How badly does Amazon package your Blu-ray and 4k discs?

So, I am kind of wondering how many of you are getting the same kind of packaging mistreatment from Amazon? 3 Stars

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The above photo (which you can enlarge by clicking on it) says it all.

I have been an Amazon Prime member since the program began. I order thousands of dollars worth of merchandise from them each year. I also work for the Postal Service and handle their packages. You may say that I have seen it all when it comes to this company.

One thing that I can say for sure — they don’t give a shit about properly packaging items. Without saying more than I should, I will keep it to just my personal concerns — and that is the fact that they will stuff a huge box, comingling large and fragile items together without batting an eye.

To throw two Blu-ray/4k titles in the same box as two 15lb. bags of dog food and a case of canned items? What the hell were they thinking?

And this is not the first time this has happened. I complained to Amazon two months ago when they did the exact same thing with the last pet food shipment they sent me. I was assured by customer service that this kind of thing would never happen again — and guess what — it did!

So, I am kind of wondering how many of you are getting the same kind of packaging mistreatment from Amazon?

I have already told the company that the next time this happens I will cancel my Amazon account and go through someone else — no matter what the personal inconvenience it will make for me.​

Published by

Ronald Epstein

administrator

70 Comments

  1. I generally order pretty much only discs, so I don’t have the issue of other products being mixed in, however the packaging material they use is very minimal and quite frequently falling apart on delivery. I’m just lucky that the discs themselves aren’t damaged.

  2. Blimpoy06

    one-size-fits-all plastic envelope.

    Plastic? I'm surprised.
    Everything from Amazon comes in recycled and recyclable cardboard here in the UK….

    I thought Amazon would be more environmentally friendly all over the world? – or is it only places where they feel they have to..?

  3. They once put my Yellow Submarine blu-ray in the same box as an Epson Workforce 11×17 scanner/printer. It came in a coffin-sized box, and the blu-ray was just floating around in the box with this HUGE scanner. There was also no packing material inside the box to keep the scanner from shifting around. The blu-ray wasn't damaged, which was really amazing.

  4. I too have reservations about Amazon packaging, particularly form the UK arm. I have many a package rewrapped by local customs or post office. However, there have been invoices missing, discs missing and I have had to get a replacement which is willingly given. I try to tell them. When you have ends that are tucked in then it can come open at either end, perhaps a shock of something heavy dumped on it or some person can quickly slip the flap out and take a disc or two. Not happy. What could be costly in the future for me from July 1 2018 is that my country(after a delay of 12 months) is bringing a sales tax on imported items from $1 upwards(10%) and that is going to be complicated. Until now for a number of years it has been Free into store to A$1000. Now it will also include 10% on delivery as well, an unfair situation. We would be, thus, punished for buying stuff unobtainable here or in special editions or blu ray in my country. A major retailer pushed and pushed for it. He is not clean taxwise as my late sister found out as an accountant at his HQ and was promptly fired. He has some stores off shore including Slovenia. So there it is.

    I have had wet and damp packages but no damage to goods. With replacements, Amazon does not require me to return goods but will I be made pay the sales tax again or get a credit for the faulty item tax? I don't know but business like Amazon are being forced to collect tax on behalf of our government and remit the funds on my behalf!!!!! Amazon does not want this and we know how they feel about charging sales tax on domestic US sales and gone to court about same and lost.

  5. Blimpoy06

    My Criterion blu-ray of Being There arrived in this package.
    View attachment 45433

    My discs used to come in padded yellow envelopes, but my last one came in this type of package. Amazon will occasionally package my discs with other items if I have ordered something else, but I cannot recall having a disc package ever damaged by the way they packaged it.

  6. Scott Merryfield

    My discs used to come in padded yellow envelopes, but my last one came in this type of package. Amazon will occasionally package my discs with other items if I have ordered something else, but I cannot recall having a disc package ever damaged by the way they packaged it.

    Same here!

  7. I have had the most trouble since they started shipping discs in those cheap bubbled paper envelopes. I would say I have about a 40% return rate on damaged product. When they ship in boxes with proper packing, I have seen very little, if no damage. They have kindly changed all of my shipping to UPS, since I have reported more issues with damage and late delivery by the USPS. If I thought I could get them to change to box-only, I would.

  8. I receive 2-3 deliveries from Amazon weekly….blu-rays, health and beauty items, etc, along with the occasional large electronics item. Usually, if multiple items ship I'll get the small Amazon box with it all in there with the little air cushion packaging material inside. A single blu ray used to come in the brown padded envelope, now they're using the white/blue plastic bags shown above. I've never received anything damaged in all the years I've been a member.

