I Lost My USPS Tracking Number (Where To Find + What To Do)

When you mail a package, USPS provides you with a 20 to 22-digit tracking number. This number lets you verify your package’s location and gives you the assurance that it gets delivered safely.

But what happens if you lose this precious number? Can you still track your package without it? Can you recover it? If you want the answers to these questions and more, then check out our article.

I Lost My USPS Tracking Number (What To Do)

USPS tracking numbers are located on sales receipts, on online label records, and on the package’s barcode. If you still can’t locate your tracking number, see if the recipient is an Informed Delivery subscriber. If they are, the tracking number is in their dashboard. In some cases, a USPS manager may be able to look up your tracking number.

If you want to know the secret to recovering a lost USPS tracking number, then keep reading!

Where Can I Find My USPS Tracking Number?

Before you freak out about losing your tracking number, it’s important to remember that not everything has a tracking number.

Postcards and First-Class Mail don’t come with tracking numbers (unless you buy add-on services). If you sent your item with one of these services, then you don’t have a tracking number, to begin with.

If you sent an item with Priority Mail Express or Priority Mail, your item does have a tracking number.

This tracking number may be located in more than one location. For example, if you’re the sender, you may find your tracking number by looking on your:

  • Sales receipt
  • Self-service kiosk eReceipt
  • Online label record, if you purchased postage online (through Click-N-Ship, eBay or other services)
  • Barcode (placed on the mailed item)

Additionally, if the recipient is a current Informed Delivery subscriber, they will be able to see the tracking number on their dashboard.

Another option is to check through your phone and see if you took a picture of the receipt or barcode after mailing. It’s possible you have a photo of the tracking number without realizing it.

If you’re the recipient, check with the sender to see if they can give you the tracking number.

Or, if you purchased the item online, check your confirmation email or contact the company you ordered from.

What If I Lost My USPS Tracking Number?

What If I Lost My USPS Tracking Number?

If you still can’t find the tracking number after exhausting all of the options above, there’s still one final thing you can try.

Before attempting this strategy, it’s worth noting that USPS will probably tell you that Care Center agents and local post offices won’t be able to help you recover a lost tracking number.

They’re not declining to be difficult, rather it’s because the USPS system is set up in such a way that pulling up tracking numbers is difficult and time-consuming.

Still, difficult and time-consuming doesn’t mean impossible. If you can provide USPS with enough information about your transaction, they may be able to recover the tracking number for you.

You’ll want to ask for a manager to help you as they’re the only ones who have access to certain purchase records.

First, you’ll need to provide the manager with the date and time of your purchase, as well as the amount you spent.

This is easier if you made your purchase with a credit or debit card, given that each transaction comes with a digital time and date stamp. 

If you paid with cash, you’ll have to wrack your brain for the day and time of your purchase, as well as the amount.

Next, you’ll need to remember either which kiosk you used or which employee helped you. USPS’ system allows managers to filter by kiosk or employee ID number.

Provided all the information you’ve given is correct, the manager should be able to print a duplicate receipt, complete with your tracking number.

Can You Track A USPS Package Without A Tracking Number?

In most cases, no, you won’t be able to track a package without a tracking number.

Your best bet is to look for your tracking number in the places listed above or see if a USPS manager can print a duplicate receipt for you.

Can You Find Lost Mail Without A Tracking Number?

It may be possible to find lost mail even if you can’t find your tracking number.

If you’re the sender, try looking through your emails or photos to see if you have a record of the tracking number.

You can also try getting a duplicate receipt by providing the date, time, and amount of your purchase.

If you’re the recipient, you can…

  • Ask the sender for the tracking number
  • Check your Informed Delivery dashboard
  • Contact the company you purchased the item from for the tracking number

If you want to know more, you can also see our posts on whether or not USPS tracking numbers expire, if USPS reused tracking numbers, and if USPS updates tracking.


Losing a USPS tracking number can feel like a nightmare. Without it, you’re left wondering where your package is and when it will arrive.

In some cases, you’ll just have to be patient and cross your fingers that everything goes well with your delivery. In other cases, you may be able to dig up your tracking number using a bit of creativity.

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Marques Thomas

Marques Thomas graduated with a MBA in 2011. Since then, Marques has worked in the retail and consumer service industry as a manager, advisor, and marketer. Marques is also the head writer and founder of QuerySprout.com.

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