USPS Lost Tracking Number

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June 8, 2023

Expecting a package without knowing exactly where it is can be frustrating. Usually, USPS generates and provides a tracking number for most packages, except for First-Class Mail letters, flats, and postcards. 

What will you do if you lose your USPS Tracking number? Can you track your USPS package without a tracking number?

Let’s say you’ve sent a parcel to your friend but misplaced the tracking number. If you’re concerned that your delivery item is delayed or lost but don’t know how to track it without its USPS Tracking number, read on. 

This article details what to do if you lose your USPS Tracking number. It includes information on tracking your USPS package without a tracking number, including how to make a USPS lost package claim. The write-up also explains whether getting a tracking number is possible if you lose your receipt.  

FindPostOffice.org is a complete and accessible post office lookup in California, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Texas, Michigan, and other states in the U.S. Our site lets you access information related to USPS and its services, including ways to track your package after you’ve lost the receipt and tracking number.

What Will Happen if You Lose Your Tracking Number?

If you lose your tracking number, you won’t be able to track your USPS package because you’re the only person who can access that number. So you must keep your tracking number somewhere safe. 

What Is the USPS Lost Tracking Number?

Care center agents and local post offices can’t assist in recovering lost tracking numbers. USPS (United States Postal Service) doesn’t keep transaction records. The agency only keeps the mailing receipt that it gives you. 

Let’s say you’ve lost your email and mailing receipt and, as a result, can’t access your USPS Tracking number. You can’t track the status of your parcel without a tracking number unless you have a way to find the lost mail receipt or restore the confirmation email from USPS.com. 

How Do You Locate a Lost USPS Tracking Number? 

USPS suggests using these resources to locate a lost USPS Tracking number: 

  • Mail receipt
  • Online label record if you bought postage through services like eBay and Click-N-Ship

Click-N-Ship is a USPS service that allows you to create pre-paid Priority Mail shipping labels on ordinary printer paper 

  • Sales receipt
  • Self-service kiosk eReceipt

Note that USPS customers who subscribe to the USPS Informed Delivery service can see the tracking number on their dashboard. 

What Is the Solution for a Lost USPS Tracking Number?

The solution for a lost USPS Tracking number is to wait until USPS employees deliver your order.

The shipping time for domestic mail and shipping services varies. For instance, the shipping time for the Priority Mail Express postal service is one to two days. 

Regardless of whether your order has bounced back or been misplaced, you’ll have to go through the standard waiting period before you take a new step. You can contact USPS once the required waiting time period has passed. 

Can USPS Look Up Your Parcel With Other Information?

Even though the U.S. Postal Service has other information about your parcel, including the sending date, the sender’s address, and the recipient’s address, the agency can’t use these details to look up your package and find out where it is. 

Your USPS Tracking number is associated with your package, not the other information. Since your number is unique, there’s no risk of getting it mixed up with others. 

What to Do if You Lost Your USPS Tracking Receipt and Number

Suppose you lost your USPS tracking receipt and number. The postal service can’t help you gather tracking information because the agency doesn’t keep tracking I.D. and numbers. 

Your last option is to wait for a few days until your mail reaches the recipient. For example, the waiting period for international mail can be up to 28 working days.

What Would You Do if You Lost a Priority Mail Express Tracking I.D?

Priority Mail Express includes USPS Tracking and up to $100 insurance with most shipments. If you lost your tracking I.D., USPS could help you gather the information about your package since you’re a Priority Mail Express user. 

You can visit the nearest post office or go to the same post office from where you have sent your parcel. You can get the tracking details of your package from those locations but expect to pay an additional charge. 

Can You Track Your Package Without Your Tracking Number?

You can’t track your parcel without a tracking number unless the shipping service that you use is Priority Mail Express.  

Priority Mail Express offers next-day to two-day delivery service by 6:00 PM with a money-back guarantee. This shipping service provides Sunday and holiday delivery in various major markets but for an additional fee. 

