U.S. Postal Service? Shipping a Package? Don't bother.

(EDIT after I posted this the dress arrived ... 2 days late and without any warning ... the USPS never scanned the tag so we couldn't track it ... combined with the bridesmaid dresses being run over we had no way to know ... at least we got it ... but NEVER EVER ship valuables USPS)

So the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) has once again proved why FedEx and UPS are such successful businesses. Cheap != better.

Earlier this week my fiancée shipped a package via the USPS "1 day" Express. The package was in before the deadline for going out that night. When did it get there? 2 days later.

On Wednesday the person making her wedding dress shipped both the wedding dress and bridesmaid dresses via the USPS. Guess what? The wedding dress will probably never arrive.

The person shipping it got a tracking number. So Friday morning we tracked it and realized from the text that the USPS had not yet (2 days later) even scanned it into their system. So we contacted the dress maker and she swore she dropped them off Wednesday. She ended up driving to her Post Office to check on them. Nothing. Lost.

Yes, the dress maker insured the shipping, so $ aren't the problem here ... but we have 1 week to figure out a replacement for a dress that took months to have made. It was a custom design by my fiancée to fit her dreams of a Steampunk/Victorian style dress. It was looking pretty magnificent from what we could tell.

A couple of hours later we got word that the dress maker had the bridesmaids dresses. They were returned to her by the Post Office. The box had been run over by a vehicle.

Today? No word on the wedding dress. So unless it magically appears in a couple of hours it is pretty certain that both of the boxes fell off the transfer truck and the wedding dress didn't get recovered. That's actually close to a best-case scenario.

I doubt we'll ever know what happened to it. Anyone want to take bets on the USPS not bothering to investigate and just paying out the insurance? Wouldn't much matter unless they investigated by Monday. Yeah.

So in the end:
* The USPS loses $1000+ in insurance money, they won't notice that.
* The dress maker gets her money from the PO and returns our payment.
* My fiancée has to figure something out that will definitely not be what she wanted after spending months dealing with the stress of organizing things versus her mother.

Simply put: don't ship anything of value via the USPS. I haven't done it for years. I would have paid the extra for shipping if I'd known that the dress maker was going to ship USPS just to get it on FexEx or UPS. The USPS is cheap for a reason.


  1. I'd like to weigh in here. I still haven't finished making the bridesmaids dresses, so they actually haven't been shipped yet. I have no idea where you got the information that the bridesmaids dresses were run over by a truck - they are still sitting in my studio, nearing completion.

    Additionally, NO ONE requested that the outfits be shipped by any method other than USPS (which is what I use exclusively, and have for years, and have never had anything of importance lost).

    I called MY post office this morning, and was told that if the person taking the package didn't scan it in initially, it won't be scanned again until delivery...and that more than likely, it will be delivered today or Monday.

  2. Hi SugarKitty,

    Wow, so I apparently never checked here for 3rd party comments and didn't get a notification ... so I just now published yours.

    It was a total cluster of a miscommunication. I don't even remember all of the details any more. We figured out that Darien misunderstood something along the way and I honestly don't even remember how it all came about. At this point I pretty much just chalk it all up to last minute panic.

    Either way, the wedding went great and your dress was a big hit, and as far as I know you and D still talk, so all's well that ends well :)