What is a Manifest?
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.
Why Create a Manifest?
Some carriers require manifests it makes the pickup process must 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, scanning a manifest is far more efficient than scanning 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 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).
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.
ShipEngine has two different ways to create manifests:
Specify exactly which labels to include in the manifest.
Specify criteria for including labels in the manifest, including the ability to indicate specific labels to exclude from the manifest even if they meet the criteria. We refer to this as implicit manifests 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 Name||Manifest Required?||Manifest Method||Notes|
|Australia Post||REQUIRED||PDF download||Australia Post calls this form Order Summary Report.|
|Canada Post||REQUIRED||PDF download|
|DHL Express AU||NO||N/A|
|DHL Express Canada||NO||N/A|
|DHL Express UK||REQUIRED||Electronically submitted|
|DHL Express (US)||NO||N/A|
|FedEx (US, CA)||Optional||PDF download||Provided for FedEx Ground Shipments that meet the folowing criteria: |
|FedEx UK||REQUIRED||PDF download|
|FedEx International MailService||NO|
|LSO (Lone Star Overnight)||NO||N/A|
|Purolator Canada||REQUIRED||PDF download||Submitted electronically through ShipEngine.|
|Royal Mail||REQUIRED||PDF download|
|RR Donnelley||REQUIRED||PDF download|
|UPS (CA, UK, US)||Optional||Optional via EDI apply to UPS via their Paperless Invoice Enrollment Page|
|UPS Mail Innovations||NO|