Global tracking allows both the sender and receiver of a package to follow its progress from its origin to its destination. Shipping companies such as Federal Express and UPS give their customers several different methods for monitoring their packages.
After a shipping company accepts a package from the sender, the representative provides the sender with a tracking number. This number appears on the shipping label that the sender prints out after ordering the shipping services online. The shipping company's website has a field that allows the sender and receiver to enter the tracking number and find the most recent scan of the package.
Shipping representatives scan the package upon shipment and at every change in truck along the way, such as moving from a long distance truck into a local shipping facility, and then again when a local truck driver puts the package into his truck for delivery. The final scan takes place at delivery. In some cases, the sender and receiver also can track the package using the sender or receiver's email address. UPS and Federal Express both allow customers to receive text alerts with shipping updates, and Federal Express also offers desktop updates. Federal Express also offers the Insight service that allows customers with an account to track their packages without a tracking number.