This is the story about my purchase of a Dell Inspiron laptop. It’s not a pretty story, but a damn good read if you are considering a Dell PC.

Monday July 1st 2002

A brand new Dell Inspiron is ordered from the Dell web site. Estimated time of delivery is 10 working days after the order is placed.

Wednesday July 10th 2002 (10 days after ordering)

I’m contacted by a Dell seller who wants to verify my credit card number because he is unable to get any money from my account. The account was filled with the correct sum before the order was placed and the credit card number is verified. He has already got the correct number.

Friday July 12th 2002 (12 days after ordering)

The same seller from Dell calls once again and wants to verify my credit card. After a while he realizes he has already done that. The laptop was supposed to be here by now.

Friday July 12th 2002 (12 days after ordering)

The order is recorded by Dell, and I receive a mail about it. 10 working days has gone since I placed the order.

Tuesday July 17th 2002 (17 days after ordering)

My order is sent to the Dell production department. The e-mail says the estimated time of deliver is 7 to 10 working days from the 17th.

Wednesday July 21st 2002 (21 days after ordering)

Unfortunately, I’m moving in the end of July and the address I originally gave to Dell is wrong. Why didn’t I give them my new address when I placed the order? Well, if Dell had done what they promised in the first place and delivered my laptop on the 12th, this wouldn’t have been a problem. I e-mail Dell Costumer Service about the change of address.

Monday July 22th 2002 (22 days after ordering)

The PC is stuck in post-production because of lack of parts. New estimated time of delivery is August 2nd, 33 days after the order was placed.

Wednesday July 23rd 2002 (23 days after ordering)

An e-mail confirming my change of address is received from Dell Costumer Service.

Thursday July 28th 2002 (28 days after ordering)

The PC is still stuck in post-production. New estimated date of delivery is August 5th.

Wednesday July 30th 2002 (30 days after ordering)

I receive an e-mail stating that the laptop has finally been sent to from the Dell production site to me.

Thursday July 31th 2002 (31 days after ordering)

According to the tracking service, the packages are picked up from the site. Unfortunately, they are being sent to my old address, which is a bad thing because I don’t live there anymore. Dell Costumer Service is contacted about the problem, they will update their database and fax the cargo-company about the change of address. Estimated date of deliver is now August 6th.

Thursday August 1st 2002 (32 days after ordering)

The packages is stuck in the Netherlands and the ETA is pushed another day, new date is set to August 7th.

Friday August 2nd 2002 (33 days after ordering)

The laptop arrives in Oslo (so it’s now in the right country), nothing happens.

Monday August 5th 2002 (36 days after ordering)

The laptop is moved to the Dell office in Oslo and delivered to another cargo-company.

Wednesday August 7th 2002 (38 days after ordering)

A letter shows up at my old address with information about a package from Dell. The laptop has been sent to the old address in spite of the fact that I contacted Dell twice about the change of delivery address. Dell Costumer Service is contacted once again about the problem. They say they will contact the cargo-company and get them to re-route the packages. New estimated date of delivery is Friday 9th of August. I get the waybill number from Dell. A tracking seach shows that the packages actually showed up in my old town in the early hours of Monday August 6th, a day before anyone bothered to tell me about it.

Thursday August 8th 2002, 08:00-08:30 (39 days after ordering)

According to the tracking service of the cargo-company, the packages hasn’t moved at all, so I call them to check if the packages has been re-routed with a new waybill number. Unfortunately, they have not and they are still stuck at my old address. They have not heard a thing from Dell and are still waiting for me to come pick up the laptop. I call Dell Costumer Service - again - and tell them what’s up. It turns out that the fax has not been sent to the local branch of the cargo-company, but to their main office. After a while, I’m able to convince the girl in the other end that it might be a good idea to fax it directly to the people sitting on my packages. She says she will do that instead.

Thursday August 8th 2002, 09:03 (39 days after ordering)

I contact the cargo-company to check if they have heard anything from Dell. And - shock - they have! The shipment is being re-routed and it’s now scheduled to arrive on Monday August 12th. How it takes 4 days to get two small packages from my old address to my new one beats me. It’s a 10 or so hours drive. Unfortunately, the new waybill number is not showing up at the online tracking service. Is it light I see there at the end of the tunnel?

Monday August 12th 2002, 18:50 (43 days after ordering)

There is nothing in my mailbox about the Dell. I call the hauling-company to check if the laptop has arrived at their warehouse. And it has. If I hadn’t called in to check, it would have taken yet another day to get the PC. My packages get scheduled for delivery between 160:: and 21:00. At 18:50 the packages are delivered as promised. It sure took a while…

The Aftermath

So, I finally got my Dell. Hoperfully this story is an isolated event, I guess most people get their computers on time. Some of delays wasn’t actually Dells fault, but the cargo-companies moving the laptop around. Unfortunately for Dell, I’m not a costumer of any of these companies, I’m a Dell costumer. If they have decided to use shitty cargo-companies whose total lack of logistics abilities delay my shipment, that puts Dell in a bad light. Of course, there is a rather slim chance that I will ever use any of the cargo-companies involved for my own private shipments.

Better luck next time, Dell. Oh, that’s true - there will be no next time!

Do you have a Dell story, good or bad? I want it!


Do you have any thoughts you want to share? A question, maybe? Or is something in this post just plainly wrong? Then please send an e-mail to vegard at vegard dot net with your input. You can also use any of the other points of contact listed on the About page.


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