A little while ago, I came home to find the dreaded UPS Signature Required slip affixed to my front door. I was really, really looking forward to something arriving at my house, and the package door slip, regardless which carrier it’s from, is about the worst thing on the planet anyone wants to see when they’re highly anticipating something. And in this particular case of mine, it was from UPS.
I have a camera on my property, so I have video evidence of the UPS driver delivering my package and then walking away. Three steps out of my front stoop, he turned around, retrieved the package, and proceeded to fill out the slip that I would eventually find on my door later in the day.
I was puzzled by this. This was not the first time I had ordered from this particular merchant, and the previous instance, no signature was required, and my package was delivered to my residence without any problems.
No problem, I figured that I could sign the slip and leave it on my door, and get my package the following day. The following day, I watched the driver not only not deliver my package, but simply leave yet another slip on the door. Now we have a problem.
Ultimately, I circumvented delivery, by opting to have the package sent back to the delivery center, and retrieved it myself. But I wasn’t pleased with the fact that I had to make an 18-mile each way drive to retrieve my package, and upon inquiring from the UPS employees themselves, it was explained to me that signature on delivery was the only option allowed for me, which is why the driver did not leave it on day 2, in spite of me signing and leaving the slip on the door.
Thinking this was the decision of the merchant, I contacted the merchant, imploring them to provide more clarity on their shipping protocol, since they’re relatively new to the online store game, and a little minimalistic on descriptions of things in general. I would hear back from the merchant, only for them to explain that they weren’t aware that signatures were necessary, and that it just might be an issue with UPS themselves.
To cut to the chase, when I contacted UPS, it was explained to me that UPS drivers have the discretion to choose whether or not to leave the package, or alternatively require a signature.
UPS drivers, choose whether or not I get packages.
I expressed my displeasure at that concept, and even more so that I was unhappy with the fact that the option to release with signed slip wasn’t even allowed in this particular instance; I was more than willing to absolve the driver of accountability, if they were to leave my package, and it was stolen. I signed for it, it would be on me if it were stolen off my stoop. But it was robotically explained to me that such was regular procedure, and that ultimately it’s the driver’s discretion whether or not they leave any package. Also, that if I wanted to prevent this from happening in the future, I could enroll in My UPS Choice, which would give me more liberties with package handling; naturally for additional fees and charges.
Let’s be real here, I can’t hide the fact that my neighborhood comes off as kind of questionable. And it wouldn’t be the first time that a package has vanished; it’s the reason why I have a camera now in the first place.
But knowing that it was the driver’s call to not leave my package paints an unfortunate picture about the situation as a whole. It’s like looking back at the original clip, the driver leaves the package, and on his walk back to the truck it’s like he notices a black person walking around, and thinking he’s doing me a favor, he takes back my package and made it such that it required a physical signature. Not even the option to sign the slip and put what he clearly figured was likely theft, on my hands.
Needless to say, I explained to the UPS agent that I did not like this procedure, and that if I have carrier options, I may consider alternates, and that if I absolutely have to use UPS, that I’m clearly going to have to ship to locations where drivers might not panic and try and play god over my purchased belongings.