Manifests FAQs

What are the cutoff times for USPS® shipments and manifests?

To include the current day’s date on a USPS label, you must issue the Create Shipment request before 8 p.m. local time. After 8 p.m., the label gets the next day’s date. At any time, if you want to create a shipment with a label that displays a future date, use the FUTURE_SHIPMENT_DATE option.

To include a eligible shipment on the current day’s SCAN form, you must issue the Create Manifest request before 8 p.m. local time. If you create the manifest after 8 p.m., you must set the manifest’s submissionDate to the next day or later. A shipment is eligible for addition to a SCAN form if the shipment’s ADD_TO_MANIFEST option is set to true.

For both the Create Shipment and Create Manifest API requests, local time is based on the induction postal code if present and otherwise on the state specified in the sender’s address. For states with two time zones, local time is determined by the part of the state with the larger population. For more information, see How is the local time zone determined for USPS shipments and manifests?

Note: Transaction Reports do not use local time for transactions but instead use UTC/GMT.

If a eligible shipment has not been added to a SCAN form by 6 a.m. UTC/GMT the next calendar day, Pitney Bowes auto-manifests the shipment.

The following table shows the cutoff time and auto-manifest time for each domestic time zone:

Time Zone Cutoff Time for
Labels and Manifests
Auto-Manifest
Occurs At
Eastern 8 p.m. ET   1 a.m. EST / 2 a.m. EDT
Central 8 p.m. CT 12 a.m. CST / 1 a.m. CDT
Mountain 8 p.m. MT 11 p.m. MST / 12 a.m. MDT
Pacific 8 p.m. PT 10 p.m. PST / 11 p.m. PDT
Alaska 8 p.m. AKT   9 p.m. AKST / 10 p.m. AKDT
Hawaii-Aleutian 8 p.m. HAST   8 p.m. HAST

For military-origin addresses (APO/FPO/DPO), the cut off times are in UTC/GMT:

Origin Cutoff Time for
Labels and Manifests
Auto-Manifest
Occurs At
Armed Forces in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Canada (AE) 8:00 p.m. UTC   6 a.m. UTC the next calendar day
Armed Forces in the Pacific (AP) 8:00 p.m. UTC   6 a.m. UTC the next calendar day

How is the local time zone determined for USPS shipments and manifests?

For both the Create Shipment and Create Manifest API requests, local time is based on the induction postal code, if present, or otherwise based on the state specified in the sender’s address. For states with two time zones, local time is determined by the part of the state with the larger population, as shown in the following table. Note that Arizona is on Standard Time all year, unlike the other states listed, all of which observe Daylight Saving Time.

States with Two Time Zones
State Time Zone for Local Time
Arizona Mountain Standard Time
Idaho Mountain
Kansas Central
Kentucky Eastern
Nebraska Central
North Dakota Central
Oregon Pacific
South Dakota Central

What is included in a USPS SCAN form?

If you create a SCAN form with a submissionDate of day N and if you specify shipments by providing a list of tracking numbers, then you can include shipments with ship dates of day N-1, day N, and day N+1.

If create a SCAN form with a submissionDate of day N but you do not provide tracking numbers, then all eligible shipments with a ship date of day N-1 and day N are added to the SCAN form.

Can I exclude shipments from appearing in a USPS SCAN form?

Yes, you can exclude a shipment from appearing in a SCAN form by setting ADD_TO_MANIFEST to false when creating the shipment. The shipment will not use a SCAN form, and Pitney Bowes will auto-manifest the shipment within 30 minutes of the Create Shipment request.

Note: The ADD_TO_MANIFEST option is always considered true for PMOD labels. PMOD requires packages be added to PS Form 3152 using the POST manifests API. If you set the option to false, the PB Complete Shipping APIs still consider the option to be true.

Can I choose to manifest a shipment at a later date?

Yes. Set the shipment’s FUTURE_SHIPMENT_DATE option in the shipmentOptions array to a date up to 7 days in the future. Specify the date in UTC/GMT using one of the following formats:

  • YYYY-MM-DD
  • YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS

This prevents the shipment from being picked up by the nightly auto-manifest job.

When you are ready to add the shipment to a manifest, issue the Create Manifest API call and specify the manifest’s submission date and the shipment’s tracking number.

For a list of all shipment options, see shipment options.

Can I remove shipments from a manifest after creating the manifest?

No, once you have created a manifest, you cannot remove tracking numbers from that manifest. You can, however, submit the package for a refund.

How long is a manifest URL available?

The URL is available as long as there is space in the server, which is roughly about 15 days. However, the GET /manifests/{manifestId} API call returns a valid response only until 24 hours after the first print.