- will anyone send them packing this Christmas?

Christmas time! Mistletoe wine! Dubious packaging far from fine! Yes, as we begin ordering a festoon of gifts from online stores, there will be more than a few prezzies returned after seemingly been packaged by a mentalist. Who can forget the likes of Bitterwallet reader Halflife's internal hard drive, which was left to rattle around a large cardboard box unprotected, then placed inside a larger box?

Or reader jinkssick's CDs, sent in a box with no packaging whatsoever? "It sounded like a lego box when I got it":

The culprit in both instances? Bitterwallet favourite The question is, have they learnt their lesson since last year? And who else frankly can't be arsed to put the effort into making sure your Christmas gifts arrive in one piece? Send your photos and disgruntlement to Bless you, my flock.


  • Kim
    I have to agree,'s packaging is a joke. I received a t-shirt the other day which was just stuffed inside an envelope, not even in the clear plastic bags they usually come in - literally shoved inside a brown envelope. However have managed to screw up to my advantage recently. I ordered an item worth £30 from them and they send me an item worth £100 - thank you!
  • Warwick H.
    Shit company since they were taken over a couple of years back, I no longer deal with them over the packaging or lack of it issue.
  • fella-tio
    ah another anti Play rant by shitterwallet. Perhaps it cause you get better rates from Amazon NEVER had a badly wrapped item from Play since I started using them in 1999. ABout 600 items bought from them too
  • Carwick U.
    Wrong Still a good company
  • Nobby
    I too received a t-shirt from them last week in an a4 brown paper envelope. As it was raining when the postie delivered it, the t-shirt was damp when it arrived.
  • Goity
    As I said last year, the packaging for my ps3's hard drive was much worse than this. It was just in a large box, with no polystyrene, rattling about.
  • Rob
    Play are a bit rubbish really. My Mrs ordered something from them once in July for my birthday in October. It was listed as 'pre order to be available mid september' When did it arrive? November. Everything I've ordered from them always takes an age to turn up.
  • james d.
    i got a Polaroid pogo from play that was all battered about. ALl the corners were knocked in and there was a rip on the top. Luckily the polaroid packaging itself was pretty good so the device itself is fine but it is a present and now I have to hand my girlfriend a battered package on christmas day.
  • Nobby
    > I have to hand my girlfriend a battered package on christmas day. Oooh er.
  • fella-tio
    ah another biased hate campaign against Play by Shitterwallet....perhaps cause Amazon give them better rates used Play since 1999, over 500 items bought (not including Playtrade) but NEVER had a packaging problem. Only problem I see is they OVER package everything
  • required
    I gave up ordering from play a while ago after I received a DVD box set with the corners all bashed in.
  • Andrew B.
    Never had a problem with Play. Don't tend to order that much, but have always been quick and well packaged.
  • mark
    I have just received 2 sd cards maybe 1"x1",not put in 1 package as you might think(ordered together at exactly the same time from same account)but in 2 brown boxes 8"x9"x1" WHAT A WASTE OF PACKAGING!!!Thank god i didn`t have to pay the p&p but now have to despose of the cardboard packaging which i could have fitted 2 dvd`s in each box!!
  • Patrick
    We have ordered before and they have been fine, but this Christmas season they sent us an SD card when e asked for a memory stick, (but it was worth about twice as much!) and Ice Age 3, they featured it on the home screen, with a sticker pack, NO stickers!! Just now, got a 2 disc set DVD and I can hear one of them rattling about! Whoever gets that won't be happy Makes you wonder who packs their stuff.
  • jbarnes
    ordered loads over the years all been fine ordered something 3 weeks agao and no show yet and they wont look into it for another month, anybody got a decent email for them?
  • Richard
    I tend to go to find what I want then go to and get it there.
  • maxtweenie
    Christ! No wonder it takes them two days to put my PS3 copy of Borderlands in the post. They're obviously waiting for a new supply of fecking great big cardboard boxes to put it in.
  • Callum
    I often get DVDs etc. that come loose inside the box but I don't think you can blame etc. for that. Its the distributer that packs and seals them that is to blame.
  • me
    Just received a mug from Amazon well pacakged in a large box, then they thought that wasnt good enough so they put that in an even bigger box. Seriously the box could probably hold 100 mugs.
  • Carl
    whoever got the harddrive in a box should consider themselves lucky. I got a hard drive posting in just a grey plastic bag, nothing else. I phoned them straight away and they said if it didnt work I could send it back or return it without testing but I would have to pay for there postage cost to send and return it. of coarse it didtn work, total joke. Will never use again.
  • IfYouCopyMyNameYouAreGay
    Shit company. Amazon > Play
  • Simon
    I've still got a pile of duplicate books from from last Xmas. I had to go buy the same items elsewhere thanks to their pitiful delivery efforts. Not that Amazon's is any better - I've had a lengthy thread with their customer service team about their blatant attempts to mis-lead customers with their delivery information and refusal to fix it when faced with unrefutable evidence that they all but lie to customers - absolute balls. And is Which? online retailer of the year 2 years running - absolutely laughable. I'd avoid either of them if i could, but unfortunately everyone offering a decent service is doing so at a price, and people would rather have shit service and cheap prices - what can you do eh?