Priority Mail Express also offers a free Package Pickup service. 

How to Track a USPS Package Without a Tracking Number

You can track a USPS package without a tracking number if you set up a USPS Informed Delivery Account. USPS Informed Delivery offers a digital preview of a customer’s incoming mail.  

Suppose you’re a subscriber of the USPS Informed Delivery service. In that case, you can set package tracking notifications to automatically receive text and email alerts with your parcel’s delivery status and other details. With USPS Informed Delivery, you can track packages and manage them in one convenient place. 

Finding a Lost Tracking Number: What Steps Should You Follow?

Care center agents and local post offices don’t have a way to recover a tracking number. If you lost your tracking number, here are the steps you should follow in hopes of finding it:  

  1. Look for the receipt you received when you mailed your package. Check your purse, wallet, or any bags you were carrying the day you acquired the receipt. 
  2. Check if you have the insurance receipt. You must have an insurance slip along with the normal receipt, with the USPS tracking information printed on it. 
  3. Search your inbox and junk mail or deleted folders. You may use your email’s search function to look for key phrases, such as “dispatched,” “tracking,” or “USPS.”  
  4. Suppose you purchased from an online retailer. Check with the online store whether its confirmation or dispatch email has a tracking number. 
  5. Contact the person from whom you purchased the item. The seller may still have the tracking information. 
  6. Contact USPS. Although the agency is unlikely to provide help when you lose your tracking number, there’s no harm in trying. 
  7. Ask the recipient if they are an Informed Delivery subscriber. They’ll see the tracking number on their dashboard if they have an active subscription for such a service. 
  8. Wait for your package delivery. If all else fails, you have no choice but to wait for the parcel. Suppose your item doesn’t arrive at its destination on the indicated delivery date. In that case, you can file a Missing Mail search request.  

You’re Not the Sender. How Do You Get a Tracking Number?

If you’re the recipient, you can request the tracking number from the sender. 

Let’s say you bought something online. You can see the tracking number on the retailer’s website, usually under the “order information” section. Still, not all sellers upload such information on their websites. 

You need to request a tracking number directly from the seller if it isn’t indicated on their website. USPS can’t give you the tracking information because the agency doesn’t store it. 

Meanwhile, if you’re an active Informed Delivery subscriber, you can go to your dashboard and find the tracking number. 

What to Do if the Post Office Can’t Find Your Package

Suppose the post office can’t find your package. You can file a claim provided that your item is insured. 

Here are the steps to file a claim: 

  1. Check Filing Periods 

There’s a different filing period for each mail service. The filing period is based on your receipt’s mailing date and whether your parcel arrived at its destination damaged.  

  1. Gather All Documents 

Ensure you include all the right documentation with your claim so that USPS can approve your request more quickly. Save all your proof documents until the agency resolves your claim.

  1. File Your Claim 

The easiest and quickest way to file your claim is online. Suppose you can’t file a claim on USPS.com. Then start a claim process by mail. Once you file your claim, keep all your proof documents until USPS resolves the issue. 

Finding Missing Mail: How to Start Your Search

Your mail is important to the U.S. Postal Service whether you’re a sender or receiver. If you think your mailpiece is delayed or lost in transit, follow these steps so that USPS can help you find your mail item. 

  1. Check the Current Status of Your Mail or Package 

Check USPS Tracking if your mail or package has tracking to see your item’s current status. 

  1. Complete a Help Request Form  

Complete USPS’ online help request form before starting a Missing Mail search. Use a desktop computer to submit your form. USPS will forward your request to your local Post Office facility to help locate the missing item. 

