Colombia's postal service, Protected content , seems to be a permanent topic of discussion, for obvious reasons: it's not the best. But I've actually used it regularly over the past 5 years to send and receive packages and have only just now had my first problem. They said the address was "wrong" because they read the "B" as an "8", meaning that Carrera 7B was interpreted as Carrera 78. Big difference.
So I wanted to share some tips that I think might help people avoid similar problems.
1) Be sure to have the sender save the "Customs form number." It starts with 2 letters, is followed by a bunch of numbers, and then ends with another 2 letters. If your package doesn't arrive, Protected content actually track it quite easily with this number. I was pleasantly surprised by this.
2) Write the neighborhood on the package. In my case, if my mom had written my neighborhood on the box, the postal workers might have realized that the B was a B and not an 8, since Carrera 78 is nowhere near my neighborhood.
3) Write a phone number on the actual package. I have no evidence to support this, but I like to think that if the package had had a fijo or cell number written on it, maybe they would have called me when they discovered that the address was "wrong."
The annoying thing is that my mom actually included the código postal (yes, Colombia now has zip codes!)--which, in theory, indicates a particular zone. So the fact that this didn't help makes me a little sad.
Anyway, I hope this info is helpful for people thinking of using Protected content ...