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29%
2.02 

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Hefty money taken for brand name, not service
Apr 13, 2010 02:43 PM 12550 Views
(Updated Sep 04, 2010 12:27 PM)

Customer Service:

Staff Courtesy:

When I decided to shift from New Delhi to Hyderabad because of a change in my employment, I decided to hire the services of Agarwal Packers and Movers for shifting of my luggage as they have a big brand name in this line. I enquired them regarding their charges and time required for movement. The first thing the gentleman started giving follow-up calls though I could not effect the work before allotment of a quarter in Hyderabad by my new employers and it was bound to take time. However when the time came and I approached them again, I was charged handsomely as compared with the market rates. However I did not dispute or bargain much because of their brand value and reputation.


I was asked to pay the full amount in advance which I paid to the gentleman who came to my flat with the labourers for packing. He prepared the bill and collected the full sum then and there. Thereafter he demanded from me out of pocket expenses worth Rs. 300/- (not mentioned in the bill) for bribing the transport people to get the transportation slip issued, get the truck properly in queue and for some unknown reasons. When I objected, he told me that I did not have any option and it was given by every customer. I tried to contact the person in the office who was dealing with me since the outset but he did not bother to pick up the phone (He told me the next day that it was his weekly off). For transportation of the car, the gentleman got the papers filled by me and added 150 kms to the km reading of the car saying that the transporters may have to drive that much. I objected saying that there should not be any such need because the distance of the transportation joint (Gurgaon) from my flat in Dwarka, New Delhi plus the distance of the destination of the container (in which the car was to be transported) from my employer's colony in Hyderabad could not be that much. But he did not listen.


The labourers got involved in packing my luggage in such a hurry that they did not care for asking us, the clients, before packing anything. Several small things got packed without identification of the containers (cardboard cartoons) in which they were packed. They (the labourers) told us there was no scope for re-opening the containers and we had to manage for the next 3-4 days with inconvenience as we got our luggage packed 3-4 days in advance of leaving Delhi by train as we were told that it took almost 5 days from Delhi to Hyderabad by road. We thought that when we reach Hyderabad, within a day, our luggage also would reach there. We were made to pay INAAM (extra money out of record) to the labourers also after the truck was loaded. For that also, we were pressurised by the same gentleman. The driver of the truck refused to give us his mobile number. We talked to the truck owner also and insisted the gentleman of APAM also that the driver's mobile number should have been given to us for communication. The reply given to us was that the driver should not be disturbed by frequent calls when he was on the way (as if we were fools to disturb him every now and then). The driver, a young boy of 19-20 years, told us that the truck would not leave that day because of some problem in its system. We got apprehended because we decided to endure the inconvenience of living without our luggage only because we wanted our luggage to reach Hyderabad as early as possible. We asked the gentleman of APAM to arrange alternative truck if that truck was not to proceed on the journey the same day but he assured us that the problem would be resolved immediately and the same truck would proceed its journey that night itself.


After 5 days, when we were in Hyderabad, we started following up with the truck owner (whose mobile number had been given to us instead of the driver) and the APAM office for our luggage. It came after two days (taking seven days in total). Now what we came to know and what we found and what we experienced is as follows :




  1. The truck owner assured us at around 11 a.m. that the truck had entered Hyderabad and it will reach us within 1.5 to 2 hours maximum. Actually the truck reached us at 4 p.m. (Understandably, he was lying).




  2. The local people who had to do the unpacking job (because we had been charged for unpacking job also in the bill and told that APAM had a tie-up with a local agency who would send the unpacking people) did not reach in time. We were told over phone that the in-charge of the office in Hyderabad was lying admitted in some hospital and nobody was there to coordinate the job (as if it was the client's business to take into account such things also). When they came ultimately, they told us that they were coming by bus from a faraway place and that was the reason for the delay. Needless to say, they also demanded their INAAM from us after the work. They took away the packing cartoons also after unpacking the materials though we had been charged heavily for packing by APAM.




  3. The truck driver told us that the truck proceeded on its journey on 6th October because of the problem in it (whereas we had got it loaded with our luggage on 4th October itself and the APAM gentleman had assured us that it would start its journey on the same day).




  4. Several things were found broken after unpacking. Till date I wonder what was the use of paying hefty packing amount to a reputed packer and mover when ultimately I had to get broken things only. Packing money is given for good and safe packing to protect the materials from damages that may occur during long road journey.




  5. The tape used for packing was such that it got badly stuck to several things made of good quality wood, steel and sunmica and till date we have not been able to remove it completely. The ugly tape stuck on our articles is giving a bad look to our beautiful household but we cannot help. (contd. in comments)




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