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“Dispatched for Delivery” Meaning (Tracking Guide)

You’ve recently purchased an item online and are waiting for it to arrive.

You’ve been watching your package tracking closely and received a “Dispatched for Delivery” update.

What does this mean exactly? How far is your package from delivery at this point, and is there anything you need to do?

Let’s take a look…

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Summary: Dispatched for Delivery

Dispatched for Delivery means that the seller has packaged up the order, arranged all of the shipping details with the carrier, and has now handed it over to the delivery company.

Dispatched for Delivery – Guide


This alert is most commonly used at the point the carrier company receives the package from the sender. 

Essentially, the sender has “dispatched” the item to the delivery company. It is now, physically in the hands of the carrier.

Clearly, the item is at the very beginning of the shipment journey.

Dispatched differs from shipped, in that it is used to describe the fact that the handover from the sender to the carrier has taken place.

Although shipped is used by some carriers (or eCommerce platforms) to mean this too; it is better to understand the idea of shipped as being the process of the carrier transporting the package to the first facility in the network. 

Dispatched is the handover, shipped means the package is now in transit.

Dispatched for Delivery at the End of the Shipment Journey

delivery van on road

To confuse matters more, “Dispatched for Delivery” is used by certain carriers at the end of the shipment journey.

In this scenario, the package is “dispatched” from the final facility in the delivery network, and delivery to the recipient will now take place. 

In other words, “dispatched for delivery” in this context, is the same as “out for delivery”.

So Where is My Package When it is “Dispatched for Delivery”?

girl shrugging

The best way to ascertain where your package is when you receive this update is to look at what alerts preceded it and also to use a little common sense.

If you have only just made the order and very few alerts have been sent thus far, “Dispatched for Delivery” will mean that the sender has handed over the package to the carrier.

If the shipment has been in transit for a number of days and you have received updates describing progress such as arrived at the regional facility etc; you will know that “Dispatched for Delivery” means that the item is very close to delivery.

Does Dispatched Mean it Will Arrive Today?

delivery driver

This is a good question. “Dispatched for Delivery” if the item has reached the end of the shipment journey will often mean that you will receive your delivery that same day.

Keep an eye on your tracking here as a delivery date or window may accompany the alert.

On the other hand, if the item has only been “Dispatched for Delivery” to the carrier company from the sender, it is clear that the delivery is still a few days away, (unless, of course, same-day delivery was ordered).

How Long After an Order is Dispatched Does it Arrive?

date and time

This is actually an impossible question to answer, but I will give an overview as it is a query that is often made.

Basically, the arrival time after an order is dispatched varies for a number of reasons. 

Everything from the delivery service used, the distance between sender and recipient, where in the shipment journey the alert is triggered, and whether there will be any delays, all impact the speed of the shipment.

Only where the update is sent at the end of the shipment journey, can you be relatively certain that you will receive your package that same day, (or at least the next business day).

At any other time, (unless a guaranteed delivery window was ordered), there are too many variables at play.

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