Warning to major retailers: stop penalising islands on postage

Shetland MSP Tavish Scott has called for major retailers to stop charging extra postage or refusing to deliver parcels to the islands.

Mr Scott has welcomed the findings of Citizens’ Advice Scotland’s campaign for fair delivery, which included surveys completed by 395 Shetland residents and business owners.

A high proportion of those raised concerns about being charged extra for parcel deliveries to Shetland postcodes, or being refused delivery altogether. Some of the larger online traders, including eBay, Amazon, Argos and Tesco, were cited as “problematic retailers” following large numbers of complaints.

“People in Shetland are suffering disproportionately in the digital age,” Mr Scott said. “Those with broadband which allows for internet shopping cannot enjoy the benefits this offers because, often at the very end of a lengthy registration, browse and check-out process, they are told ‘delivery to Mainland Scotland only’.

“Many popular retailers are at the heart of this problem. This is simply unacceptable. Their state-of-the-art computer systems can surely cope with sending islanders’ orders by Royal Mail, rather than courier.”

Mr Scott added that he had contacted the SIC’s trading standards department urging them to tackle the issue.


Add Your Comment
  • john ridland

    • October 11th, 2012 15:21

    Ordered a garden rake aff Amazon, Cost £9.45 free p/p any UK
    Next day receved e-mail requesting £18.95 extra because we were “overseas”
    Bloody Ripp Aff,,,,,,

  • Andrew Gibson

    • October 11th, 2012 19:40

    It should also be noted that there are a number of companies that either don’t charge an additional premium or just a small additional charge, which after all is fair given they have to transport the goods much further. I used a number of these last year when I moved house, ArtPlants, Myakka, Mattress Next Day, Tooled Up amongst others. Shetland folk can use these companies if they need specific items and not feel ripped off.
    One special mention should go to John Lewis who charge no more for Shetland deliveries and all deliveries over £30 are free.
    No I don’t own share in these companies, I have simply used them and been very pleased with costs and service.

  • Colin Hunter

    • October 12th, 2012 2:21

    The biggest problem we have to face here is the proliferation of so called “Carriers” who have decent enough networks on the UK mainand, but it all comes horribly unstuck when the item gets to Aberdeen. The first thing to fail is the “tracking system”,which, although you have been given a tracking number for the item, seems to mysteriously vanish into the ether as soon as it gets to Furryboots city. This name probably comes from the often asked question, “Furryboots is my parcel?”
    Then, after languishing for the best part of a week in some unspecified store, it eventually makes it onto the boat and arrives in Shetland. It then might take another week because “We only deliver to Brae on a Tuesday”. Tough luck if it came north on Wednesday!
    This is probably why the two high value items I paid extra for “Express delivery” from amazon last Christmas took nearly a fortnight to arrive by carrier (pigeon?), but the other stuff was delivered FREE inside three days by Royal Mail!
    I wouldn’t mind a bob for the number of times I have been asked for extra money because “It costs more because you’re far away” or something equally feeble, I threatened one ebay seller with negative feedback for charging extra P&P and recieved an immediate and miraculous refund to my paypal account. He, unfortunately is in a very small minority.

  • Fiona Johnson

    • October 12th, 2012 7:08

    Yes its annoying to pay extra for postage and yes its really annoying to be told you are “overseas” (funny how the tax man never sees it that way…..)

    BUT – did you check out the prices in Lerwick? I have shopped “all aroond da world and idder places forbye ” and Lerwick has some great shops with prices as good as anywhere – and great service as well.

    Shetland Wholefoods at the toll clock – amazing range of stuff. its the place you go for the really weird Nigella ingredients and they always have it
    Kelly opticians on Commercial st – better value than i could find in Scotland or England and an exceptional and personal service
    or my personal favourite, the late lamented Imelda’s that had shoes at better prices than mainland UK – but was full of people trying them on so they could order them online!

    and then next week there will be a letter asking “why are we losing the centre of Lerwick? Why are there no shops left? Why is nothing opening except charity clothes shops?” – if you don’t use them, you’ll lose them and all the jobs, daily contact and service that goes with them.

  • John Ridland

    • October 13th, 2012 21:21

    Ordered a very small spare part for my car from “overton” Dice Aberdeen
    cost £10,,, They would send it to Da auld rock with Shetland Transport extra £15
    I said just stick it in a jiffy bag an go Royal mail “COD”
    Responce……. No chance, Not our POLICY to p**s around Aberdeen looking for a carrier .. …….!

  • Davy porter

    • September 20th, 2013 11:35

    Ordered an item from amazon which unbeknown to me was bein sold through a seller called segasykes who refused to post to our so called offshore islands


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