If you follow us on Instagram (theretro32uk) you might have seen that a few weeks ago I purchased a bargain of an Amiga 600 from Facebook marketplace. Unfortunately, the Amiga was DOA and would require some love from Steve @ Amiga Passion.
The board was promptly removed from the machine and a courier was booked on Parcel2Go. The board was loveling packaged and dropped off at my local garage.
Over 2 weeks passed and Parcel2Go confirmed that my parcel could no longer be accounted for by Hermes. A claim was opened which has now resulted in me rejecting numerous offers.
“Big deal” I hear you ask. Well, yes. This article isn’t for my benefit. It’s a warning to make sure you cover your back when sending anything through the UK’s wonderful delivery network.
Whilst I argue with Parcel2Go over £4.15 I thought I would give you some top tips on how to protect yourself from losing a parcel and make sure you have the best chance of getting your money back if it all goes pear-shaped.
These tips might seem like common sense but in hindsight, I wish I had followed them.
- Securely package your Parcel
Ensure your parcel is well packaged and is safe from any drop, knocks or kicks it might receive. If you’re sending something like an old console, it’s likely that the plastics could have become brittle over the years. Extra care should be taken.
- Clearly label!
As well as the printed copy of the delivery label we suggest labeling the parcel yourself too with the return address clearly show on the back.
- Keep all your slips
Make you keep your drop off slip when you hand over your parcel. If you’re someone who misplaces things regularly then take a photo of both sides of the slip when it’s handed over
- Photos Photos Photos
When dropping off the parcel take a photo/video of the parcel sporting it’s courier label at the drop of point. It will show that the label was securely attached and the condition of the box you are sending. If you can also photograph the item in its box surrounded by its packaging to prove that sufficient care was taken to protect it.
- Insure the ****ing thing for the right amount
This is where I dropped the ball. To keep prices down (yes, I’m a tight a**) I went with the standard £20 protection offered for Hermes small parcels. This wasn’t a realistic representation of the value and I’m paying for that now. On the flip side, don’t waste money and overvalue the item, in the event of a claim they will ask you to prove a number of things including the value of the item from the item listing or from the recipient.
- Opt for signed / recorded delivery
Rather than simply “trust” that your parcel has been delivered, we suggest that you opt for a “signed for” service with a delivery guarantee. This will further protect yourself from an unscrupulous buyer or delivery driver who likes to punt parcels over fences or leave on show for porch pirates.
- Be careful with your parcel contents
When booking your parcel choose how you describe the content. Labeling as an iPhone 11 or Rolex might attract the attention of a rogue employee. Use a term like electronics or games.
Whatever you send, there is always a chance that it’ll be damaged or lost in the “system”. We suggest that you just do the best you can to give your parcel the best chance to get there in one piece. Couriers will do EVERYTHING they can to prevent a payout in the event that your parcel is lost or damaged. Don’t give them that chance.
Whilst I argue with parcel2go for peanuts, I’ve already secured a recapped Amiga 600 from Amiga passion to replace the one Hermes “misplaced”. Yes, the end result will be the same but it’s going to cost me a lot more time and effort to get the final piece of my Amiga jigsaw together.
Will I be using Parcel2Go / Hermes again? Maybe. Next time I’ll follow my own advice and just hope for the best!
Let’s hear from you
Have you lost a parcel containing a beloved retro gaming history? Did you get your money back? What are your tops tips on making sure your parcel arrives? Let us know in the comments below.