OverviewAccording to the basic principles of the UPU, all international shipments are divided by weight and the tracking opportunities. The division by weight is clear up to 2 kilos is a small packet, more than 2 kilos a parcel. The tracking option is automatically launched only to parcels and sending that are registered via EMS service. As for the small packet sent via regular mail to get the tracking option it needs to be registered. During the registration process, the sending is assigned with a unique code that consists of 13 characters, 9 of which are numbers. Knowing the registration number you can always track the way of the item you sent or ordered.
What does the tracking number consist of?The first symbol of the code for small packages is Latin letter “R” which stands for “registered”. The exception is the packets sent by EMS; in this case, the first symbol is the “E” letter. The packets without the tracking option, the tracking number is also assigned, but in this case, it is the inside information of the postal service and neither sender nor recipient knows it. The code is not tracked if it begins with “L”. If you receive such parcel to Russia from another country, it will be given an internal code starting with “RA” and finishing with “RU”. This is also the inside information and is used for statistical records, and for payments to the postal operator of the sender’s country. Shipments weighing more than 2 kilos (parcels) have the tracking number starting with “C” letter. In such way, in the first in the first two characters of the code the information about the type of the postal sending is encrypted. The second symbol can be any letter of the Latin alphabet, because this symbol is only subsidiary. The last two characters stand for the sender’s country. Two-letter countries codes are dictated by the international standard ISO 3166-1-alpha-2 code. As a result, the registration number will look like this:
- EEХХХХХХХХYGB (EMS – sending from Great Britain)
- CQХХХХХХХХYCN (parcel from China)
- RAХХХХХХХХYUS (small packet from the USA)
- LAХХХХХХХХYCN (unregistered small packet from China)
Features of obtaining and using the tracking numberIf you are the sender of the postal item, you can receive the tracking number either in the post office where the sending is registered or remotely, after registering it through the Internet. In the second case, it turns out that you already know the tracking number even though the package itself has not reached the post office, and you won’t find any information about it in the tracking systems. If you are the recipient then to find out the tracking number, you need to contact the sender. While making a purchase at the online store very often the number is added to the information about the status of your order. If this did not happen then you have to send a request. The same applies to the private vendors (for example, the ones that trade on the virtual auctions). Having the tracking number and using it to track your parcel you must take into account the fact that the status update in the database may be somewhat delayed and did not correspond to the present situation. In particular, sometimes the recipient has received the parcel, and the tracking service is still showing its status as “Sorting”. In general, taking into consideration this small error in 2 days you can estimate the delivery time.
How the postal item is deliveredThe shipment of any international postal sending includes the following steps:
- Registration (reception).
- Sorting ( may include some additional steps).
- Customs procedures.
- Shipment from the sender’s to recipient’s country.
- Customs procedures in the recipient’s country.
- Sorting in the recipient’s country.
- Delivery to the final destination.
- Getting your item.
Tracking sitesKnowing the tracking number of your sending you can track its location using the appropriate sections of the postal services websites. The interface of these pages is usually very simple all you have to do is to enter your track code the given field and click the button finishing the action. This button is usually called “TRACK” or “OK”. Some services also have a field for verification code, which is used a protection from automated form of filling. After you send your request, you will see either the way that your sending have already passed or its last status (depends on the characteristics of the particular website). The website of any postal operator either national or commercial can easily be found on the Internet when you search it.
Tracker for tracking postal itemsOn our website, you will find simple and convenient tool for tracking your sending, so-called tracker. It is a fully automatic system, which receives information from more than a hundred postal operators, including Russian Post, USPS, China Post, Singapore Post, British Royal Mail, UPS, and dozens of others. Just enter the track number of postal items, wait a second until the system will detect what the sender and the recipient countries are. If necessary the country can be identified manually. And click the “Track package” button. The system will check the postal services and display the consolidated information. Also, tracker is available from any page of our website. Just enter your parcel’s number in the search box on the site and click “Track”.
Why use tracking optionTypically a postal operator’s client use the tracking option if the delivery time does not meet his expectations. Usually the users of the internet shops, the one that are new in this, overuse this option. Because while tracking their sending they get the feeling of control over the situation. More experience shoppers usually do not worry much if their order is on its way for more than month, and use the tracking systems only to get the information. Although, it happens that people are forced to use this system because the sending is on its way for too long, or even is lost somewhere on its way. In this case, the information from the tracking services is used as a proof to resolve the dispute with the seller or postal operator. The sophisticated user can consciously access the tracking system to compare the terms in which the parcel passes particular stage with the normal terms, so in case of violation of these terms he can make a complaint to the postal operator.
What determines the delivery timeThe delivery time of a postal sending depends on the number of the features. In particular,
- the category of the sending (packages have priority before the small packets);
- the type of the postal operator ( regular service or express);
- the characteristics of the operator of the particular country;
- the distance between the place from which the item was sent to the nearest point of international postal exchange;
- the time of the shipment from one country to another (may vary from 2 weeks to 2 months);
- the time of the year (in winter the sending usually go longer due to the numerous holidays);
- 1-2 weeks – sending sent by EMS;
- 2-3 weeks – international parcel (sending weighing more than 2 kilos);
- 3-4 weeks – small packet.