Herme customer slams ‘disgraceful’ service after courier sends photo of the DEPOT as proof of delivery – as dozens claim drivers damaged their Christmas deliveries
- EXCLUSIVE: Holly Reed, from Devon, received image appearing to show a depot
- Meanwhile David, a self-employed Hermes worker, said his pay was cut last year
- His comments came as customers complained about firm’s service over Xmas
- One woman who bought vintage items online said they arrived ‘smashed to bits’
A Hermes customer has lashed out at the courier for sending a photo of a depot as proof of delivery while dozens claim their items were damaged over Christmas.
Holly Reed, from Devon, was told her item had been delivered two months after placing her order, but received an image appearing to show a warehouse.
She said CCTV at her home showed the courier never attempted to deliver the parcel to her address and slammed the service as ‘disgraceful’.
Meanwhile David, a self-employed worker at the company, told MailOnline his pay was cut midway through last year – despite the number of deliveries ‘increasing by at least 50 per cent’ since the start of the pandemic.
David, a so-called lifestyle courier, who has worked for Hermes for 10 years, said the pay cut resulted in his monthly income dropping by over £100.
He added: ‘With fuel prices now at the level they are, we couriers are effectually subsidising Hermes.
‘This Christmas period I am working longer hours and delivering more items to try and earn the same as I did last year.’
His comments came as other customers complained about the courier’s service over the festive period, with some saying their deliveries had been ‘smashed to bits’.
And Robert Shatwell, from Surrey, said he dispatched a camera telephoto lens worth £1,500 via Hermes, but the recipient was delivered a pair of ladies shoes instead with the courier offering a ‘paltry’ £20 in compensation.
The complaints follow Ofcom rating courier firms according to overall customer satisfaction rating, putting Hermes at the bottom with a figure of 57 per cent.
Yodel was second worst on 61 per cent, while UPS scored 74 per cent, Parcelforce 79 per cent and both the Royal Mail and FedEx 80 per cent.
Holly Reed, from Devon, was told her item had been delivered two months after placing her order, but received an image (above) appearing to show a warehouse
Karis Weaver, from Preston, said her parcel (above) was delivered opened with some contents missing. She commented: ‘Hermes is such an infuriating company and I know it’s not a single person problem’
‘My iMac looked like it had been dropped off a cliff’
Mark Bothwell sent an iMac computer that was collected by Hermes at his home in Suffolk and delivered to Liverpool after being ordered through an Ebay auction in early December.
He said an online system gave a list of items which couldn’t be insured, including laptops and TVs.
Mr Bothwell told MailOnline: ‘It was a computer and it was all boxed so I didn’t think it was an issue.
‘The customer sent me a picture of the box once it was delivered and it looked like it had been dropped off a cliff.
The iMac before being delivered by Hermes
The damaged computer after its delivery
‘The computer was sticking out the side right next to a big sticker on the box that said fragile and was bent on the corner – I don’t think I could physically do that.
‘When I complained they stuck to the line that I shouldn’t have sent it because it couldn’t be insured, but I said this doesn’t appear on your list – it’s not a laptop or TV, it’s a computer.
‘They did refund the courier fee which was £20-£25 but they wouldn’t entertain compensation. They were completely non-committal.’
He added: ‘It was marked fragile and I went over the top – they still just treated it like a football then afterwards they didn’t want to know.
‘I said you shouldn’t even allow people to send that and there should be an algorithm on the site that should detect the word computer and shouldn’t let you carry on. All the other sites don’t let you go further but Hermes seem to reel you in.
‘I said to the recipient just chuck it and I had to reimburse them. Overall my parcel was damaged, late and Hermes wouldn’t compensate.’
Referring to the photo apparently showing a Hermes depot as proof of delivery, Ms Reed told MailOnline: ‘The photo is meant to show the parcel by your house which is where I asked for it, but I got a photo clearly of their warehouse.
‘The photo is meant to be proof of delivery to my address? That tells me that they have scanned it there and most likely stolen it because I never actually received it to my home and I have CCTV to observe that.
‘I want this company to sort themselves out – they are disgraceful.’
Meanwhile, Anthony Barthorpe from Stromness, Orkney, received a damaged work chest covered in dents and holes.
He said: ‘This is designed to house building, car maintenance, or plumbing tools, and built to survive rugged use in the workplace. It didn’t survive being delivered by Hermes!
‘In addition to the product damage, there were marks around the carton that suggested that it has been kicked around the floor of a warehouse like a football. At least four holes were in the carton in different locations and also dents.’
Jo Byford bought a set of mugs from JD Williams which were delivered through the courier and turned up broken.
She said: ‘I understand Christmas pressure because I have four family members that are delivery personnel – two Royal Mail, one Parcelforce and one UPS.
‘They have problems too and are working very long hours but they do not have the bad reputation that Hermes do.
