Saturday, December 16, 2006

Home is where you hang your... self

I don't know just who said that - James Thurber, maybe.

I've been going through absolute Hell trying to arrange a FedEx shipment online. I sold a nice prie-dieu to a lady in Louisiana, and figured I'd ship it to her using FedEx's Ground Service. It's supposed to be easy, right? No way. I've set up 3 different accounts with FedEx since Wednesday, for regular shipping, ground shipping, and customs brokerage. Then came the last phase, filling out a waybill online. I started Thursday night, got all the way to the end, and then got an impenetrable "Error" message. I've redone the forms 20 times, and today I got a technician online to fill them out with me, and the same thing kept happening. I've eliminated every cookie and temporary file, I even enabled that remote-distance thingy where someone else can look in on your computer, and it STILL didn't work! I was on the phone a whole hour this morning in this futile attempt. By now, I could have put the damn box in my van and DRIVEN it to Louisiana.

Their senior technicians can look at the problem on Monday - thanks a lot. I don't know if this will succeed or not, but I tell you, I don't think I'll be using FedEx again, even if I have to ship a Kleenex. I'm fit to be tied, let me tell you...

UPDATE: I DID IT! Yes, the prie-dieu is on its way to Louisiana, and it only took me 5 days to figure out the online form. It's what I call NOT user-friendly; the reason it kept aborting was because I typed a "1" before the 800-number of the brokerage firm I'm using. Well, that's the way the number is given on their website; the stupid form NEVER said how many digits I was supposed to type, so I had no clue this was a problem. Grrrrr... The only advantage of going through the same form about 30 times before finally getting it right is that by now I think the procedure has been driven into my mind so firmly, I can practically do it from memory now. I'd better send something else quickly, before I forget how to do it!


Blogger Kasia said...


I remember selling something on eBay a few years back that had to be shipped to Canada...I think it was British Columbia. Since I live so close to the border, I thought I'd just ship it from the Canadian side and save my customer the appalling expense of international shipping. Won't be doing THAT again...not only was the customs agent unimpressed ("Do I have to pay duty on it?" "Well, actually, THEY'RE supposed to pay duty on it!"), but finding the darned UPS store was a NIGHTMARE. Of course, that wasn't really anyone's fault but Mapquest's, for having created a faulty map, and mine, for not having simply called the store for directions...

1:29 pm  

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