I recently read a post over at New Mum Online about her preparing a photobook for her mum for Christmas, she has used a company called Blurb which you can read about here, but her review made me think about my recent experience with Photobox when preparing an important wedding gift for some friends.
My best friend recently got married and we prepared a book for her hen night which contained a photo of each hennete with the bride-to-be and a personal message from them. We found photobox easy to use, although it did take us ages to upload the photos/messages and organise them, however I/we had never done anything like it before. I was also very impressed that we were able to have the order delivered straight to the hotel via Royal Mail for the hen weekend. The book was brilliant, it was glossy, really good quality and very well presented, and good value for money, we were all over the moon with it, especially the Hen (she cried infact but tears of emotion rather than sadness!).
As this was such a success, I then offered to prepare another photobook to present to the bride and groom on their wedding day. It was to be a story of their life to date, so had photos of the bride growing up and then photos of the groom growing up (embarrassing ones of course). This was then followed by photos of when they first met, their engagement and so forth and a good selection of both the hen and stag do. We ended the book with a message from us bridesmaids and a space for them to stick a wedding photo. The idea was to present it to them after the speeches so it could be enjoyed by all at the wedding as well - there were some real corker of photos in there!
However, I hold my hands up saying I left it late to prepare, but I rang Photobox and spoke to an adviser and as the first book had been delivered in less than a week asked if we could expect the same service. I then opted to pay extra for next day courier delivery and was told expected delivery date was the wedding date, so I organised for it to be delivered to the wedding venue before 4.00pm.
4.00pm arrive of the wedding day - no delivery. The wedding coordinator followed it up for me and came to inform me it had been delayed and was sat on the van to be delivered the following Tuesday. Obviously this was no good as there would be no-one from the wedding party at the venue. I then organised for it to be delivered to my home address as the bride and groom were planning on staying at her parents for the first week before their honeymoon. Tuesday arrived - no book. Wednesday, still no book.
More phone calls later to a premium rate number, and it turns out the book was delivered to the wedding venue despite a note being on the account to request an alternative address. The person I spoke with at Photobox was very helpful offered to have the book reprinted and delivered direct to the bride and groom who live in Switzerland. Great. I passed on the address, and left it in what I thought was their capable hands.
3 weeks later, still no word of thanks from the bride and groom so I had to tell them about it and ask if they had it. in a word - NO.
More premium rate phone calls, Photobox customer services said they would find out where it was and ring me back, they didn't, so I incurred more cost ringing them to find out the address had been misspelt so the couriers were unable to find it.
We are still waiting for a resolution. I have rung numerous times, and also emailed their customer services, and each time get a different person trying to sort the problem out. Now I have been told that thee is a credit on my account for me to organise a reprint of the book and get it delivered at a time convenient to me.
I have to say I am really, really disappointed and frustrated with the whole thing. The whole purpose of the present to be enjoyed by all, have a giggle over, embarrass the bride and groom is long gone. Yes they will still enjoy it and yes they will treasure it but its not the same. They got married nearly 2 months ago now. Although I found Photobox initially very helpful, it didn't actually resolve the problem and I feel like we are now going in circles. I would really like to speak to some one about it but my last phone bill showed a cost of over £14.00 on phone calls to their customer services and I object to having paid for a photobook, then extra for courier service and then I am paying to sort their mistake out so I guess I am just going to bite my tongue and be done with it.
I wish I could write a glowing report to match liska's, my first experience was good, second not so good.
One day our friends will get their book!!