Does First-Class Mail Have Tracking?


March 13, 2024

Mail tracking service is one of the handy features provided by USPS (United States Postal Service). Through tracking, customers can monitor the progress of their deliveries. However, not all mailing service provided by USPS has tracking.

Does First-Class Mail, a popular, affordable, and convenient USPS mail service, have tracking? If not, can one add mail tracking to a shipping service type?

This article provides information on whether First-Class Mail has tracking services. It also tackles options customers can do if a particular USPS service isn’t eligible for mail tracking. 

Furthermore, this write-up explains each additional service one can add to a First-Class Mail shipment to monitor delivery. 

If you need to send mail via USPS and want the contact information and address of the nearest post office in your area, visit Our website gives access to over 31,330 post offices in the country. 

Can You Track First-Class Mail?

At the moment, the tracking option is not available for First-Class Mail. One of the reasons why the U.S. Postal Service isn’t tracking small mailpieces shipped through First-Class Mail is the affordability of the mail service. 

Millions of people use First-Class Mail for sending correspondence to people regularly. In fact, USPS reported that they process and deliver an estimated 162.1 million First-Class Mail every day. 

Tracking the sheer number of First-Class Mail letters, postcards, and flats (envelopes) sent weekly can strain the system. Upgrading the tracking system to cope with the volume of First-Class Mail may ramp up costs. 

However, customers can purchase extra services that offer barcode scanning, of which some may provide some tracking. 

How Do You Track First-Class Mail?

Although First-Class Mail is not eligible for mail tracking, there are ways to have some level of tracking. The tip is to purchase extra services that include barcode scanning. 

The following are some examples of add-on services you can purchase when you are mailing to help “track” or monitor your First-Class Mail. 

Certified Mail

The first option is to purchase a Certified Mail add-on to your First-Class Mail. Certified Mail provides a mailing receipt and electronic verification notifying you when a USPS carrier delivers your mail or attempts a delivery. 

When you purchase Certified Mail, you’ll receive a tracking number, which you can type into the tracking system search bar at 

Registered Mail

The second additional service you can choose is to ship your First-Class Mail with a Registered Mail add-on.

Regarded as the “most secure” USPS mail service, Registered Mail provides mail protection by including cages, locks, keys, safes, and sealed containers. 

What’s nice about using this add-on is acquiring access to tracking information. Registered Mail has a tracking number you can use to monitor your shipment. 

However, Registered Mail doesn’t provide updates between scans. The tracking number will only show the delivery status of the parcel. 

Signature Confirmation

The third extra option you can use is the signature confirmation add-on. However, this service doesn’t give you a tracking number. 

Instead, you can “track” or monitor the status of your mail because you’ll receive mail delivery confirmation. 

This confirmation comes as a receipt with the recipient’s signature notifying you that your parcel was delivered. 

Another service you can combine with signature confirmation is a return receipt, which provides delivery confirmation, the date and time the recipient received the package, and their signature.

Informed Delivery

The last option in this short list is the Informed Delivery add-on. However, Informed Delivery doesn’t involve tracking numbers. You can “track” your parcels via photos sent to you when a package bound for your address arrives at a local post office. 

It may not be similar to mail tracking like other USPS services, but Informed Delivery “informs” you of the status of your package, nevertheless. This service is free; you only need to sign up via the USPS website.  

Introduction: USPS

The United States Postal Service, or USPS, is one of the major shipping giants in America. It handles different types of mail and packages and is one of the popular couriers for sending First-Class Mail. 

The Basics of First-Class Mail

Out of the many services provided by USPS, First-Class Mail is the most affordable. As a result, many people use this shipping service for regular mail. 

What Is First-Class Mail?

First-Class Mail is an affordable way to ship ordinary letters that weigh up to 13oz anywhere in the United States. 

