What does “package acceptance pending” mean on USPS?

While the United States Postal Service is one of the most used shipping services, using the agency may be frustrating at times. One of the common challenges of using the federal agency is delays in accepting the packages.

If you get “the acceptance of your package is pending” notification, you may have to wait for 48 hours or even two days before the agency solves shipment status.

So, what does “package acceptance pending” mean on USPS tracking? The pending notification means that the USPS clerks have received your parcel but it has not reached the first sorting facility. The delay may be because of multiple causes, either on your end (as a customer) or from USPS.

For instance, a large shipment may take more time in the scanning process compared to a smaller one. The process may also delay due to technical issues such as a scanning sheet on a parcel or breakages. For unique cases such as a package acceptance pending for over a week, the glitch may be from the agency’s end.

What to do when you get the “package acceptance pending” notification

In case your shipment has a pending notification, you can do one of the following things:


While the pending notification may be frustrating at times, you should first wait for at least two days. In most cases, the USPS changes the status from pending to active shipment within 48 hours of delivering the parcel to one of its outlets.

Apart from having many parcels to sort out and scan, shipping during the festive season requires patience. During this period, USPS may take longer to scan and ship items.

Contact USPS customer care

If the shipping status of your parcel does not change after two days contact USPS customer care. A representative from the agency will tell you where your item is and more importantly when it will be shipped.

Apart from addressing the USPS tracking status, the representative will inform you why the scanning was slow.

How to avoid this notification in future

While some interruptions are inevitable, you can avoid most delays but being proactive when preparing for shipments. Here are some suggestions.

1. Avoid using a scan sheet on your shipment.

While having the items scanned individually may take time and delay your shipment, it is surprisingly the safest way to avoid delays. The main reason why using a scan sheet may lead to the package acceptance pending notification on USPS is due to recent past’s developments.

Scanning each item is currently the best way to establish that you took the shipment to one of their outlets unlike printing labels for packages. Some e-commerce platforms such as eBay now use the date USPS accepted the item and not when you created the scan sheet.

2. Avoid sending breakable things via USPS

While USPS may be one of the cost-friendly shipping options, it may not be the best option to ship breakable items. In case one of the items on your shipping list gets damaged, you will get a “USPS stuck on package acceptance pending” report immediately.

UPS and FedEx have a good reputation for handling fragile items compared to USPS. While they may be expensive, the items on shipment will not get any damage or unprecedented delays.

3. Always consider USPS insurance on valuable items.

In some unique instances, clerical errors may jeopardize the shipping process. In such a case, following up on the shipping status may be tedious. However, USPS has insurance policies that cover valuable items from such uncertainties.

4. If possible, avoid shipping during the festive season.

Like other federal agencies, the festive season means less human resources and therefore, delays are inevitable. It is advisable to ship items before or after the festive season. However, if you must mail any item, be ready for delays.

Alternatively, you can use other options such as FedEx and UPS. They are expensive, compared to USPS, but reliable during the festive season.


Even with more structural advancement, using USPS service may sometimes be frustrating. However, avoiding scan sheets on your batch and not shipping breakable things minimizes the chances of delayed shipment. Also, if you are shipping expensive items, consider USPS insurance coverage in case of delays and breakages.


Share This Post:

Posted Under

Related Posts

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments