We have a repeat customer who is known for being a special snowflake (referred to as SS from this point). He is a repeat international customer and naturally his orders often get delayed at the airport as they have go through customs first. His newest order has just been posted, and he just has one request for his order.
SS: I really need this order as soon as possible. Can you send it through a different airport this time to avoid the delay?
Me: I’m sorry, but we have no control over which airport it is sent through as it depends how Royal Mail sort it when they receive it. The delays are caused by customs, and going to a different airport wouldn’t change that.
SS: I want to try a different airport anyway. Can you ask them to send it somewhere else this time?
Me: explains how our packages to the US are probably less than 1% of what Royal Mail has to send there every day, and that we really have no influence over which airport it goes to. Especially as the airport his previous orders have gone to are based in the same state as him
SS: Can’t you call Royal Mail and ask them to find my parcel and make sure it is sent elsewhere this time? It is a tracked delivery – they can just find it by the tracking number.
Me: Again, SS, our packages are just a very small percentage of what they receive and have to sort through. They will not delay hundreds of packages and waste so many man hours just to find one package and to send it to another airport.
SS: Hmm. he takes a few seconds to think, and I am hoping that the message has sunk in and he will just accept it. Can you call British Airways?
Me: Sorry? What do you mean?
SS: British Airways. Your plane company. Can you call them?
Me: Um.. why?
SS: To ask them to redirect the plane to New York or somewhere.
SS: Why not?
Me: Because they will have hundreds of people on the plane expecting to go to a particular airport. The airport they are flying to is expecting them and has space for them to land. If they were to suddenly redirect to another airport, they may not be able to land, the people on the plane will be very annoyed at landing in a different part of the country, and their customs team will suddenly have several thousand more packages to sort through which they will be unprepared for. This will cause even more delays for both you and the other people whose packages are on the plane.
SS: Are you sure? My packages are usually delayed for about a week. The delay wouldn’t be that long, surely?
Me: I am absolutely certain. Furthermore I can not, and will not, make any attempt to inconvenience what will literally be hundreds of people to try to save you an unavoidable delay. Is there anything else I can help you with today?
(Thankfully the answer was no.)