  9. I only get cheap bubble wrap envelopes (both the paper and plastic kind) for Blu-rays now. They haven't been damaged and I'm not that precious about the condition of a box so I don't really mind them using bubble wrap envelopes for them.

    However, I routinely buy $50 MSRP hardcover books and they use a bubble wrap envelope for those too. They almost all arrived damaged to varying degrees (from small dings on the corner that I can live with to flat out smashed). I complain, they tell me how they're going to take care of it & not use bubble envelopes for my orders any more and then the next one arrives in a bubble wrap envelope. I even make the offer to pay more money if they'd just use a box for my books (which is a ridiculous suggestion just to get an undamaged product but I'd be willing to do it) but that would be basically be admitting that the envelopes are crap so that will never happen.

  10. I've been pretty lucky overall here in Texas, but we've had a few "WTF" moments. My wife ordered some padded mats for the kitchen to stand on while she's cooking, and they shipped a 8' long one folded in half, so it arrived with an ugly permanent crease. Customer service usually takes care of it – but I agree that their packaging has gone downhill in the past couple of years.

  11. I remember the days – and hope they return – when a heavy book or DVD/Blu-ray set would get plastic-wrapped to an oversize piece of corrugated, then that would be packed into a larger box with lots of air pillows. Now, they just toss the set into a too-large cardboard box with only one or two air pillows which lets the contents slip and slide their way across the country. Single disc orders have been coming either wrapped in a flimsy plastic envelope or a too-large bubble envelope.

    I just received an order containing heavy NiCad batteries for some outdoor power tools and they just stuck the inner box containing the batteries into a big box with one air bag. It was so poorly packed the UPS driver had marked it "check for damage" before he handed it to me. Luckily, nothing was broken but it could easily have split open and lost the contents.

  12. I usually receive my Blu-Rays in bubble-wrapped envelopes with no problem. Several years ago, I had a series of Blu-Rays arrive with broken cases (the discs themselves were fine) when shipped in plain paper envelopes. I called Amazon more to point out a need for better packaging rather than to complain, and the customer service rep took it upon herself to issue me a credit for an odd amount of money, which was the amount they were currently charging for a 10-pack of empty Blu-Ray cases. I thought her solution was brilliant and ordered them on the spot. I still have seven cases left.

  13. I was just speaking about this on the Outer Limits blu-ray thread.

    My set arrived in the plastic bubble wrap bag as shown in the photo above in post 5. The set arrived with a broken hub and a dog eared corner on the booklet. This damage I believe was on Kino Lorber and could be issues when the set was assembled. I asked Amazon for a replacement and asked for a box and they didn’t use a box! The replacement set arrived in the same plastic bubble wrap bag. The new set had a slightly crushed box but the discs were ok. So I swapped the Outer box of the Outer Limits set from the first set.

    It seems other posters in the thread got their sets from Kino Lorber direct and they shipped in a box with the set properly protected.

    My recent dvd and Blu ray purchases have arrive from Amazon in the yellow padded paper envelopes. I do recall the earlier days when they used boxes and had the small airbags inside but those didn’t do much to cushion the contents.they just used one airbag and it wasn’t enough to hold everything in place.

    It seems the skimping on packaging might be due, and it’s my own speculation, as a time saver to meet the crush of time limits to get packages out the same day or in two days. It must be faster to stuff an envelope and takes less space then bulky boxes in the Amazon fullfillment facilities. (Maybe the price we pay for instant gratification)

    I’d prefer they take the time to use a box and place sufficient packing materials. But I can see that being a possible downside as it costs more and might be environmentally not as good. More landfill filled with packing materials.

    In the end, I wish they’d use better ways to ship stuff. In Ron’s case above, they could have packed the Blu rays in a padded envelope at least to protect them. For me I wished they’d better protect the contents, use a box, add some bubbles inside to cushion stuff. Go back to those early days of shrink wrapping the contents into a piece of card board before inserting it in a box. That actually worked well.

    But I suppose the returns they get for damaged goods is part of the cost of doing business. I don’t know if we as a group can band together and push them to change. Take Jeff Bezos to face questioning by Congress!

  14. Half the time I am unable to order 4K discs from Amazon (cough, cough Disney), so they aren't getting as much business from me as they used to. We don't order groceries from Amazon so the discs I get usually arrive unscathed in a bubble mailer.

  15. You could also place separate orders a day or two apart, separating the big bulky items from the smaller items, and the items would likely be packaged and shipped separately. I doubt Amazon will care enough to individually package separate items within a single order. One of the caveats of the "free shipping" with Prime is that orders are combined as much as possible. That most likely means just tossing everything that will fit into a single box.

    On the upside, from the pic it doesn't appear anything was damaged.

    As with Adam, I don't generally order much from Amazon other than movies/music/books, so I haven't really had any packaging issues.

