What does the “Processed Through Office of Exchange” tracking alert mean?
As we will see, it can actually mean two scenarios surrounding the progress of your package delivery. Let’s take a look.
Processed Through Office of Exchange – Meaning
“Processed Through Office of Exchange” means that your package has reached an exchange office in either the origin or destination country and is being prepared for customs clearance.
How do I know which Office of Exchange my Package is at?
The tracking details should state the location of the exchange office. However, it is easy to work out whether this is the origin or destination country through the tracking update you received prior to “Processed Through Office of Exchange”.
If the update before was “Arrival at Outward Office of Exchange”, this signifies that the package is currently going through the customs process of the origin country.
The “Outward Office” is the one that the package is being processed through and will be leaving.
If the update prior is “Arrival at Inward Office of Exchange”, you know that the package has reached its destination country, and is about to be processed through customs there. It is the “Inward Office”.
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How long will my package remain on “Processed Through Office of Exchange”?
This will depend on how busy the office of exchange (i.e customs) is at that location. It will also make a difference whether your package has been delivered by plane or cargo ship.
Essentially, the package will be joining a queue of items that need to pass customs clearance.
This can take anything from a few hours to several days. If a problem with customs occurs you will be notified via a relevant update.
If everything is in order, you will receive a “Customs Clearance Processing Complete” style update.
Note: Different couriers use different tracking wording when it comes to declaring the customs process complete. For example, DHL will use wording such as “Clearance Event” & “Customs Status Updated”.
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What Happens Next?
What happens after receiving a processed through the office of exchange alert depends on the location of the exchange office, (i.e origin or destination country).
If the package is still in the origin country, once it has cleared customs it will be loaded onto a plane or cargo ship for onward delivery.
At this point, you will often receive a “Dispatch from Outward Office of Exchange” alert.
If the package has reached the destination country, the next step of the journey after customs clearance is via the courier handling the final delivery to the recipient’s address.
This could be USPS or any other major carrier. Either way, in this scenario the package is close to arriving.
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What do I do if the update remains stuck on “Processed Through Office of Exchange”
As we have explained, after receiving the “Processed Through Office of Exchange” alert, you know that your package is being queued for customs clearance.
This can take some time, so it is advised that you remain patient during the process.
If however, several days pass and you see no update on progress, it is recommended that you contact the shipper and/or relevant carrier responsible for delivery for more information.
It could be that the backlog of items at customs is causing delays. It might also mean your package has experienced problems with the clearance process.
However, the latter should trigger a relevant alert providing details of the issue.
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I’m a 25 year veteran of USPS. I’m retired now, but as the editor of Mailbox Master, I can’t quite remove myself from the carrier industry just yet. 🙂