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……to be very cross with The Times/Sunday Times Newspapers?

(35 Posts)
nowahousewife Sun 14-Apr-13 10:42:34

Longtime lurker, first thread post so I'll try to get it right; not too longwinded but not drip feeding.

I've been a subscriber to The Times home delivery service for over a year now. Every so often my newspaper does not turn up (particularly on Sundays). I ring up to complain and usually spend over 15 mins on the phone listening to different options, piped music etc before being told I'll be given a refund in next month's direct debit.

Earlier this year a nice lady knocked on my door one Sunday afternoon with my newspaper. It turns out she lives in a road with a similar name to mine (eg. I live at 4 Privet Drive while she lives at 4 Privet Close) and said her downstairs neighbour keeps getting my newspapers. This happens a couple of times again so I duly phone up the Times, inform them and they assure me it won't happen again.

Fast forward to 17th March and once again my Sunday Times is not delivered but I get this email:
(sic) "....can you please go and collect the papers as I have been informed that they are disabled and can not bring it to you, the newspapers will be in the veranda waiting for you.
I have told the delivery team to make sure that you will get the newspapers, I am sorry for this inconvience and it will be sorted out for you as soon as possible."

I replied telling them it was not my job to rectify their mistakes and that they had a cheek asking me to collect it ? I did however send my son round to collect it.

They replied with:
"Please accept our sincere apologies for the issues surrounding the delivery of your Sunday Times recently.
We have applied 3 days of credit to your account.
More importantly, we have escalated this issue and are confident that the Sunday papers should now be delivered to the correct address." hmm

Last Sunday again the paper did not turn up so I emailed them to advise. Monday the paper did not turn up again and I received a phone call from a manager, let's call him 'Dave', asking me to go and collect my paper from disabled lady at 4 Privet Close. I asked him did he have record of the email I sent yesterday to which he said he did not. I told him this was the last straw and I wished to cancel my subscription. This was a very longwinded process being passed to two different departments and eventually speaking to 'Jo' who proceeded to entice me to stay with them by offering me 3 months subscription at half price etc. Told him it was of not use to me even if it was free as they could not deliver reliably. I'm paid up to 8th May.

Anyway 'Dave', the manager assured me it would be sorted. Guess what I did not get today. Yep, no Sunday Times! I spent 25 mins on the phone speaking to 'Greg' who offered me a credit to which I laughed and said no use as I've already cancelled! I told him where the paper would be and asked what were they going to do about it? He couldn't answer so I was really mean and said to him did he want on his conscience a disabled lady not to be able to get out of her house as his papers were blocking her porch? I did not shout or swear at him (very restrained of me I think) but I was mean to him and got off the phone and was very grumpy with DH.

Told DH I was going to speak to someone senior tomorrow and write a stroppy letter. He said "don't waste your time, post on Mumsnet and those stroppy women will sort it for you!" V wise man my DH. grin

So if you've managed to get to the end of this very long winded post what would your next step be and should I feel guilty at being mean to 'Greg'"

YoniLovesChachi Sun 14-Apr-13 10:49:27

I think you should just forget about it. They didn't get a few papers to you so you cancelled. Nothing else to be done, really.

HeyYoniYoni Sun 14-Apr-13 10:54:33

But if the address is written correctly, which surely it is as you usually get your paper, then isn't it down to the deliverer rather than the sender? It's the postman making a mistake not the times???

Salbertina Sun 14-Apr-13 10:57:24

Go for online version instead?

nowahousewife Sun 14-Apr-13 11:00:41

Yoni, it's the Times' own delivery service which is paid for in the subscription, not the postman.

Guess I'm just fed up with the ineptness of all these call centres, all they ever seem to do is 'make a note on the system'.

Loving all the Yoni names grin

ParadiseChick Sun 14-Apr-13 11:00:49

Oh dear.

What do you want? The newspaper boy's head on a stick?

You signed up, it was shit, you cancelled.

Build a bridge, get over it.

nowahousewife Sun 14-Apr-13 11:01:52

online version included in the subscription. Will be losing that now I've cancelled!

HoHoHoNoYouDont Sun 14-Apr-13 11:03:10

Bloody hell, they're a shambles aren't they. I think I'd be inclined to send them a stroppy letter.

nowahousewife Sun 14-Apr-13 11:03:57

Paradise - am going back to using the local newsagent and a newsaper boy.

