Are you tracking a package you’re expecting from UPS, but it is simply showing ‘label created’ with no further tracking information?
This can be an annoying message to see, especially if it’s been stuck on there for several days now.
So, what does it mean when UPS says ‘label created’, and what should you do if it gets stuck there?
In this article, I’ll be answering all of these questions and more!
What Does ‘Label Created’ Mean On UPS?
If UPS tracking shows ‘label created’, this means that the shipper has created a shipping label with UPS, and the label is registered in UPS’ system.
However, UPS has not yet received the actual package, and is waiting for it to arrive from the shipper. Until they actually receive it, no further updates can occur.
Although this message usually goes away quickly, this is actually normal.
Most eCommerce shippers (including those on marketplaces like Amazon, Etsy and eBay) purchase their shipping labels in bulk. This way, they can print them all out at once, and apply them to all packages they’re mailing out that day at one time.
This is different than how most people purchase UPS shipping labels individually, which often happens at a UPS store itself.
Once the shipper has taken the packages over to UPS, each one will be scanned in, and your tracking should update to show its on its way.
Why UPS Gets Stuck On ‘Label Created’
UPS shows ‘label created’ when they claim to have not yet received the package. However, there is actually two situations in which this can happen – with different delivery timelines for each one.
So, let’s quickly look over each reason now.
1. The Package Hasn’t Been Given To UPS Yet
As already mentioned, this one is by far the most common.
Until UPS actually receives the package from the shipper, they are unable to give any further information on it. From their perspective, they don’t know anything at all except that the shipper created a label. However, they couldn’t possibly predict when the package will actually make it to them, or if the shipper intends to bring it to them at all.
Thankfully, shippers have to pay for shipping labels when they purchase them, so they’re usually not printed unless the shipper actually intends to ship something.
Sadly, many merchants print shipping labels far before they actually give the packages to UPS.
This is because it makes them appear that they’ve shipped it quickly, even if they haven’t. Many systems like Amazon, eBay, Etsy and Shopify register the package as shipped as soon as the label is created, even if it isn’t delivered to UPS until days or even weeks later.
This is done so these marketplaces don’t punish the seller for late shipments, or so the seller can pass the blame off to UPS – even when it’s actually their fault if shipping is slow.
That being said, most companies hand the packages off as quickly as possible after the label has been created, and UPS usually scans it in within 1 business day.
2. UPS Didn’t Scan It In When They Received It
Even if the shipper does give the package to UPS, it will not update in UPS’ system until they scan it in.
All packages are supposed to be scanned when they are received. This registers with their system that the package has been handed off to them, and is in their possession.
In fact, your package will be scanned many more times as it departs and arrives at different UPS facilities.
If the first scan is missed however, your package will still be on its way. Unfortunately though, it won’t show any updates until it’s scheduled to be scanned again, often when it departs the current facility it’s at.
This means tracking may show it remaining on ‘label created’ for several days, even if the package is in fact on its way to you.
What To Do When UPS Doesn’t Update After ‘Label Created’
So, what should be done if UPS gets stuck on ‘label created?’
If it hasn’t yet been a few days, the first thing that you should do is simply wait.
Even if the shipper gives the package to UPS the day they create the label, it may not actually be scanned in until the next day, or even the day after that if it was left in a UPS drop box.
Additionally, if it turns out UPS forgot to scan the package when they received it, waiting a few days can give the shipment ample time to reach its next scan. This means it may appear before long, and will show you that it wasn’t actually any fault of the shipper.
Note however that it is the shipper that is responsible for ensuring the package arrives to you safely, and in a timely fashion.
So, if there are significant delays or the package never shows movement, contact the shipper on your behalf.
They are the ones that will need to have it sorted out with UPS, and some merchants may even offer you partial refunds or credits for any delays – Amazon being one of them.
And if by chance the shipper forgot to deliver the package to UPS, your message will certainly remind them!
How Long Will The Package Be Delayed?
So, how long can you expect your package to be delayed?
In an ideal world, the shipper would deliver the package to UPS as soon as the label was created. Unfortunately however, this isn’t always the case.
It’s important to keep in mind that UPS delivery times start as soon as they actually take possession of the package. So, if receiving the package via UPS Ground for example, the transit time is one to five business days after UPS receives it.
So, the amount of the delay will be entirely dependent on how quickly the shipper hands it off to them.
Note however that if UPS did actually receive the shipment, there should be no additional delay time added. Instead, tracking will simply show its first update as appearing even closer to you than it would have originally.
For the most accurate estimated delivery date, view the estimate provided on UPS’ tracking page. This will be calculated by all the data UPS has available, so it’s incredibly accurate!
Most of the time, ‘label created’ means that the shipper has created a UPS shipping label for the shipment, but has not actually given the package to UPS yet.
However, in rare cases it could also mean that UPS simply forgot to scan it after it was handed off to them.
If the label created message remains stuck for several days and UPS doesn’t start showing that the package is on the way, contact the shipper for assistance. They are the ones responsible for sorting it out with UPS, and may even be able to reimburse you for the shipping delay.
I hope that you’ve found this article helpful, and that it’s answered your questions.
If you have any other questions about UPS, please ask them using the comment form below and I will try to respond within 24 hours.
Thanks for reading, and wishing you the best!
– James McAllister