Tracking Your Package: The Complete Guide


Have you ever ordered a package and then became anxious, wondering where it was? Tracking your packages is not as difficult as it seems. In this blog post, we will give you a quick guide on how to track your package while also going into the details of what tracking numbers are and how they work.

Table of contents

Who invented package tracking?

The tracking number, that string of digits that tell you where your package is and when it's going to be delivered, is so ubiquitous today that you'd probably never believe that there was a time before its existence. Yet, this obvious piece of information didn't exist before FedEx (then Federal Express) created it forty years ago.

The system, launched in the late 1970s, was created to improve efficiencies. It worked so well that, in 1979, the system was offered to customers as COSMOS (Customers, Operations and Services Master Online System). When the system went online it included early prototypes of handheld computers that scanned package barcodes with wands. FedEx was aware that of the importance of all this data. FedEx founder Fred Smith is famous for saying, “The information about the package is as important as the package itself.”

In 2000, couriers started using Advance Electronic Data (AED) to electronically provide information about packages including their weight, cost and destination address on-line before delivery takes place. This helps save time when processing large volumes of shipments daily. The data also provides valuable security for each parcel.

How tracking numbers are generated by couriers

Tracking numbers are generated differently by each courier company, but usually consist of a combination of letters and digits that can identify the location a parcel is collected from, the destination or where it is heading to. Some also include information about which carrier has transported the parcel as well as its weight. With this added number data detail you're able to see how far your package has travelled on its route - ideal for those who need their orders delivered with urgency.

What technology is used to track a parcel?


Couriers use different details to track your parcel. Some may use radio frequency identification, or RFID, which is a wireless technology that can help track your package. Others might be using barcodes to label packages and attach tracking devices.

Global Positioning System, or GPS, is the technology that can be used to track a parcel nowadays. The system has become so popular because it provides pinpoint accuracy of locations around the world. However, for this type of tracking to work, you need electronic devices and they must have an internet connection in order to receive signals from satellites orbiting the planet

For each method of tracking, the parcels need to be scanned regularly as this is the information needed to pinpoint the location of your order.

What you should do if your parcel tracking does not update

If you do not receive a tracking update for more than 4 days, there are several steps to take. Firstly, check your computer's time and make sure it is set correctly to link with your tracking updates. Sometimes when this isn't done properly, packages may be marked as being delivered on an incorrect day. Secondly, if possible use an alternate browser or email address to log into the tracking account of that shipping company in order to see if any updates have been posted since you last checked your original inbox. Thirdly, verify with family members at home whether they received a your parcel. Lastly but most importantly contact us here at SantokuKnives where we will be able to investigate the status of your parcel with the shipping company/courier/postal service.

Lost in Transit

Sometimes parcels are lost in transit and if the parcel is insured, you will be reimbursed for what it was worth or you will be resent your order. Please ensure to check and double-check the delivery address given with your order, as if your parcel cannot be delivered due to an incorrect address, we will struggle to resolve a lost parcel for you.

Delivered but Not Received


In some cases your item might have been received by a colleague/relative and someone else will have signed for it. When this happens, the Track & Trace system will be updated to confirm that delivery has taken place.

Please check with friends/relatives/neighbours and around your property for your parcel. If nothing has been received, please contact us and we will investigate for you. We can contact the courier and provide an electronic Proof of Delivery (ePOD) on items that have been signed for. This will show the related Track and Trace number of the item, the time of delivery and most importantly, the printed and signed name of the person who took the parcel in.

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