There’s an odd glitch when printing Priority Mail labels online at USPS.com. Beginning the evening of September 30, 2009 (Possibly October 1 Eastern Time which would make sense), USPS changed the prefix of its Delivery Confirmation numbers from 0103 8555 **** **** to 0550 3699 **** **** where * represents the rest of the numbers. When I check to see if any of these packages with the 0550 3699 **** **** Delivery Confirmation number have been delivered, USPS says “There is no record of this item” for every single package shipped since September 30th. I’ve been a little concerned over the past week that none of my packages have been delivered. Even more worrying is the fact that PayPal may think that I haven’t been shipping any items and will shut me down or buyers will think I haven’t shipped the item at all. Of course, without online verifiable proof that the item has been delivered, I would lose any PayPal dispute for Item Not Received which could potentially mean thousands of dollars in losses if buyers started to catch on. Several buyers on eBay have contacted me and asked for the “correct” Delivery Confirmation number and all I can tell them is that there’s some glitch with USPS Delivery Confirmation and their item has in fact shipped as indicated in the email generated by USPS and PayPal.
Well, I figured out that if you put “94″ before the 0505 3699 **** **** Delivery Confirmation number that USPS generates then USPS will return the correct Delivery Confirmation information online. For example, if the number USPS gives you is 0550 3699 3000 0110 1234 then simply put a “94″ before it to get 94 0550 3699 3000 0110 1234. This new number will generate the correct shipment information and your item should show up as it did with the 0103 8555 **** **** numbers.
Hopefully the United States Postal Service will get its act together here and fix this glitch as soon as possible. I’ve called and emailed and gotten nowhere as usual so only time will tell. Until then, if a buyer asks about the status of their order tell them to put a “94″ before the number they received and track it that way. If possible, print labels through PayPal, Stamps.com, or other means until USPS fixes the problem with labels printed at USPS.com.