Why Are Amazon Packages Running Late? (7 Common Reasons)

Amazon is a major shipper of goods both within the United States and globally, offering a wide range of products including clothing, footwear, accessories, toys, home appliances, furniture, fitness equipment, electronics, and food items.

Despite their efforts to deliver packages promptly or ahead of the estimated delivery date, there is no guarantee that orders will arrive within the specified time frame.

Here are 7 common reasons for delayed delivery:

1. Logistics Issues

This is the most common reason why Amazon packages are running late.

Amazon ships an estimated 1.6 million packages every single day. That is the equivalent of 66,000 Amazon orders every hour and 18.5 orders every second.

Due to the number of packages the company must pack and ship each day, plus the ongoing addition of new products and packages to their inventory, there are many chances for errors and issues with logistics.

While Amazon tries to be as reliable as possible, it can still make mistakes every now and then. When there is a huge volume of packages to be shipped out, there are many chances for errors when staff members deal with shipping supplies and labeling.

The most common example of this is when a worker accidentally destroys shipment labels by putting them over boxes or other transported objects. Sadly, that means leaving packages with incorrect labels and not being shipped on time.

There may also be a lack of truck drivers and delivery vehicles in some cases, especially during peak season when Amazon orders get to an insanely high volume.

2. Inclement Weather

This probably takes the number 2 spot for why Amazon packages arrive late. And this is uncontrollable.

Amazon packages may run late and cannot be delivered on time if the weather is bad.

This happens when inclement weather poses a safety risk for Amazon drivers and packages. Some examples include tornadoes, hurricanes, heavy storms, snow storms, torrential rains, and heat waves, which people can’t control.

Amazon will not risk the safety of their staff during bad weather and will postpone deliveries until the situation is safe.

So you have no choice but to be patient and simply wait for your Amazon package to arrive as soon as the weather clears up. If your package is running late, you will see it in the tracking information.

Plus, if the weather is bad in your area, you can assume that your Amazon package will arrive late.

Do not forget to thank Amazon drivers whenever you can for all the hard work that they do to make sure your package arrives on time.

Remember that when the weather is extremely bad, this does not just affect Amazon staff and customers. It affects all businesses and individuals involved in the shipping and logistics industry.

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3. Third-Party Seller Delays

Not all orders all fulfilled by Amazon. A huge bulk of orders are also prepared and packed by third-party sellers with warehouses or storage facilities.

Some of these third-party sellers, especially small business owners, could even be preparing orders in their homes. Also, not all of them are full-time sellers.

Some third-party retailers have full-time jobs and sell different merchandise on the side.

Orders that Amazon’s third-party sellers fulfill are not technically required to follow the company’s timeline requirements.

If you order through an Amazon vendor, it will be processed right away. If you purchase from an Amazon third-party seller, they may have different order processing times.

Another reason why Amazon packages are running late is delays on the part of third-party sellers.

If a third-party seller takes too long to prepare and pack your order, then your package will arrive late. If a third-party seller is low on stock, your package may arrive late.

By visiting the “Orders” page in your Amazon account, you can get in touch with the seller and inquire about updates on the shipping. Just log in to your account and look for your purchase.

Once you’ve located it on the page, click the button to contact the seller.

4. High Volume Of Shipments

There are times when the number of Amazon packages scheduled for delivery is extremely high.

This normally happens during peak shipping seasons such as Christmas or holidays, especially when there are special sales, like the Black Friday Sale.

As mentioned previously, Amazon ships around 1.6 million packages every day. When it is peak shipping season, that number increases.

If there’s an extremely high volume of Amazon packages to be delivered, then you may experience a delay in the delivery of your package.

Even though Amazon tries its best to deliver all packages on time and would resort to using its partner carriers, such as the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) and UPS, there’s no guarantee that your package won’t be running late.

If the package is shipped overseas, then the high volume of shipments can also cause your package to arrive late, especially if it has to clear customs in the destination country.

During peak shipping seasons, customs facilities would have thousands of packages for clearing before they are delivered to the recipient’s address.

While your package is in customs, it will be scanned and inspected to ensure that it complies with the import policies in your country. It normally takes a few days for a package to clear customs inspection.

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5. Special Items

Special items on Amazon generally take longer to prepare and ship out compared to regular items.

Examples of special items include the following:

  • Handmade or handcrafted items
  • Customized or personalized items
  • Large items
  • Fragile items

These things typically take a few days to prepare before they are finished and packed for shipping.

When ordering special items on Amazon, sellers would usually tell you in the item description how long it normally takes for the item to be finished, especially if it is handcrafted or personalized.

6. Change in Priorities

During specific situations, such as national or international disasters, shipping companies are expected to prioritize packages that address essential needs, such as health and personal hygiene.

If this happens, when a customer orders on Amazon, their package can be delayed if it doesn’t include anything essential for their safety or health.

So if there are ongoing national disasters, such as natural calamities, you may want to consider holding off on online purchases on Amazon or other e-commerce websites if you don’t want your package to arrive late.

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7. Shipping Carrier Strikes

While this does not happen very often, it can still cause shipment delays.

Most non-Prime members usually have their orders processed and delivered by different shipping companies.

Suppose employees of a shipping company are on strike due to low salaries, lack of employee benefits, or overall job dissatisfaction. In that case, there will be delays in the shipment of Amazon packages.

If a postal carrier in the customer’s country is on strike, then there will be no deliveries at all. Package deliveries will resume when the strike is over.

What Happens if My Amazon Package is Running Late?

If your Amazon package is running, you will be notified by the company.

You will get an email saying there is a delay in the delivery of your Amazon package. The new estimated delivery date will also be indicated in the email.

You can also track your order to view its current status and location and see the new estimated delivery date.

Simply log in to your Amazon account and navigate to the page that shows all your orders. You can click on “Track Package” to get the most recent tracking data.

Amazon usually updates your package’s tracking information in real-time to let you know where it is in the delivery process and the estimated day of delivery.

In most circumstances, you can even get more detailed tracking information.

If you are paying for an Amazon Prime membership where early deliveries are guaranteed, but your package is running late, then it would be best for you to contact the customer service department of Amazon Prime.

Amazon Prime has guaranteed delivery terms and conditions stating that you may be qualified for a free 1-month extension of your membership if your Prime order was not delivered on time as promised.

Can I Get a Refund if My Amazon Package is Running Late?

If your Amazon package is running very late and you don’t want to wait for it anymore, you can request a refund on the Amazon website.

Simply log in to your Amazon account and navigate to the orders page. Then select the order that you want to refund, and click on the button that says “Problem With Order.”

From there, you can select the option that says “Request Refund” and include an explanation and any other information that may be helpful in your situation so that your request will be approved.

In most cases, Amazon packages arrive on time or before the estimated delivery date.

However, there are times when packages are running late due to certain, and sometimes uncontrollable, circumstances such as the ones stated above.

If you are having problems with your Amazon order, don’t hesitate to reach out to their customer service department so you can get the assistance that you need.


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