Monday, November 10, 2008

Our Container Finally Arrived But...

We are sooo unhappy about the entire shipping to India experience. We had two options - Sky2C carriers and Universal Relocations. My hubby reached out to both but when Sky2C did not respond for a while and Universal did, he decided one is as good as the other since both had good reviews in the R2I forums. So we went with Universal. BIG MISTAKE as we now learnt :( Why you ask? Well there's a huge laundry list why. First of all my hubby now tells me that once they had all our stuff loaded with them, they started hitting us with all sorts of new additional charges. And worse than that, the had the audacity to refuse to ship our stuff if we did not pay. Did we really have a choice then? That was our first hint of their "chor giri". So after a few nasty email exchanges, my hubby decided to do a smart thing. Pay them but pay using an Amex credit card instead of the bank transfer they were pushing us for. He decided to bear the additional 2% charge they imposed on us for using a credit card just so that we can contest with Amex in case we had issues with them later on. Good thinking I say coz that is exactly what happened when our stuff arrived a little over 2 months later.

After being told for a week that our truck should arrive from Chennai to Bangalore tomorrow, the truck finally arrives on the morning of Sat, Nov 8. We excitedly start unpacking right away only to learn that so much of our stuff has been damaged in transit. And if the glass stuff that broke was the stuff we packed such as Corningware bake and serve or Mikasa jug, I can understand. But it was also stuff they packed such as our dresser mirror and our leather couches. Our dressor mirror was entirely gone - broken in pieces and we have a decent size leather damage on one of the couches.

But wait - the worst is yet to come. Our moooooost expensive and the moooooooost important and irreplaceable item is gone! LOST! Chhoooo mantar! Not arrived! Our oh so cozy, plush, huge king size mattress with an oh so plush mattress cover. Poof! Just did not show up. Also our home music system/ipod player. Gone as well! What did they have to say abt that? We will try to locate it in the warehouse and get back to you in half an hour. That half an hour turned to 2 days and forget about calling us, we have called them atleast 10 times but they are just not picking up the phone. What does this make us feel? Ofcourse we suspect that they have robbed us and are intentionally not getting in touch anymore. On top of all this, those idiots (pardon my language) had the nerve to call us during the delivery and say that there will be an extra delivery charge since we live on the 7th floor! SERIOUSLY!!!????

We finally have filed for a chargeback for the entire shipping amount with American Express and have decided we are not going to bother calling and fighting with these thieves anymore. Let them deal with Amex who will first withdraw the money we paid them and then tell them to prove why they shouldn't. So take that Universal!

Did any of you R2Ied folks have to face anything similar? Would love to hear your experience and how you dealt with it.

10 comments:

Gayathri said...

Welcome to India!

I will sympathize only if u promise to sympathize with us abt our scorpio situation :)

Gayathri

Divs said...

LOL Gayathri! Yeah this sure is a warm (read "hot") welcome. And I will sympathize with your scorpio situation if you sympathize with us abt our HDFC situation ;) It just doesn't end does it? :-)

asaaan said...

Ohh my sister is facing the same situation. She left USA in June and her stuff is supposedly arriving next week..
Maybe its the same company. I am going to ask her to read this.

Anonymous said...

Our "chor" company was Global Ocen Freight. After 6 months it is finally supposed to get here, I am going to be furious if they damage my Bose Home theater. I like your idea of doing a chargeback, although we paid for it 6 months ago, wonder if I can still do it.
asaan's bro-in-law

Divs said...

Asaan & bro-in-law: Wow 6 months to get stuff here? That's crazy! As long as you have paid by credit card, I think you should be able to do a charge back. In our case, they called us back after we gave them bad reviews on R2I forums and charged back the amount. They finally located our mattress but are still fighting with us about the home stereo system. Ridiculous! Good luck with Global Ocean guys. Do let me know what happens via the comments to this post...I'd be curious.

ulaar said...

Sorry to hear, Divya. These stories sure vindicate our crazy decision to travel 'light'.

http://ulaar.wordpress.com/2008/08/13/a-sense-of-satisfaction-and-accomplishment/

Vishy

Divs said...

Well its a catch 22 situation Vishy. Reading your method of choice to transport stuff, I don't think I could have lived with that either. The uncertainty of how and when our stuff would arrive in installments over the next year one by one would just kill me. I'd rather have all of it here at one shot and deal with it at the same time. Oh well...all's well that ends well :-) BTW we both live in RR, we should meet up sometime.

Priyanka said...

OMG !!!!!!!!! My bro/SIL are expecting their shipment from US next week, they too have shipped their entire house, like their mattress, kitchen stuff etc. They are having such a horrible experience already, their shipment is 2 months late.

Divs said...

Priyanka - I hope for the best for your bro/SIL. Being late can be expected due to port congestion or something but I do hope they get all their stuff intact. Keep me posted - I'd be curious.

Anonymous said...

Divya,

We shipped through Universal and our stuff came in perfect shape - it took 7 weeks door to door. We had a week long delay after the ship reached Chennai and we went through some hurdles trying to get them the customs duty and some sundry charges - because they wanted a bank transfer and Indian banks don't seem to do the kind of wire transfer we are used to seeing in the US.

BTW, I happened to come across your blog only today - more when we catch up in the park

Vaishali