How UPS Screwed up my Apple Watch Delivery

no ups

Before I begin, I realize this is the very definition of a First World Problem and in the grand scheme of things isn't a huge deal. That doesn't make it any less frustrating for me though.

I'm obviously a huge Apple fan and there was never a lot of question of if I was going to order an Apple Watch. I was lucky enough to get a watch ordered a few minutes after the pre-sale began, and got a notification that it was shipped and being delivered on launch day, April 24th. 

The problem is that Apple (understandably) does not allow you to pre-sign for their more expensive products, and I really didn't want to take a day off work to sit home all day for something that might not come until the evening anyway. Knowing all of this, I logged into my UPS account and had it rerouted to a UPS store about 7 minutes from my house.  I then called UPS and spoke with a representative that confirmed my requested change had gone through. I was assured the change was processed, and the tracking info was updated showing that it would be at that UPS store by 3pm on the 24th. 

Pick-up Attempt 1. When I arrived to the store, they didn't have, and they had just had their 3pm truck come by. I called UPS and was told there was an issue with it and it was presently at the local Distribution Center.

Pick-up Attempt 2.That's about a half hour drive, so not too big a deal. I arrived there about 3:45. They told me that it was actually on a truck and I would need to come back after 7pm. I'll concede that maybe I should have called first, but considering I was told by UPS it was already at the Distribution Center I didn't even think about that.

Pick-up Attempt 3. I arrived back at about 7:20pm and was told that Apple wasn't allowing them to give it to me since I had requested the different delivery spot. I called Apple and was able to confirm that this was NOT the case. They contacted UPS on my behalf to tell them to release the watch. The catch is, UPS then informed the Apple rep that the watch was actually at that original UPS store I wanted it to go to in the first place. And of course they closed at 7pm.

No big deal right? They open at 9am on Saturdays so I would just go up there and get it. Well, before I went up there I happened to look at the tracking. I'm not sure why, as I had no reason to do this. Upon doing so I saw this note:

"The receiver has canceled the product order and refused delivery. / The package will be returned to the sender."

Kinda funny, since in actuality, I, the receiver, had tried to picked it up 3 separate times. The tracking info said at 8:56pm on the 24th it left the distribution center and was on its way across the country to an Apple warehouse. I called Apple again, who confirmed that was the case, but also said this was NOT initiated by them; that they had no reason not to release the watch to me. 

We ended up on a conference call with a UPS rep who specifically worked with Apple (Since UPS has an exclusive contract with them apparently.) The UPS rep told us that the Store (which is actually an "Access Point") I had originally tried to send it to had refused the package. So apparently the small stores don't have accept things. Good to know. I sure wish it said that on the UPS website when I was making the change. After hearing that  the Apple rep started getting pretty heated with UPS. Of course it's in transit across the country and won't stop until it arrives or something so there really wasn't anything they could do.

At this point I'm looking at about another week before I get it. Again, not a huge deal in the grand scheme of things and I know a few other people whose watches won't even ship for a few more weeks, including Jennifer's. So, it could be worse. That doesn't make it any less frustrating for me though.

On the bright side every Apple rep I spoke with was fantastic (3 different reps at this point.) After it was all said and done, another rep called me and said she had been monitoring the case. She was unable to do anything to speed it up but she did offer to send me a free iPhone accessory (up to a $100 value) as a way to compensate me for my trouble. I thought that was incredibly generous considering it was really UPS's fault. If only there was a way to make UPS foot that bill.

At this point, when I get notified that Jennifer's watch is shipping I will call Apple back and have them put a hold request to keep it at the distribution center. Otherwise this entire mess will just start over. 


To read about how Apple made up for UPS go here.