Given all the various horror stories on Qype (both German and British versions) about parcel delivery services, here's a nicer (if still rather involved) tale.
My partner and I were trying to ship a dining table to Spain. We'd been looking for a suitable table for ages and decided that actually the best for our purposes was one we had already - it was just in the wrong country! Having weighed up the costs, we realised it would be cheaper to ship the one we had across to Spain than to buy a new one there, so muggins here was tasked with making the arrangements.
Shipping something of this size always presents potential problems: fortunately for us, the table legs were designed to come apart, so at least I was not going to have some cartoon-like parcel to ship, looking like a wrapped-up table. My problem, though, was the weight restriction: anything above 31.5kg requires a pallet, which bumps up the cost no end. So I parcelled up the top and legs separately.
The oak wooden table top, with my Heath-Robinson packaging, (think: yards and yards of parcel tape) came to 30kg, perilously close to the limit, with no capacity to include the table legs. Sending these as a separate parcel would be too expensive (nearly the same price), so I opted to carry these in my luggage and take them on the plane. (Thereby hangs another tale, but that's for another day).
So, first I spoke to a member of the DHL team to check for any restrictions, and to make the booking. This turned out to be fairly straightforward: not too many 'push button one' options, and an intelligible and reasonably helpful person at the other end. Fortunately there were no restrictions on movement within the EU, so that was OK. I went arranged the booking, agreed the price, and waited
To my relief, and actually some amazement, the DHL chappie duly arrived at the agreed time at my flat to pick up the table top. That in itself is a minor miracle, given that my flat (despite being in a building 120 years old) doesn't feature in the Royal Mail database, and all sorts of delivery people spend ages fruitlessly ringing my neighbour's bell before giving up.
The parcel duly taken off my hands, I headed to the airport next day with my unfeasibly large and heavy extra luggage. Astonishingly, I glided into Gatwick and out of Barcelona airports without anyone taking the slightest notice of the fact I was carrying four elegant but large pieces of wood, but that (again) is another story.
So, we then waited in Spain for our delivery. The computer tracking told us the piece had arrived in Spain, so we waited for it to arrive. The first day, we managed to miss the delivery - I'm still not quite sure how, but we discovered a 'failed delivery' note in our letter box. However, after a phone call sorted out the problem, the table top duly arrived safely at the agreed time next day. Even more amazingly, my packaging was in perfect condition, and so were the contents. (I've since become a convert to the virtues of extra-heavy-duty parcel tape.)
And that was that. The re-assembled table is now performing sterling service in a nice warm and sunny climate. We've since used DHL (Park Royal branch) a couple of times, and I'm a convert to them too.
One of the more reliable parcel delivery and courier services. I was not expecting a parcel at the time so was surprised to find a card left behind at my place after a day at work.
Their setup is rather convenient, with the option to arrange re-delivery online for a set date. I would only say that it is rather unfortunate there is no option to arrange for a certain time of day, even if it were just morning, afternoon or hours after work.
My parcel did eventually arrive, although fairly late at night and it was impossible to get hold of anyone at DHL to confirm that it would be arriving on the day - hence the 3 stars only.
Unbelievable service. Package was stuck in China, and they were going to charge daily holding charges, one call through to DHL customer service, and they had the package redirected to the new address, reduced the charges to nearly nothing.
Cannot express enough how amazing their customer service and follow up is. Truly remarkable.
This user has arrived from Qype, a European company acquired by Yelp in 2012. We have integrated the two sites to bring you one great local experience.