  16. I can't remember the last time I received a disc from Amazon (the U.S. branch, at least) in anything other than those bubble mailers.

    I don't know if this is completely true, but I have a friend who sells items on Amazon as a "fulfilled by Amazon"-type of third party seller. He told me that due to Amazon's deal with the post office, they get a flat rate of 50 cents a package for any item sent in one of those mailers rather than a rigid box. Apparently part of the reason has to do with the type of packaging, that if it's in rigid cardboard it gets accessed at a different parcel rate, whereas if it's in one of those envelopes which is capable of being bent (even if the content inside isn't), then it is accessed at a lower letter rate. So apparently it's one of those things where they're saving so much by using those bubble mailers that they can absorb the cost of a damaged or replaced item, that it's cheaper to replace something for the handful of people that will complain than it would be to send everything more securely in the first place.

    I think a lot of the damage that comes to my items happens less from the actual shipping part of the equation, and more from it being shoved into my mailbox by the postal service. Without having a way to determine how accurate this is, I've been lead to believe that this is because of those bubble mailers being sent as letters rather than parcels, which is a signal to the postal worker that the item may be folded or bent to fit into the mailbox, whereas a parcel would be designated as a "do not bend"-type item where it wouldn't be policy to try to shove it in the box no matter what. But apparently because that bubble mailer counts as a letter, they're not going to handle it with extra and will treat it like a regular letter, which means it gets shoved into the box. Not sure if that's true, but that's the only explanation I've ever been offered on this.

    Anyway… that, in a nutshell, sums up my problem with Amazon these days. They offer a lot of very good services that I've grown to rely on. But they're no longer customer friendly and just try to do it on all on volume. Their service definitely is oriented towards doing something as cheaply as possible and then addressing complaints after the fact, rather than spending a tiny bit more upfront and getting it right the first time. I've complained again and again and I won't hesitate to write in if I get something in bad condition. I used to be the guy that would check to make sure I was getting an undamaged copy when I'd purchase in a brick and mortar store, and I'm not going to lower my standards or accept less than I've paid for just because the item is being shipped. And, truth be told, it's not "free" shipping – its shipping that I've spent a $100 fee for. Amazon no longer offers any kind of price protection, and in my experience, shipping speed has also been reduced. So if they can't guarantee the best price or the quickest delivery, all that's left is to make sure that the item arrives in good condition at least.

  17. Josh Steinberg

    in my experience, shipping speed has also been reduced

    Interesting. My experience is just the opposite. Here in the Virginia suburbs, I only upgrade to one-day shipping when the item is immediately needed, since my standard two-day Prime shipments occasionally arrive in only one day anyway.

    By the way, I second Malcolm R.'s suggestion about placing orders for bulky and fragile items separately, a few days apart.

  18. RichMurphy

    Interesting. My experience is just the opposite. Here in the Virginia suburbs, I only upgrade to one-day shipping when the item is immediately needed, since my standard two-day Prime shipments occasionally arrive in only one day anyway.

    By the way, I second Malcolm R.'s suggestion about placing orders for bulky and fragile items separately, a few days apart.

    It just occurred to me that you might be able to prevent the combining of packages by using different addresses for different categories. For instance: 101-D Main Street for dog food and 101-P Main Street for potato chips. Or perhaps 101 Main Street Box D. Or even something like Department D. It might be good to check with your PO or carrier first, though.

  19. RichMurphy

    By the way, I second Malcolm R.'s suggestion about placing orders for bulky and fragile items separately, a few days apart.

    I would definitely recommend doing them days apart – I've tried to do this with orders on the same date or only a day apart, and I find they get combined anyway.

    RichMurphy

    Interesting. My experience is just the opposite. Here in the Virginia suburbs, I only upgrade to one-day shipping when the item is immediately needed, since my standard two-day Prime shipments occasionally arrive in only one day anyway.

    What I'm finding is that they're waiting longer to ship items, but that the transit time is basically the same. So even though I have Prime shipping, I'll look at an item being sold by Amazon, and see that it's in stock and prime eligible, but that it won't ship for a day or days. So it'll get to me with free two day shipping when they send it, but they're no longer sending items immediately. You would think, for instance, that an item ordered during the day today should ship out today for delivery on Friday. What I'm finding is that a lot of things now will only ship Thursday or Friday for Tuesday delivery. They'll offer one day shipping where it'll arrive tomorrow, but it'll list "Tuesday" as being the two-day delivery date if I don't want to pay for one-day shipping. There doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason for which items are affected by this.

    BobO’Link

    That's exactly what happens with "No Rush Shipping." I use it almost all the time for the digital credits.

