UPS has an extensive network and uses an advanced system to ensure that orders make it to their destination without issues. However, some recipients have come across issues where the UPS tracking system indicates that a package has been delivered to the front door, but upon checking, no package was actually received.

This issue can occur for different reasons such as package theft, an incorrect system update, collection by a neighbor or household member, and various others. If you have found yourself in this situation, your first move should be to ask your household members or neighbors if they have your package. If this doesn’t resolve the issue, you should contact UPS and file a claim.

In this article, we will cover the reason why UPS may have indicated that your package has been delivered, although you have not received it. We will also discuss how to resolve this issue and how to prevent it from happening in the future.

Reasons Why This Happens When Using UPS

Although UPS’s tracking system is very reliable when it comes to showing delivery statuses, in rare instances it may state that your order has been delivered when you haven’t received it. There are different reasons why this may happen, which we’ve outlined in more detail below.

Incorrect Delivery Update

The UPS driver could have incorrectly updated your order status on their system before actually delivering your package. In this situation, the system would state the package has been delivered when in reality it is still out for delivery.

Such problems could happen if the driver accidentally marked your package as delivered while delivering another package or in the middle of their delivery route.

Your Package Was Collected By a Household Member or Neighbor

It’s also possible that your neighbor or someone from your household collected the package on your behalf. This is often done out of kindness and to prevent package theft. In this situation, the package was delivered to the correct address and delivery location.

Your Package Was Stolen

Unfortunately, package theft from porch pirates (people who steal unattended packages) is a reality in some areas. These opportunistic individuals monitor delivery trucks and snatch unattended packages on doorsteps and porches. This could be a common problem in certain neighborhoods.

The UPS Driver Has Placed the Package Elsewhere

In some cases, the UPS driver may have placed your package at a location you don’t usually check, such as a side entrance or behind a plant by your doorstep. This can happen even if you give specific delivery instructions to have your package placed at the front door.

The delivery driver may have done this unintentionally by misreading your delivery instructions or accidentally forgetting to check them. However, they may even do this intentionally if UPS drivers feel the package isn’t safe being left at your front door, either due to potential theft or to protect it from the rain.

How Can I Resolve This Issue?

Many recipients eagerly anticipate the arrival of a long-awaited package, only to see the UPS status as “Delivered”, but ultimately find that there is no package. Here’s what you can do if you’re confronted with a situation like this.

Verify Tracking Details

Your first move should be to visit the UPS website or use the UPS app to verify your order’s tracking details. Check if UPS has provided any additional information on your order’s status.

If you’ve opted for a ‘”UPS Signature Required” service that requires you to verify your identity and signature upon collecting the package, check if the person who took your order can be identified.

If your order doesn’t require a signature upon delivery, check if the UPS driver uploaded a photo of the delivery. UPS drivers typically take a picture upon drop-off, as proof of delivery.

Check with Neighbors, Third Parties, or the Surrounding Areas

Ask your household member or neighbors if they collected your package for you. Alternatively, check around your property and see if the UPS delivery driver could have placed the package in a hidden spot to protect it from theft or rain. If you still can’t find your package, proceed to the next step.

Contact UPS Customer Service

You should reach out to UPS customer service only once you have exhausted each of the other options as described above. Once you’re speaking with a UPS representative, let them know your tracking number, and they will then guide you on your next steps.

Alternatively, you can also file a claim on the UPS website. This is generally a straightforward process in which you submit your package details, explain your role in the claim, provide additional documentation, and then submit the claim.

Best Practices To Avoid This From Happening

While it’s not possible to influence the tracking system or infrastructure from UPS, there are certain ways to ensure that your package arrives safely at your front door. Below are some of the best tips and tricks.

Ensure That Your Delivery Location Is Secure

Ensure the delivery location you have specified on your order is safe and secure. This will reduce the likelihood of package theft. If you live in areas where packages are more prone to theft, it may be best to have them delivered to your workplace or a UPS Access Point instead.

You can also leave special delivery instructions to let the UPS driver know where to drop off the package. It may also help to keep the area around your front door covered to keep your package dropoff point shielded from the rain. Good locations could be behind a wall or plant, inside a package box, or in similar concealed areas.

Make Yourself Available During Delivery

While UPS packages can be dropped off at their delivery location even if the recipient is not required to be physically available, it is generally best to ensure you are at home to receive your order.

This is especially important for packages that contain high-value or important items. Moreover, this will reduce the likelihood of someone stealing the package from your doorstep. It will also allow you to acknowledge receipt of your package.

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Gerrit Poel

Co-Founder & Writer
at freightcourse

About the Author

Gerrit is a certified international supply chain management professional with 16 years of industry experience, having worked for one of the largest global freight forwarders.

As the co-founder of freightcourse, he’s committed to his passion for serving as a source of education and information on various supply chain topics.