Returns On Late Present Arrivals

24 December 2010, 05:00

Heart's being told that gifts bought online but haven't arrived in time for Christmas should still be able to be returned.

This comes as tens of thousands of people claim to have given up waiting for their online orders and headed to the shops instead. The recent cold snap and icy roads have caused huge delays for the arrival of parcels.

Both Royal Mail and DHL have had staff working longer hours and extra staff have been hired to clear the backlog in Suffolk and Norfolk. Royal Mail has also been running evening deliveries to try and get parcels out on time.

Richard Marks, Managing Director of John Lewis in Norwich told Heart: "There's no doubt the conditions have been challenging, particularly for the drivers on the roads who have been working longer hours to get deliveries to customers. People seem to be really understanding. I think people are aware that the conditions are pretty unique."

However, for people who have chosen to double up on presents rather than wait for their orders, Ann Jackson from Norfolk Trading Standards told Heart about how gifts can be returned:

"Yes, you would have the opportunity to return the goods if they arrive late and you have been able to find a suitable alternative. It is the good old breach of contract, in that the goods have not arrived at the time specified.

You have to have some sympathy for the retailers in that it's something we'd perhaps class in law as 'it's beyond my control', but at the moment most of the big companies are pledging that they will refund if there are problems."

Trading Standards are also warning us about one present we should not be giving people this year, the celebrity pet that Paris Hilton and the Beckhams have both been spotted buying - The micropig.

Click on the link to listen to why Ann doesn't think the mini pets are a good Christmas present this year.