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Thread: Banana Republic - Horrible Customer Service Experience

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    Banana Republic - Horrible Customer Service Experience

    Backstory: A little over a year ago, I had ordered a Trench Coat from Banana Republic's Online site. UPS marked the status as "Delivered" but the package was never delivered to me. I contacted the customer Service and they issued me a refund.

    Fast Forward to the present:
    I ordered a bunch of items from BR.com with the recent 35% off coupon, including the winter coat. The total for the merchandise was about 225-250$. The estimated delivery date was last week and I kept on waiting for the order to arrive. I forgot about it for a few days and I remembered to check the shipment status yesterday since i recollect their 4-7 day free shipping being slow at times. The package was shipped via UPS Smartpost (where UPS hands over the package to USPS for local delivery).

    UPS's shipment status indicated that USPS delivered the package on 2nd October. Another one of my J Crew packages was indicated as delivered the same day, around the same time by USPS. I did not recollect seeing any delivered packages for my apartment that day or any day since then. I asked around my neighbors and none of them received the packages for me. I left a note for USPS but got no response from them either.

    I emailed BR's customer service to inform them of this issue. They said that since they had already refunded my order once in the past, they will not process the missing package claim and re-ship or refund this order. They asked me to take it up with my credit card company.

    Anyone have any similar issues with them? I wasn't even aware of them having such a policy.

    Now I understand every company needs a fraud prevention policy but the way BR is handling this is pretty piss poor. J Crew couldn't have handled it any better, promptly offering a refund for the amount without me even asking for it.

    I'll be contacting my credit card company to dispute the charge but then I fear that BR is going to put the bill out to collection claiming it's not their problem.

    The one thing I do know: Banana Republic just lost a customer for life.

    F*ck them.

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    Also, it sounds like you need to contact your local postmaster. The packages could be stolen off your doorstep (in which case you should get a PO Box for deliveries), or are being stolen by a mail carrier/postal employee. The USPS take that very seriously, but can only investigate if people actually inform them of the issue.

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    I have found Banana Republic to have very bad customer service, both via phone and in store. It's as if they are only prioritizing that sale and not keeping you as a long term customer. Alternatively, I have nothing but glowing praise for JCrew so this story does not surprise me.

    I have very little doubt that your credit card company will take care of you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TDurden View Post
    I have found Banana Republic to have very bad customer service, both via phone and in store. It's as if they are only prioritizing that sale and not keeping you as a long term customer. Alternatively, I have nothing but glowing praise for JCrew so this story does not surprise me
    Agreed, I've had some bad experiences with BR (online purchases they won't allow returned in store, etc.), but J.Crew's service is always great.

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    I'm going to drop by the local post office after work (even in the city, they shut down before 5 on most days except thursday).

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    Super Moderator LesserBlackDog's Avatar
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    It sounds to me as though your main issue is with UPS/USPS, not Banana Republic. Banana Republic has no control over the product once it ships. You can't reasonably expect BR to take a hit for you any and every time your package is either lost or stolen in the carrier's custody or from your doorstep. If I were you, I would have attempted to fully resolve the issue with the carrier before seeing if there was something BR would be willing to do about it. The smartest thing to do might have been to get BR on your side to try to leverage some kind of loss coverage out of the carrier.

    In any case, you should probably start having your packages shipped to your workplace or some other location where you know there will be someone to accept it. At least that way, you won't have to wonder if future problems are the carrier's fault or the fault of some random passerby stealing packages.
    Ben

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    My building has 2 keyed entry doors - USPS leaves the packages behind the first door, to which they have the key.

    Again, I did not expect BR to take a hit but just reported the non-delivery. I wanted to see if they had some information and instead, I got a form email saying they will not do anything.

    That's the part that pisses me off.

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    Super Moderator Shomas's Avatar
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    I have everything shipped to me at work because there's no safe place to leave it at my house. My work is in a building with a mailroom staffed seven days a week. I have had the same issue once with BR and a couple of times with Gilt. I think the main problem is with the SmartPost/SurePost shipping method. It sucks. Leaving aside the fact that USPS has a terrible tracking system ("delivered? Yeah, that means something other than what you think it means."), this method is exceedingly slow and just adds another transfer point into the system, which increases the odds of mishaps occurring.

    I suppose I understand the reasoning behind the SmarPost/SurePost method (i.e., saving on shipping costs by minimizing the number of discreet stops the carrier has to make), but it drives me crazy. I would pay more to just have it delivered by UPS or FedEx. And in my case, all carriers make multiple huge drop-offs to my building every day, so the actual savings to the carrier are quite limited. I've just taken to expressing my serious distaste for this shipping method whenever I have the opportunity. For example, BR sends me periodic customer surveys and I let them know there. I don't know if anyone actually reads that or cares, but it's cathartic.

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    Just wanted to update this thread with new developments..

    I ended up at my local USPS post office, who then forwarded me on to their regional facility which deals with UPS, Fedex, etc. and they couldn't really give me an update other than "it was delivered. Our record says so.". I contacted UPS and they said BR would have to initiate a claim, etc.

    I emailed BR about the same and they issued me a refund. I guess they don't like dealing with UPS, etc. after all.

    I suppose they just send those initial emails randomly and with the hope that the matter is not pursued further.

    Thank you all for allowing me to vent on here.

    Sidenote: Putting in a claim with UPS, etc. has to be one of the most futile customer service experiences one can endure. My buddy put in a claim about a package that was damaged in transit and I don't think he ever got any money for it.

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    Varsity Member mcadamsandwich's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pratyk View Post
    Sidenote: Putting in a claim with UPS, etc. has to be one of the most futile customer service experiences one can endure. My buddy put in a claim about a package that was damaged in transit and I don't think he ever got any money for it.
    At my office, we use nothing but UPS to ship packages. From a business POV, their claim system is fairly simple. Could be different on the consumer end though.

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