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Timescales and action when parcel is lost internationally

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Recently I sent out an item using RoyalMail Tracked and Signed.

I was on vacation and got back and found an AtoZ claim against it opened as not received (Germany site).
I checked the tracking and indeed it is in a weird status. Just sat as 'received in Germany and sorting'. But this appears to have been like that for nearly two weeks.

I informed the buyer there is a problem and I need to have it investigated. Buyer replys back angrily and wants full refund without any wait.

I would love to just do a refund straight away and then deal with royalmail. Only thing is RoyalMail say they need a minimum 20 days after latest arrival date before I can claim. This means waiting another 3 days or so.

Im wondering what if any space does Amazon give / permit for sellers to allow the courier to go through investigate or wait periods. Does it differ locally / internationally ?

Last thing I want is that i refund, and then claim but item gets delivered and I am in loss in full =(

You need to supply all the tracking details to Amazon and defend the claim. While it might be helpful to carry on communicating with the buyer it is Amazon who make the decision based on the details you supply. If you as a seller cannot supply by the latest delivery date the buyer will get a refund regardless of whose fault the delay is.

The tracking details were on the order from the time it was sent, and also I communicated with the buyer, and even included the text form the tracking information from Royalmail website showing that it was sent weeks ago, and is stuck in Germany.
I also stated that I need to talk to Royalmail first and get a response.
On a side note if it is indeed lost and I refund, what is the correct option to choose as reason. And does it effect my performance / metrics ? Do Amazon still see it as seller fault even though it is outside seller business control ?

Amazon see it as a seller fault because you haven't got the item to the buyer. The A-Z claim is a -500 points hit on your selling metrics. Recently however it appears a successfully defended claim does not affect your metrics. This is what I have seen on some threads.
The item appears to be stuck in traffic rather than lost.

Thank you. I will represent the case with all the info, and hope Amazon give me some breathing space.
But if they do not and do a full refund and grant AtoZ effecting metrics, I will simply close the international sales aspect as it is not worth the little revenue it brings.

Germany tend to be fairly quick about returning uncollected items, have had more than one complaint of item not arriving in the amazon dates only for it to come back uncollected the day after.
Far quicker than UK post office.

Just as a help for the future I was given this by royal mail to track parcels once they are in europe may be of help to you.

Sorry martin this was intended for the OP.

Edited by: BOB on Feb 18, 2015 1:58 PM

That is a great link, thank you ! Never seen that one before =)

I was told it was the most likely service have parcels once they land in Europe. Worked well for me for a complaining customer from Poland even told her directions from her house to the office holding the parcel.

Since the A-Z has been opened, it's worth while defending yourself, although I am not optimist: if the parcel does not arrive to the customer, the seller is responsible.
I would suggest also to start a complain with Royal Mail, asap: it takes a long time to be refunded by them. I have recently been refunded for a parcel sent at the end of November, for which I had to refund customer one month later. So, RM waited two months, before refunding.
Have you considered the option of sending another product? it may be less expensive then full refund, and a light bolt seldom strikes twice in the same place, they say. If the customer gets two parcels, he has the duty to return one, he can't keep it.