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Delivery on Shabbat


Kavod HaRav,
An online order is scheduled to arrive on Shabbat. I tried to cancel it but so far the order remains. As the delivery on Shabbat is a “delivery estimate”, does this transgress Shabbat? (It is being sent to be delivered at a post office box and would not be picked up until the following week. It is technically possible that the order would be delivered earlier…Also, I did not request Shabbat delivery, it was that the order qualified for free shipping, and the delivery estimate for the free shipping was Friday at 10pm, which means a re-delivery attempt would probably be made the next day…If it can not be canceled (I tried several times), how should I proceed? )
Thank you sincerely.




As long as you didn’t stipulate that the order come specifically on Shabbos, (such as overnighting it on Friday) you don’t have to be concerned about it. The shipping company are non-Jews, and they are doing the job they are hired to do at the time that they decide. If they decide to deliver it on Shabbos that is their issue and as far as the actual delivery, you don’t have to be concerned that they are doing it for you. Even if they write Friday at 10 pm, that doesn’t mean that that is when it will be delivered. Often it is delivered earlier than that, and they leave themselves some extra time. Therefore, it is quite possible that it will be delivered before Shabbos. There is no need to cancel the delivery.

If the second attempt to deliver was done on Shabbos, that would require you to wait the time it takes to deliver the package locally, which would not be longer than an hour or so. By the next day, that time has already elapsed.

If the non-Jew however does deliver it on Shabbos, then you can’t use it during Shabbos, but you can pick it up the next day and use it.

Best wishes


O:CH 252-4. There is no need to wait the amount of time it takes for the package to be delivered from the original destination since most of the packages on the plane or truck were for non -Jews. The only part that is done specifically for the Jew is the delivery to his address, which doesn’t take that much time. See Chelkas Yackov 1-25 (6), SS”K 30-50 ftnt. 4, Poskim.

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