How to Add Delivery Instructions to USPS?

There are times when you want to add specific delivery instructions on your parcel. For instance, when delivering a parcel containing fragile goods.

Now the question is how do you add delivery instructions to USPS? Is it even possible? 

The short answer is yes. You can add specific delivery instructions to the USPS. This can be done using its Delivery Instructions service. In this post, I will give you all the details you need to know.

What is USPS Delivery Instructions Service?

The USPS Delivery Instructions Service allows you to add specific delivery instructions to certain packages. In other words, you can authorize or specify how certain incoming mail-pieces or packages are to be delivered.

You need to add the instructions online. Once you are done, the packages will be delivered at a specific location at your address, a different domestic address, or at the Post Office.

You will find all the options online. All you have to do is select the one that you think is convenient for you.

If your package is eligible, you can also add Extra Services or even upgrade the mail class. However, you should know that the Delivery Instructions setup is often a paid service.

Before you opt for this option make sure you go through the setup options both free and paid. You can access Delivery Instructions through your USPS account.

What type of shipments is eligible for Delivery Instructions?

The next big question is what packages are eligible for delivery instructions. The main eligibility condition is a barcode.

Your package should carry the USPS Tracking barcode so that you check it online and confirm whether it is eligible or not. 

Here is what you need to do:

  1. First, you need to go to the official USPS website and log in to your account.
  2. Now enter the tracking number in the given box and click on the option “Search.”
  3. You will be shown the recent tracking status of your package.
  4. If your package is eligible for the Delivery Instructions service, you will be shown the option “Delivery Instructions” on your screen. It will appear on the right side of your screen under the heading “Available Actions.” 

These are the items/situations that are not eligible for Delivery Instructions:

  • International items 
  • The package is already delivered or out for delivery
  • Package to be delivered to a military address
  • Packages that are insured for $500 or more
  • Packages and mail-pieces with Collect on Delivery service
  • Shipment requires a signature upon delivery 
  • Address with an active Hold Mail request
  • An item with an active USPS Package Intercept service
  • Address with a Temporary Forwarding service
  • An item with an active Hold For Pickup

If your shipment falls under any of these categories, then it is not eligible for the USPS Delivery Instructions service. 

Fees for USPS Delivery Instructions Service

There are both free and paid USPS Delivery Instructions services available. It depends entirely on what Delivery Instruction service you select.

Here are the details you need to take note of: 

No Cost Options

  • Delivery/redelivery to a specific location at your address
  • Hold for Pickup at your post office
  • Delivery to a neighbour’s home

Upgrade Fee Options

Notifications Of USPS Delivery Instructions Request

Based on the options you have selected to set up Delivery Instructions, you will receive any of the following email notifications. 

  1. Confirmation email to let you know that your Delivery Instructions request was successful
  2. confirmation email to let you know that your shipment is delivered 
  3. An email if you made a paid request, and the actual postage exceeds the estimated postage that was provided to you at the time of the request
  4. If your shipment needs to be repackaged, they will send you an email with a new USPS Tracking Number
  5. If your shipment is undeliverable, you will be sent an email with the reason for non-delivery

Note: Once you have submitted your delivery instructions request, you cannot cancel it.

USPS Delivery Instructions Not Working:

Sometimes, the customer might encounter the problem where USPS Delivery Instructions fail to work. It’s truly very frustrating when such errors occur.

Here are the reasons why that happens and how to overcome it. There are top three reasons why USPS Delivery Instructions don’t work: 

1. There might be some technical issues

it might be due to any internet issues in your locality, or maybe their system is facing some technical difficulties. This can be solved by logging out of your account and then waiting a few minutes before logging in again. Or, you can also check the internet service at your end and fix it if there is a problem. 

2. Order has been shipped:

Another reason for such an error might be that the order has already been shipped and scanned at a unit. In that case, the feasible solution is to contact the Post Office directly. Call the local Post Office supervisor, explain the issue you are facing and request them to follow the specific delivery instructions you need for your package. Remember to be cool and polite during your conversation, and the work will be done smoothly.

3. Delivery location does not handle:

The third reason is that the delivery location you chose or the parcel you ordered is not eligible to handle any specific delivery instructions. There is not much you can do about this issue. You can call the Post Office or the local carrier to know why it’s ineligible and ask them to offer a solution for the predicament.

There can be several other reasons why this issue erupts. But if you find yourself in a fix and unable to use the feature, the best solution will be to contact the Post Office directly and discuss the matter with them. 

How to Change Delivery Instructions USPS?

USPS also allows you to change the delivery instructions of a package that has already been ordered. 

Here are the steps to change the Delivery Instructions on USPS:

Step 1: Visit the official website of USPS

Step 2: Enter your login credentials and log in to your USPS account

Step 3: Find the mail whose delivery instruction you want to change

Step 4: Insert the mail item’s pursuit range (incoming)

Step 5: Click on the arrow over the “Correct” option

Step 6: Hover over the option “Available Actions”

Step 7: Click on the “Delivery Instruction” option present underneath

Step 8: Make the changes you need for the selected parcel

Step 9: Check once before submitting the changed instructions

Step 10: Click on the Submit button to confirm your action 

It is to be noted here that not all parcels or delivery locations are eligible to avail of this feature of changing Delivery Instruction. You will be allowed to proceed to Step 7 only if your package and its delivery destination are eligible.

If USPS does allow you to change the delivery instruction, you won’t be required to pay any extra fees for that action.

However, if you change the delivery address to someplace that needs additional postage, you will have to pay the extra postage charge as required.

Also, suppose you want to upgrade your delivery method to the two-day or overnight delivery process. In that case, you will have to pay the additional shipping charges required to avail that feature.

USPS Won’t Let Me Change Delivery Instructions:

In certain situations, USPS can’t allow you to change your Delivery Instructions. 

The number one situation is when your package or delivery location is not eligible for adding any additional delivery instructions or changing it. 

The second situation is when the package has already been shipped or is out for delivery and hence, is not in a position to change the delivery instructions anymore.

Another situation might be that the Courier Service cannot comply with the delivery instruction you are suggesting.

Maybe following that particular instruction might give rise to an issue on their end. Or perhaps they don’t deem the option safe enough for your package.

Plus, many unforeseen circumstances can prevent the Postal Company from allowing you to change the delivery instructions.

In all such cases, the best solution will be to contact the Post Office directly and discuss the issue. You can also opt for alternate services like Hold Package, Pick Up, Package Intercept, etc.

Hold Package service allows you to prevent the parcel from being delivered to the original location and hold it at some secure location for pickup until you are ready to receive it.

Package Intercept service allows you to redirect your package to some other address, provided that it’s not out for delivery or has not been delivered already to the original address.

Many such USPS services can give you a safe delivery even when you can’t change the delivery instructions directly.

USPS Delivery Instructions service is a very useful service. It helps you to authorise how your shipment is to be delivered. Now that you know the details, it should be easier for you to use this service.


Why do you need to add delivery instructions to your USPS package?

There are times when you would want to add specific delivery instructions to certain USPS packages or mail pieces. In your instructions, you can specify how your package should be delivered or handled.

Does it cost to use USPS Delivery Instruction Service?

There are both paid and free USPS Delivery Instruction Services available. You will be charged based on the delivery options you choose.

How to add delivery instructions to your USPS package?

You can add delivery instructions to your USPS package online. You can do so from the USPS tracking page.

Avatar for Charles Helms

Charles Helms is the owner and head writer of the well-known platform TrackingAdvice. With a career as an Operations Manager and over a decade of first-hand experience working with major courier shipping companies, Charles has the knowledge to help you to solve shipping and packaging-related queries.

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