How to track deliveries of your Christmas shopping

Make sure your Christmas gifts arrive on time (PA Wire)

Make sure your Christmas gifts arrive on time (PA Wire)

With Black Friday and Christmas looming, you’ll need to keep an eye on the delivery of package loads. Checking individual deliveries from multiple couriers is a pain, but there are easier ways to find out exactly where your packages are.

Google recently confirmed that Gmail will show new package tracking updates directly in emails over the next few weeks. Unfortunately, this feature is restricted to US-based buyers for the foreseeable future.

The good news is that there are plenty more ways to help Santa keep the show going right now. Here’s our guide on how to stay on top of your party shopping.

How to Track Amazon Deliveries

Amazon is the 10-ton gorilla of the shopping world, so chances are you’ll be tracking a few of its packages.

The Amazon Shopping smartphone app provides detailed tracking information for all pending deliveries. Click on the “little person” icon at the bottom of the screen, click on Your Orders and you should be able to check the status of each order. (See our featured iOS and Android apps below for how to track multiple orders from a single screen.)

However, if you have a lot of Amazon devices at home, such as Echo smart speakers, Amazon may actually be too informative, for example, displaying on-screen details of gifts you have ordered, which you may not want other household members to see.

Amazon is withholding precise details of package deliveries in the run-up to Christmas, to avoid spilling secrets. However, if you want to eradicate the risk of spoiled surprises at any time of the year, open the Amazon Alexa app, click More at the bottom right of the screen, then choose Settings > Notifications and turn off the option that allows up to Alexa to blurt out. the items delivered.

Now we’ll show you how to keep tabs on ALL your package deliveries more discreetly.

How to Track Packages in iOS

iPhone or iPad owners should check out the brilliant Parcel app. This allows you to track packages in different ways. You can securely log in to your Amazon account, so that all your Amazon deliveries are automatically transferred to the app. You can also enter tracking numbers individually or scan a barcode, if you’re trying to track a package you’re sending with prepaid labels.

The tracking information is detailed and you even get a small map showing the courier’s progress, although the accuracy of this depends on how much location information the courier shares. Our Amazon deliveries have been updated as soon as the item has been delivered, which is useful if the courier has handed the package over to a neighbour, for example.

There are restrictions in the free version of the app. You can only track up to three packages at a time and you do not receive push notifications. The premium version of the app costs £4.49 per year which also removes all ads and also lets you get delivery updates through a web browser.

How to Track Packages on Android

Unfortunately, we haven’t found anything as good as Parcel for Android users.

Among the Android alternatives is Parcels. This app securely integrates with Amazon and eBay, so you can track all your deliveries from these stores, as well as manually enter tracking numbers from other couriers or scan barcodes on packages you send. .

The biggest issue with Parcels is that it failed to update properly once we did the initial sync with Amazon/eBay. There are a number of reviews reporting this bug to the developer on the Google Play Store, so cross your fingers this bug is getting fixed soon for what is a highly rated app.

Another Android alternative is AfterShip Package Tracker. This claims to work with many UK couriers including DPD, Royal Mail and Parcel Force. It takes a slightly different approach by asking permission to scan your Gmail or Outlook email accounts for package tracking numbers. Even though this app promises that everything is done safely, we’re not sure we’d want a package tracking app to scan our email, but you can enter tracking numbers manually instead.

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