5 On Your Side

Floral retailer fails man on Valentine's Day

Posted February 18, 2011 6:31 p.m. EST
Updated February 18, 2011 7:20 p.m. EST

— What was supposed to be a sweet, romantic Valentine’s Day gesture on the part of Jeff Dudash, of Raleigh, turned out to be a delivery disaster.

The week before, Dudash paid $70 through flower retailer FTD’s website for what he thought would be a striking bouquet.

He says he ordered a “Seasons of Love” bouquet of 17 red roses and pink carnations, with a guaranteed Valentine's Day delivery,

They never arrived.

“So, I went from being the hero on Valentine’s Day to suddenly spending hours on the phone and on e-mail trying to figure out where my order was,” Dudash says.

He wasn't the only one with problems.

WRAL’s 5 on Your Side received a number of complaints about FTD – ranging from wilted flowers to partial deliveries to promised replacements and credit cards being charged.

And FTD's own Facebook page had post after post from angry customers.

"FTD is a no show.” "Flowers were never received, YOU DROPPED THE BALL, GUYS.” "Thanks for nothing, FTD. You officially ruined Valentine's Day."

When Dudash got through to FTD the next day, a customer service representative eventually offered him a $25 refund and a better arrangement that included a “florist-designed” upgrade.

“So, instead of at least 17 roses, we got 12 tulips,” Dudash says. “It's not very impressive, even if it arrived on Valentine's Day. But as flowers the day after Valentine’s Day, it's really kind of pathetic.”

In a statement to WRAL News, FTD says that, based on shopping records, it is confident the vase of tulips Dudash received is the $70 Seasons of Love bouquet he ordered.

The company says the bouquet with roses is last year's version. Its statement does not reference the promised upgrade.

An FTD representative called Dudash on Friday to offer an apology, free flowers in the future and a full refund.

As for the orders that didn't make it on Valentine's Day as promised, FTD says "the vast majority" did but that deliveries on a "high-volume holiday can be challenging."

Dudash says he feels FTD should be able to handle that challenge.

“I was expecting to do something really nice, and it turned into a bust,” Dudash says.