Signed up to the Times own service as it promised delivery before 0700, online edition, online account management etc.

Wotme Sun 14-Apr-13 11:04:53

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

HeyYoniYoni Sun 14-Apr-13 11:04:54

What? it's the Times's own delivery person? A paper delivered by a person employed by the publisher? No wonder they have to charge for their online service

nowahousewife Sun 14-Apr-13 11:08:14

Yoni, not 'employed' by the publisher but outsourced as most things seem to be these days. However certainly not outsourced to the local newagent, rather a large co that specialises in this type of outsourcing.
They charge for online service as Rupert Murdoch doesn't like giving things away for free!

wotme - off to walk the dog soon, will enjoy the sun and will pop into 4 Privet Close to collect my paper!

BookFairy Sun 14-Apr-13 11:09:12

What a pain. How lazy of them to not proprly check the delivery address. We have a good subscription with them: we pay for vouchers which we use at the local newsagent, who delivers first thing. Online access included.

ParadiseChick Sun 14-Apr-13 11:10:44

So who is the company the deliver it? I bet it's just the local shop. All this outsourcing is a bit much for potentially one paper in one street!

nowahousewife Sun 14-Apr-13 11:13:09

Paradise, no it's not a local shop. There are co's that specialise is this type of thing. Do like your 'build a bridge, get over it' might come in handy with my teenagers.

MrsSpagBol Sun 14-Apr-13 12:35:36

OP i also cancelled our Times subscription after ENDLESS missed deliveries, credits, direct debit reversals etc - just not worth the aggro.

Final straw was when I was up at silly o clock one morning (like pre 5 am) and literally saw the delivery man pull up to our drive, not get out of his vehicle and literally sling the papers in the general direction of our door. Of course it had been raining for about 3 years so it landed in a small dam of water. We have a covered porch area. hmm

Their service is just useless. I would complain to get closure

MrsBW Sun 14-Apr-13 12:38:20

Deary me...

MrSlant Sun 14-Apr-13 12:47:19

Sometimes on a Sunday they manage not to deliver to our entire area, I think we are too far out west for them to cope hmm. I mean to the supermarket and everything btw, not just to subscribers!

tiredemma Sun 14-Apr-13 12:49:18

Its only been full of fawning Thatcher shit anyway.

YoniMcShoni Sun 14-Apr-13 12:55:57

I am a fan of complaining where there is incompetence. You need to get this sorted by contacting the man at the top

Looks like they agree.

By the way , no I dont think you were right to be angry with the call centre worker. What power to you think he has to affect how a driver delivers your paper? The call centre is there to answer queries and give information .It is not the nerve centre of the world .He can only do what has been done before - pass on your concerns . Its the managers job to sort this out -and I mean the real manager not the person who has been tasked with being the 'manager' for that shift.

chaime Sun 14-Apr-13 12:56:21

Yeah you're really not missing much except for Caitlin Moran. Today's edition was shite.

HorryIsUpduffed Sun 14-Apr-13 12:56:35

Interesting. We had been considering changing to a direct subscription rather than going through the corner shop, to save 80p a week. Shan't bother now.

If we ever have a problem (similar, delivering to Horry Avenue rather than Horry Street because they are next to each other hmm ) we ring up and someone pops round with it. We had frequent problems at first but now we only get a problem if a different person sorts them at the shop and writes only "Horry" rather than "Horry Street" on the top.

EuroShaggleton Sun 14-Apr-13 12:58:44

We get this with the post. We are 10 X Mews. The next street is X Road. I am often popping things in to number 10 on my way out. It happens. Move on.

MrsSpagBol Sun 14-Apr-13 13:01:42

Euro it does happen but this is not normal post - this is a service that you pay for, and your paper should be delivered to your door! Otherwise, what are you paying for?!

Laquila Sun 14-Apr-13 13:01:52

I can see why you're annoyed and I also think that the call centre has a responsibility to sort it out and make sure it doesn't happen again. They don't need to be the nerve centre of the world to do this - they just need to be in charge of the Customer Service for Times subscribers ringing up to complain (which presumably they are?)

My parents do the voucher/local newsagent thing and it seems to work OK, but only because their village's papers are left in a plastic box in the pub car park and everyone has to go and collect them themselves!

Try the Guardian?!

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