  1. Submit a Missing Mail Search Request

Let’s say you submitted your online help request form and still didn’t get your package after seven days. If that’s the case, then submit a Missing Mail search request with these pieces of information:

  • Recipient mailing address
  • Sender mailing address
  • Type and size of envelope or container you used
  • Identifying information, including the USPS Tracking number, the tracking label receipt, the Click-N-Ship label receipt, and the mailing date from your mailing receipt  
  • The content’s description, like the brand, color, model, or size of the item, whenever applicable
  • Photos that could help USPS recognize your missing item 

What to Expect Next

Here are the things you should expect when you inform USPS about your missing item: 

USPS Mail Search

Once USPS receives your Missing Mail search request, the agency will send you a confirmation email, including a periodic update about the search.

Suppose USPS finds your mail or package. The agency will send your item to your address. Sometimes USPS can’t find missing mail items due to recovery restrictions. 

Requesting a Refund

Let’s say you use Priority Mail Express or other USPS services with a money-back guarantee. If that’s the case, you can send a refund request. 

File a Claim

You can file a claim if your package or mail has insurance. For missing content or damaged package, USPS recommends filing a claim immediately. USPS customers must file a claim by 60 days from the date of mailing. 

Contact USPS Support 

You can connect with USPS by filling out a short form or checking the contact information for postal store orders, technical support, and other mail-related concerns. 

General Information 

Check the USPS FAQ section to learn more about delayed delivery, tracking packages, and USPS products and services. Here are other helpful links:

You may also email USPS Customer Care Service or call 1-800-ASK-USPS (1-800-275-8777). The hours of operation are Mondays through Fridays from 8:00 AM to 8:30 PM. The agency is also open on Saturdays from 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM. 

What Is the USPS Tracking Service?

USPS Tracking service offers end-to-end package or mail tracking. The service is available for most domestic parcels, except for postcards and standard letters. You can request USPS for a tracking number but for an extra fee. 

What Package Tracking Is and Why It Is Important

Package tracking gives you end-to-end item tracking using a tracking number to know the current status of a particular package. Choosing a mail service with package tracking can lessen your worries, allowing you to track the status of your parcel with ease. 

What Items Can Be Tracked by USPS?

USPS can track various items depending on the mail service that you choose. Here are USPS services with package tracking: 

  • Priority Mail Express
  • Priority Mail
  • USPS Retail Ground (tracking for packages only)
  • First-Class Package Service
  • Medial Mail (tracking for packages only) 

Meanwhile, First-Class Mail doesn’t include end-to-end tracking. Still, it’s an affordable USPS service. You can also pay extra to get tracking information. 

On the other hand, tracking is included in several international mailing services. However, some destinations may apply tracking restrictions. 

What Is the USPS Tracking Number?

USPS Tracking number allows customers to check the status of their delivery. USPS doesn’t have a public record of the individual tracking numbers of every parcel. So it’s not possible to identify a tracking number by your package and name. 

What Does the Tracking Number Look Like?

Here’s what a tracking number looks like based on the USPS service: 

USPS ServiceSample Number
USPS Tracking9400 1000 0000 0000 0000 00
Priority Mail Express InternationalEC 000 000 000 US
Priority Mail9205 5000 0000 0000 0000 00
Priority Mail Express9270 1000 0000 0000 0000 00EA 000 000 000 US
Certified Mail9407 3000 0000 0000 0000 00
Priority Mail InternationalCP 000 000 000 US
Collect on Delivery Hold for Pickup9303 3000 0000 0000 0000 00
Registered Mail9208 8000 0000 0000 0000 00
Global Express Guaranteed82 000 000 00
Signature Confirmation9202 1000 0000 0000 0000 00

Where Do You Find Your Tracking Number?

You can look for your tracking number in the following places: 

  • The shipping confirmation email from an online retailer
  • The post office shipping receipt
  • Email confirmation from USPS.com
  • Sales receipt if you purchased insurance at the post office
  • The bottom peel-off portion of the USPS Tracking label 

How Do You Use a Tracking Number?

You can use a tracking number by going to the USPS website and entering the tracking number into the search field. You can also use the USPS mobile app and enter the tracking number. 

Does All Mail Have a Tracking Number?

