PostNL flooded with complaints about Sinterklaas deliveries

Sinterklaas visits a school in Amsterdam, 5 December 2018
Sinterklaas visits a school in Amsterdam, 5 December 2018Photo: Zachary Newmark / NL Times

PostNL was flooded with complaints in the run-up to Pakjesavond on Tuesday. Hundreds of customers were worried that their Sinterklaas gifts would not arrive on time, AD reports.

The fact that Sinterklaas is increasingly buying his gifts online has its disadvantages. Online shops, sorting centers, and package deliverers were overflowing with packages this past week, according to the newspaper. 

In the week before Pakjesavond consumers' association Consumentenbond received 354 complaints about PostNL. In the same period last year, there were only 40 complaints about the Dutch postal service.

Customers feel cheated by PostNL's delivery time, a spokesperson for Consumentenbond said to AD. "People take it for granted and then the delivery person doesn't show up. These customers then see on the app that the delivery date and time shifted to the next day. You can imagine that people get very frustrated. We already urged PostNL to expand this margin. That prevents unpleasant surprises."

How many people had a disappointing Pakjesavond is not clear. "We can't guarantee that all packages will be delivered on time. For a small part of our customers, that won't succeed", a spokesperson for PostNL said to the newspaper on Tuesday. 

To avoid disappointment in the future, Consumentenbond advises people to buy last-minute gifts at a local physical store. "Web shops and mail deliverers will not be happy with this advice, but at least you are sure that your gifts are in the house for Pakjesavond."