Gwynnie Bee Month 3: Shipping Problems, Customer Service, and Angry Postal Workers
Month number three of my Gwynnie Bee subscription turned out to be stellar, even though I had a few odd issues with late shipping and the post office. Due to a slight downward adjustment in size and nothing to wear, I upped my number of garments per month to five, but with freebies and gifts it equated to a seven garment subscription for the entire holiday season. Now I have a better idea of how each brand fits me and what looks good on me from each brand. I had a total of 22 garments out during this month, two of them very fancy holiday dresses. One of those I bought on the spot as one of the best looking dresses Iâ€™ve ever worn while the other was too long for me to pull it off, figuratively speaking.
A seven garment subscription yielded roughly the same number of garments in a month as the previous monthâ€™s five garment subscription had, but Iâ€™m satisfied the holidays were part of the reason for the unexpected lower number. For two weeks in December, I took time off from work so it wasnâ€™t necessary to have a different work outfit every day, or even a repeated one. I did, however, have several holiday dinners, parties, and gatherings to attend during those two weeks. But the pressure wasnâ€™t on to dress up every day, as it normally is.
With two weeks out of the office, I wasnâ€™t as quick to wear garments or send them back in. I did notice that shipping time from Gwynnie Bee was lagging by several days right around the holidays. This, I thought, was understandable. Slightly annoying, yes. But understandable. It was during this time frame that Gwynnie Bee launched a campaign to encourage subscribers to package more than one garment in the returnable blue bags. I was already sending back items two or three at a time, so the campaign really had no effect on me.
I had learned early on that I couldnâ€™t just shove a blue bag into my mailbox and expect my mailman to pick it up. I had to actually take it into the post office. Okay, a little less convenient but I understand rules. Normally, I drop my blue bags at the post office about 1000 feet from my office, but on occasion I have been known to return my Gwynnie Bee garments via any number of post offices between my home and work, as well as two that were out of state because I was traveling at the time. One small satellite post office, which is contractor-run, sees me coming and says, â€œJust drop it in the bag over there.â€ Theyâ€™ve never given me a receipt, but I had always thought it was because they donâ€™t have a working printer right now. Every other post office Iâ€™ve gone to has printed out a receipt and handed it to me. Of course, it is a receipt for zero dollars because the blue bags are pre-paid.
Several days before Christmas, I returned a holiday dress, one that was worth over $300, and I didnâ€™t want to have to pay for it if it were lost or misplaced. I stood in a long, pre-Christmas line in the main post office in my area (Niceville Post Office) . Up until then, Iâ€™d been having a great day, even standing in line, chatting with the people in front of and behind me. Â I guess the postal worker behind the counter, one of several, was not having a good day. He chided me when I handed the bag to him for pausing to wait and told me that I couldâ€™ve just thrown it into the outgoing boxÂ and been done with it. I explained that it was an expensive item and I wanted to make sure I had the receipt to show that I had handed it off to the post office. He began quoting regs angrily at me and telling me that he would give me a receipt only if I paid him for one. I tried to explain that I wasnâ€™t asking for a delivery confirmation, I just wanted something showing I had given it to the post office, to which he quoted more regulations until he was turning red in the face. As I was there with nothing but my ID, my phone, and my blue Gwynnie Bee bag and no cash whatsoever, I left a pricey party dress, and two other dresses bundled with it, easily over $500 worth of garments in a blue bag in their drop box, and left without a receipt. I worried for days until it disappeared from my Gwynne Bee website screen.
If the regs he quoted me were correct, then the other three post offices who regularly hand me a receipt, smile, and say thanks are in error. Â I was nice but must’ve won the lottery to earn his wrath.
Maybe Iâ€™ve just been lucky, but Gwynnie Beeâ€™s customer service has always been very good to me and they had some good suggestions when I talked to them about the situation. They told me that if I didnâ€™t get a receipt, that they could still trace a package based on the prepaid postage account number. So, if I would keep track of my account numbers when I dropped a package in the mail, we would have a way to track it down if anything happened.
So hereâ€™s my big tip for subscribers: when I package garments in the blue bag for return, I take a picture of the prepaid label and send it to myself with the dress names in the subject line. That way, I know exactly which dresses I sent back when and under what prepaid number. Iâ€™ve not had any problems or any need to track dresses this way, except for a few times when I wanted to see if Gwynnie Bee had actually received the package in a timely manner.
And, no, Iâ€™ve not been back to that particular post office.
UPDATE: Â Gwynnie Bee’s phone app now includes a barcode scanner for the blue bag, so I no longer have to take a pic of the bag and keep up with which dresses were in it.