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rpat3901
Community Newcomer
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎20-07-2011
Accepted Solution

Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

I wanted to post a letter recorded delivery, (signature upon delivery).

The coubter assistant wanted £6.22 for a delivery tomorrow, then after i pointed out that I had a first class stamp on it insisted that I told her exactly what was in my letter in front of a large queue.

 

I suppose it was for them know which ones to pilfer first

booksandpatterns
Community Member
Posts: 3,144
Registered: ‎18-01-2007

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to rpat3901

It's just the new requirements - RM are getting a lot stricter about what can and can't be posted.

 

 

Have a read of this thread!

 

http://community.ebay.co.uk/t5/Business-Seller-Board/Are-you-posting-safely/m-p/1658370#U1658370

bankhaunter
Community Member
Posts: 8,304
Registered: ‎22-10-2007

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to booksandpatterns

They have no right to demand to know what it contains, only if it contains a prohibited item as listed.

simonrussell99
Community Member
Posts: 166
Registered: ‎21-09-2010

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to bankhaunter

I made this same point to my local post office but they said that it was easier just to ask what the package contained.  I replied that I doubted anyone would want to admit in front of a large queue of people to having personal items in a parcel, and that it was really no business of the PO to ask such an intrusive questions - at the airport they simply ask if your bag contains any of the prohibited items, not a list of the number of pairs of pants and other stuff that you have packed for your trip.  Maybe, I said, it would be better for the PO just to ask whether the parcel contained any of the prohibited items on the list they now have laminated at each counter. 

 

Personally, when they ask 'what is in the package' I reply, 'nothing prohibited' and leave it at that.

 

 

mazymoo
Community Newcomer
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎10-03-2011

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to simonrussell99

I've had the same run-in with the P.O. this morning, at first she showed me a card with prohibited items and I said no my item wasnt one of those, then she said what is it?  I replied a DVD, then asked did I have to say what was in each parcel?  She said yes it was new rules.  When I said I didnt want to declare the contents in front of the whole queue, but was happy to declare it wasnt on the list, she said I'd have to speak to the manager, who overheard and was rather rude in just repeating it was the 'new rules' and customers had to declare what was in the parcel.  No respect for customer confidentiality at all, and its going to make the ridiculous queue even longer. 

simonrussell99
Community Member
Posts: 166
Registered: ‎21-09-2010

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to mazymoo

Havingn just checked with Post Office Customer Services I can confirm that there is NO requirement to tell the PO what it is the package.  By confirming that there is nothing prohibited contained within the sender is assuming all responsibility for the package, so if there is something prohibited there is no comeback if/when the package is destroyed.

 

The PO feels that asking what is in the package is the quickest/ easiest thing to do whilst the list of prohibited items is new and not known by most senders.  Of course, they could simply ask 'Are you aware of the new rules concerning prohibited items?' and if the answer is no show the laminated form they have at each counter, but they think that 'tell me what's in your package and I'll tell you if it's prohibited' is the quickest way to keep the queue moving, without taking into account privacy considerations at all.

 

 

millielilac
Community Member
Posts: 10,351
Registered: ‎06-06-2012

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to rpat3901
I too was asked the question by the counter staff.

Apparently they now have to stick special labels on some items so they need to know exactly what is in the parcel....

According to the assistant these labels cannot be folded around a parcel either ...they need to be flat ...so some customers have to repackage items.

The lady next to me actually was posting an item that was restricted ..........
db270783
Community Newcomer
Posts: 11
Registered: ‎30-11-2012

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to millielilac

I asked my other half to post a parcel for me this morning and have just had a phone call from him from the post office as they wanted to know what was in it and he could n't remember but they were insistant they needed to know..When I went to the P.O last week I was questioned like this but the postmaster did apologize to me beforehand saying that it was driving him mad already and the new rules had only just started and he would have to do this everytime.From now on feeling sorry for him I am going to save his breathe, walk in tell him whats in the parcel wave my leaflet he gave me and say I have read it and it does n't have any of the things listed in the item.

 

I don't sell anything that's particulary private but I still think it's a bit of a cheek when you have a que of people behind you.I suppose you could always write whats in it where you will be sticking the stamp and just show it to the member of staff and then stick your stamp over the top.

danjermen
Community Newcomer
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎31-05-2007

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to simonrussell99

I've just had the same experience. My local P.O. use their common sense but as it's closed for refurbishment I'm forced to use a pokey little one at the rear of a grocery shop. The clerk told me for example that I couldn't send batteries. They obviously know naff all about the regs as it depends on the type of battery and where it's being sent. I think they are just down right nosey.

 

I've just written to the Post Office complaining about the intrusive way they ask if I'm breaking the regs and it is of no business of theirs what I'm posting, only that it doesn't break the regs.

 

Probably wont hear a thing back from them but it did make me feel better to make a legitimate complaint.

 

I'll use your reply in future and see this wind up the nosey clerks.

Many thanks

jaymol.1996
Community Member
Posts: 673
Registered: ‎02-10-2013

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to rpat3901

I was asked this other week , asking the value , if you say it is over twenty pounds they try and get you to send it registered instead of recorded.


rpat3901 wrote:

I wanted to post a letter recorded delivery, (signature upon delivery).

