royal-mail_1920471bMore than £250 million worth of online shopping vanished into thin air last year.

If you were one of the 3.6 million Brits whose package never arrived, you’ll obviously conclude that your delivery company employs badly wired Minions. Or else the retailer took your money and ran.

Whatever the story, it’s a scary fact that 18 million people never received a package they paid for in the last five years, at an average of £68 per package.

This is according to new research by Direct Line Home Insurance. The company also found that 22% of shoppers haven’t taken delivery of more than one package in the past five years.

Astonishingly, 5% of online buyers have had five or more packages undelivered. If that’s you, please stop doing the lottery immediately. For you, filling out that online order form is like placing a bet on an outsider at Goodwood.

And, for one in ten online shoppers, the average value of their missing packages was over £300.

So where do these parcels end up? Could it be that dodgy Mr Jepson at number 36, repository of all neighbourhood packages? Is he flogging your electric shavers, defibrillators and hand-made macaroons on eBay? Quite possibly.

The survey of over 2000 people suggests that over 12 million UK adults refuse to let their neighbours take in their packages. Love thy neighbour as thyself. Just don’t entrust them with your shiny goods.

It’s a sad tale of broken dreams, unkept promises, and lost and lonely packages. So what can you do if your package fails to materialise?

John Pal, a retail expert from the Manchester Business School, said, “If a retailer fails to deliver your goods on time, they are in breach of their contract. If you’ve paid for premium delivery and your order doesn’t arrive before or on the date they said it would, you can apply for a refund from the retailer.

“When you place your order with someone like Argos or Amazon, you agree to their terms and conditions – not the delivery company’s.”

What else can you do? You can cancel your online order under the new Consumer Rights Act 2015 up to 30 days after the goods have (or haven’t) arrived. Will you have to pay postage? Well, yes, unless the retailer states you have to do so in their Ts and Cs.

Good luck, and let’s give the nation’s packages the good home they deserve.

 

 

 

 

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Author Chris Painter

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