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Topic: Package "Undeliverable as Addressed"; What happens next?

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Date Posted: 3/20/2013 9:09 PM ET
Member Since: 2/2/2009
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Last Edited on: 2/9/15 7:30 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/20/2013 9:51 PM ET
Member Since: 4/11/2007
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I had this happen a few months ago. The short story was that the "PayPal Confirmed Address" for the Buyer was wrong. The package was returned to me and the buyer agreed to pay to have it reshipped.

The first thing you should do is double-check the shipping address, doing a screen print of it for your records. Next, contact the buyer via eBay's message system to let them know what you've found. (Make sure you tell them exactly what address you shipped their purchase to.) They may be clueless, as not every Buyer checks the tracking link. If the address in PayPal is wrong, you're blameless and if they still want the item, you're within the rules to ask them to reimburse you for the second shipping charge. If the address is correct, they'll need to contact the post office that delivers their mail to find what's going on. They may luck out and it may still be there.



Last Edited on: 3/20/13 9:55 PM ET - Total times edited: 3
Date Posted: 3/20/2013 10:08 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
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First class or priority mail will be either forwarded or returned to you.  (Media mail isn't.)

Date Posted: 3/20/2013 10:15 PM ET
Member Since: 2/2/2009
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Thanks for the responses.  Ed, I just did email the buyer, through ebay messaging, and let him know of the situation.  I copied and pasted the confirmed Paypal address which I used, and asked if it was in error.  Also suggested that he might check at his post office, to see if it's still there.  If it comes back to me, I'll resend it to the address he provides, as wasn't very expensive to ship.  Hopefully it'll be resolved soon!

Date Posted: 3/20/2013 10:16 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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What Emily said yes your First Class package should be returned.  Unlike Media Mail, which does not include return postage...those are sketch, some are returned, some are returned postage due, and others probably go into the unclaimed mail bin.

Date Posted: 3/20/2013 10:20 PM ET
Member Since: 2/2/2009
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Will the tracking information reflect that, Denise?  I'm just wondering why there has been no update since the 15th.  If it's on it's way back to me, shouldn't that be recorded as part of the tracking?  

Date Posted: 3/20/2013 10:26 PM ET
Member Since: 4/11/2007
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"First class or priority mail will be either forwarded or returned to you.  (Media mail isn't.)"

Actually, that's not true. If a forwarding order is filed with the USPS branch responsible for delivery to the address, Media Mail will be forwarded just like First Class. Undeliverable Media Mail *should* be returned to the sender, but might come Postage Due for the return trip. This is covered in the USPS Quick Service Guide.



Last Edited on: 3/20/13 10:27 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/20/2013 10:32 PM ET
Member Since: 4/11/2007
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" If it's on it's way back to me, shouldn't that be recorded as part of the tracking? "

You would think so, wouldn't you? But, I can tell you from the occurrence I had in the Fall, there was a long time gap between the Undeliverable scan and the scan my carrier did as he placed the book in my mailbox (with a Postage Due slip & envelope taped to it).



Last Edited on: 3/20/13 10:33 PM ET - Total times edited: 3
Date Posted: 3/21/2013 3:12 AM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
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Don't know about return scans, I've not tracked one yet.  But since it's mostly automated, then there will probably be some.  Don't worry yet tho, returns don't seem to be a priority...they appear to sit somewhere awhile.    Unfortunately 5 days isn't enough time to be concerned yet.



Last Edited on: 3/21/13 3:12 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/1/2013 7:01 PM ET
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Last Edited on: 2/9/15 7:31 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/1/2013 8:08 PM ET
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I wouldn't just blindly mail it back out again... You have no assurance that it won't get sent back again. I would either have the buyer contact his delivery USPS branch or you can contact them yourself. Ask to speak with the postmaster (or the supervisor in charge of the carrier staff). When you have a person of authority on the phone, explain exactly what transpired and have that person see if they can determine what happened at their end. At a minimum, they should be able to verify that the address on the package is, in fact, a valid delivery address. I would not remail it without that last piece of information.

Oh, BTW, did it come back 'Postage Due'? And, what kind of bar-code scanning was done on the return trip to you?

Date Posted: 4/1/2013 8:44 PM ET
Member Since: 2/2/2009
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Amazingly, and fortunately, there was no postage due.  The original tracking number has never been updated.  They stuck on an additional sticker/barcode which has my zip code on it and another number, but doesn't look like a tracking number.  The buyer and I were both wondering what to do about this; I did email him, even took a photo of the package/label today, to make sure there was nothing wrong with the way I addressed it (I haven't heard back from him yet, but I checked it all very carefully and it's identical to the mailing address he provided).  

That's good advice about contacting someone at his post office before re-mailing.  I will try to do that tomorrow.

Date Posted: 4/1/2013 10:29 PM ET
Member Since: 4/28/2009
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Have heard of several people getting this msg as well as me and each time it was an erroneous msg--- that is, the address was correct.  Soooooo, sometimes it's the error msg that is incorrect!

Date Posted: 4/1/2013 10:45 PM ET
Member Since: 4/11/2007
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"...it was an erroneous msg--- that is, the address was correct..."

I don't disagree. But, it only takes a little bit of free effort to make sure.



Last Edited on: 4/1/13 10:46 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/2/2013 2:20 AM ET
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Last Edited on: 2/9/15 7:31 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/3/2013 7:19 AM ET
Member Since: 4/6/2007
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Last Edited on: 8/2/13 8:36 AM ET - Total times edited: 1