Since FedEx came up as a topic I thought I would give you some details about using them.
For jewelry you have a $500.00 limit no matter what you list the value as. You must fill that amount in the correct line on the shipping document or you have only $100.00 value. Also it is Not insurance as they will let you know if lost, it is "declared value". Dealers may use outside insurance companies to ship high value merchandise which may not be available to consumers.
The big catch! FedEx has what they call
"signature release on file" . This is kept FOREVER....and if the address or person you are shipping to has this release ( if they know it or not) the driver can drop the package in the front yard and keep going, he doesn't even need to get out of the truck.OK, most will at least get out but DO NOT expect them to ring the doorbell. The package is "released" and they will not be making an extra trip
if not at home. This will VOID the declared value you listed on the package and any independent insurance you may have. They will not even give you a copy of the release to look at. I guess you could try and blame the receiver but most cases the credit card company would refund the deal as it was not delivered and that would be the shippers problem. I could go into a lot more detail how this could be used to rip off merchants but will not do it on an open form. Same if a consumer is shipping to a Ebay customer etc.
Before you ship with FedEx you should call the 800 number and ask if the address you are shipping to has a signature release on file. They will sometimes say that is private, hang up and get another operator who can look it up. Take the name and keep it with the shipping record just in case.
When you do ship never use any Jewelry terms on the box and be careful with well known jewelry buildings such as 580 Fifth ave, NY or 47 street. Those are hot theft addresses. Use an inside and outside box for packaging and have the full address and tracking number on the inside box. The reason is most theft is
a "punch and grab" where they hit open the box and grab what is in it then send it down the line as if it was just damaged in transet. No mess to hide from torn boxes. The inner box will prevent the easy access to the merchandise.
it is also safer not to ship over a Saturday/Sunday as it will sit at a office and gives people time to look for stuff to open. I say that as I fill out several high value shipments with 3 day weekend! Maybe they can wait till Tuesday.
I'm getting the distinct impression that Fed Ex isn't as reputable as I thought they were....this is a bit scary since I know Juan uses Fed Ex to ship his treasures. Thanks for the info.
Actually, Fedex has a pretty good record. We will, of course, highlight the problems and when they screw up they do a good job of it. But they do successfully move several million items per day.
I ship a couple hundred parcels internationally every year. I have tried them all and found Fedex to be the most reliable, at least for international. DHL comes in second. The incident that I mentioned in another thread is the only problem I have had with them.
I do not ship valuable goods, so insurance is not a problem for me. You will pretty much have to provide your own insurance for valuables. Many jewelers block policies will have a provision for having a certain dollar amount in transit at any time.
If you are shipping valuable goods within the US or it's territories within the US the only way is Registered Mail. They insure to 25K. Everytime it is handed off through the system it has to be signed for. They rarely lose them, but they will pay out if they do. (however, expect a few hoop jumps to get it.)
signature release on file
There is a way to aviod this.
FedEx also has a sticker that the *sender* can use and a signature is required!!
It is a blue sticker that we use and it says the following.
"No indirect delivery."
"Signature release is NOT allowed, and a signed Delivery Notice by the recipient is not acceptable."
This label can be picked up or ordered through fedex. We keep a couple rolls on hand and I would suggest that all vendors do the same.
The "release" is FedEx favorate way to
out of anything they do. How I found out about the real way they use it is a loss I had on a delivery to of all people a federal judge who was not happy with them for saying he had released the box. After that I learned the system.
I still use FedEX as I have better luckwith them than UPS and in my area UPS is hard to ship with. They work well if you have a driver pickup but I ship late and that does not work. I also have issues with them about signatures when I pay to have the signature and it ends up 2 doors down in the green house but they can't read the name or address but that is
where they left it because the receiver was not home. If I wanted just any signature I wouldnt use
Express mail is good as they never release the box without a signature. On the other hand the tracking is slow and if you ship on Saturday it can sit in a mail bag till sunday or monday depending if the airline had room for the mail. You will not know this until it is tracked at checkin at the next post office. They do have a good record according to the insurance companies that track that stuff. Some offer free coverage with them. They insure up to $5000.00 and pay without any arguements.
With International mail you just hope only honest people see the box as they all require the contents or a ID code to be used. The Code means it has jewelry etc in it and the value is listed on the outside of the box. Not secure but what can you do. I ship a lot in and out of Mexico without any problems and my only loss has been in the UK. I also have not had problems with Canada.
Use this label and you will not have the problems you describe, or at least it stopped mine when I started using it.
I have a special account with Fedex and I never had a problem with them.
One important sticker I use that was adviced by Fedex is to put the sticker of "HIGH VALUE" that is bright orange, with this sticker your package is handled in a separate "HIGH VALUE" container and every recipient along the route have the obligation to sign for this special container, this when the office is closed during the weekends is keep in a safe box and not in the office racks.
high value packs are never delivered without a signed recipient form.
Is adviced also to declare if it contains jewelry, gold, platinum, etc. because it also receives a special handling.
I have used Fedex for 5 years without a single lost.
The blue "signature required " sticker does help but according to FedEx supervisors that is still not a guarantee that they will not leave if the receiver has a signature release on file. You would think the drivers would get the hint from the wording but not guaranteed. Plus it would be hard to prove it was on a box that is no longer available to look at. I got paid with one that was "lost" or should I say given away, with the sticker applied but had to fight for the money...whats new.
I can't use the stickers on my high value as the insurance company I use wants a "generic" look and no hint of value or jewelry contents.
As I understand it if you ship a wedding dress they get very special handling and are almost hand carried in the system...Sure she gets the dress but no ring!
re: wedding dress but no ring -
I think that just S@%*! (About Fed X!! I'm sooo mad at them right now!! )
[Edited by Julie on 05-25-02 at 03:46 PM]
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