What is Tendered for Delivery: A Comprehensive Guide

keyKey Takeaways:
  • Tendered for delivery means your carrier company has transferred your parcel to a regional delivery service provider.
  • Access to an extensive network, efficient deliveries, and cost-effectiveness are the reasons why companies tender parcels for delivery.
  • Choosing reliable shipping companies, planning shipments ahead of busy seasons, and considering express shipping operations can minimize the chances of tendered for delivery.

What makes or breaks your customer’s experience when shopping online?

Is it product quality, value for money, or support service? While all these factors count, a crucial aspect you can’t forgo in today’s fast-paced eCommerce era is delivery management.

One flawed delivery and you can lose your customer!

Surprisingly, 85% of online shoppers wouldn’t order from an online retailer again after a poor delivery experience.

So, it’s time to buckle up and rethink your delivery management strategy. It begins with understanding the shipping industry’s intricacies, including package delivery statuses.

Unlike familiar terms like ‘Delivered’ or ‘Shipped,’ ‘Tendered for Delivery’ is an update that often leaves a delivery manager puzzled. 

Have you also received this popup that is making you wonder what it means? If so, you are at the right place. 

This blog delves into why you receive this message, what it implies for your shipment, and the steps you can take to avoid delivery delays.


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What Does Tendered for Delivery Mean?

Tendered for Delivery’ means your carrier company has handed over your package to a last-mile delivery service for the final leg of its transit.

In other words, your original shipping partner collaborates with a delivery service provider for the final delivery to your end customer. 

Why Do Shipping Companies Tender Packages to a Delivery Service Provider?

Not all shipping partners have the fleet and infrastructure to execute last-mile deliveries themselves. Moreover, coordinating with local carriers to deliver packages can be a win-win for both you and your original shipping partner.  

While local shippers’ extensive network can ensure your parcel’s on-time delivery, your shipping company can minimize the costs involved in delivering packages.

1. Expertise and resources

Last mile carriers have expertise in the final delivery process. Therefore, shipping carriers partner with local delivery services to entrust them with the last mile delivery. 

2. Efficiency and timeliness

Partnering with local carriers helps expedite the last-mile delivery of packages to customers’ addresses and makes it efficient. 

3. Extensive geographic coverage

A local delivery subcontractor like the United States Postal Service has an extensive fleet of vehicles. Hence, a package tendered to a delivery service provider can help accomplish residential deliveries in congested neighborhoods that may be challenging to traverse for carriers. 

4. Cost-effectiveness

A last mile carrier enables your shipping partner to leverage its resources and save costs on delivering parcels in remote geographic areas.

7 Stages in the Package Delivery Process

To get a better understanding of the ‘tendered for delivery’ status, understanding the entire delivery process is vital. Here are the steps: 

1. Labeling and packaging

Once a customer places an order, preparing the package for shipment starts. You can select a box or container that fits the product’s size and dimensions. It helps eliminate packaging waste and ensure safety during transit.

The next step is the generation of shipping labels. These labels contain details such as the recipient’s and sender’s addresses, along with a unique tracking number. 

2. Pickup/drop-off

Following labeling and packaging, you can schedule a pickup with your shipping company. In some cases, you can load them onto trailers and drop them off at a location your shipping partner has designated. It can be either the nearest post office or courier service center.

3. Sorting and routing

This step entails transporting the package to a sorting facility. It involves companies sorting parcels based on destinations and determining optimal routes to ship them. It also includes deciding on the appropriate shipping mode for each delivery. 

4. Arrival at the destination facility followed by resorting

After leaving a sorting facility, packages reach the destination facility. They are closer to the final destination. Here, shipping carriers sort packages again and group them based on delivery routes.

5. Last mile delivery transfer

This is the last leg of the shipment journey, where your shipping company transfers the parcel to a local courier or delivery service provider. It is where the status of the shipment changes to “tendered for delivery.”

6. Delivery to the intended destination

If the customer is available, the local carrier delivers the package successfully. Some deliveries may require the receiver’s signature or photo to present as Proof of Delivery. 

7. Tracking and Confirmation

Throughout the entire delivery process, you can track your package using the unique number generated during labelling. Both you and your customer can also monitor the package’s status via notifications the shipping company sends.

What Does the Tendered for Delivery Message Imply?

The ‘Tendered to Delivery Service Provider’ status is usually a normal stage in a parcel’s shipping journey. It indicates:

1. A local service provider has collected your package

A delivery service provider has collected your package from the local post office.

