DHL Complaint - DHL's Lousy International Service
DHL claims on its advertisements to provide an international solution to shipping problems. This is very far from true and at least here in Kuwait where I work they provide the very worst service anyone can imagine. I have had to go to the lengths of informing all conpanies who we do business with to never send anything through DHL.
First, it seems that DHL uses a local agent to clear shipments. This local agent makes more money depending on the additional items they accomplish in the clearing process. The first time I noticed this was when a company from the UK sent me some advertising documents and a videotape of their services through DHL. Since DHL "cleared" it through customs, I had to pay KD 3 (approx $10) for customs duty, but what was worse was their various "clearing" administrative activities cost me over KD 10 ($34). FEDEX regularly brings in similar envelopes with no customs or clearing charges.
The latest testament to the incompetence of DHL, I was sent a shipment of specialized industrial grease through them. I pleaded with the sender to use anything other than DHL to no avail, even though another vendor in the same city in the USA shipped a similar package through UPS on the same day. The UPS shipment arrived a week ago while the DHL shipment of the same type of items is still stuck in customs. Although the shipment originated through DHL, they called me asking for the original shipping documents, certificate of origin and packing list so they could clear it through Customs. Now, how am I supposed to have these original documents when DHL did the shipment? Maybe they thought the documents were sent through FEDEX so naturally they would have arrived early?
There were several frustrating things with this shipment. First, it arrived in Kuwait on the morning of the 26th of May (the weekend here in Kuwait) even though DHL failed to call us until the 29th three dusiness days later. WE have been trying to accompdate their requests for documents, but now two additional days later they are requesting an environmental shipping statement so they can continue the clearing process.
The reason for using such international courier services is to ensure time sensitive shipments arrive quickly, not to provide additional irritation and delays. It is clear that at least for Kuwait, this is not the case with DHL. I suggest to any company who has to ship anything to Kuwait to use UPS, FEDEX, or even parcel post before they consider using DHL.