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March 31st, 2011

In the middle of November I ordered a subscription to the Disney Princess magazine as a Christmas present for my niece. I couldn't find a direct way to order it through Disney, so I ordered it through one of those magazine sites, Magazines USA.

I figured ordering it a month and a half before Christmas would get it there in a reasonable amount of time.

A couple weeks ago, my sister-in-law emailed me to let me know it hadn't arrived yet (they're in Georgia, I'm in California and we're not exactly a close family).

I logged onto the Magazine USA site and contacted customer service who eventually informed me that they were "checking on it".

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Dear Amazon, Please Ditch Ontrac

So I've recently moved to a slightly more remote location, and signed up for an Amazon Prime account in the hopes that I can order more stuff online and spend less time in the car getting to Target/mall/pet store, etc. Sadly, Amazon seems to have recently started using Ontrac, a third rate little shipping company for some of their shipments.

Two things I've ordered from Amazon were shipped by Ontrac. One ended up in front of our house on a little wall next to our driveway (not on the doorstep or even near the doorstep, which is up a flight of stairs. This wouldn't be a huge deal except it was raining ALL day on the day it was delivered, and there was no shelter where he placed the box, so the entire thing was soaked through. Fortunately everything inside the package happened to be wrapped in plastic, so my stuff survived, but who does that? It was one flight of stairs to my front door, which has a large awning over it and was nice and dry.

The second? Well, I spent a good 15 minutes hunting all around my house today, since Amazon's website claimed it was delivered to "FDOOR" yesterday. I finally found it, after I'd given up looking, when I went to get my mail. That's right, Ontrac jammed my package into my mailbox (and it was partially opened to boot!) despite the fact that a) they claimed to deliver it to my front door, a good 50 yards from my mailbox, and b) I'm pretty sure shippers other than USPS aren't permitted to use mailboxes to deliver.

So I've complained to Amazon and Ontrac. Amazon says that there is no way to request that my orders are shipped via UPS, so I'm now forced to consider canceling my Amazon Prime account rather than put up with this nonsense. Sheesh.

Sears Online Order Fulfillment

So, I ordered a 60" x 90" rug for my art room from Sears online. Good reputable company, right?

Well, today I get this little box at work. Thinking it was software that I had ordered from another company, I took it home, opened it up, and lo and behold, inside is a pair of jeans and a receipt for the rug that I had ordered from Sears. Checked the UPS label on the outside, which indicated that it had been generated for something that weighed 20 pounds. This little box - maybe 14" x 6" x 8" - weighs maybe a pound or two.

So I called the number on the receipt for Sears Online Customer Service, and get someone who sounds like she barely spoke English who told me that she would have to submit it to the system and that I would have to return the jeans for a refund and then they could send me out the proper product. How on earth am I supposed to return jeans for which I have NO RECEIPT? The receipt is for the RUG that I ordered. The UPC code on the jeans is no where close to the UPC code for the RUG that I ordered. For all intents and purposes, as far as Sears is concerned, I received the rug. But I did NOT receive my rug, I received this crappy pair of faded, torn up jeans with a Route 66 tag on them.

So I called the K-Mart in Montana that sent me the box. The lady there told me I would have to call the 1-800 number on the online receipt. No help there either.

You can bet I won't be ordering anything from Sears online anymore, and I'll warn anyone who's thinking about it to think very, very carefully.

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