What is Default location in admin?

Sorry for the thick question but what is Default location in admin? Is that suppose to be my company address?


No, that should be considered as the “Default Location” of the customers you are targeting, or, you could use this when testing shipping methods by adding an actual validated destination address.

In very few situations would you actually want to enter anything in these fields other than perhaps a default “Country” because this can create other problems such as displaying false taxes & shipping rates based upon this default location before a customer actually enters their correct location, thus initially displaying false tax & shipping prices! :wink:

I need some help. For some reason, my cart is using my default location to pull real time FedEx rates even though I have it set to use my supplier's address. I know this because I accidentally erased my default address in admin and now FedEx real time rates stopped working!!! Why is this? So, I went back and put my suppliers address but it does not like that. Before, CS-Cart had some phony address in there like city of Boston, state of Utah, some random zip code, etc and it worked. When I put in a legit address, FedEx real time rates can't respond. I need help. Does it matter what it is? What does the phony address need to show to make it valid?

Actually, it is the location used to do the first fetch of shipping estimation when the 'cart' page is entered. It is because it tries to determine shipping cost when the page is entered so it has to have something for a valid address to use (not sure exactly why since this cost isn't displayed to the user unless they enter their data into shipping estimator.

You can verify this by just adding something to the cart, then go to the cart page.

Then, in Admin, go look at your logs for http requests and you'll see that a call was made to your real-time shipping providers even though none of those rates are displayed anywhere…

If there was no address then those calls would all fail with errors.

And yes, the address (zipcode and country at least) need to be valid.


I actually keep my default settings blank and it works great. The problem with having anything in there is that it shows a shipping amount in the cart. By leaving them blank, it forces the user to enter in their own address to get the rates and doesn't mislead them with incorrect information.

I actually have the default address this way on like 4 or 5 carts and they all work perfect. Some sites use UPS and some use Fedex and they all work great.

I know none of that doesn't help ckad79, but maybe it will help him narrow down the problem.



Not sure how a request to UPS or FedEX woud work without a destination address…

And you also can't run the 'test' in the shipping setups without a default address.


You are correct, the “test” on the shipping thing doesn't work, but it works completely fine on the customer side and on the admin order side.



What do you mean by “fine”? If there's no address, the remote request will fail returning NO rates until a valid address is supplied.

In any event, I would NOT recommend that the Default address fields be left blank. Other missing information will be filled from there for possibly areas other than shipping. If you were to look at an address in the cart ($cart['user_info']) you will see that any missing info has been filled from the Default Address.

I disagree Tony. My default address has been blank since day 1 and I have not had any problems. Why would you want your customers seeing incorrect shipping and tax rates produced by the default address?


Sorry, what I mean by “fine” is working without any problems at all. I fully agree with The Tool. I don't want my customers to just see some shippng rate that has nothing to do with them. By having the default location empty, it forces my customers to enter in their own information so that they can get an accurate rate.

With the default location set, it sends back a false rate.

I don't know squat about the inner workings of the shipping, but all I know is that having the default location empty works awesome and does exactly what I want.



I don't think it's visible to customers at that point.

All I know is that when you go to the cart page and you have realtime shipping setup that it will make a request to the shipping providers for rates before anything else is done. Why they do this, I haven't a clue. But I do know that if the data is invalid or missing that the request will fail.

I have no idea why they make the request when going to the cart page with an invalid (for the customer) address. All I know is that they do.

So whether it is useless data being returned from a rate request or a failed rate request, it probably doesn't realy make any difference from the customer perspective. I guess cs-cart would have to chime in as to why they do what they do. I can only respond to what the code does, not all the logic behind it.

I can only guess there is some dependency somewhere on the data being there, otherwise it's only value would be in the shipping tester within the shipping method.

Just the messenger here…

Update: My best guess is that some thing in the $_SESSION['cart'] is initialized by going through the shipping process and that's why it's there. Whether it succeeds or fails may be irrelevant but just that some part of the process was done so some part of the cart data is initialized.

No request nor error that I know of when going to the cart page using UPS Real time.

Edit: It probably checks to see if the customer is logged in so it can then pull the rates from their information?

I very eloquently explained this above in my 1st post! :grin:


In very few situations would you actually want to enter anything in these fields other than perhaps a default “Country” because this can create other problems such as displaying false taxes & shipping rates based upon this default location before a customer actually enters their correct location, thus initially displaying false tax & shipping prices!


I suggest that if your core market is the USA, then only enter USA in your Country field for example.

It is true that if you do not complete all of the fields in your “Default Location” that you are not able to test the realtime shipping rates thru the admin while setting them up, however, the trick is to complete all of the fields only while you are testing these shipping methods, then remove all of them other than perhaps your Country field. Regardless, I have a far better way of testing realtime shipping methods anyways.

You guys never listen to me! :grin:

You guys?

[quote name=‘The Tool’ timestamp=‘1328137380’ post=‘130439’]

You guys?


Fine, I meant Tony then… :grin:

Ok, look at it this way. The “Default Location” serves two purposes, and two purposes only.

  1. To provide an actual “Destination” address for testing realtime shipping rates

  2. To pre-fill various “Destination” address fields to provide Tax and Shipping costs “Before” a potential customer has actually entered there pertinent address details. This is where the real problem lies in that by entering too much fine detail (other than perhaps your target Country), you are actually displaying non-accurate tax & shipping costs to the majority of your site visitors, thus creating major confusion as well as no doubt, scaring alot of potential buyers away, this is why I also say that entering too many details within this section causes far more harm than any benefit gained.

    And again, the information entered into these Default Location fields is being treated as the Default “Destination” for every site visitor you have, so it is easy to see the problems this can cause if not handled with caution. It is confusing, although I believe it would make far more sense to users if CS-Cart renamed this to “Default Destination”. I know it thru me for a flippin loop figuring out exactly what it’s purpose was! :shock:

@Struck - Don't disagree with your analysis at all. You are answering from a merchant user's perspecitve and I was giving a technical answer on how it's used in the code and what actions are taken when the user goes to the cart page.

If there's no valid address info, a real-time shipping request (which is made when going to the cart page) will fail returning no rates. So the only shipping rates that someone might see is whatever might be returned based on their manual shipping settings (if any) only.

I think (but am not sure) that having an empty default location can sometimes lead to the initial “no valid shipping locations” message when entering the checkout page. But there've been so many changes to shipping in the last year that it gets hard to track what still happens and what doesn't.

I see nothing in the shippings/ups.php code that looks to see if the 'location' is empty and does not request if it is. It appears that it makes the request regardless. It would simply have empty fields in the request which would cause the UPS response to be no rates.

Good discussion though… I had thought (though I don't use) the default location needed to have values. But since I sell only EDP products and we have no sales tax here in Oregon, it's not something I would enounter from a merchant (non-technical) perspective.

Now in ver. 4.13.3 if you select a country it asks for state default field. Best left empty, this caused major ordering issues for us when we upgraded for some reason the Boston, Ma was showing up as default even if the billing address check box was empty and causing the credit card processor to decline the transactions. Gives me a headache :(