    I would be more inclined to use "No Rush Shipping" if they'd offer me something of use. Unfortunately, for at least a year, my offer has been exclusively for Prime Pantry, a service I do not use, nor do I have any intention of using. I haven't seen a digital credit offered to my account since 2016.

    BobO’Link

    I absolutely hate bubble mailers and don't see why a small box (smaller than the current "A1" size) couldn't be used

    As I was saying above, I've been led to believe it's because the types of packaging are charged at different rates. If it's sent in a bubble mailer, Amazon supposedly only has to pay 50 cents for that envelope, regardless of the size or weight of that envelope. If they send it in a rigid box, then they are charged a higher rate rather than that 50 cent flat rate.

    So my theory is that the money saved with that flat rate shipping exceeds whatever credits they have to issue due to damaged merchandise.

    It sound similar to their "guaranteed delivery dates" and "release date delivery" policies – in the past, I would always, always, always get new releases on their Tuesday street date if the item offered release date delivery on order. Occasionally they'd show up a day early, but usually on street date. In the past 2-3 years, they have stopped sending things early. Now all "release date delivery" items that I order that have Tuesday release dates are sent via overnight shipping late Monday, which means that some arrive late. It seems that they would rather have to issue a credit for the occasional missed shipment, rather than sending them early enough to ensure that none are late in the first place.

  20. Malcolm R

    You could also place separate orders a day or two apart, separating the big bulky items from the smaller items, and the items would likely be packaged and shipped separately. I doubt Amazon will care enough to individually package separate items within a single order. One of the caveats of the "free shipping" with Prime is that orders are combined as much as possible. That most likely means just tossing everything that will fit into a single box.

    On the upside, from the pic it doesn't appear anything was damaged.

    As with Adam, I don't generally order much from Amazon other than movies/music/books, so I haven't really had any packaging issues.

    The irony here is that Amazon Prime customers [who pay more] appear to be being treated worse than those of us who do not subscribe to Prime. I don't order a lot from Amazon either, yet when I do, the packaging has never been an issue.

  21. Josh Steinberg

    So my theory is that the money saved with that flat rate shipping exceeds whatever credits they have to issue due to damaged merchandise.

    I hope Amazon is smarter than that. Each damaged product also damages their reputation even if they do eventually make the buyer whole.

  22. John Dirk

    I hope Amazon is smarter than that. Each damaged product also damages their reputation even if they do eventually make the buyer whole.

    I agree, but they seem not to care.

    They don't give partial refunds for canceling prime earlier, so they probably figure that they already got my membership fee for the year, so why put more effort in. And, if they look closer, they'd probably be okay with losing me a customer. I buy a lot of low-margin items like discs, and get a lot of "free" two-day shipping for those items. They're probably not making a fortune on me. They might even be better off without me. At least, that may be the internal thinking.

  23. Malcolm R

    You could also place separate orders a day or two apart, separating the big bulky items from the smaller items, and the items would likely be packaged and shipped separately. I doubt Amazon will care enough to individually package separate items within a single order. One of the caveats of the "free shipping" with Prime is that orders are combined as much as possible. That most likely means just tossing everything that will fit into a single box.

    On the upside, from the pic it doesn't appear anything was damaged.

    As with Adam, I don't generally order much from Amazon other than movies/music/books, so I haven't really had any packaging issues.

    I have ordered items a day apart before and had them show up packaged together, so it would probably have to be several days apart.

  24. Adam Gregorich

    I have ordered items a day apart before and had them show up packaged together, so it would probably have to be several days apart.

    I would wait until I get a shipping notice for the prior order.

  25. I havent recieved BLUs / DVDs in a box from US amazon in a long time. It used to be that if you ordered 4 or more and they all shipped from the same whse that youd usually get them in a box. Not anymore they just throw them in a BIGGER yellow bubble mailer.

    Ive complained so many times that you spend so much money buy amazon acts like its your fault because the case comes looking beat up and used. Its clear amazon could care less about how the item arrives.

    I wish they offered an option to ship the BLU or DVDs in a BOX id be willing to pay so an additonal 1.00 – 2.00 on my order to request they ship in box.

    For more cult / horror titles I try to use Diabolik DVD .com. They always wrap items / ship them protected. They ship items the way they would to get them. Looking like a NEW item you purchased.

  26. Maybe all these problems have to do with which particular Amazon distribution center is being used. As I stated earlier in this thread, I've never had a problem with damaged media. If I order one or two Blurays, they arrive in bubble wrapped envelopes, but if I order 3 or more or a a box set, they arrive in boxes with those air bag thingies. I ordered my Outer Limits Bluray box set, and it arrived in a box, not a large bubble wrap envelope, and was totally unscathed. I live in Texas as one of the other members mentioned, who I believe also said he had no issues. Have never had to call customer service to complain.