This mail delivery service is crucial because some letters and important documents can only be delivered through First-Class Mail. Examples of such documents are the following:

  • Bills, credit cards, or invoices
  • Personal or business correspondence
  • Any mailable confidential documents
  • Handwritten or typewritten letters

What Makes First-Class Mail a First-Class Service?

First-Class Mail is first-class because it’s at the top in the order of priority for mail classes. 

However, that top position doesn’t mean First-Class Mail is also the fastest mailing service USPS provides. The honor of being the company’s fastest way to ship important documents goes to Priority Mail.

What Types of First-Class Services Are Available?

You can further divide First-Class Mail into three categories: First-Class Mail, First-Class Mail International, and First-Class Package. Each type delivers packages of different weights, sizes, and destinations.

First-Class Mail

USPS offers the First-Class Mail service as a convenient way to ship pieces of mail and postcards to any address in the United States. 

Here are some features and vital information about the First-Class Mail service:

  • Delivery time takes one to five business days.
  • First-Class Mail is USPS’ affordable mail service for mailpieces weighing up to 13oz.
  • The weight limit for small letters is 3.5oz.
  • The weight limit for large envelopes is 13oz. 
  • As of September 2023, the price starts at $0.66 for a one-ounce First-Class Mai.

First-Class Mail International

USPS also provides First-Class mailing service to international destinations. 

Through First-Class Mail International, mailers get the same affordable services for shipping parcels to over 180 countries, including Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom. 

In addition, other extra features are only available with First-Class Mail International, including the following:

  • Delivery times may vary depending on the destination country.
  • Customers can send parcels weighing 1oz to 15.994oz.
  • Price starts at $1.50 for a one-ounce First-Class Mail International.

First-Class Package Service

USPS also provides First-Class Service for shipping light packages anywhere in the United States. 

For international deliveries, customers can use the First-Class Package International service to ship packages weighing up to 15.994oz to over 180 countries, including Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom. 

First-Class Package service has mail tracking, which is unavailable for letters, postcards, and small parcels. 

So, if you want to use a First-Class mailing service with tracking, the package service option is your choice. 

Is USPS First Class Mail Automatically Tracked?

The USPS tracking system doesn’t automatically track First-Class Mail because this mailing service is not eligible for tracking. First-Class Mail doesn’t have any tracking number. 

Only First-Class Package Service has tracking numbers, allowing package updates whenever the parcel gets scanned. 

If you want your First-Class Mail tracked, you can purchase additional services to monitor your parcel’s delivery progress. 

The USPS Tracking Services

The USPS tracking service is a method to monitor mailpieces shipped domestically. 

Customers get end-to-end item tracking and status notifications about the status of their packages as they go through the delivery process. Most USPS shipping services have tracking services aside from First-Class Mail. 

How Much Is the First-Class Mail With Tracking Cost?

Remember that First-Class Mail can only have some tracking when customers purchase additional services. As mentioned above, customers can choose a few services to monitor their mailpiece’s delivery progress. 

Here is a short price list of those additional services you can tack onto your First-Class Mail to monitor your letters and packages:

  • Certified Mail: As of September 2023, this extra service starts at $4.35. However, there are other Certified Mail types that you can choose like:
    • Certified Mail Restricted Delivery: $11.45
    • Certified Mail Adult Signature Required: $11.45
    • Certified Mail Adult Signature Restricted Delivery: $11.45

Restricted Delivery is an additional service instructing the courier to deliver the parcel only to the addressee or a recipient’s authorized representative. 

Adult Signature Required is also an additional service that ensures the recipient of the parcel is an adult or at least 21 years old.  

  • Registered Mail: The cost of this extra service depends on the declared item’s value. 

However, as of September 2023, the price starts at $16.80 for no declared value and goes up to $31.95 for declared values of up to $50,000. 

  • Signature Confirmation: The cost for this extra service depends on where it was purchased. As of September 2023, prices are as follows:
    • If purchased at the post office: $4.05
    • If purchased online: $3.40
  • Informed Delivery: This extra service is free of charge for all USPS customers. 

