Go online to look for EMS (which actually stands for Express Mail Service) and you are likely to find the situation a bit confusing. On first glance, you might imagine that EMS package tracking is strictly for the Chinese market—and you’d only be half wrong. The fact of the matter is that the EMS is an international postage service for accelerated delivery. Its services are currently available in more than 190 countries and territories the world over and the EMS Cooperative includes over 85 per cent of all operators, all of them affiliated with the Universal Postal Union (UPU). All of the affiliated operators are audited by an external organization on a yearly basis and receive certificates based on their performance.
So, then, what gives? Why does a large chunk of the world use EMS, instead of UPS, DHL, or other similar shipping and package tracking services? Mainly, it’s because of national laws, which categorize carriers differently. In Russia, for instance, foreign shipments for personal needs worth less than EUR1,000 are exempt from customs fees, while for the other carriers mentioned above, the value threshold is lowered to EUR250. In spite of this legal conundrum, EMS is a reputable company, based, indeed, in China, whose postal shipment tracking service range we will be analyzing below.
EMS China Postal Courier official site: www.EMS.com.cn
EMS Package Tracking Options
There’s a plethora of EMS package tracking methods available to users. For the purposes of this article, we will first look at the Track & Trace system, in place on the main EMS website. Extra tracking options are listed further down below.
- EMS Package Tracking for Express Shipment. The previously linked page allows users to track a single shipment, as well as multiple shipments. In both scenarios you will need a tracking number, as provided upon making the order and you’ll also need to enter a verification code correctly. For multiple shipments, you can enter up to 10 EMS tracking numbers at once.
- EMS Package Tracking for Logistics Shipments. All of the above also applies to the EMS logistics solutions shipment service. The key difference is that, since this is largely a B2B service, the multiple shipment tracking section allows you to input two sets of up to 30 tracking numbers at the same time.
- EMS Package Tracking via other methods.
- EMS Package Tracking by Phone. Chinese customers can call the company’s Customer Service Hotline at 11183, in order to glean additional shipment status details.
- EMS Package Tracking at the Post Office. For over-the-counter tracking info you will need to return to the post office where the shipment was initially posted from. Make sure you have the waybill (or at least a copy of it) with you, as well as the postage receipt.
EMS Package Delivery Estimate
If you want to know the estimated date of arrival for a shipment you’re planning on making with EMS, you can calculate the domestic transit time for China here. You can either get a precise assessment of the time required for your package to reach its destination, or a vague one (with a margin of error of 1 to 2 business days). The precise estimate requires you to know the post code of both the location of origin, as well as of the destination. Meanwhile, the vague estimate only requires the name of the two cities. The EMS website database of cities includes 100 localities in China. You will also need to enter the date at which you plan on sending the shipment, as seasonally high volumes of shipments can affect the time required for delivery. Note that the vague estimate is not legally binding, whereas the precise one is.
Extra EMS Package Tracking Options
Aside from the main Chinese website, EMS package tracking is also available at the following addresses:
- Track-Trace.com: you can track EMS shipments across 148 countries on this website.
On all the aforementioned websites, you will need your tracking number, which usually consists of two initial letters, followed by nine numeric characters, followed by two more letters—something like AA123456789ZZ. The final two letters represent either the country from where the package was shipped, or the destination country, whereas the first two stand for the type of tracking used: direct, or with options. Some unsupported countries can be selected manually, after the tracking number has been inputted.
What Can You Do If the EMS Package Doesn’t Arrive on Time?
As usual, the first step you need to undertake is to make sure that the delivery of the package has actually been delayed. If possible, check the estimated time of delivery once more, via the EMS website. If all else fails, you still cannot locate your parcel, but the tracking system says it has been delivered, get in touch with EMS via the Customer Service hotline. You can file a complaint with them for delayed delivery. The company guarantees compensation, though different criteria and compensation levels apply, based on type of shipment.
Insured domestic shipments which have been lost or damaged will be compensated for actual value; this value cannot exceed the value the item was insured for. Non-insured domestic packages will be compensated for loss or damage according to the actual value of the damage at hand. if delivery is delayed, the company will refund the sender their postage costs, but without the packaging, insurance, and other added value fees. International shipments will be compensated with CNY400 for lost or damaged shipping documents, declared value + CNY500 + CNY60 x the item’s weight in kilos for loss or damaged goods, and in case of delivery delay, the sender will receive 50 per cent of the postage fee back.