  27. As someone who used to work for the House that Bezos built (though, disclaimer, no longer do and haven't in a couple of years), I can at least provide some answers from personal experience.

    If the Customer Service Associate tells you that a shipping problem will never happen again, they're lying. Amazon is a huge company and the Customer Service folks have no direct connection to the Fulfillment Centers other than a form they can fill out when there has been an issue. Where that form goes? Who knows? The best CSA's at Amazon won't blow smoke up your butt, but there are always less-than-stellar folks who will tell you whatever it is that they think will make you click "Yes" on the all-important "Did I solve your problem?" survey at the end of the email they send you after you've contacted Amazon. Their jobs literally depend on getting as few "No's" as possible on those. What they do is tell you what you want to hear, you click "yes," and then you don't realize until later that the problem really wasn't solved. You end up contacting Amazon again and the poor person who gets you the second time is already starting the call at a deficit. Often times, they'll be the ones who are honest and truthful about what can and can't be done about a situation and end up taking the "No" because people have either been promised something that can't be provided or, often, the second person actually does solve the problem, but the customer is pissed off that they've had to contact Amazon more than once and they still click "No" on the second person. It definitely sucks to work in Customer Service if you're honest.

    As for Amazon not caring about your individual shipping needs as long as it keeps costs down? You're absolutely correct. They don't. They're a business out to make money and one of the ways to do that is to keep costs down as low as possible while not reaching the tipping point whereby taking care of the problems that arise is more expensive than the money saved on a process. They ship things as cheaply as possible, even for Prime members. On the vast majority of orders (and this is a huge amount of orders), things don't get damaged and all is good. Sometimes they do and Amazon is pretty good about issuing replacements or refunds, depending on what is available. The few orders they have to replace are a drop in the bucket next to the money they save by using the most inexpensive shipping materials and methods. Look at it this way, though. Amazon is still really good at making sure the customer either has a refund or replacement. A lot of places aren't.

    Are there smaller companies that take more care in their shipping methods? You bet. With that said, you usually end up paying more for the item and shipping at one of those smaller companies. You want it fast and cheap? You go with Amazon and usually end up okay. You want white glove service and immaculately-packaged items? You pay more and go with a smaller company.

    I can totally understand everyone's frustrations with Amazon. Believe me, I call them on the carpet when they have screwed up or I know I'm being lied to by a CSA. With that said, I've seen it from the other side and can tell you that the majority of the folks at Amazon are decent folks who truly do the best they can under the circumstances they're handed from Seattle. I've seen folks in both Customer Service and the Shipping Dept. go out of their way to make sure that someone has a last-minute Christmas gift or something that is needed for someone who is not long for this world. The majority of the people are good and decent. There are also those who should lose their jobs immediately and who tend to bring down the reputation of the company because of laziness, spite, and greed.

    Hope my response helped.

  28. The primary reason I only really buy dvds/blurays from amazon or costco, is that too many local offline retailers give you the fifth degree whenever there's problems with defective discs and you ask for an exchange. In this regard, amazon and costco are the least problematic.

    Not worth the time and headaches anymore (along with wasted gasoline), in dealing with local retailers who are a crapshoot when it comes to getting an exchange for defective dvd/bluray discs. They lost my business a long time ago, and they can go screw themselves !!!

  29. To avoid problems like the photo in the first post on this thread, I generally order in blocks of only dvds/blurays without anything else.

    I wait for the package to be sent in the mail, before doing an order for something non-dvd/bluray (such as books, etc …). This usually means checking the tracking number(s) of the package delivery company or postal service, to make sure that the package has already left amazon's facilities.

  30. jcroy

    The primary reason I only really buy dvds/blurays from amazon or costco, is that too many local offline retailers give you the fifth degree whenever there's problems with defective discs and you ask for an exchange. In this regard, amazon and costco are the least problematic.

    Have you had that many defectives? I have thousands of discs and don't really recall any issues with defective discs. The only thing I recall was purchasing the Back to the Future DVD set and finding I had the first film and two copies of the third, but no Part II.

  31. Brian Kidd

    With that said, I've seen it from the other side and can tell you that the majority of the folks at Amazon are decent folks who truly do the best they can under the circumstances they're handed from Seattle. I've seen folks in both Customer Service and the Shipping Dept. go out of their way to make sure that someone has a last-minute Christmas gift or something that is needed for someone who is not long for this world. The majority of the people are good and decent. There are also those who should lose their jobs immediately and who tend to bring down the reputation of the company because of laziness, spite, and greed.

    I'm certainly not surprised to read that. Companies don't get to be this influential without a good, core base of people.

