Yikes! What to Do When Your Amazon Package Is Not Delivered
Amazon was set to deliver 5.9 billion packages itself over the course of 2023. That's more than UPS or FedEx! But with so many online orders being placed, Prime customers and other shoppers occasionally have to deal with an Amazon missing package or delivery delay.
Now that Amazon parcels are trackable to within minutes of delivery in many locations, one lost package can seem like a mystery worthy of a podcast. Is your Amazon package missing? Before you freak out, check out our guide on what to do if your Amazon package didn't arrive.
Take Full Advantage of Amazon Package Tracking
To track most packages, you should do the following:
- Sign into your Amazon account
- Click on "Returns & Orders"
- Select the "Track package" option for the appropriate order, if available
- Otherwise, click on "View Order Details" to see pertinent information
After clicking the "Track package" button for yet-to-be-delivered orders, you might see which carrier shipped the package, the tracking ID, options to return or replace items or buy again, and/or the status of the order. On the "Order Details" page, you'll be able to see the purchase date, and the shipping date and/or delivery estimate.
For delivered packages, you can also see delivery info and specifics on where the package was left, such as "near the front door" or "inside the residence's mailbox." Keep in mind this may be dependent on the delivery person noting such details, so not every shipment may have this crucial information.
Looking for a more up-to-the-minute option? Amazon Map Tracking is a feature that allows you to track the real-time progress of select packages delivered by Amazon. On the day of delivery, click "Track package" from your Amazon account, shipment confirmation email, or the notification on Amazon's app. You can then see the remaining number of stops the driver has before the delivery arrives at your door. Note that map tracking is disabled for wish list or gift orders to protect the recipient's privacy.
Amazon Photo on Delivery is another shipping service that can come in handy. It'll send you a photo to confirm the delivery has been made when a package is left unattended. If you'd rather not have Amazon take photos of your property, you can opt out by contacting customer service.
Most Amazon orders are trackable once the packages have shipped. The only real exception should be if the tracking information doesn't update, in which case you should be able to potentially find more info on the carrier page. Standard international deliveries and certain items sold by Amazon Marketplace sellers may also not be eligible for tracking.
How to Report a Missing Package to Amazon
If your Amazon package shows as delivered but you can't find it, don't panic! Amazon recommends first checking the delivery details. Ensure the shipping address is correct, check the porch or garage, and see whether one of your neighbors accepted your order on your behalf.
In some cases, Amazon packages show as delivered up to 48 hours before their actual arrival. You may need to wait a couple of days to see if your order shows up — it could still be en route.
If your Amazon package hasn't arrived after those 48 hours, either contact Amazon to report the missing package, or get in touch with the carrier or third-party seller. Who should you call? Consult your tracking information.
How to Contact Amazon About a Package That Wasn't Delivered
If Amazon shipped the order and the package arrived at an Amazon facility or the carrier facility, contact Amazon with the delivery complaint. Amazon also has a page with carrier contact info if you'd like to reach out to the carrier directly. If your item was sold and shipped by a third-party seller, contact the seller themselves. Either way, you'll want to have the order number handy.
When dealing with Amazon, go first to their Customer Service page. Select the item you need help with, or "Help with a different item" if it's not one of the suggested options.
Alternatively, if you want to skip straight to chatting about the issue, click "Help with something else" on the initial page, which will open up further options. Click the "Something else" button, and then "I need more help" to go straight to the chatbot. From there, you'll have to answer some questions, and the bot may be able to solve your issue. Or it could ask if you want help from an associate, or simply direct you to a page like this missing-package one that has relevant information.
How to Contact a Third-Party Seller About a Lost Package
What if a third-party seller sold and shipped you the order? Then go to your orders and select the seller. Click on the "Ask a question" button, and Amazon's Seller Messaging Assistant program will likely pop up. After the prompt about what you need help with, choose the option for "An order I have placed". The program can lead you through the steps to resolve your issue. Note that a seller has 48 hours to respond before you can contact Amazon to file a missing-package claim.
