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Shipping Restrictions: What You Can Ship And Can’t?

Shipping Restrictions: What You Can Ship And Can't?

If you have ever shipped something, you know that some items are more complicated to ship than the rest. Either the procedure will the lengthy, or there will be more shipping restrictions. This guide will solely focus on letting you guys know what you can ship and cannot ship internationally or domestically through any logistics provider. By the end, you will learn how items are categorized as deliverable or not.

Items for shipment come with restrictions if there lies a chance of them being dangerous in transit. Even though restricted items are deliverable, providing that all the safe shipping instructions are followed. They must be packaged and labeled as per the particular courier provider.

The shipping instructions for restricted items most likely include additional safety packaging and other safety measures that ensure safe transport.

Why do you think courier service providers or logistics companies impose different shipping restrictions? Well, any variation in the shipping restrictions is more or less similar, with slight differences based on the country and shipping laws.

Such restrictions are proactive measures to make shipping services more proper and safe. Correctly packaged and labeled shipments are easy to handle and prevent accidental damage to the items in transit.

In a sense, domestic courier services may have less rigid shipping restrictions than international ones. Because international shipping laws are more lucrative.

As much as it is the service provider’s responsibility to follow the shipping restrictions, the customers also must be aware of them. You can learn more about different countries shipping rules and regulations by visiting their official websites.

As per the United States transportation laws, goods or items are categorized into three sections –

  • Restricted goods (can be shipped with additional measures).
  • Banned or prohibited goods (cannot be shipped at all).
  • Unique items with an export license (can be shipped).

What can you ship?

International and domestic shipping laws must indeed be followed. But, above that, logistics and courier service providers also have different shipping rules. Before you ship your items out, ask them about it.

Restricted items

You can ship restricted items following some additional restrictions or rules. It could be different packaging, a limit on shipping quantity, or any other limitation. If not, you might require a shipping permit for that item or an exclusive license to export to your target location.

So, the list of restricted items for international shipping is as follows:

  • Retail tobacco products
  • Tranquilizing guns & ammunition
  • Project cargo
  • Precious metals like platinum, gold, and silver.
  • Perishable goods.
  • Valuable artwork between US $250,000 – US $500,000 and higher.
  • Medical devices like computer chips, microchips, CPUs, microprocessors, etc., have distribution permits, licenses, and per state laws.
  • Lithium and lithium-ion metal batteries
  • Personal effects and household goods.
  • Radioactive materials
  • Gems (cut or uncut)
  • Flowers
  • Fresh foodstuffs
  • Organic peroxides
  • Oxidizers
  • Toxic substances like liquid or solid
  • Flammable gas
  • Harmful wet flammable solids
  • Combustible flammable solids
  • Flammable gas
  • Class 8 corrosives
  • Class 9 miscellaneous like dry ice, lithium batteries, etc.
  • Antiquities, artwork, and archeological artifacts
  • Etiological and biological agents
  • Non-toxic and non-flammable gas
  • Explosives like model rocket motors and airbags.
  • Class 3 flammable liquids

Dangerous goods

Are you surprised that dangerous goods can be shipped? Yes, they can be shipped with utmost attention and care during transit. Any minor error could cause heavy damage. The ADR and IATA (International Air Transport Association) regulate the shipping of dangerous goods.

So, here goes the list of dangerous goods:

  • Insecticides, pesticides, toxic herbicides, or toxic substances like poison.
  • Organic peroxides or oxidizing materials like hair dyes.
  • Lighters, matches, lighter refills.
  • Biological substances that may contain infectious pathogens or another agent.
  • Compressed and toxic gases like fire extinguishers.
  • Flammable solids like potassium
  • Flammable liquids like acetone
  • Ammunition or explosives like flares and fireworks.
  • Environmental wastes.
  • corrosives
  • Seat belt pretensioners
  • Solid carbon dioxide
  • Cells or batteries
  • Alcoholic beverages with more than 24% alcohol level.
  • Aerosols like deodorants and hairspray

What can you not ship?

You cannot ship prohibited or banned goods/items at any cost. No permit or additional protection goes around with banned items for shipping.

This list of banned items/goods applies globally to all courier providers:

  • Livestock or animals.
  • Illegal goods like narcotics and counterfeit products
  • Semi-precious and precious stones
  • Bullion of any metal
  • Cash legal tender
  • Ashes or human remains
  • Aminal hunting trophies or animal parts like shark fins, tiger heads, ivory tusks, etc.
  • Animal by-products not for human consumption

Last thoughts

Knowing this shipping restrictions and regulations list will help you prepare for future shipments. And note that these shipping restrictions on certain goods and items are applicable worldwide. There might be slight differences based on particular courier service providers, though. If you are shipping something breakable, use super secure packaging to prevent breakage. Added security is always good, like the real-time tracking system.