Retail

How Accurate Is USPS Tracking

By David Krug David Krug is the CEO & President of Bankovia. He's a lifelong expat who has lived in the Philippines, Mexico, Thailand, and Colombia. When he's not reading about cryptocurrencies, he's researching the latest personal finance software. 4 minute read

Tracking information from the United States Postal Service (USPS) is the best approach to ensure that your shipment reaches its destination. You may still have doubts about the accuracy of USPS tracking, especially if you’re waiting for an essential or expensive shipment. Keep reading to learn more about USPS tracking!

Is USPS Tracking Accurate?

Tracking from the USPS is often fairly accurate. Mail sent within the continental United States will have an accuracy of up to 95% by 2022. Due to the amount of parcels USPS handles each day, real-time tracking updates are not possible. After a scan, the vast majority of tracking data is automatically updated.

If you want to learn more about USPS tracking, continue reading to find out more!

What Is USPS Tracking?

Your package’s current location may be found using USPS tracking information. In addition, it may inform you whether or not a carrier has made an attempt to deliver your item. A 20-22-digit tracking number is provided to your parcel when you purchase a mail service that includes tracking (e.g. Priority Mail Express, Priority Mail, or Parcel Select).

You’ll find a barcode for this number on your shipping label or on the outside of your shipment. The barcode on your parcel will be scanned by USPS every time it arrives at a new location, be it a postal distribution center or a post office near you. If you have a tracking number, you may see where your parcel is in real time by entering it into the USPS website’s tracking feature.

Each purchase you make has a unique tracking number that is printed on the back of your sales receipt. First-Class mail, such as letters and cards, does not include tracking information. On top of that, monitoring isn’t allowed for anything under 13 ounces in weight.

Is the USPS Tracking System Accurate?

Generally speaking, the tracking information provided by the USPS is spot-on. Package location and delivery date are also included in this information. The accuracy of USPS tracking was put to the test by one news organization, which sent 33 items to 13 different cities throughout the country.

Ninety-eight percent of the parcels were delivered on time or ahead of schedule, indicating that USPS tracking is extremely reliable. Both the accuracy of delivery predictions and USPS location updates were examined by a news agency.

It achieved this by embedding GPS trackers in each parcel and comparing the data they collected with that of the United States Postal Service (USPS). Some of the information was accurate, while others were completely wrong. For instance, the USPS system reported that one shipment was in Fort Worth, Texas, while the box was actually in Tampa, Florida.

Does USPS Update Tracking?

All products with this service updated by USPS have their tracking information updated.
Mail Express, media mail, parcel select and first-class package service are all included in this package. At least once a day or more, the United States Postal Service (USPS) updates tracking information.

Is USPS Tracking Delayed?

The tracking information provided by USPS is generally accurate, however the system can occasionally fall behind or fail altogether. Within a few hours of scanning your shipment, tracking information is generally updated. The scan results, however, might take up to 24 hours to arrive at your location.

As the United States Postal Service handles an enormous number of shipments each day, this wait is to be expected. When it comes to precise updates, even the most advanced systems aren’t capable of doing so.

Despite the predicted delays in tracking information updates, it is still conceivable that tracking information does not reach the intended destination at all. The United States Postal Service (USPS) may be to blame for this. When this occurs, the postal service is known to skip scans in order to expedite package delivery. Defective scanners can also cause tracking updates to be lost or be delayed.

How Accurate Is USPS’ Expected Delivery Date?

The estimated delivery times provided by USPS are quite precise. For things being sent within the continental United States, they may be as accurate as 95%. Unfortunately, tracking information is less reliable for packages going to Alaska, Hawaii, or other countries. Unexpected events, such as adverse weather or workforce shortages, may also cause delivery dates to be delayed.

We’ve written about USPS tracking numbers being lost, USPS item numbers, and why USPS tracking isn’t updating if you’re interested in learning more.

Bottom Line

Tracking your parcels with the USPS is a terrific method to keep an eye on them. However, it’s not a flawless method, and it’s accurate and trustworthy most of the time. In the event of tracking difficulties, be patient; either your information will be updated or your delivery may arrive unexpectedly.

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