You might be eligible for a refund request under the Amazon A-to-z Guarantee in cases like these when you purchase third-party-seller items:
- Three days have passed since the latest estimated delivery date
- The Amazon tracking says it was delivered, but no package has arrived
- The order is different from expected, you've returned it in accordance with Amazon's return policies, and you haven't received a refund
- You wanted to return the item, but the seller didn't close/authorize the return request
What About Items That Are Fulfilled by Amazon?
Your order might also fall somewhere between buying from Amazon and from a third-party seller. Fulfillment by Amazon is sort of a mix of the two. Third-party sellers sell FBA items, but they also pay to have these products stored in Amazon warehouses. So shoppers receive items from Amazon Fulfillment Centers, thereby having an order "Fulfilled by Amazon."
So why does this matter? Because it can determine who you need to contact if your package is missing. If a product is noted as being fulfilled by Amazon (i.e., packed and shipped by Amazon), then the retail giant should be the one you go to for issues with your package delivery. You may be able to detect an item from an Amazon FBA seller by going to the product's page on Amazon. If you see "Amazon" next to the "Ships from" text on the page and a different seller's name next to the "sold by" text, that could be an FBA indicator.
What If Your Amazon Package Is Late?
If a guaranteed delivery date provided on the checkout page was missed, then you could be eligible for an Amazon late-package refund. Check first to see that the order meets the refund requirements, including shipment to an eligible address via an eligible shipping method. Then go to the contact page to report the late delivery.
Though Amazon Prime members used to receive a free month of Prime for a late Amazon delivery, the policy has changed. Now Amazon offers a refund of shipping costs when an order is late, while Prime members may receive a promotional credit or other compensation.
What to Do If Your Amazon Package Is Stolen
If you believe your Amazon package was stolen, contact Amazon for a refund or to request they send the items again. You should also file a police report about the Amazon package theft, especially if you have security camera footage the police officers can view.
Know you aren't alone either. According to a 2023 report from Security.org, 17% of Americans had had a package stolen within the past three months. The same report noted that 88% of adults were concerned about package theft ahead of the 2023 holiday season. Needless to say, so-called "porch pirates" are a very real concern even now.
Have an Amazon Package Stolen? How to Prevent a Repeat
If someone stole an Amazon package from your doorstep, you can take steps to prevent porch pirates from striking again. Here are some options.
Amazon Lockers or Counters
Consider the Amazon Lockers or Counters available in various cities. Find one by address or ZIP code, add it to your Amazon address book, and then select that delivery option during checkout. The package ships to that location, and you'll want to bring your delivery confirmation email when picking it up.
Amazon Key In-Garage Delivery
In certain cities and surrounding areas, Amazon also offers Amazon Key for Prime members. It allows them to get in-garage deliveries at $1.99 an order for a 1- or 2-day delivery, though the fee is waived for those who use Amazon Day with Key as the preferred delivery option. You have to have a compatible myQ-, Aladdin Connect-, or OHD Anywhere-connected garage door opener or hub to get the service.
Amazon Key In-Gate Delivery
Amazon has introduced Key In-Gate Delivery, as well, which lets Amazon customers have orders delivered inside their gates. You'll need the Ring Access Controller Pro 2 and accompanying app to set it up. The Ring setup "is perfect for gated single-family homes or small, multi-unit apartment buildings," according to Amazon.
Some people have decided to be proactive and teach porch pirates a lesson. A variety of videos talk about how to create a decoy package that contains a glitter "bomb." An ex-NASA engineer even upped the ante and added "smelly skunk fart spray" and "police sounds" to his trap.
Of course, when it comes to package theft, you can occasionally rely on karma. One Florida woman got a squirmy surprise when she stole a box containing 500 worms for a pet bearded dragon. She didn't keep the package, and the lizard got their snacks back.
Ready to shop items that will hopefully arrive safely and on time? Check out the Amazon deals available now!
Note: Josie Rubio died on December 3, 2019.