Before you trash the US postal service, read this

2 replies
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True story:

I ordered an item from a company in Minnesota - it's not relevant what it was, except that it was the last such item available anywhere in the United States. Not expensive, but pretty much irreplaceable. I paid for Priority shipping.

It did not arrive, so I called the company back to get the tracking number, and found out that the package had been sitting in a post office in New York City for three days. This was weird - definitely not normal.

It turns out there is an 800-number you can call when you have a USPS delivery problem. The 800-number person said they'd investigate. I received a call back from someone in the New York City post office that had the package. Yes, they literally got their hands on my package and told me that it was addressed to zipcode 10132. My zipcode is 01032.

I told the supervisor at that post office, a man with a melodic Jamaican accent, that this was a one-of-a-kind item, and could he send it on to me with tracking? He said that would cost $6. I said, can I give you my credit card?

"It doesn't work that way," he said. "But I'll call you with the tracking number later."

He called me with the tracking number and I asked him who was going to cover the $6. "Out of my pocket," he said.

"Oh come on, that's not right," I said. "Can I send you a check?"

He wouldn't respond to that.

We had another conversation, after I received the forwarded package and I called him back to thank him. "Isn't there some way I can pay you?"

He pooh-poohed me. "Sometimes you just have to do this," he said.

Now this wasn't a matter of life or death, or me not being able to afford the $6. It was someone spending money to help a stranger out of a serious inconvenience. I can't send a check because I don't have his last name.

So as a tribute to this wonderful human being in a big bureaucracy, who did something the rules did not say he had to do, I am posting this story.

Thank you, Richard!

Marcia Yudkin
#heroism #postal #read #service #trash #usps
  • Profile picture of the author Mark Singletary
    Many people here that are trying to make money online, forget the importance of good customer service.

    For example, they don't answer emails before the sale, their refund policy isn't stated clearly, they take their sweet time to respond to support requests, they blame the customer for any failures in using their product, etc.

    So, thanks for the story and reminder. Hopefully, those that need to will take it to heart and in the process have not just more customers but happier customers as a result.

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  • Profile picture of the author JasonTheFreeman
    That's a really heartwarming story. What a guy. I wish there are more Richards out there.

    What he said is true, sometimes we have just have to do things. Some people might say it's not a big deal, but it's more than just the amount being covered. It's the willingness to compensate for the inconvenience.
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