skip to content

Ron Manners’ ideas
and adventures
Read More

This Mannerism shares ways to deal with bad service (or at least offers some choice responses to give the disillusioned postal service).

Lost in the post

We will continue to be plagued by bad service as long as we suffer in silence! Perhaps the antidote is to speak up on each occasion that service is not delivered to your satisfaction.

I thought about this when I strode out of the Subiaco post office recently. A simple matter, which should have taken only a few minutes, ended up costing me half a day. Someone had sent me a parcel from Melbourne that required my signature and payment for their ‘under-stamping’. However, after a lengthy search, the post office staff advised that the parcel couldn’t be found. I was told to come back next week.

I did, and this time they found the parcel. I jokingly asked if, after two visits, did they think it appropriate to still charge me the $6.50 ‘under-stamping’ fee. Well, their response was somewhat ferocious.

They were astounded that I should make such a suggestion. To which I responded, “You’re lucky I don’t send you an invoice for my travel, time and parking.”

When I was asked why I insisted on taking with me the ‘collect notice’, I remarked that, “I’m a writer and I collect examples of bad service.”

Shoe shopping

While in that vicinity I walked over the road to buy some new joggers. I selected a pair with a sale price tag that clearly showed $189.95. I was amazed that it was then processed through the cash register at the original price of $249.95 (the price on the box).

When I pointed out to the proprietor the actual sale price tag he simply said, “Okay I’ll change it.” (Probably thinking to himself, “I thought the silly old bugger would not even notice”). I then arrived back in the office just in time to receive a telephone call from my daughter in London. She had received a notice from UK Customs demanding a $100 payment to release a parcel.

She presumed the parcel to be Christmas presents for my granddaughters. However, when my daughter telephoned Her Majesty’s Customs they refused to reveal details of the sender. All very unsatisfactory! I suggested that as the grandchildren had missed out on Christmas, I would make enquiries from our end. When I asked why penalty rates apply to gifts being sent to the UK, the answer was: “to discourage people bringing in internet purchases.” (Which is totally unrelated to gift sending).

A happy ending

I wrote to the British Consul General in Perth, explaining that if the UK Customs confiscated and kept this parcel, it was a clear example of stealing. Funnily enough, the parcel was subsequently sent back to me at their expense.

Now it has been successfully ‘smuggled’ into the UK so that two little grandchildren can enjoy a belated Christmas. Warm feelings all around!


1 Comment

  • (FWIIW 5 years later)

    Yet there is in UK a top class company that sells auto light globes, they have a very good web site.
    Gov. charges- usually the charge for that sort of thing is a few dollars so we do not complain.

Leave a Reply