Are you expecting to receive a package from Amazon, but you aren’t sure where it will be delivered?
Because Amazon is such an enormous company – processing more than 66,000 orders every single hour, they use a wide variety of couriers to help deliver their packages.
So, is there any way to choose whether Amazon delivers packages to your mailbox or door, and how can you gain more control over the delivery process?
In this article, I’ll cover everything that you need to know!
Does Amazon Deliver To Your Mailbox?
Amazon may deliver to your mailbox, if the packages are shipped using USPS. However, if the packages are delivered using any other courier (including Amazon’s own delivery service), then the packages will be delivered to your door instead.
That is of course, unless you choose to have them delivered somewhere else on your property, which I’ll share information about later on.
Anyhow, this restriction largely comes in place for legal reasons.
Technically speaking, you do not own your mailbox – it is owned by USPS, and is considered federal property.
Third-party delivery services like UPS, Fedex and Amazon Flex are not legally allowed to put packages inside of your mailbox – only USPS can.
So, while packages that are delivered by USPS may get placed in your mailbox, it is not a guarantee. Even USPS themselves may choose to deliver to your door in some situations.
You can track which courier is delivering your package by going to the Orders page on Amazon.
Then, clicking on the button that says ‘Track Package.’
Amazon will pull up the tracking details for this order. You can then see which shipping service was used to ship the package.
In this instance, this order was shipped with UPS, meaning that it could not be delivered to the mailbox.
Note: Packages that are sent via UPS SurePost are the one exception to this rule. With UPS SurePost, UPS hands the package off to USPS for final delivery. Fedex used to offer a similar service – Fedex SmartPost, but this has been rebranded into Fedex Ground Economy (and these packages are no longer delivered via USPS.)
Most Packages Won’t Fit In Your Mailbox, Anyway
It’s worth keeping in mind that even if these other couriers were allowed to place packages in your mailbox, the majority of them wouldn’t fit.
Amazon boxes are big and bulky, and couldn’t comfortably fit inside.
Not only that, but they would block the ability for USPS to place important mail inside the mailbox, and hamper their ability to store important deliveries in there themselves.
Size is an important factor to keep in mind for this reason. Even if a delivery is made by USPS, they may choose to deliver it to your door if it is too large to fit inside of your mailbox, or any package lockers that may be attached to it.
What Percentage Of Amazon Packages Are Handled By USPS?
So, what percentage of packages are handled by USPS?
By knowing this information, you can gain a bit more insight as to whether or not your package may be delivered to your mailbox, even if you do not yet know the courier that will be delivering it to you.
— Bluegrass Capital (@BluegrassCap) June 27, 2019
According to information from Rakuten Intelligence, roughly 1/3 of all Amazon packages within the United States were delivered via USPS, as of May 2019.
However, Amazon has been rapidly expanding their own delivery service, so it’s likely this number is even lower now than it was in the past.
Additionally, certain factors increase or decrease the likelihood that USPS will be used to handle the shipment, or that the Amazon package will be delivered to your mailbox. Let’s look over some of these factors now.
Mailbox Or Door Delivery – What Factors Impact The Chance?
Determining which shipping service to use for your order is a complex decision, and a large number of factors go into account.
By being aware of them, you can better predict whether or not Amazon will deliver to your mailbox, or whether the package will end up at your front door.
While these are just a few of the factors, they are perhaps the most important ones!
As mentioned earlier, the courier ends up mattering the most.
Unless the package is being delivered by USPS, then it simply cannot and will not end up being delivered to your mailbox.
While you can request the package be sent to an Amazon locker or held at a Fedex store for example, only USPS can deliver packages to a mailbox – and there are no exceptions to that.
Put quite simply, the package has to be able to fit in your mailbox, in order to be stored there.
This is true even if it was shipped using USPS.
If the package is too large to fit, USPS will opt to deliver it directly to your door instead.
Thankfully, packages that are larger tend to be shipped more frequently with UPS and Fedex anyway, as they are usually cheaper than USPS for larger packages.
So, this may not be something that you need to worry about.
Packages that are shipped to rural addresses are more likely to be shipped via USPS, or with a service like UPS SurePost (which has USPS handle the final delivery.)
This is because USPS has to deliver mail regardless of the address. However, for the occasional shipment in rural or remote locations, this can be very uneconomical for companies like UPS or Fedex, who may have to go very far out of the way to deliver to just one person.
So, to save money, USPS may be more likely to handle these shipments. And if USPS is the one delivering, the chance that your Amazon order ends up in your mailbox is higher.
Fulfilled By Amazon, Or A Third-Party Seller
Finally, the last major factor is who is actually shipping the package.
If the item is being shipped by Amazon themselves, they are more likely to use their own delivery service in areas that it’s available in, or a courier like UPS.
However, USPS is often cheaper for third-party sellers to ship with, and in some cases may be the only option available to them – not every town has a UPS or Fedex store, but a post office is almost always close by. So, it is easier for third-party sellers to use USPS to ship with.
Therefore, if you’re ordering from a third-party seller, the likelihood that they use USPS goes up!
How To Request Your Package Be Delivered Somewhere Else
Did you know that you can request your package be delivered somewhere else – such as your garage, or back door?
This may be a more secure option, that can protect your packages from thieves or poor weather.
For all other couriers that Amazon uses – including their own delivery service, you can specify where you want the package left by clicking on ‘Add Delivery Instructions.’ This button can be found underneath your shipping address while checking out.
In addition to the options above, this is also where you can request that the package be delivered to one of Amazon’s parcel lockers instead, should you wish to do so.
While there is no way to request that Amazon delivers to your mailbox, you do have a lot of additional options available to you!
The overwhelming majority of the time, Amazon will deliver packages to your front door, rather than to your mailbox. This is because only a small percentage of their packages are shipped via USPS.
However, couriers like UPS and Fedex allow you to specify where you want your package left, via UPS My Choice or Fedex Delivery Manager. This can give you more control over how you receive your shipments.
I hope that you’ve found this article to be helpful. If you have any other questions about receiving packages from Amazon, please ask them using the comment form below. I can usually respond to all questions quite quickly.
Wishing you the best, and thanks for reading!
– James McAllister