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Amazon Preparing for Shipment: What Does It Mean?

The “Amazon preparing for shipment” message is sent to inform you that your shipment is in the final stages of preparation before delivery.

Likewise, this is usually when Amazon charges a customer for the order since it has confirmed stock availability and is about to dispatch such order(s).

But what happens when an order is stuck at this stage? What can you do in such instances?

Follow through the rest of this guide to learn all you need to know.

Key Takeaways

  • This status indicates that your order is in the final stages of preparation, which involves picking, packing, and quality checks.
  • The duration of the “preparing for shipment” phase can vary based on factors like order complexity, item availability, and your chosen shipping method.
  • Stay alert to communications from Amazon that provide updates on your order’s status.

What Are Possible Reasons for the Amazon “Preparing for Shipment” Status?

There are a series of triggers that can bring about the “Preparing for Shipment” message on your Amazon order.

Here are a few.

Order in Processing

Amazon may send you this message when its staff pick and pack items in your order.

Likewise, this status would be displayed on your order page when an Amazon Fulfilled by Merchant (FBM) seller receives your order and starts packing it to ship to you.

While many FBA sellers use Amazon warehouses, some can package your orders from their homes or other storage locations. In this case, you’ll also get the “Preparing for Shipment” when they’re setting up your order to be picked up by Amazon and shipped to you.

Shipping Label Creation

creating amazon shipping label
Amazon orders at this stage will also be tagged "Preparing for Shipment".

The shipping label helps signify that your package is officially in the system and ready to move through the intricate logistics network. This shipping label also indicates a return address to use in case the order is damaged, you got the wrong order, or for other reason(s).

Quality Control

Your chosen product may also go through Amazon’s final checks before shipping. 

This phase ensures that your items meet the company’s stringent standards, reducing the probability of the item being returned and increasing customer satisfaction.

Mode of Shipping

Orders shipped via Amazon FBA usually get out of the “Preparing for Shipment” status faster than orders fulfilled by merchants. That’s because Amazon already has a streamlined product packaging and delivery process, ensuring it can prepare and send orders faster than third-party vendors.

In fact, the “Preparing for Shipment” phase can last for less than a day if you’re a Prime member and the processing stage goes hitch-free!

Note:

Prime subscribers can also be stuck in the “Preparing for Shipment” phase if there’s an issue packing the order, a warehouse incident, or other unforeseen circumstances. However, this doesn’t happen often, so you should usually get your order in 1-3 business days.

How to Check the Status of Your Order?

Checking the status of your Amazon order is a straightforward process. 

This way, you can know when it gets the “Preparing for Shipment” tag and when it moves past that stage.

Here’s how:

  1. Log into your Amazon account.
  2. Go to “Orders.”
  3. Locate a specific order.
  4. Find its current status.

How Long Can You Expect the “Preparing for Shipment” Message to Last?

The duration of the Amazon “Preparing for Shipment” status can vary, influenced by several factors discussed below:

  • Order Complexity: The intricacy of your order, including the number and types of items, can impact the preparation time.
  • Item Availability: If all items in your order are readily available at the chosen fulfillment center, the process tends to be swifter.
  • Shipping Method: Your chosen shipping option plays a role. Standard shipping may take longer than expedited, FBA, or Prime options.

Generally, the Amazon “Preparing for shipment” phase lasts between a few hours to a couple of days. Amazon aims for efficiency, but occasional high order volumes or logistical challenges might extend the timeframe.

For context, below are Amazon order shipping and delivery timeframes:

  • Amazon Prime Users – 1-2 days.
  • FREE Shipping – 5-8 days.
  • FBM Deliveries – Dependent on vendor.
  • International shipping – 5-20 days (average), depending on priority level.

Hence, the “Preparing for shipment” message should last less than your preferred shipping route or marketplace vendor option.

If the status persists longer than expected, Amazon’s customer service is just a message or call away, ready to provide updates and assistance.

What Can You Expect When Your Order Is in This Status?

As your order enters the “preparing for shipment” status, several important aspects come into focus. Let’s delve into the specifics:

Delayed vs. Expedited Processing

If your order experiences delayed processing, it may be due to various reasons, such as

  • High demand.
  • Item availability issues.
  • Logistical challenges.

On the other hand, if your order undergoes expedited processing, it signifies a quicker transition through the preparation phase. This could be influenced by factors like

  • A straightforward order.
  • Readily available items.
  • Prioritized fulfillment methods.

Impact on Order Tracking

Your tracking details may be limited as the package is still being prepared.

You can expect more comprehensive tracking information once it advances to the shipping phase.

Note:

You may get estimated delivery dates in the Amazon “Preparing for Shipment” phase. However, check to reconfirm that the estimated dates still hold when the product finally ships.

Communication From Amazon

Amazon values transparent communication with its customers. Hence, you’ll often receive notifications or emails about your order during the preparation.

amazon late delivery
Possible communication from Amazon if you don't get your package on time

These communications could involve

  • Processing status.
  • Expected shipping dates.
  • Unforeseen issues that impact delivery times.

You should stay alert to these updates since they inform you to take appropriate actions if needed.

Can You Do Anything About the “Preparing for Shipment” Status?

The “Amazon preparing for shipment” status is essentially a behind-the-scenes phase. 

Hence, you can only stay calm and await the order or contact Amazon’s customer care service.

The customer care reps are in the best position to provide clarity on the situation, offer updates, address concerns, and provide assistance based on the current status of your order.

In some instances, such as urgent needs or time-sensitive orders, you may inquire about the possibility of expediting the processing of your order. While not guaranteed, customer service can guide you through available options.

Recommended Readings

FAQs

Yes, Amazon will typically charge you for your order during the “preparing for shipment” stage. The charge indicates that the items in your order are being processed and prepared for dispatch.

You can cancel an Amazon order in the “Preparing for Shipment” phase

However, success may vary depending on how far the order has progressed in the preparation process. It’s advisable to contact Amazon customer service promptly for assistance.

Understanding Amazon’s Delivery Pipeline

Understanding the “preparing for shipment” status can make your shopping experience smoother. Naturally, it’s just one aspect, but we’ve all had our share of frustration while awaiting an important delivery.

For other intricacies of navigating Amazon, get our refresher guide on finding trusted sellers or specific storefronts, especially those with whom you’ve had a smoother transaction in the past.

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