2. The parcel is on the move 

The ‘tendered to delivery’ means a local carrier is actively working to deliver your parcel to its destination within the stipulated time frame.

3. Provides tracking information

Once tendered to a delivery service, you are likely to get additional tracking updates about your parcel movement.  

4 Steps to Follow on Seeing the Tendered to Delivery Service Provider Status

People often fret when they see the ‘Tendered for Service’ notification. However, it is nothing more than a notification that tells you that the shipping carrier has passed over your package to a local delivery or postal service. 

You can still follow a few steps after seeing the ‘Tendered to Delivery Service’ message.

1. Stay patient

The delivery timeframe may vary depending on the carrier and final destination. So, being patient is important. You should allow your shipping partner and local delivery or postal services to process and handle the package.

2. Keep track of your package

Tracking updates helps keep an eye on your parcel’s progress and estimate when it can arrive at your recipient’s address. 

3. Contact the carrier

Contacting your original shipping carrier can help you know the tracking updates about your package delivery. 

4. Confirm delivery

Ideally, your carrier updates the status once the final delivery is complete. You should keep a tab on this tracking information and updates to ensure successful delivery.

What If the ‘Tendered for Delivery’ Update Takes Longer Than Expected?

If you see your tracking update “Tendered for Delivery” unchanged even after a long time, It indicates something is amiss with the handoff or transfer. 

You can consider waiting for up to three weeks, especially for international packages that might take longer.

What if the delivery status still stays unchanged?

Well, here is a list of steps that you can follow then.

1. Check with your carrier

Begin by contacting the carrier responsible for your package delivery. You can provide them with the tracking number and seek your parcel’s status and location. They can help address your concerns and connect you with the new last mile delivery partner for further clarification.

2. Verify your delivery address

An incomplete or incorrect delivery address can be one of the factors behind delivery delays. So, double-checking the address you provided while shipping your parcel is imperative to ensure its accuracy. 

3. Ensure your carrier complies with delivery instructions

Any special directions or requests may impact the delivery process. So, if you have provided any specific delivery instructions, it is crucial to confirm if your carrier has correctly recorded them.

4. Review your carrier’s terms and conditions

Referring to your shipping service’s terms and conditions is vital. It will help you understand their policies regarding delivery timeframes, tracking updates, and customer support. 

5. Consider escalation

If you fail to get the tracking information from the carrier’s tracking system, it is advisable to contact customer support. They can investigate the shipment status and provide more details. If the issue persists, you can consider taking the matter to the higher authorities in your carrier or shipping service.

How to Prevent Your Package from Receiving a ‘Tendered for Delivery’ Status?

Though tendering a package for delivery is not a matter of concern in most cases, you can still follow some practices to avoid this situation.

1. Ensure accuracy in shipping details

Making sure you provide a complete and accurate delivery address on the shipping label is essential. It must contain every important detail, including your customer’s name, street, address, city, state, and ZIP code. Besides, you should always include the contact numbers of both you and your customer.

Pro Tip: While all shipping details are significant, the ZIP code is unique to each area or locality. So, double-check it to minimize the chances of confusion, especially when other details like house number or street name can be similar.

2. Label the package properly

Attach the shipping label that you generate or the carrier provides firmly to the package. You should make sure that all the information is legible and can’t be detached or damaged during transit or handling.

3. Package your parcel well

The global eCommerce packaging industry is set to exceed $242 billion by 2032

This stat signifies the value of packing your items securely to prevent them from any damage while shipping. 

You should use suitable packing materials based on the type of parcel. Following your carrier’s guidelines to pack fragile or high-value products is also imperative.

4. Ensure availability for pickup

If applicable, you can ensure that the customer is aware of the expected delivery date and time. Coordinating with them to ensure they are available to receive the package in person is recommendable.

5. Enable delivery alerts and notifications

Signing up for delivery alerts or notifications your shipping carrier provides can help you stay informed of any changes in the delivery schedule. It will also help you track any unsuccessful delivery attempts. 

6. Insurance and delivery guarantees

The global shipping insurance market is forecast to reach $7.14 billion by 2031

Consider purchasing additional insurance for your shipments. If your shipping carrier offers delivery guarantees and insurance, explore the options available and select the one that suits you best.

7. Plan to ship ahead of peak seasons 

During seasonal spikes, carrier services often experience increased demand and hence, higher congestion. Therefore, they may often resort to partnering with a subcontractor to deliver your package. 