  • KJ
    wow lots of hate of play. Must admit play's packaging service is so random! Sometimes u get items packaged up nicely with some protection. other times u get a bag with a sticker on it (your address details). It's a bit of a gamble. MOST of the time i get my stuff in good condition. Amazon is the same to be honest, i had my portable hard drive delivered to me in a box with no protection. Wasn't impressed with it, but its the way the cookie crumbles. As mentioned other companies other slightly better delivery service, but u have to pay for it thats all.
  • Kevin
    Did anyone see Play's 'warehouse' on BBC Breakfast News the other day? It looked like shit. Stuff just laying around (although it looked like it was set up to look busy). Compare that to Amazon's warehouse a few days before which was exceptionally well organised, miles and miles of stock, explanations of how things are stored, stocked and mailed out. They really have plummeted in quality, what's changed?
  • chools
    If you think Play is bad try Debenhams. I ordered a dinner service from them which the warehouse packaged in a large plastic bag, needless to say it arrived in state fit for an archeologist to piece back together. Their customer services were excellent but after two more tries with the warehouse still sending out the china in plastic bags I gave up and eventually got a full refund I really don't understand how anyone could be so stupid as to send out by carrier something wrapped as though you were going to carry it to a nearby car!
  • andy y.
    At least if you complain they put it right
  • dunfyboy
    I ordered the Band Of Brothers box set a couple of weeks back. It arrived dented as Play seem to think jiffy bags are the toughest thing in the world. And no, Play, they don't protect packs of DVD-Rs either. As Amazon seem to drop their prices to match Play's within a day or two I think I'll stick to them in future.
  • Rilshov
    I ordered a new mouse from them last week and they sent me a Sean Connery mug! I've deleted them from my favourites.
  • luther
    Play have always been one of the worst culprits for packaging for me. I remember the last thing I ordered was a Sony MP3 player with those bluetooth headphones..... what a shambles! The package arrived looking like it had been crushed.... ironed out, and then soaked in a bucket of something wet and sticky. Thankfully the items inside seemed okay but I wasn't all that impressed considering the item was meant to be a present. Never bothered with them again.... Amazon on the other hand..... awesome. I'm always impressed with their packaging. Very sturdy and durable stuff..... maybe even ott sometimes..... :D Amazon will continue to get my money until they start doing 'a'.....
  • Papa S.
    LOL Rilshov, thats quite a cock-up. Personally I haven't had problems with Play/Amazon, but then again I've never gone near their electrical sections. If I want hardware I'll order from OCUK/possibly e-buyer who I know will package suitably and respond to faults. Only on one ocassion has a DVD not turned up from Play, and I was promptly refunded for it.
  • Graham
    Boots posted me a free soap and gloary gift bag(paper thing it went straight in the bin!!) in a whole big box all by its own, and the rest of my £50 order in a same size box... crazy
  • Rob
    Play is bad? Play is nothing when you've ordered direct from HP. I ordered a laptop from their website and I got it delivered in a huge box (literally 15x-20x the size of the laptop packaging) and shrink-wrapped onto a blue pallet. The delivery driver told me it was all mine, I made him take the pallet, despite it being worth a little bit of cash.
  • Stevie
    Not sure what the deal is but ive ordered 63 items from them and not had a bad one yet
  • red
    ordered the luke skywalker light sabre from them 2 years ago... still waiting for it to come
  • Chamois
    Amazon may well pack your items better, but then they hand it over to HDNL who will smash it to bits (if you're ever lucky enough to receive it from them).
  • Haushinka
    Pre-ordered the black wii from They sent it in a silver plastic bag (tightly). Of course HDNL got hold of it and obliterated the box. Fortunately the wii worked, but appalling packing!
  • Inspector M.
    Second picture seems a little suss, as if the pastic wrapping around a shrinkwrapped spindle of 50/100 cds/dvds would come off in the packaging too. Also the box looks like it's been opened by a dog. Nice pink deuvet cover though, Where'd they buy that from?
  • Big G.
    [email protected] contact email
  • Dazz B.
    cunts. that is all
  • Jamie
    HDNL are a pap.
  • James
    I have ordered over 100 times from to Finland, to this day there has only been 1 problem. A book was sent to me without plastic-bag or whatsoever covering it and of course it went damaged with water. I immediately informed and they sent me another copy carefully protetcted. Just ordered bunch of cd:s and 1 box the other day, weird but the the items have been in "packing" for few days.
  • das
    play is crap now i ordered a yo gabba gabba toy and got a belly button brush still waiting for my money back waiting for 2 month now
  • Alex
    Our £99 Sony blu ray player arrived at 8.55pm the other day- can't complain about that. I've used play since they used to be play247 and have seldom had an issue with them.
  • The B.
    I ordered a cd from play and when it turned up a member of Play staff fisted me, killed my great grandmother and then danced on her grave, even worse, the cd had slight mark on the case.
  • dee
    I've ordered a load from Play for Xmas this year, from gadgets, to tee-shirts, to books, to box sets, etc and i haven't had a single problem. Everything arrives quickly and well packed, although i will admit i have had one or two things sent in a flat box that's twice the size of the item i bought, but these were for things such as a novelty bookmark or a little pooing reindeer toy that weren't exactly easily breakable objects.