‘My advice to companies that don’t want to lose money is to make sure that the parcels are wrapped up and boxed before handing over to the delivery company then all that it ensures through transit, it should be okay.
‘But Hermes really need to get their warehouse staff under control.’
Karis Weaver, from Preston, said her parcel was delivered opened with some contents missing.
She commented: ‘Hermes is such an infuriating company and I know it’s not a single person problem.’
And Mr Shatwell reported Hermes to Surrey Police after his parcel arrived containing a different item, and appeared to have been cut open then resealed using sellotape.
He said: ‘I made a formal complaint to Hermes who responded that the matter had been passed to the local depot for investigation.
‘A complaint form was completed giving all details, however the only investigation carried out by Hermes was an email stating that the package would have been handled by a number of employees and therefore no investigation was being carried out.
‘They offered me a paltry £20 compensation for the loss of a camera lens worth £1,500. They did not appear to care a jot for the theft of property in their charge and made no attempt to find the culprit.
‘The only people who knew what the package contained were myself and the Hermes agent to whom I had handed the parcel to.’
He added: ‘I reported the matter to Surrey Police as a complaint of theft, on October 27. The same day I received a response from them stating that as there was no chance of a prosecution, they had closed the case and allocated a complaint reference number.
Audrey Jones, who bought vintage items delivered through Hermes from a car boot sale online, said: ‘When the box arrived the contents were smashed to bits’
Jo Byford bought a set of mugs from JD Williams which were delivered through the courier and turned up broken
‘My biscuit barrel arrived in pieces’
Jeannie Campbell sent a biscuit barrel via Hermes which she said was ‘very well wrapped’ but arrived ‘in pieces’.
She said: ‘It was not a fragile piece and It was really well wrapped and in a very strong box yet it arrived in too many pieces.
‘Even the lid which was wrapped separately was broken into pieces.’
Jeannie Campbell sent a biscuit barrel via Hermes which arrived ‘in pieces’
Ms Campbell added: ‘[The recipient] said the delivery guy dropped the box then snapped a photo and more or less ran away so knew it was broken.
‘I truly believe they abused my parcel to get it so broken. They won’t cover compensation – I have tried before to get compensation for a broken mug and they said the same – you shouldn’t send things that can get broken.
‘This is ridiculous – why do they offer insurance for more valuable pieces at a higher cost if they don’t compensate?’
‘Despite several letters of complaint I can report that Surrey Police have done nothing to investigate the theft. I have now made a formal complaint to the Office of The Police & Crime Commissioner.’
Audrey Jones, who bought vintage items delivered through Hermes from a car boot sale online, said: ‘When the box arrived the contents were smashed to bits.
‘To say I was devastated is an understatement. Hermes claim we won’t be compensated as the items shouldn’t have been sent through the post.’
The complaints concerning damaged and wrong items being delivered over the Christmas period came as other courier companies, namely Royal Mail, urged managers to hire extra vans to deliver presents on time.
Simon Thompson, a former Apple executive who also ran the NHS Test and Trace app, told managers across its 1,200 sorting offices to get their hands on hundreds more vehicles after admitting head office bosses had left posties short at the busiest time of year.
In a late-night video message posted on an internal channel for its 137,000 employees, seen by the Mail on Sunday, Thompson said: ‘Hi team, sorry to get you so late on a Friday evening but I wanted to share something with you about delivery vans. I don’t think we’ve got this right. I think you’re short.
‘And I’ve been hearing the feedback now for too long and it’s now time to act. So what we’re going to do from Monday morning is we’re going to make sure that you – at a local level in all of the delivery offices – can decide exactly what you want and you can go and source what you want locally.’
Meanwhile, Yodel axed a delivery driver last month after he was caught on CCTV apparently dumping parcels containing Christmas gifts on a street in London.
Footage filmed on December 17 shows a white van man pulling up to a kerb in Lewisham, south-east London, and leaving five packages on the side of the road.
At the time, Yodel told MailOnline that the driver had been ‘removed from the business’.
Meanwhile, Anthony Barthorpe from Stromness, Orkney, received a damaged work chest covered in dents and holes
Robert Shatwell, from Surrey, said he dispatched a camera telephoto lens worth £1,500 via Hermes, but the recipient was delivered a pair of ladies shoes instead with the courier offering a ‘paltry’ £20 in compensation
A survey by consumer champion Which? found that 43 per cent of online shoppers experienced at least one problem over Christmas 2020.
One in five (19 per cent) of this group said the item was late, 11 per cent of deliveries were left outside without consent, and 7 per cent went missing.
Parcels arrived broken after being thrown over fences – including a crate of wine hurled over a gate – some were left in the snow and rain, and others were put in the bin as a ‘safe space’, only to be taken away by binmen.
Which? said: ‘Don’t be afraid to make a complaint if you are having problems.’
MailOnline has contacted Hermes for comment.