    Brian Kidd

    If the Customer Service Associate tells you that a shipping problem will never happen again, they're lying.

    This frosts my cake each time it happens. I can't tell you how many times an Amazon rep has told me that they would personally monitor my account to make sure such a thing doesn't happen again. In whose universe do they live that they think they can actually get away with a guarantee that a mistake won't get made again? I always ask them to explain how they can make such a guarantee. Surprisingly, they never have a satisfactory explanation. 🙄

  32. Malcolm R

    Have you had that many defectives? I have thousands of discs and don't really recall any issues with defective discs. The only thing I recall was purchasing the Back to the Future DVD set and finding I had the first film and two copies of the third, but no Part II.

    I've encounter way too many defective/wrong discs when it comes to tv show season sets, and other multidisc sets.

    Individual movies with only one disc are less problematic. So whenever I'm shopping at places like Wallyworld or local discount/dollar stores, I'm only willing to do impulse buys on individual movies with one disc. Not tv shows and other multidisc sets.

  33. I order CDs/Blu Rays/and DVDs from Amazon. All are shipped in bubble envelopes.

    The brittle plastic on CDs arrives cracked about 5O% of the time.
    The brittle plastic of DVDs is also frequently broken.
    Blu rays, with their softer plastic usually arrive with no problems.

    If there is damage to cases, I immediately call Amazon and they usually take a percentage off my bill. (They used to send out new empty cases).

    I live in Canada and use a Buffalo P.O. box. If a disc is damaged, Amazon.com usually just sends me out a new one without having to return the old one and take it back across the border.

  34. jcroy

    I've encounter way too many defective/wrong discs when it comes to tv show season sets, and other multidisc sets.

    It seems that disc quality control goes down the toilet, with the larger number of discs in a set.

    Perhaps this shouldn't be too surprising.

  35. jcroy

    The primary reason I only really buy dvds/blurays from amazon or costco, is that too many local offline retailers give you the fifth degree whenever there's problems with defective discs and you ask for an exchange. In this regard, amazon and costco are the least problematic.

    Not worth the time and headaches anymore (along with wasted gasoline), in dealing with local retailers who are a crapshoot when it comes to getting an exchange for defective dvd/bluray discs. They lost my business a long time ago, and they can go screw themselves !!!

    This is one of the main reasons I shop at Amazon, too. When there is a problem, it is so simple to initiate a return and replacement, even if the issue originated with the manufacturer and not Amazon. I do not have issues very often, but when it happens the entire process is automated and I do not even need to place a phone call.

    I bought a new golf bag through Amazon a couple of weeks ago, and it had a defect (a cut partially through one of the straps). I initiated an exchange online, printed out the pre-paid UPS label and dropped the box off at the nearby UPS store the next time I went out. Meanwhile, Amazon automatically generated a new order and I had a replacement a couple of days after I filed the claim.

  36. jcroy

    Individual movies with only one disc are less problematic. So whenever I'm shopping at places like Wallyworld or local discount/dollar stores, I'm only willing to do impulse buys on individual movies with one disc.

    Nevertheless, sometimes I don't bother even doing impulse buys at local retailers. I keep my a list of possible $5 dump bin discs which I might be interested in, until it is enough to get free shipping on amazon.

    Sometimes I use these dump bin titles on my list as "padding" when I'm ordering other dvds/blurays on amazon. Basically if the other dvds/blurays I'm ordering are not enough to get free shipping, I'll add one or two of these $5 (or less) dump bin titles to my order to just go over the mimimum free shipping amount.

  37. Brian Kidd

    As someone who used to work for the House that Bezos built (though, disclaimer, no longer do and haven't in a couple of years), I can at least provide some answers from personal experience.

    If the Customer Service Associate tells you that a shipping problem will never happen again, they're lying.

    Just for the record, I didn't believe the person that told me that. As Samuel L. Jackson says in Jackie Brown, "My ass may be dumb but I ain't no dumbass." 🙂

  38. I just packed up a Blu ray box set of The Outer Limits that arrived with a damaged disc hub. I’m shipping it back to Amazon and I was going up reuse the blue bubble pack they shipped it in. But decided to show them how it’s done as I had a box the right size and bubble pack. It’s going to arrive at Amazon in perfect shape, so that will show them!