  • playfotcom
    @therealbob I have checked your order - please note the following section - and your response. I do not wish play to contact me regarding further offers = true I do not wish my details to be passed to a third party = true Any special delivery instructions Anal fisting = true Mureder of oldest family membe"r = true Special offer "riverdance funeral" free with the above option Free voucher to be fellated by each member of Girls Aloud = false You're sure about that = true Really really sure = true Right - I'm gonna stamp on your cd case then
  • Bored
    Yes, Play have been 'packing' Arrested Development for two entire days must be to ensure that box set corners aren't quite so badly buggered this time.
  • cheapskate
    HDNL are shit. On the up side, they've recently delivered over £280 of someone else's M&S order to my house (they live in Scotland & I don't so it's not just a drop off error). The packaging was knackered though - they left a box made from recycled cardboard out in the rain the knobs. Tried to contact M&S and they didn't seem to give a shit. This isn't just any old fuck up, this is an M&S fuck up.
  • Callum
    People should learn that you can have bad experiences with any company. My 82 orders with over the past 2 years were all completed with no bad packaging and long delays. Same with my 11 orders.
  • Martin
    My Borderlands PS3 copy has been in packing for 3 fucking days, never shopping with them again. I wish id have just paid the extra £5 that shopto wanted.
  • Three B.
    [...] seconds have passed since we asked for your examples of bad Christmas packaging, when we presented’s efforts as first-rate examples of the genre. First off the [...]
  • Bernard Kids presents battered and stuck together with selotape! Returned item but 10 days later no contact. Managed to get hold of them today and they hadn't done anything about a replacement and have now promised to do something about it. Will see! Ages waiting on 'phone and very difficult to understand what the person on the other end of the line saying - call centre in Thailand or similar I guess. Will NEVER use again.
  • Guy
    i buy games and DVD's from they often come in a brown evnevlope that has bubblewrap.....
  • Carroll M.
    Is it just me or is the post not showing up? It looks like all of it is missing on my screen?
  • herbalecstacy
    Hi, just found this here after an quick google search. Neat post you have here! Keep it up!
  • dianaarty
    Ive had the same problem recently had bought a game from playtrade took 2 weeks to arrive i received it yesterday was not happy the jiffy bag was to big and it was ripped and the address label fell off underneath it had a different address???tatty!!! "it looked like it had been reused again again and again". There was tape around where seal was suppose to be the game disc was really loose i was shocked to see the scratches it was BAD and i had bought a brand new and sealed it was not and it was the wrong 1?. So i contacted the seller got reply saying "they get shipments of stock that they dont check and just send out as new because they paid the bulk" I think play should do somethimg about this thats not the way you sell products i should know im a playtrader myself i send dvds and games as stated the way i sell is by truth and not conning people in proper new jiffy bags and always first class post which has original clear address labels and i dont have problems with lost post or replacements because"I DONT CON PEOPLE".
  • Customer B.
    [...] yes – we know some of you don’t give a chocolate sod about excess packaging and will piss and moan regardless of whatever we show you, but there’s little argument to be [...]
  • Nick C.
    Worst culprit, HP sending a mouse on a pallet See below link!
  • Charlie
    I order stuff from Play all the time and have literally NEVER had a problem. I think you are getting confused - if you order from Playtrade you are generally buying from people like you, not It's like Amazon's Marketplace. Play offer a guarantee via their FairPlay service if you get bad service (or no service) from a Playtrade seller, so rather than wasting time posting stuff like the above, why not use that instead?!
  • dianaarty
    You can only use the fair play guarantee up to 3 times only but to get the best results you should always contact the seller first thats why play have that function on there site and use the fair play as a last resort if you cannot work things out with the seller. When you order anything With you have to wait a total of 21 days before you can report an item lost but with a playtrade seller just 7 days to report a item lost in the post? so thats why many of us buy from traders instead of you dont have the long wait to report missing/defective items. But at the moment because of the really bad snow no post at all???
  • Michael
    Weird I ordered a hard drive, an enclosure, and a usb drive. all ordered on same day. One package arrives on friday, the other two on a monday. The hard drive was a few times wrapped in bubblewrap, and then the standard cardboard box. Yet my usb flash drive, and enclosure were jsut put in a box just rattling about ha
  • Alex
    I have been using for about 5 years now and have recieved a lot of items from them. yes some of the packaging could do with a bit of a re-design for some products but the ouuter packinging of the product is a layer of protection so plays outer box does not really matter. i have never recieved a damaged product from due to poor packaging. and even if i did there returns proces is seemless. if they had a set box for every product they stocked they would need about 20000 lines of boxes. is always my first look for dvds,blu rays and electronic products and will carry on beign first choice

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