USPS is making it quite hard to do business the way I like to.
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Old 04-14-2012, 04:48 AM   #25
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What a bunch of crooks... everytime I ship plants or fish I just lie through my teeth. Less attention to the package the better I would think.
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Old 04-14-2012, 09:27 AM   #26
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Great. Like packages to me don't already show up late each time. Damn USPS. So many cute fish have died because of them.


-Val
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Old 04-14-2012, 12:17 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by msjinkzd View Post
They did produce it. I stoppped in a few other local post offices today, apparently a new memo was sent out to every office in the area (which they also let me see) which is nto about ME specifically, just the change in live guarantees for express shipping (which was actually done almost 2 years ago, they are just now catching up). The good news is most of my packages are arriving as usual. It just stinks that if they are 3 days late, I can no longer reship for free should their be DOA's. I have always prided myself on my policies and ethics, and USPS is making it quite hard to do business the way I like to.
Ugh. Good thing you're just a drive in the country away for me.
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Old 05-06-2012, 12:11 AM   #28
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A couple of years ago I ran into this situation when I was told the same thing. Express mail of live fish could actually take several days longer than priority mail. The postman explained it this way. Live fish have to go in a special place sometimes on commercial flights. The pilot has the right to bump items of lesser value for ones of greater value. Being the small guy, would mean my stuff would get bumped first. The post office skates on delivery time because they claim it is out of their control.
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Old 05-06-2012, 01:31 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by msjinkzd View Post
They did produce it. I stoppped in a few other local post offices today, apparently a new memo was sent out to every office in the area (which they also let me see) which is nto about ME specifically, just the change in live guarantees for express shipping (which was actually done almost 2 years ago, they are just now catching up). The good news is most of my packages are arriving as usual. It just stinks that if they are 3 days late, I can no longer reship for free should their be DOA's. I have always prided myself on my policies and ethics, and USPS is making it quite hard to do business the way I like to.
Fed Ex/USP

Drop off by a certain time at several places locally etc, or have them stop and do the pick scheduled. Here's why you will NEED to do this: USPS plans to do away with Express mail service. So they are not going to put much effort into refunds or timely service guarantees. They will continue for a while till it is phased out.

That's what managers/postmaster told me and it's in the news.
Cost a little more for private shipping.

But for priority mail for things like plants, the cost cannot be beat at USPS.
Or dry good parcels etc.
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Old 05-06-2012, 02:08 AM   #30
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Yes, for dried goods, plants or invertebrates- usps is best. For fish- I am working on alternative carriers. It is not a fun time.
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