Christmas delivery fails! Where couriers are REALLY leaving your parcels

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  • They're definitely NOT in a safe place

    Forget burning the turkey or forgetting to buy Aunty Jean a present. The most stressful part of Christmas HAS to be waiting in for deliveries to arrive. It goes without saying that the postman or courier will knock the minute you pop to the loo/dash out to buy milk/go to pick the kids up from school* (*delete as appropriate). And so the game of ‘where did they leave the parcel?’ begins!

    A new survey from has been collecting tales of delivery fails from the length and breadth of the UK and found that posties leave packages in the most bizarre places – that’s if they even arrive at all!

    Related: 10 signs Christmas has officially arrived


    According to the Yorkshire-based company, you could expect to find your parcel in a flower pot, under your car or even in the bin. One person recalls getting a delivery note saying ‘In the shed’. ‘Except the shed was locked and was still locked when I got home. It’s like one of those Sherlock Holmes locked room mysteries.’ Another reports being told their parcel was under the doormat: ‘An arrangement that worked fine for books and CDs, but not so well for our new food mixer. It’s probably halfway to a man in the pub by now.’

    These are some more of their best stories of delivery woe so far…

    • ‘We got a card from the postman saying a parcel was ‘under the plant’. He had literally lifted up a large plant pot and put the parcel underneath. He must have had the strength of The Hulk.’
    • ‘In the bin. On bin day. Luckily the bin men had already been.’
    • ‘They left a card saying it was over the garden gate. You guessed it – into next door’s garden.’
    • ‘In the dog kennel. It was clothes, and the dog ripped open the parcel and made a lovely bed out of my new party dress!’
    • ‘Of course the logical place to leave a parcel is under your car. I didn’t know until I had driven over it, twice.’

    Image credit: Polly Eltes

    Still shopping for presents? Last-minute gift ideas under £10 that will save your Christmas

    ‘Britain is spending literally billions of pounds on a mail order Christmas thanks to the internet,” says spokesperson Jonathan Ratcliffe, ‘But there’s growing anger that delivery company just aren’t …err… delivering.’

    ‘We pity the couriers who are putting in long days under extreme pressure from their bosses,” he adds. ‘Often, they’ve got to think on their feet to make sure the parcel is delivered. The trouble is, with limited options, their chosen solution is sometimes not the best.’

    So what do you do if you want your delivery to arrive in time and in one piece? We recommend that you always fill in your own recommended ‘safe place’ if you have the option of leaving delivery notes when you order. Failing that, use a ‘click and collect’ service so that you can pick up your parcels at a time that suits you.

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