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Tracking number

What is a tracking number?

A tracking number is a unique identification code assigned to a package or shipment that allows the sender, recipient, and carrier to track its progress through delivery. Tracking numbers can be composed of letters and numbers, and their format varies depending on the delivery service or postal service being used.

For example, priority mail from the United States Postal Service (USPS) typically has a 20-digit tracking number, while express shipments may have a 22-digit tracking number.

Courier shipping companies provide tracking numbers to enable customers to track their shipments online. Some companies also provide a tracking code, a set of instructions that customers can use to track their packages.

Postal services and courier companies offer different levels of tracking information, depending on the service the sender selects. For example, some postal services provide basic tracking information, while others offer more detailed tracking, including delivery confirmation and proof of delivery.

The post office and courier companies also provide tracking information through various means, such as email, SMS, or online tracking portals. Customers can use these services to monitor the progress of their shipment and get real-time updates on its status.

How to find out if a package has a tracking number?

To find out the tracking number of the package, you can follow these steps:


  1. Obtain the tracking number from the shipping label or confirmation email. The tracking number format may vary depending on the courier or shipping company, but it’s usually a combination of numeric identifiers or letters.

  2. Go to the website of the courier or shipping company and enter the tracking number in the tracking tool. The tracking tool will provide information about the package’s whereabouts, including its current location and any previous tracking updates.

  3. If you don’t have access to the internet, you can also call the courier or shipping company’s customer service number and provide them with the tracking number. They’ll be able to provide you with the package’s current status and estimated delivery time.

  4. In some cases, the package may require a signature confirmation upon delivery. If so, check the tracking information to see if the package has been delivered and who signed it.

  5. If you’re the package recipient, you can use a bar code reader app on your phone to scan the shipping label’s bar code. That’ll also provide you with information about the package’s whereabouts.

To find out where the package is with a tracking number, you need to use the tracking tool provided by the courier or shipping company. You can also call customer service or use a bar code reader app to get information about the package’s whereabouts. Signature confirmation may also be required, depending on the shipment’s delivery requirements.

How can you tell what tracking number belongs to what carrier?

You can use the carrier-independent ISO standard to determine which carrier a tracking number belongs to. This standard assigns a unique prefix to each carrier, included in the tracking number format. Here are some examples:

  • UPS tracking numbers typically begin with “1Z”

  • FedEx tracking numbers typically begin with “9”

  • DHL Express supports multiple tracking number formats depending on the country of origin, but they often begin with “JD” for international packages or “GM” for domestic packages

If you have a tracking number and are unsure which carrier it belongs to, you can look up the carrier prefix online or contact the carrier’s customer service for assistance. That’ll allow you to track the package’s delivery progress and receive updates on its status. It’s important to note that some carriers may support domestic and international packages, so check the carrier’s specific tracking number formats to determine the type of shipment.

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