Did a Porch Pirate Hit You Up For Your Package?
With the rampant rise in online shopping over the years especially over the holiday seasons, porch pirates who take packages are just getting started.
It was reported that one in three on-line consumers has had a package taken from their front porch or stoop.
If you were unfortunate enough to have a package taken from your front door, below is what you need to do.
What you can do if a package is stolen from your porch
Start with Tracking Your Package
If you think your package has been stolen, the very first thing you can do is to check your order confirmation email for the tracking details.
Generally, you will get an email with a tracking number that you can utilize to track your package shipping status.
Often all that is required for you to do is click on this number or copy it so that you can enter it on the website of the store or shipping company.
It’s typical for shipments to encounter delays particularly throughout peak delivery seasons such as Christmas, Cyber Monday and other holidays.
The shipping status will let you know where your package was last registered or the day and time it was delivered to the delivery address.
If your package is showing as having been delivered, keep reading.
See If Your Neighbor Has It
Once you have confirmed that the package was indeed delivered, reach out to your next-door neighbors.
It’s not cool and embarrassing to yell at or belittle the customer support rep only to uncover the person next door saw your packages sitting on your porch and took it in to avoid if from getting wet from rain or stolen.
Reach Out to The Seller
If it’s looking like your package has been stolen, get in touch with the vendor or seller that sold you the product.
Many retailers have different procedures and policies for dealing with stolen packages, however typically, you are entitled to a reimbursement or a substitute or replacement product.
Amazon for example, covers most stolen packages with their A-to-Z Guarantee Protection.
In many cases, purchases that are fulfilled through Amazon are in fact sourced from retail partners referred to as Amazon Sellers.
Amazon usually requires you to contact this 3rd-party vendor to try to resolve the problem with them.
However, if you have waited for two or even more business days for an action or response or if the vendor is uncooperative, you can file a claim with Amazon as well and they will provide a reimbursement.
Oftentimes, the seller will consent to quickly replacing the item.
However, if they don’t take responsibility or refuse to provide a substitute item, there are still a couple of actions you can take to get compensated or reimbursed for your missing item.
File A Claim with The Company Responsible For Shipping
In some cases, sellers attempt to move the responsibility to the delivery company or they will need you to submit a complaint and wait a specific number of days to make sure your package will not be recouped.
If you run into situations such as this, you may want to go ahead and file a claim with the delivery company.
FedEx, UPS and USPS offer an online claims process to report your missing package or you can call them on the phone.
See if Your Credit Card Provider Offers Purchase Protection
Some cards provide or offers purchase protection that will repay or reimburse you for stolen products if the item was bought with that said charge card if they are alerted within a certain time-frame.
Go on to the credit card provider’s website and check to see if this coverage is offered and file a claim.
However, some credit card providers exclude protection for high value items generally worth over $500 or $1000.
The credit card company may also require you to submit a police report prior to them providing you with a reimbursement.
Keep in mind, credit card purchasing protection is usually secondary insurance coverage meaning it will only kick in after your primary insurance coverage has been applied for example renter’s insurance.
High value claims should be filed with your home owner or renter’s insurance policy.
The thing with this however is that the value of the item stolen should be well over your insurance deductible.
With deductibles ranging from $500 to $2000 bucks, filing a claim will not make good sense for the majority of packages taken.
Also, if the missing package is valued greater than your insurance deductible, you will risk the chance of having your insurance premium increased as a result of the claim.
Here’s How to Avoid Package Theft
It is irritating having a package stolen and going thru the claims process is just as frustrating.
If you really want to protect your packages from porch pirates, consider taking the following precautions:
- For high value items, spend a few dollars more and insure your package which can be done with the seller or via the postal service making the delivery.
- Free but inconvenient, plan for in-person delivery. It is the most effective method to stop mail and package theft. You can even notify you’re the carrier to deliver the package to a neighbor who is at home to sign for your package.
- Check with your employer and see if it okay to have your package delivered to your workplace.
- Use a lock box method such as Amazon’s storage lockers. There are some convenience stores and grocery stores that provide this kind of service. You can also have the package delivered to a local USPS or UPS facility and pick it up at those locations.
- Buy a secure package lock box for your front porch. This list provides the most popular ones on the market.
- Install and set up a security camera. Many are inexpensive and very easy to install. The majority of the cameras will sync with your Wi-Fi and phone application, so you can take a peek throughout the day. The visibility of cameras is usually enough to deter package thieves.
- Get a package alarm such as the package guard. Read more about the package guard. It is smart technology for receiving and protecting packages from thieves.
- Video doorbells are also great for providing footage to your local authorities or to see if you know who your porch is. You never know, it could be your neighbor next door.