UPS Shoe Policy (What Kind Of Shoes, Black Only + More)

One popular place to work is UPS because the pay is considerably higher than other companies. Of course, every UPS employee must follow a specific dress code because nearly every employer has some requirements for dress codes, and UPS is no different.

If you’re looking to apply to UPS, you might have some questions about the dress code. For example, what type of shoes should you wear while working at UPS? I’ve looked into it, and here’s what I discovered!

UPS Shoe Policy In [currentyear]

All UPS employees, except corporate or HR UPS employees, must wear black or brown, steel-toed boots as of [currentyear]. The boots must have sturdy uppers, man-made leather, or similar protective material with non-slip soles and good support. Also, tennis shoes, sneakers, running shoes, loafers, and open-toed shoes are prohibited at UPS.

A lot more goes into understanding the UPS shoe policy and why it’s in place, so be sure to keep reading to get some insight and save yourself time and money!

What Kind Of Shoes Do You Have To Wear To Work At UPS?

While some of the specifics of the UPS shoe policy change depending on your role, you can always expect to need closed-toe, sturdy shoes while working at UPS.

Suppose you’re not a corporate or HR employee, meaning anyone who works in a UPS facility or delivers packages.

In that case, UPS has a list of requirements on its onboarding site for what kind of footwear is acceptable.

For example, some requirements to keep in mind are that your shoes must have:

  • Sturdy uppers made of leather, man-made leather, or a similar protective material
  • Good support
  • Non-slip soles
  • Depending on the role, your shoes may need to be black or brown, steel-toed boots

Moreover, the following shoes and features are prohibited while working at UPS:

  • Tennis shoes
  • Sneakers
  • Running shoes
  • Loafers
  • Sandals
  • Open-toed shoes
  • Anything that doesn’t provide protection or support

Do UPS Work Shoes Have To Be Black Only?

No, your work shoes for UPS don’t have to be only black.

In some roles, such as drivers or driver assistants, your shoes may need to be black or brown to help maintain a cohesive, professional appearance since you’ll be wearing a UPS uniform.

For positions outside of drivers, driver helpers, or corporate/HR jobs, there are no listed color requirements for shoes on the UPS website.

Still, this doesn’t mean that any shoes are acceptable. Therefore, it’s always best to reach out to the hiring manager or an HR employee if you have questions.

If all else fails, you can use sites like these that allow you to ask current and former employees any questions you have so you get information from people with first-hand experience.

Do You Have To Wear Boots At UPS?

Do You Have To Wear Boots At UPS?

The answer to this question depends mainly on your position at UPS.

For example, if you’re a corporate or HR employee, there are no requirements stating that you must wear boots, only that you may not wear open-toed shoes.

For positions like delivery drivers, warehouse workers, material handlers, and driver helpers, you aren’t required to wear boots.

However, you must have slip-resistant, close-toed shoes made of leather or other water-resistant materials.

Further, two types of shoes are acceptable for non-corporate employees who aren’t required to wear boots:

  • Ankle work shoes with rounded toes, lace-up closures, and slip-resistant rubber soles
  • Sturdy, lace-up closure boots above ankle height with non-slip bottoms

Also, delivery drivers and driver helpers can wear closed-toe, cushioned shoes that provide comfort and support with lace-up closures.

Boots, specifically those with steel or composite toes, are required for positions such as package handlers, loaders, and preloaders as they spend most of their time lifting and carrying packages.

Additionally, if you’re worried about finding proper footwear, HAIX offers exclusive deals specifically for UPS employees and provides a range of shoes, all of which are within UPS’ regulations.

So, if you’re interested in checking out the shoes available on HAIX, you can visit the website here.

Does UPS Pay For Work Boots?

Yes, UPS does pay for its employees’ footwear, but only if that footwear is considered safety equipment and only if you are employed in the state of California.

On February 6th, 2020, a California court ruled that by California labor codes 6401 and 6403, which says employers must provide any safety equipment required for a job, UPS must offer work shoes to its employees.

With that, this ruling came after a Cal/OSHA-issued citation in June of 2016 after an inspection of a UPS facility in Bloomingdale revealed workers wearing safety shoes that UPS didn’t provide.

At the time, UPS claimed that while the steel-toed shoes were required for working in the facility, the company didn’t need to pay for them.

However, as you just discovered, this ruling was reversed recently.

Unfortunately, this ruling is only valid in California, so if you’re a UPS employee in any other state or country, you can expect to have to pay for your shoes!

To know more, you can also read our posts on whether or not UPS is a federal job, UPS leave of absence policy, and is it easy to get a job at UPS.


UPS requires that all non-corporate employees wear shoes with uppers made of leather with non-slip soles and good support.

Some roles, such as package handlers, require that you wear black or brown boots with a steel or composite toe for safety reasons.

Also, if you’re a UPS employee in California, UPS will provide you with the necessary shoes at no cost to you.

However, if you’re a UPS employee in any other state or country, you can expect to purchase your own work shoes.

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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

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