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FTD Fails, By Using Plaza Flowers

·710 words·4 mins
Articles Fail
Daniel Andrlik
Daniel Andrlik lives in the suburbs of Philadelphia. By day he manages product teams. The rest of the time he is a podcast host and producer, writer of speculative fiction, a rabid reader, and a programmer.

This is our first Valentine’s Day as parents, and I wanted to get my wife an extra special floral arrangement for the holiday. I knew that with our schedule I would have a hard time sneaking away to a florist to make arrangements. So, like so many gullible husbands and boyfriends of the world, I went to FTD.

What I Ordered>

What I Ordered #

The shopping experience there was awesome. I was able to browse a variety of bouquet options available in my delivery area, and the purchase process was quick and easy. The arrangment I settled on was dramatic and lovely.1 The advertised features of the arrangement are visible below.

![What I ordered](images/8474306397_b5c2773923.jpg “What I Ordered (I selected the “Better” option)”)

Pretty, yeah?

What Was Wrong>

What Was Wrong #

In short, almost everything. When it arrived, it included a vase, and had some roses and lilly, but that’s where the simularities end. The colors, which should have been vibrant, were a blend of pastel pinks, and gentle pink/violet roses accented by white daisies. While the health of the flowers was not an issue, the whole arrangement seems pale and wilted compared to what I thought I was buying.

The resulting bouqeut
The Delivered Bouquet

In addition to the color scheme begin completely wrong, the bouquet was also substantially smaller than advertised. The listing stated that the bouquet would be 19 inches high and 16 inches wide. Let’s see how that stacks up.

Height of final bouquet
Less than 19 inches.

To begin with, it isn’t even close to correct size. The bouquet was supposed to be 19 inches high, and this is 12 inches for all but one of the roses which reaches up to just about 15.5 inches. That one tall rose looks terrible in the context of the rest of the arrangment.

Width of final bouquet
Just under nine inches wide.

The discrepancy on width is even worse. It was supposed to be around 16 inches in width, and in the image above you can clearly see that it is not even a full nine inches wide.

Look, I wouldn’t quibble on size if it was a little closer to what was advertised, but when you add in the fact that the color scheme was all wrong it’s ridiculous. I would have preferred to have them call me and say, “Sorry, we can’t fulfill your order because blah blah blah.” Now, I’ve wasted money, when [I could have run to my local grocery store and purchased a better arrangement at a fraction of the price.

The florist who made the arrangment, Plaza Flowers in Norristown, Pennsylvania, apparently has been known to do this kind of thing before judging by their Yelp reviews. This is part of the problem with FTD, you never know which business will actually fulfill your order, which means it is completely possible to end up with someone sketchy.

Where From Here>

Where From Here #

I finally got through to FTD after more than an hour on hold. The customer service representative I spoke with seemed sensitive to the issue, but needed to speak to the contractor who made the arrangement before he could process my complaint. He will call the florist tomorrow to find out what happened and then call me back. Essentially, my options will be as follows:

  • Have the florist pick-up this bouquet and deliver the correct arrangement.
  • Keep the current bouquet and receive a 25% refund on the order.
  • Have the florist pick-up this bouquet and receive a 100% refund.

You better believe I told him that I expected a full refund to be the outcome of this process. He said he understood and would call me back tomorrow afternoon. On the plus side, dealing with FTD means that I’ll likely not have to duke it out with a florist over the quality issue2, and hopefully FTD can use this as a tool to weed out a contractor who provided a substandard product.

Naturally, I’ll update this post with the final result, but this has been a frustrating day. It’s not good to have what was supposed to be a sweet surprise for a loved one leaving them disappointed.

  1. Not to mention pricey. ↩︎

  2. The Yelp reviews linked above seem to indicate this has been problematic in the past. ↩︎


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