The coubter assistant wanted £6.22 for a delivery tomorrow, then after i pointed out that I had a first class stamp on it insisted that I told her exactly what was in my letter in front of a large queue.

 

I suppose it was for them know which ones to pilfer first


 

lemagasin55
Community Newcomer
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎30-03-2011

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to rpat3901

I get annoyed by the policy of asking. This is made worse when the assistant asks what's in the parcels 'for security' and is told 'dvd's'. He then tries to start a conversation about it, 'So, are you selling off some of your old dvd's then?' which has nothing to do with security.

 

Also, am I missing something obvious here? You can buy the stamps and put the packages in a post box - so why isn't security important in this case?

norseway53
Community Member
Posts: 23,878
Registered: ‎28-10-2006

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to lemagasin55

lemagasin55 wrote:

.............

 

Also, am I missing something obvious here? You can buy the stamps and put the packages in a post box - so why isn't security important in this case?


Security is still important, even if you are just putting something in the post box you should still stick to the rules.

________________



I bid, I win, I pay - you deliver
xtinexoop
Community Newcomer
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎20-12-2010

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to norseway53

I've just been asked this and said I didn't see why they needed to know, it was nothing on the prohibited list.  They insisted I tell them or I wouldn't be allowed to post it.

 

As you do, when I left I thought if what I'd say next time - used underwear!  

mcats1234
Community Newcomer
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎13-06-2013

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to rpat3901

I take 4 or 5 parcel each week into my local Post Office.

Every time I arrive at the counter, I get the same inane questions about the contents of my 'private' mail.

My parcels are all delivered to mainland Britain.

First question:'What is in the parcel?'

Second question: ' Does it contain batteries?'

At first, I tried the two sensible options ie. 'These questions should only be asked when dealing with items for international postage..'

(certain types of Nicad battery can explode above 30,000 feet) and: 'I receive about 50 batteries every month by post from UK suppliers so what  is the problem with my batteries?

Less than helpful response.

Next time, I was a little more adventurous:

'I'm delivering this parcel for a neighbour. She didn't tell me what was in in it. Shall I take it back and tell her you've refused to accept it?' - parcel accepted for delivery.

More recently, I thought don't get angry, get even, and told the female staff member ' It's a vibrator - with Duracell batteries' - parcel accepted for delivery.

Last time I went for this one: (A4 envelope) 'It's an ironing board.'- parcel accepted for delivery.

If you think carefully about this nonsensical situation, the safety of our aircraft, crews and passengers depends on honest responses from terrorists in Post Offices.

You couldn't make it up.


rpat3901 wrote:

I wanted to post a letter recorded delivery, (signature upon delivery).

The coubter assistant wanted £6.22 for a delivery tomorrow, then after i pointed out that I had a first class stamp on it insisted that I told her exactly what was in my letter in front of a large queue.

 

I suppose it was for them know which ones to pilfer first


 

cossornet
Community Newcomer
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎20-08-2011

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to mcats1234
'Rules are for the guidance of wise men & the blind obedience of fools' -Solon, the Lawmaker of Athens, d. 559 BC.
pussinflipflops2012
Community Newcomer
Posts: 9
Registered: ‎04-07-2012

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to mcats1234
Love it.. must remember to claim it is sex toys next time I'm subjected to the Post office inquisition !!!
1000flagsuk
Community Member
Posts: 239
Registered: ‎07-07-2006

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to pussinflipflops2012
If asked just say "it's a copy of When the Swedish girls go to bed! Part 2......I know you enjoyed pat 1 , would you like to buy a copy?!"
thetrusselltrust.lockerley
Community Member
Posts: 979
Registered: ‎24-09-2010

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to rpat3901

rpat3901 wrote:

I wanted to post a letter recorded delivery, (signature upon delivery).

The coubter assistant wanted £6.22 for a delivery tomorrow, then after i pointed out that I had a first class stamp on it insisted that I told her exactly what was in my letter in front of a large queue.

 

I suppose it was for them know which ones to pilfer first


One of the errors that you made was to put a 1st class stamp on the letter.

 

I have a friend who, until recently owned a PO. and she has always maintained that the PO tills have no facility to minus any pre-stamped mail. This may have been the starting point of the inquisition, but of course, I am only making an assumption.

 

I agree with all the other responders that the PO counter staff are not required to be so imtimidating, and we all need to be ready with our replies, ..."the parcel contains no restricted or banned items" and that is all they need to know.

 

 

2812kim
Community Newcomer
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎09-12-2014

Re: Post Office Staff want to know exactly what was in my letter

in reply to rpat3901
since may I have been working in a post office and the first question we ask is 'for the purpose of safety do you mind telling me whats in your parcel?' we even ask for letters too as they could contain lithium batterys. these have been known to explode.I would show you a dangerous goods laminate. I have seen an iphone battery explode personally. then I would ask is it worth more than £20. this is to ensure that I offer you the best service and compensation for the contents of your parcel. as for deducting the cost of a stamp if someone has put this on a envelope, the only service this cant be done for is special delivery.As for a counter assistant asking a general question like do you send many parcels they would be asking in case the drop and go service may be beneficial to the customer as its free and saves queuing. I hope this clears up a few questions. we are not being nosey we want to help and protect the public with safety questions. thx