Where Is the Tracking Number on First Class Mail?

As mentioned above, First-Class Mail doesn’t have tracking. However, customers can get around this limitation by purchasing extra services that have barcodes and other delivery notification services. 

The tracking number is usually on the shipping label, sales and mailing receipts, online label record, and the barcode placed on your package.

Track the First-Class Letter

Although First-Class Mail on its own doesn’t have automatic tracking, you can have extra services that may have tracking. 

For instance, you’ll receive a tracking number when you purchase Certified Mail. Once you have the number, you can input it into the tracking system available at 

You’ll then get regular updates about the whereabouts of your packages and their current status, and notifies you when it’s at the local post office near you. 

USPS Mail Class Guide

As mentioned above, USPS provides other classes of mail, which, unlike First-Class Mail, may have tracking. 

Priority Mail

Priority Mail is a service designed to deliver mail or packages anywhere in the United States within one to three business days. Priority Mail automatically has mail tracking, which is unavailable with First-Class Mail. 

Furthermore, First-Class Mail that weighs over 13oz will get bumped up to Priority Mail if you ship it.

Priority Mail Express

Priority Mail Express is a faster shipping service than Priority Mail, as customers can get deliveries done by the next day. 

The delivery timeframe of Priority Mail Express is one to two days, and this delivery schedule has a money-back guarantee. 

Media Mail

Aside from regular mail items or correspondence, customers may want to ship media items. 

Media Mail is a USPS mail class used specifically for shipping media items. USPS lists the things that are considered media items:

  • Books
  • CDs (compact discs) and DVDs (digital versatile discs) 
  • Printed music, screenplays, and magazines
  • Film tape (16mm or lower)
  • Computer-readable media storage devices
  • Printed educational and test materials

Standard Post

Standard post or standard mail is also known as “bulk mail,” which is not time-sensitive. Most items included in this mail type are flyers, brochures, and marketing materials. 

Standard mail reduces shipping costs of these materials, which might be prohibitive when delivered using other USPS mailing services.  

How to Send Mail for Each Mail Class

When you mail a standard letter or a package, you must first consider your package’s weight, size, and destination. USPS will determine the postage rate by the dimensions and destination of your parcel. 

You can either go to a post office near you and ship your package there or have a courier pick it up from your home. 


USPS provides not only tracking services to its customers. Here are the different USPS transactions one can do online. 

  • Buy stamps or postage online.
  • Create and print labels for shipping.
  • Order items from the Postal Store.
  • Access Informed Delivery.  
  • Make payments online. You can only pay via PayPal for Postal Store and Click-N-Ship transactions.

Click-N-Ship is an online application where one can create postage labels. The Postal Store is the official online store of the Postal Service. 

At the Postal Service

The USPS, or the Postal Service, strives to improve its mailing services. The growing number of people using USPS shows that the mailing system is still relevant, even with the proliferation of email and social media. 

If you want to learn more about the over 31,330 USPS retail offices in the United States, visit Our site gives access to contact information and the address of the nearest post office in your area. 

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. Why can’t I track a USPS First-Class large or flat envelope shipment?

You can’t track USPS First-Class large or flat envelopes because they don’t have tracking. 

If you want large or flat envelopes tracked despite using First-Class Mail, you can purchase a Certified Mail add-on or have it shipped via First-Class Package services. 

2. How do I know if my First-Class Mail has been delivered?

You can use the free USPS Informed Delivery service to get a notification that your parcel has arrived at the nearest post office to your area. You can use other USPS delivery confirmation services with tracking, like Signature Confirmation. 


  1. One Day in the Postal Service
  2. What Domestic Mail Extra Services are Available?
  3. Registered Mail® International
  4. What is Signature Confirmation™?
  5. Return Receipt – The Basics
  6. Informed Delivery by USPS
  7. First-Class Mail
  8. First-Class Mail International
  9. USPS Price List