So, it is crucial to select an experienced third-party logistics partner that deploys multiple carrier partners and enables different shipping services for greater contingency plans. 

8. Choose reliable shipping partners

A reliable shipping partner is pivotal to ensuring a seamless delivery process.

Therefore, it is vital to compare multiple shipping services and find the one that offers various shipping options at competitive prices. 

You can consider a shipping company that offers tracking services to get visibility into delivery status. You can also look at reviews to assess their quality of service and avoid issues, damages, or lost packages.

9. Consider express shipping options

If you want to deliver your orders fast, you can go for expedited shipping. Using this option implies your shipping partner relies on third-party companies. Besides, as packages spend less time in transit, the risk of items getting damaged or lost is lower. Another option to reduce risk is partnering with an omnichannel fulfillment partner that takes care of the shipping on your behalf.

How Do Different Shipping Companies Show “Tendered for Delivery” Status?

Major shipper giants like DHL, FedEx, and UPS contract with subcontractors and leverage their extensive carrier fleets and strong local networks to complete delivery. 

Here is a rundown on how the prominent shippers display the status when they tender a parcel for delivery to a regional carrier. 

1. United Parcel Service (UPS)

With delivery operations across 200+ countries and territories, UPS delivers 24.3 million packages per day. UPS SurePost® is an economy service for packages that are not time-sensitive. 

In this service, UPS picks up the shipment, and the US Postal Service makes the final delivery every day, including Sundays. Using UPS SurePost means your package will be delivered in a day or two, and the tracking information shows “Tendered to Delivery Service Provider”. 

2. FedEx

Incorporated in 1965, FedEx is one of the leading global shipping companies that deliver parcels across the globe. It provides different shipping services, including Ground, Express, International, Freight, Same-Day, and Flat-Rate.

While FedEx mostly handles the entire delivery process end-to-end, FedEx Ground Economy (formerly FedEx Smartpost) service contracts with the United States Postal Service (USPS). It offers contract-based and cost-effective services for low-weight and non-urgent packages. The transit time frame for FedEx SmartPost deliveries is typically 2-7 business days. 

In these cases, your delivery information shows the “Tendered to the Authorized Agent for Final Delivery” message. It implies that your package has reached the closed FedEx processing facility and will reach its final delivery address soon. 

3. Delsey, Hillblom, and Lynn (DHL) 

DHL is the world’s leading logistics company that delivers packages across 220 countries. It has a strong network of local carriers worldwide that it subcontracts and completes last-delivery. 

For items shipped within the US, it works with the United States Postal Service (USPS) carrier to deliver your mail. For international packages, it partners with the local delivery service provider from the destination country. 

In this case, the service provider can be either the local post office or another local last-mile shipping service. It shows the message ‘Tendered to delivery service provider’ in this case.


Ensure that the tracking number you entered is accurate and in the right format. If the issue persists, consider connecting with your shipper.

Various reasons behind your status being stuck on ‘Tendered for Delivery’ can be processing delays at the end of the facility partner or significant shipment volumes during seasonal spikes. Causes like inclement weather conditions and the breakdown of delivery vehicles can also be responsible.

The typical delivery timeframe once a shipment is “tendered” is 2-7 business days for most parcels. However, it can vary to some extent based on factors such as the distance to travel, size, weather conditions, or security checks.

Bid Adieu to “Tendered for Delivery” with Upper

If you want to minimize the chances of encountering the ‘Tendered for Delivery’ status, especially if you manage your delivery operations independently, consider optimizing your routes. Manual route planning or relying solely on traditional navigation apps can be challenging, especially when expanding into new territories.

That’s where Upper comes in as your ideal route planner. Our advanced route optimization software helps you create the shortest, most efficient routes based on time or distance. This not only saves time and fuel but also boosts profitability. Our ‘Proof-of-Delivery‘ feature enhances accountability by allowing you to collect signatures or photos as proof of successful deliveries.

Features like adding/removing stops, route swapping between drivers, and real-time fleet tracking keep you in control of your delivery management.

So, don’t let the ‘Tendered for Delivery’ status stress you out. Sign up for a of Upper now and experience a transformation in your delivery efficiency.

Author Bio
Rakesh Patel
Rakesh Patel

Rakesh Patel, author of two defining books on reverse geotagging, is a trusted authority in routing and logistics. His innovative solutions at Upper Route Planner have simplified logistics for businesses across the board. A thought leader in the field, Rakesh's insights are shaping the future of modern-day logistics, making him your go-to expert for all things route optimization. Read more.