Mother’s Day has come and gone, but a B.C. woman is still angry over her online flower order.
“I sent them because I wanted to surprise her and I wanted it to be special, but it just ended up being embarrassing,” Jemma Palmer said.
Two days before Mother’s Day, Palmer placed an online order with Bloomex.ca, which dubs itself “Canada’s Official Florist.”
“I wanted to get her something nice and to me they looked nice. They advertised nicely. The flowers looked good,” Palmer said.
Palmer said she paid just under $62 to have the flowers delivered to Summerland from Coquitlam. The arrangement was scheduled to arrive the next day.
Instead, they showed up at her mom’s house after Mother’s Day. When the delivery finally arrived, the flowers were damaged and wilted.
“You picked them up and the flowers would fall off,” said Palmer.
On top of that, the chocolates that accompanied the bouquet had melted.
Palmer contacted Bloomex immediately. After repeated calls and emails, Palmer said she finally got through to a customer service representative, but hit a roadblock because she didn’t have an order number.
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Palmer says she never received one. She then contacted Consumer Matters. In less than 24 hours, Bloomex gave Palmer a full refund and an apology.
The company told Consumer Matters:
“We did experience some courier delays in certain parts of B.C. due to the sheer volume of orders that were in transit, so it seems that this order was one of those affected. If a courier was delayed, as flowers are a highly perishable product this would explain why they arrived wilted and the chocolates melted. It is certainly not our deliberate intention to send either.”
The Better Business Bureau (BBB) said it took over the Bloomex file from Ottawa about six months ago. In that time, BBB has been working closely with a local representative from Bloomex to address the high volume of complaints and is working towards improving their record.
Kristin Ames, North Vancouver florist and owner of Posy, says the best way for consumers to avoid disappointment is to seek out a reputable flower shop.
“The best way to make sure that you get something of quality when you are ordering online is to order from an actual brick-and-mortar flower shop rather than what are called online order gatherers,” she said. “Also make sure the website you are looking at actually has an address and they are a real flower shop.”
Ames also said consumers should a carefully scrutinize a florist’s website.
“Do they have an original gallery of online photos that look like they were created by that shop? Does the shop look like they spent some money on their website and check reviews? Do they look like they came from a real person?”