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Are They Stupid, or What?!


StevenGuthmiller
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I've been tracking a package for an item that I purchased on Amazon a week or so ago.

It started in Salt Lake City, Utah and then made it's way all the way to Bismarck North Dakota, (approximately 220 miles from my home)

It then moved to Fargo, (about 23 miles from my front door)

Today I find that from a stones throw away in Fargo, it's now traveled to Minneapolis Minnesota!! (233 miles away)

 

What the hell?

They do realize that they could have thrown it from Fargo to Hawley, right? :blink:

 

 

 

 

Steve

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Yup,that’s what always happens.I had a package come onto LI NY,10 mins from my house.I then checked with the tracking info the provided to me, thinking it would arrive any day.Then i find out that it went back up state for some unknown reason before finally arriving to my house almost a week late.What??? !!!!!!😤😤🤬.Pain in the butt.

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This always strikes me as odd.

There are folks who try to tell us it's all a matter of sophisticated "logistics", as though mere mortals are too stupid to grasp the esoteric brilliance of sending a package 500 miles out of the way and back.

Nah. It's just stupidity on the part of the shipper.

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I had a package that was in nj being delivered to nj, that was accidentally routed to hawaii. When i called usps, they tried to say it was still going to be delivered to me that afternoon. 

I Told them i didn't really believe it. Shockingly it wasn't delivered for a few days

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My former office location is just a couple miles from the UPS Depot.  They would make deliveries by 10:30a, 3p and 5p (end of the day).  Wouldn't it be cheaper to put them all on the same truck?

I can ship a document via UPS ground and it makes it to its destination 250 miles away the next day.  If I upgrade to two day shipping, it's more expensive AND it really will take two days for the same journey!

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The guy who picks up my trash has the physical PO Box right under mine at the local PO. If my arm were longer, I could reach through my box and put my quarterly bill check in his mailbox from the back. But no, I have to put a stamp on it.

Until recently, the PO had two outgoing mail slots--one for the local town (very small, and presumably all mail delivered in the town would be handled by this PO) and one for the rest of the world. Now they've done away with the local slot, so all the mail now gets taken over the mountain to the next city, about 30 miles away, to be sorted, and then the local stuff is sent back in a day or two. Oh well, at least now I can feel like I'm getting my money's worth for that stamp. :lol:

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I've had this happen a few times will small time shippers, even as recently as last week. My wife ordered some things just after Thanksgiving and once it shipped we watched the tracking, it went from New Jersey to Virginia then to North Carolina, then back to Virginia, then back to North Carolina, then to Virginia again where it stopped updating for almost a week. Now well outside of the delivery window we contacted the store, they were out of some of the things she ordered so we got a partial refund and what was still available resent. Then one day last week her original package shows up on the porch looking like they kicked it from Jersey to Charlotte. 

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Received a package in the mail today. It was shipped out on the 6th from California, a few days later it arrived in Oregon, then for some reason it spent 5 days in Washington after that, switched carriers, and then came back to Oregon. Could’ve had it a week ago if the shippers hadn’t have made that slip up.

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I have a hypothesis. Once upon a time, the software that figured out all these routes worked very well, and everyone was (reasonably) happy. Over the years, enough "special cases" were added such that the software doesn't work as well, so things get sent on these long, bizarre routes until the routing system does something semi-intelligent, or someone steps in, and sends it to the right place in spite of the routing instructions. 

Add to this the occasional package code misread, and it's probably a miracle that it works as well as it does. 

 

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5 hours ago, Snake45 said:

The guy who picks up my trash has the physical PO Box right under mine at the local PO. If my arm were longer, I could reach through my box and put my quarterly bill check in his mailbox from the back. But no, I have to put a stamp on it.

Until recently, the PO had two outgoing mail slots--one for the local town (very small, and presumably all mail delivered in the town would be handled by this PO) and one for the rest of the world. Now they've done away with the local slot, so all the mail now gets taken over the mountain to the next city, about 30 miles away, to be sorted, and then the local stuff is sent back in a day or two. Oh well, at least now I can feel like I'm getting my money's worth for that stamp. :lol:

We lost our local box over 10 years ago. seems stupid to me to haul letters that never need to leave the area code. But hey there are high paying golden parachute management type that have a better idea. 

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Here's a thought: the percentage of the small number of frequent posters here who notice this bizarre routing and remark about it is pretty high, all things considered.

If the national percentage of packages going on such unnecessarily extended joyrides is similar, it would be a pretty extensive problem.

Kinda makes one wonder about the competence of whoever's driving this particular bus, eh?

8 hours ago, Dave Ambrose said:

...it's probably a miracle that it works as well as it does. 

Maybe the head guy's qualifications are that he likes stamps, and proposed to his wife in a post office.

2 hours ago, Mark said:

Someone probably got, or will soon get, a bonus, raise, or promotion because the trucks transporting everything around are all closer to capacity.

Ah yes; middle-management-think at its very best.

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I ordered a dishwasher part from a place in Lexington, KY.(295 miles from Lawrenceburg, TN.) From there it went to Louisville, KY.(260 miles) Then, on to Nashville, TN.(86 miles) From Nashville, it zoomed right by Lawrenceburg on its way to Montgomery, Al.(243 miles away). Then, it went back to Louisville, then back to Nashville. This time, it came to my mailbox, instead of going to Montgomery! Our dishwasher was out of commission for more than two weeks, waiting for a small, well traveled part.

I've had other packages that seem to sort of fly right past the house, only to come back later in a sort of boomerang effect!

