What are the restrictions on international mail?

Restricted items for international mail may seem harmless in your home or business but are hazardous to send.

All International Mail shipments are limited by the same restrictions domestic mail must adhere to with a few additions. While they pose no harm to you in your household, these items can become dangerous with temperature and pressure changes or when shaken.

  • Fireworks
  • Nail polish
  • Perfumes
  • Matches
  • Batteries
  • Aerosols
  • Bleach
  • Dry Ice
  • Glues
  • Cleaning Supplies
  • Items previously containing fuel
  • Airbags
  • Flea collars or flea sprays
  • Fuels or gasoline
  • Mercury thermometers
  • Paints
  • Pool chemicals
  • Although not hazardous, no alcoholic beverages can be mailed.
  • Only licensed dealers and manufacturers can mail handguns.
  • Cigarettes and smokeless tobacco generally cannot be mailed. See tobacco restrictions and guidelines for more information.
  • Only registered dispensers and practitioners can mail prescription medications. Over-the-counter medications fall under similar restrictions.

In some instances, there may be more specific restrictions depending on your shipment’s final destination country. A complete list of these restrictions can be found in the International Mail Manual (IMM), which can be found on the USPS website.


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