A waste of 200+ miles

My work requires that I travel with 5-8 computers and a projector. I can't check them with my luggage because they will get stolen. The airlines specifically say they will not be responsible for any electronics in checked luggage. So historically, my best option has been to carry them on the plane. It was annoying, and you didn't want to be in line behind me at security, but it worked.

2008-03-03 Crate (1)

In recent weeks, I switched to a Pelican case. These things are nearly indestructible and are well padded. Plus I can lock the case. Now, the routine is to ship it through Fedex to my various events. It makes traveling easier. Most of the time.

Last week, I wrapped up an event in the LA area on Friday, and slapped the label on the beast. I asked the front desk at the hotel where the nearest Fedex drop off was so I could ship it to my next destination.

They graciously offered to take it for me and have Fedex pick it up from them. That turned out to be a big mistake.

As I waited for my flight to San Diego this morning, I checked the tracking information, and discovered Fedex had no record of the shipment. I panicked, hyperventilated, pulled out a bunch of hair, calmed down, got angry, and calmed down again.
2008-03-03 San Diego Airport and downtown

A quick call to the original hotel revealed that Fedex came and for some strange reason did not pick up the box. They were mystified as to why Fedex wouldn't take it; the hotel certainly wanted it gone. They were going to make Fedex take it this afternoon, but since I needed it first thing in the morning, I asked them to hold it.

So I flew into San Diego, got in my rental car, drove 120 miles from San Diego to the hotel near LAX, picked up my box, and drove back down to Carlsbad, another 100 miles or so. Through rush hour.

So 4.5 hours, more than 200 miles, and half a tank of gas later, now I have the privilege of tripping over it in my hotel room.

On the plus side, I did get to listen to two episodes of TWIT and two episodes of This American Life on my MP3 player.

Who says business travel isn't glamorous?


Anonymous said...

I'm sorry, i'm sure it was totally frustrating for you but I couldn't stop laughing after reading this post :)
Did you ever find out why they didn't take the case?

AVCr8teur said...

I remember dragging a rented projector onto a plane to avoid it being broken as checked baggage. What a hassle that was so I really feel for you! The hotel should've called you to give you an update. I hope you still have all your hair.

LDK in STL said...

I, too, would like to know if you ever found out why FedEx screwed up.

Cromely said...

I never found out why Fedex didn't pick it up. Either they screwed up or the hotel screwed up and just blamed Fedex. I would investigate further, but that sounds like so much work, and I don't think I'd actually get anything out of it.

I've never had a bad Fedex experience, so I hope this is just a fluke.