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My experiences with the USPS have been all over the board.

Like you guys, I've seen packages travel all over the country to get to Georgia from cities on the east coast or Midwest.

Most of the time my local guy is great, making sure packages are under cover on the porch, along with the paper mail rubber-banded to it.

BUT...in the past somebody has left packages at the end of the drive, in an inch-deep puddle in the driving rain, or on top pf a car, or just thrown over the fence.

When I came back from an out-of-town trip in early November, the mail I'd had held was in one of those white corrugated-plastic PO open-top containers, in the middle of the front yard, FULL of water.

Right now I'm on the way to the PO to try to track a package I NEED for a project, marked as "delivered" on the website, but nowhere to be found on my property.

That said, MOST of the time they do a pretty good job overall.

 

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I read last year that sometimes when packages get routed to somewhere that doesn't make sense, it's making the most of available labor to manually process mail - so if a particular office is really backed up it may be quicker to route to another hundreds of miles away and let the staff there handle it and send it to the next destination faster than if it went the 'logical' route.  I have no idea if that's true though.

Like all organizations, the USPS no doubt has it's fair share of inefficient staff and likely a much smaller share of EXCELLENT staff.  Our local mail lady in Brooklyn, Linda, was really exceptional.  In 2018 I moved in with my wife-to-be right before we got married.  After we got married a bunch of my wife's family sent cards and a few forgot to put our apartment number on the envelopes.  Despite the fact that I had only lived there a couple of weeks and had less than a dozen items of mail delivered there, Linda figured out where to deliver all these cards addressed to my wife (now with a surname she didn't recognize on them and no apartment number), on a route that likely included THOUSANDS of customers.  She was great - I always made sure to offer her a drink or a snack when I'd see her in our lobby or outside the building.

Then, another time, I went to collect a package from our local PO and the guy said "How do you expect find your package?  I have 10,000 packages here?!  What do you want me to do, look at all 10,000?".  I said "I dunno, don't you have some sort of system, or...." 🤷‍♂️

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I'm humored right now with a package coming from UPS as the tracking says it will be delivered Sunday by 9 pm. UPS doesn't deliver on Sunday which means they may give it to the USPS who does deliver on the weekend but I'm expecting it won't be delivered this weekend and I'll see it Monday or Tuesday or......

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Actually, as a rule, I'm pretty happy with the USPS's service, except for the occasional "my stuff in someone else's mail box, and vice versa", but that's a local carrier issue.

 

It just makes you wonder sometimes when you're expecting something, it appears to be on the threshold of turning up on your doorstep, and then, shazam! it takes a sight seeing tour of half of the country!

The package in question is a Christmas gift for my wife, and I'm trying my best to intercept it before she gets a look at it, because you never know when the package will be emblazoned with a giant description of what's contained in the box! :rolleyes:

 

 

 

 

Steve

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The majority of time I have no issues w/ my local USPS.  Except when once in a while they deliver packages to the wrong house..there is a house 2 streets over from me with the same house number and a very similar street name.  And there is a house down my street with an almost identical house number except for one digit. I get their mail and vice versa once in a while.  Or the previous owners of my house, I've been here almost 5 years but still get their mail on occasion...    Amazon, UPS, and FedEx have foul ups on occasion also.

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21 hours ago, StevenGuthmiller said:

I've been tracking a package for an item that I purchased on Amazon a week or so ago.

It started in Salt Lake City, Utah and then made it's way all the way to Bismarck North Dakota, (approximately 220 miles from my home)

It then moved to Fargo, (about 23 miles from my front door)

Today I find that from a stones throw away in Fargo, it's now traveled to Minneapolis Minnesota!! (233 miles away)

 

What the hell?

They do realize that they could have thrown it from Fargo to Hawley, right? :blink:

 

 

 

 

Steve

This has happened to me numerous times.  The last package came from Texas to Chattanooga Tenn. which is about 10 miles from me it then traveled to Atlanta GA. which is about 150 miles away only to come back to Chattanooga lol. 

Maybe they should toss the computer/gps technology and do it like they did 30 years ago.

Edited by Scott8950
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22 hours ago, Snake45 said:

Until recently, the PO had two outgoing mail slots--one for the local town (very small, and presumably all mail delivered in the town would be handled by this PO) and one for the rest of the world. Now they've done away with the local slot, so all the mail now gets taken over the mountain to the next city, about 30 miles away, to be sorted, and then the local stuff is sent back in a day or two. Oh well, at least now I can feel like I'm getting my money's worth for that stamp. :lol:

They don't have personnel to sort mail locally.  Everything goes to the sort center where it's sorted by machines into the exact route order.  

A while back I thought I'd test it.  I dropped a post card to myself at the local PO in Exton, PA.  It arrived the very next day with the Wilmington, Delaware sorting center postmark on it.  No doubt it left Exton at 5-6pm,  was sorted in Delaware and was sent back in the wee hours of the morning to be in my carrier's truck by 6am!

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44 minutes ago, Tom Geiger said:

They don't have personnel to sort mail locally.  Everything goes to the sort center where it's sorted by machines into the exact route order.  

The local has two people, who seem to have little or nothing to do 1/4-1/3 of the time. I doubt the "local" slot was taking in 100 pieces a day. Probably 1/4 of the town is on the PO boxes. I can't imagine they couldn't at least go through and pull the PO box mail and insert those in hours. There's only one truck and one mail route for the rest of the town, and I doubt there are 50 streets. Should be easy enough to sort out in "spare" time. In fact, I think this it the way they had been doing it. 

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