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A manifest is a physical or electronic document that is required by some carriers to streamline the pickup process. It typically contains a barcode that the driver can scan when they arrive to pick up your packages.

Example Manifest

API Management Text

Why Create a Manifest?

Some carriers require manifests to make the pickup process much faster. The driver simply scans the barcode to process all the packages at once. Without the manifest, the driver would need to scan each package individually. When picking up hundreds of packages from a warehouse, it is far more efficient to scan one manifest than to scan each package individually.

Do I Need a Manifest?

If your carrier requires a manifest, then you must create a daily manifest whether you have one package or hundreds.

Creating a Manifest in ShipEngine

Creating a manifest in ShipEngine consists of sending a request that specifies the labels you would like to include in the manifest. You may explicitly or implicitly specify the labels.

Electronic vs Physical Manifests

You will need to consider whether the carrier you are using supports electronically submitted manifests or if it requires you to download and print a physical PDF document.

If your carrier supports electronically submitted manifests, ShipEngine will automatically create a daily manifest in the format required by the carrier and submit it on your behalf.

If a physical manifest is required, you will need to make a request to ShipEngine to create the manifest. The response will include a URL where you can download the PDF file. You will then need to print it and present it to the carrier when they come to pick up your package(s).

Manifest Daily

You must create your manifest on the same calendar date as the date on which your labels were created. If you try to generate a manifest that includes labels that were created on a prior date, you will get an error.

Explicit vs Implicit Manifests

ShipEngine has two different ways to create manifests:

  1. Explicit Manifests specify exactly which labels to include in the manifest.

  2. Implicit Manifests specify criteria for including labels in the manifest. This method enables you to indicate specific labels to exclude from the manifest even if they meet the criteria. We refer to this as an implicit manifest since you do not specify the exact labels to include.

Manifest Requirements by Carrier

Some carriers require a manifest, while others make them optional. Some carriers do not support manifests at all.

Many carriers require you to print a PDF document and present it to the driver upon pickup. Some carriers support electronically submitted manifests, in which case ShipEngine will automatically submit the manifest for you.

Carrier NameManifest Required?Manifest MethodNotes
Access WorldwideREQUIRED
Australia PostREQUIREDPDF downloadAustralia Post calls this form Order Summary Report.
Canada PostREQUIREDPDF download
DHL Express CanadaNON/A
DHL Express UKREQUIREDElectronically submitted
DHL Express (US)NON/A
FedEx (US, CA)OptionalPDF downloadProvided for FedEx Ground Shipments that meet the following criteria:
  • Collect on Delivery Amount (COD Amount)
  • Declared Value greater than $100 U.S. dollars
  • Oversize (Length + Girth greater than 84")
  • Additional Handling applied to shipment
  • Acknowledgment of Delivery (A.O.D)
  • Residential delivery address
FedEx International MailServiceNO
FirstMileREQUIREDElectronically submitted
LSO (Lone Star Overnight)NON/A
NewgisticsREQUIREDElectronically submitted
Purolator CanadaREQUIREDPDF downloadSubmitted electronically through ShipEngine.
Royal MailREQUIREDPDF download
RR DonnelleyREQUIREDPDF download
UPS (CA, UK, US)OptionalContact UPS Support or your UPS representative to see if Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) may work as a paperless invoice within your International Shipping Tools.
UPS Mail InnovationsNO
USPSOptionalPDF download