Why your Valentine's Day flower delivery may be late

Why your Valentine's Day flower delivery may be late

Read the fine print: No guarantees, limited cancellations

Last updated: February 11, 2015 12:15 PM

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If you place an order for Valentine's Day flowers online, you might miss a disclaimer that says the site does not guarantee delivery on major holidays—including Valentine's Day. The 1-800Flowers site, for example, says "The floral and gift business experiences an increased volume of orders during major holiday periods, such as Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Valentine's Day, and Mother's Day. While we ordinarily can guarantee delivery on the exact date you choose for delivery, the high volume of orders we handle during major holidays prevents us from guaranteeing delivery during those weeks." Teleflora's site suggests you place orders five days in advance of major holidays.

Add if there are some major weather problems such as those brought by winter storms, many more orders will likely be delayed. Yanique Woodall, a spokeswoman for 1-800Flowers, told us that they monitored the weather and delivered many arrangements early as a result. Others, however, may arrive late. "We want our delivery people to be safe, too," she told us.

For other gift ideas, check out the 5 Valentine's Day gifts your techie sweetheart will love and our review of the best-tasting chocolate bars for Valentine's Day. Also see our comparison of bouquets from two online florists.

If you wait until the last minute to make a change, it might be too late to cancel an online order and pick up a bouquet at your local florist instead. FTD's site, for example, says cancellations must be requested within 24 hours of placing an order. If your cancellation is made within the 24 hour time frame but your order is scheduled to ship within 24 hours of its receipt of your notice, FTD says it will not be able to honor your request. It also notes that no requests for credits on product, freight, or shipping charges will be accepted if your shipment is delayed for reasons beyond FTD's reasonable control, including courier delays caused by inclement weather conditions. ProFlowers says it does not allow orders to be edited or cancelled within 48 hours of the requested delivery date, or within the seven days prior to Thanksgiving, Christmas, Valentine's Day or Mother's Day, because of its extremely high volume of orders during these times.

But you can likely track your order online; if it's going to be delayed, you can let your Valentine know it wasn't because you forgot—really this time.

––Mandy Walker (@MandyWalker on Twitter)

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