    But it occurred to me. The return label I printed that they sent me is for UPS. I imagine that might cost more then the USPS rate they might be getting to ship it to me. And I wondered, and it’s not my problem, if that label will cover the cost of a box. Then it had me wondering about the news. I won’t get into the politics, but if the attacks against Amazon include how the Postal Service is getting ripped by Amazon, I’m not sure I buy that. I’m sure the USPS made a deal for a good rate for the volume of business they get from Amazon. It’s just that the rate is such that the packages just don’t get treated as we’d like. I wish the mailman would deliver my magazines flat and not folded or torn! I'm tempted to get my magazines digitally. But then there goes that argument about streaming killing Oppo. But that’s another thread. (Excuse me for the reference about the news that the postal service might be getting a bad deal from Amazon, I just wondered if it might be relevant. )

  39. Nelson Au

    I won’t get into the politics, but if the attacks against Amazon include how the Postal Service is getting ripped by Amazon, I’m not sure I buy that.

    Don't buy it. By law, the USPS is not allowed to negotiate contracts or provide services that are below their actual costs, so they are not getting "ripped off" by Amazon regardless of the "opinion" of some uninformed people in high places. USPS may not be making the usual profit margin from Amazon that they make on regular mail, but they are also not providing service to Amazon at a loss, and Amazon's volume is likely helping keep USPS afloat.

  40. Malcolm- totally agreed. I don’t buy it. I just didn’t want to press too hard as it’s touching on forum rules that I didn’t want to break.

    I heard on NPR Radio a story about a postal
    worker who commented that in his 20 or so years on the job, Amazon packages are becoming more and more what he carries and the weight and bulk increase is quite noticeable!

  41. When I use Amazon, it's pretty much exclusively for discs, and very occasionally, books.

    The only incident that immediately springs to mind is a few years ago, my first DVD order of ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN: SEASON 1 arrived with a broken hub. What made this particularly annoying was that for some unknown reason, it shipped from B.C, even though Amazon has a major depot just a few hours south of us, from where most of my orders ship.

    CHEERS! 🙂

  42. Yes, please. Let's continue to steer away from the Amazon/USPS opinions that are being discussed in terms of any political relevance.

    Certainly, this thread is all about Amazon and it's delivery protocol (so discussions about Amazon and its relationship with the USPS/UPS/FedEx are relevant)…but we don't need to go to that place where the discussion may get political.

    Anyway, this thread is mostly about Amazon's packaging failures, not its delivery failures (which I realize can be tied to the carriers it chooses to use).

  43. Brad here.Got a Blu/DVD order from Amazon recently in one of those white bubble envelopes. No problems there. Last month I got a 100’ Roll Of AWG14 speaker cable from Amazon in a solid box. Wish they’d use those solid boxes for Blus.

    Also I thought I’d posted this a couple days ago but I missed the posting button and my message was lost.

  44. Nelson Au

    I just packed up a Blu ray box set of The Outer Limits that arrived with a damaged disc hub. I’m shipping it back to Amazon and I was going up reuse the blue bubble pack they shipped it in. But decided to show them how it’s done as I had a box the right size and bubble pack. It’s going to arrive at Amazon in perfect shape, so that will show them!

    But it occurred to me. The return label I printed that they sent me is for UPS. I imagine that might cost more then the USPS rate they might be getting to ship it to me. And I wondered, and it’s not my problem, if that label will cover the cost of a box. Then it had me wondering about the news. I won’t get into the politics, but if the attacks against Amazon include how the Postal Service is getting ripped by Amazon, I’m not sure I buy that. I’m sure the USPS made a deal for a good rate for the volume of business they get from Amazon. It’s just that the rate is such that the packages just don’t get treated as we’d like. I wish the mailman would deliver my magazines flat and not folded or torn! I'm tempted to get my magazines digitally. But then there goes that argument about streaming killing Oppo. But that’s another thread. (Excuse me for the reference about the news that the postal service might be getting a bad deal from Amazon, I just wondered if it might be relevant. )

    You are putting way more thought into a return than I ever would. And I doubt anyone at Amazon is going to care or notice how you pack the return or whether it was shipped USPS or UPS. It will just get scanned and then disposed.

  45. Ronald Epstein
    And this is not the first time this has happened. I complained to Amazon two months ago when they did the exact same thing with the last pet food shipment they sent me. I was assured by customer service that this kind of thing would never happen again — and guess what — it did​

    Amazon's outsourced overseas customer service reps love to make this promise time and time again. I will then ask them how they can possibly make such a promise, are they going to personally pack my next order themselves?

    This is why when there is an issue with an Amazon order, I request a call back, then once connected I ask for a US representative. 9 times out of 10 I get someone competent and understanding who then takes care of the issue by either refunding the order outright and/or placing a replacement order. Not once has s US rep promised me that something would never happen again . I've even had my Prime membership fee refunded completely due to a run of damaged and late shipments.

