What items are prohibited to ship internationally with USPS?

When shipping internationally, it is good to be aware that there are many items which can’t be shipped under any circumstances or without going through specific channels. ShippingEasy helps you organize your international shipments by saving your shipment settings, including a description of the item. You can enhance this further by saving customs information to ShippingEasy's Product Catalog.

Prohibited International Items

Often only licensed dealers and manufacturers are permitted to ship to other licensed dealers or manufacturers the following items:

  • Aerosols
  • Air Bags
  • Alcoholic Beverages
  • Ammunition
  • Cigarettes
  • Dry Ice
  • Explosives
  • Fresh Fruits and Vegetables
  • Gasoline
  • Nail Polish
  • Perfumes (containing alcohol)
  • Poison

Most of the items can pose a serious threat to passengers on a flight or voyage to another country. Some of the items, such as alcohol, can’t be shipped due to strict international regulations and may have other methods of transport.

What about common household items?

It’s important to note items like nail polish, fresh fruit, and aerosols as these are fairly common items you may wish to ship to your friends, family, or customers overseas. All of these items could possibly pose a significant risk to the crew attending them due to chemicals being released in a small area, flammability, or strict regulations.

If you have something to ship that you aren’t sure qualifies for this list, you can always contact your local post master and ask them. If they determine it’s unshippable internationally, they may be able to direct you to the best alternative way to ship it.


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Related articles:

What is a Customs Form?
What is a Harmonized Code?
Shipping knives with USPS, UPS, and FedEx
Shipping alcohol with USPS, UPS, and FedEx
Shipping tobacco with USPS, UPS, and FedEx


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