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IPFS News Link • How To

Believe it or not, you can legally buy strangers' Amazon and Postal Service packages. Here's

•, Katie Teague

Have you ever wondered what happens to Amazon and US Postal Service packages that never make it to your doorstep? While your first guess may be porch pirates, it could be that your items were lost in transit from one delivery truck to another or misplaced in a warehouse. After months of going unclaimed, those packages can be auctioned off or end up for sale at local swap meets. (Amazon typically refunds customers or replaces missing items.)

A few TikTok creators have brought the idea of buying lost packages to light, posting videos of warehouses full of mystery items waiting to be unboxed. While some contain cheaper fare like socks, TikTokers have also unwrapped gift cards, Nike sneakers and name-brand purses. Postal Service auctions put some items on display before you buy, so you have an idea of what you're getting.

We'll explain how to purchase unclaimed packages from Amazon, US Postal Service and other delivery services that haven't been claimed. We'll also tell you how to look out for companies that claim to sell mystery boxes but could potentially be scamming you.

Check these websites to find an auction for packages

If a Postal Service package hasn't been claimed within 90 days, it'll likely be auctioned off on GovDeals, a company the US Postal Services contracts with to sell unclaimed items. Items could be sold in lots, rather than individually -- so you may wind up with a bunch more stuff to sift through, resell or donate. On the site, you can browse categories you are interested in -- for instance, sporting equipment, beauty supplies and clothing.

The website Liquidation lets you choose the company you're interested in buying bulk packages from, including Amazon, Target, Walmart, Lowes and Home Depot. For some items, you can actually see what you're bidding on, but other listings will only show you images of the boxes or pallets and the category it falls under, as well as an estimated retail price.