  46. I only started getting damaged Blu-ray's (Cracked/broken cases etc) when Amazon switched to sending me my orders using the yellow padded envelopes a few years back. The odds of me getting my order undamaged then became really low (I live in New Zealand). A few months back I decided to see what would happen if I paid for one of my Blu-rays in an order to be giftwrapped. It caused the entire order to be upgraded to a cardboard box. Since then I've always made sure to have at least one of the Blu's gift wrapped and this has ensured my order is shipped in a box. it doesn't gurantee undamaged items but the likelihood of my items being intact has shot up.

  47. I guess maybe living in L.A. where Amazon has a strong presence has given me good shipping luck. I’ve rarely if ever had anything damaged in transit, but I also don’t order overly large things through them. Mostly books and discs and they generally arrive in good to mint condition. One odd thing did happen a couple of weeks ago. Something was supposed to be delivered same day (Prime member, free one day if over $35 offer) and it was canceled and my card was refunded. When I looked at the reason, the Amazon driver (it was through their shipping service with the TBA tracking number) reported it was damaged and refused delivery on my behalf due to the damage. That was kind of cool. Reordered and a new one arrived the next day.

  48. I mostly lurk here, but this discussion raised my hackles and sucked me in. I, too, have had a much bigger issue with Amazon's shipping packaging and policies recently (especially the last year or so) which have caused me to consider dropping Prime altogether since that's the main reason I get it. I've had some of the same complaints as the folks here, like discs thrown in boxes full of canned goods (a 12-pack of Surge and a 12-pack of Ecto Cooler in the same box, no less) and constantly getting damaged sleeves or cases due to the flimsy yellow bubble mailers they've been using. The worst experience I've had yet was with an LP however. Usually these are pretty safe as they put them in stiff cardboard mailers, but I received one that hadn't even been packaged. They just slapped a label directly to the shrink wrap and threw it in the mail. I just about died when I got it.

    That said, I don't think it's just Amazon's fault. For some reason in the last few months, I'd say at least half my packages are arriving looking like someone has sat on them. In the last week, I had a package that was torn open, an eBay order where most of the side had been torn off the box (this one at least had a "damaged condition" stamp and thankfully had been packaged very carefully inside by the seller) and a Loot Crate order with a huge gash in the box.

  49. I purchase desktop hard drives on a semi-regular basis, with my most recent purchases over the first few months of this year, and can confirm it is not just Amazon.

    E-tailers in general have decided shipping electronics is no different than shipping t-shirts. From numerous companies I have had a hard drive placed inside a shipping box that is either 1, much smaller than the shipping box with no protective material inside -ZERO – so it bounces around or 2, in a shipping box almost the exact same size as the product box which means no room for protective material.

    It's almost like there is a global shortage of bubble wrap and packing peanuts or something.

    The one company I had luck with, and I had to place my order over the phone to be sure a production note was added, was B&H.

    There is going to have to be a determination that this future is unacceptable if we are expected to transition more and more to online shopping for all things, including media.

    Maybe that means actually paying for shipping?

  50. The worst one I have received in the U.K. from Amazon USA was the latest The walking Dead statue limited edition S7 boxset where the shipping box was fractionally smaller that the statue box so they had to bend the top to fit and it offered no crushing protection to the statue box.

    I believe warehouse packers are told by the picking system the packaging to be used for that specific order so the packers themselves don’t choose of their own free will a box or padded envelope.

  51. Here's a package I got from Amazon yesterday.

    The too-large box contained two items: A dog toy and a small baggie of 50 small button batteries (hence the big label on the side of the box warning about its contents). There was also a single strip of those air bubbles (which had three sections–but the middle one was deflated).

    [​IMG]

    Why bother pretending that you are including packing material? Here's a shot to give an idea of the size of the contents vs. the size of the box:

    [​IMG]

  52. I usually only order Blu-rays, CDs, and books from Amazon, so I've been pretty lucky in that most of the time the packaging is fine. Since I live with my parents and we order from the same account, occasionally one of my items will get bundled in the same package as one of Dad's orders. But that happens only rarely and hasn't been a problem.

    Last year, I had the then-new Harry Potter illustrated edition (a 3.7-pound oversize hardcover book) and A Ghost Story Blu-ray coming to me on the same date. I ordered them at two different times as two separate orders and was concerned enough about the possibility of the book crushing the Blu-ray that I did an online chat with customer service and requested that they be packaged separately. The guy at customer service said this would be the case, but of course he wasn't actually in the packing facility, so they did in fact ship them together, which is what I requested they not do.

    It was still okay because I lucked out in that the Blu-ray was not crushed by the book at any point in the process of getting to me. So I dropped the issue.

    But it could have been, and was not well-handled by Amazon overall.

  53. With the recent revelation that the median annual salary for Amazon is $28.4K (meaning half are below that point, and most of those are warehouse people) it’s amazing we get any luck with shipped items at all! 😮

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