Not all mail has a tracking number. Mail items that don’t include a tracking number are the following: 

  • Certain marketing mail parcels
  • Standard letters (although you can request a tracking service for an added cost) 
  • Postcards 
  • Periodicals 

Frequently Asked Questions About USPS Tracking

  1. Can I track my USPS package by address?

You can’t track a USPS Tracking number by address. However, the USPS Informed Delivery service added to your account lets you track the packages you send and those mail items sent to your address. 

  1. Can I track my package by name?

You can’t track a package by name. However, you can set up an Informed Delivery service using your USPS account to track your packages or use your USPS Tracking number. 

  1. How do I send a package from USPS? 

You should use a box big enough to hold what you’re sending. Pack your box to protect your content, address your package, and choose a mail service. 

USPS offers various mail services. Take note of your package size, weight, and how quickly you want it to arrive at its destination to help you choose the right mail service option. 

Also, correct postage helps your parcel arrive on time. Enter your package information into the USPS Postage Calculator to know the postage prices for different services. Meanwhile, USPS shipping costs vary depending on several factors.

You can visit the post office near you to ship your package, leave your box with an Approved Postal Provider, or request free package pickups. You can drop your parcel in a blue collection box if it is small.  

  1. How do I track a USPS package?

Whether you’re the recipient or sender, you can track your USPS package online using USPS Tracking on the USPS website. You can also send a text message to 28777 (2USPS) with your tracking number as the content of the message or download the USPS Mobile app for Android and iPhone. 

  1. How do I make a USPS lost package claim? 

You can make a USPS lost package claim if your item includes insurance. You may call 800-ASK-USPS (800-275-8777), so USPS can give you a claim form. 

Send the completed form with all the other documentation for loss or damage of a package mailed with insured services to the address printed on the form.  

Visit this page for information on USPS shipping insurance and delivery services. 

  1. Do I need to have a tracking number to report mail as lost?

You don’t need a tracking number to report mail as lost. When you submit a missing mail request, you need to give the following information: 

  • The date of mailing
  • The sender’s address
  • The recipient’s address
  • What the package looked like
  • A description of the content
  • The tracking number, if available 
  1. I didn’t receive a tracking number. What should I do?

If you didn’t receive a tracking number, chances are your package doesn’t include one. First-Class Mail letters, flats, and postcards aren’t eligible for USPS Tracking. 

  1. Can I get a tracking number if I lose my receipt?

Getting a tracking number from a local post office or care center is only possible once your receipt has been recovered. However, if you subscribed to the USPS Informed Delivery service, you’ll find your item’s tracking number in your dashboard. 

References

  1. What are the Types of First-Class Mail®?
    https://faq.usps.com/s/article/What-are-the-Types-of-First-Class-Mail
  2. How to find your tracking number
    https://faq.usps.com/s/article/How-to-find-your-tracking-number
  3. Send Mail & Packages
    https://www.usps.com/ship/
  4. Priority Mail Express
    https://www.usps.com/ship/priority-mail-express.htm
  5. Find Missing Mail
    https://www.usps.com/help/missing-mail.htm
  6. Informed Delivery by USPS
    https://www.usps.com/manage/informed-delivery.htm
  7. File a USPS Claim: Domestic
    https://www.usps.com/help/claims.htm
  8. Contact Us
    https://www.usps.com/help/contact-us.htm
  9. USPS Tracking
    https://faq.usps.com/s/topic/0TOt00000004HFmGAM/usps-tracking-?tabset-44809=2
  10. Sending Packages
    https://www.usps.com/ship/packages.htm
  11. USPS Tracking® – The Basics
    https://faq.usps.com/s/article/USPS-Tracking-The-Basics
  12. Claims for Loss or Damage
    https://about.usps.com/publications/pub370/pub370_v10_revision_012016_tech_013.htm
  13. What are the Types of First-Class Mail®?
    https://faq.usps.com/s/article/What-are-the-Types-of-First-Class-Mail