Picked Up By A Shipping Partner: Meaning, Types & How To Pick The Perfect One

When sending a package, one of the crucial steps is handing it off to a shipping partner. The “picked up by a shipping partner” or a similar update confirms this process. 

In other words, it means your package is now in the hands of a third-party logistics company. These partners are responsible for moving your packages between locations, and ensuring they arrive safely and on time. 

While this may sound simple, a couple of activities must occur between a pickup and successful delivery.  

This guide explains what it means when a package is picked up by a shipping partner and the available types. You will also discover the factors to consider before picking a shipping partner and what to do if your package experiences a significant delay. 

What Does “Picked Up by Shipping Partner” Mean? 

“Picked up by shipping partner” is a tracking update (shipping companies use) to indicate that a package has left the hand of the sender and is now in the custody of a third-party carrier. 

This can happen when you drop off your package at a shipping center or when a shipping partner comes to pick it up. Such packages get scanned and are tracked throughout their journey. 

Aside from the tracking number, the sender and the receiver get free access to the name of the shipping partner and estimated delivery date. 

Types of Shipping Partners 


1. Postal services 

Postal services are government-owned facilities that operate mail delivery services. Examples include the USPS (in the U.S.) and the Royal Mail (in the U.K.).

Postal services can help you ship packages both domestically and internationally. They can be very affordable, especially for lightweight packages. 

2. Courier services 

Unlike postal services (which are government-owned), courier services are private companies that specialize in package delivery. Examples include FedEx, UPS, and DHL. 

They are often faster and more reliable than postal services for domestic and international services. However, they can be expensive, especially for heavy packages. 

3. Freight carriers 

The major difference between couriers and freight carriers is that the latter specializes in moving large and heavy shipments. They also ship domestically and internationally. 

If you own a business that needs to send cargo, machinery, and equipment across long distances, this is the ideal shipping partner for you. 

4. Customs brokers 

Customs brokers are companies that help businesses navigate the complexities of international shipping. Their primary function is to resolve issues regarding taxes and customs clearance

While they are not designed to deliver your package to you in person, having them as a partner can speed up deliveries. 

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Shipping Partner

1. Speed 

If you want your package to arrive quickly, then a courier service may be the best option. These companies specialize in fast delivery and often offer same-day or next-day delivery. 

2. Cost 

The cost of shipping a package can vary widely depending on your selected shipping partner. The most affordable option is the post office because courier services are usually on the high side. 

3. Tracking 

You also want to choose a shipping partner that allows you to track your package. Both the post office and courier services allow package tracking. How advanced and detailed this service is depends on the shipping partner. 

4. Insurance 

If you are shipping valuable items, it is essential to consider insurance options. Some shipping partners offer insurance for an additional fee. This service guarantees a full refund should your package get lost or damaged. 

5. Weight 

Postal services may not be the ideal shipping partner for very heavy shipments. Such items should be handed over to a freight carrier or courier. 

What to Do If Your Package is Delayed? 

Despite the remarkable efforts of shipping partners, packages sometimes can be delayed during delivery. If this happens, there are several steps you can take: 

  1. Check the tracking information provided by the shipping partner. This may provide some insight into why your package is experiencing a delay. 
  2. Contact the shipping partner if the tracking information is not helpful. They should be able to provide more information about the delay and when the package is expected to be delivered. 
  3. Lastly, you can file a claim if the package is confirmed lost or damaged during transit. This process allows you to request a refund or reimbursement for the value of the lost package. 


Does shipped mean out for delivery?

Shipped represents the movement of a package between courier locations, while lit for delivery mostly applies to final delivery. 

Who pays the courier?

The customer or receiver often pays the courier when making a purchase. 

What happens to the package if not picked up?

The package is returned to the warehouse and eventually to the sender. 


When a package is picked up by a shipping partner, it means it is in the hand of a third-party company responsible for its delivery. These partners can be the post office, a courier service, or a customs broker. 

Choosing the right service also significantly affects how fast and affordable a shipping experience would be. You should also consider carriers that provide real-time tracking and insurance. 

I hope you found this guide helpful. Feel free to explore Threaller for other shipping guides. 

Thanks for reading.