Last night on my way home from work, I stopped at the dry cleaners to pick up my order – nearly 10 pounds of wash and fold, four blouses that needed pressing, four pairs of pants, and a dress and jacket set -- so I could pack and be off to Tampa this morning. The dry cleaner is in the basement of my building and at 5 p.m., the guy tells me it’ll be here by about 6:30 or 7, depending on traffic. So I go upstairs and start to pack the things that I can. I go back down at 6:40, but still no clothing. At 7:20, I go down again, wait for the three people ahead of me to pick up their cleaning and packages and then it’s my turn. By now it’s nearly 7:30 and they close at 8.
“Is my dry cleaning back?” I ask.
“Yes,” he says, “but there’s a problem.”
The guy gives me the wash and fold, the four pairs of pants, the dress and jacket set and then points to the computer screen where the blouses are listed and says, “They’re still in the plant.”
After a brief exchange in which I use my “I am not pleased voice” to tell him this is totally unacceptable, I leave with the laundry that did come back, as well as a brochure for Prestige Valet and Concierge, the company that provides the service.
Back upstairs, I visit Prestige’s website and use the on-line form to send the following email:
On Saturday, December 6, I dropped dry cleaning and wash and fold in the Package Room at Kips Bay Towers. I was told that everything would be ready by today, Tuesday, December 9. However, four blouses did not get on the truck and they were "still at the plant" when I went to pick up my order. Unfortunately, I am leaving for a business trip at 7:30 tomorrow morning and now do not have the clothing to take with me. When I do pick it up upon my return next week, please be advised that I do not plan to pay for this order since the clothing was not ready when promised. Furthermore, I will no longer be using the services of Prestige Valet and Concierge and will advise my neighbors and friends to do likewise. Your service is unreliable and I will take my business elsewhere.
I left a similar message at the number printed on the company’s brochure.
A short while later, much to my surprise, my cell phone rang and the owner of the company was at the other end. In addition to a profuse apology, he offered to FedEx the clothing to me. Although this wasn’t a workable option for a number of reasons, he did offer – and I accepted – a $25 credit on my next order. Once that’s used up, I’ll reassess Prestige and decide whether or not to continue using their services.
In the meantime, customer service lives.