Prohibited and Restricted Goods

Post office counter

Items you cannot send in the post

There are some items which Royal Mail is unable to carry in the UK for legal or health and safety reasons. This comprehensive A-Z list gives you detailed information about the things you cannot post with us, as well as highlighting areas where there may be exceptions.

The table below covers all Royal Mail’s UK mail services including 1st Class, 2nd Class and Special Delivery Guaranteed®.

Customers posting items overseas should note that the rules may be different for international post. Please visit our international pages for more details.

You are responsible for checking whether or not an item is prohibited or restricted. If you send prohibited goods or restricted goods (and you do not comply with the relevant terms and conditions), we may deal with your items as we see fit, including but not limited to, disposing of the parcels concerned (in whole or in part).

For more information, download the prohibitions and restrictions leaflet.

If you are not sure about the item you wish to post, please call Royal Mail Customer Services on 0345Calls to 0345 will cost no more than calling a standard geographic number starting with 01 or 02 from your fixed line or mobile and may be included in your call package dependent on your service provider 7740 740. Textphone users should call 0345Calls to 0345 will cost no more than calling a standard geographic number starting with 01 or 02 from your fixed line or mobile and may be included in your call package dependent on your service provider 600 0606.

Prohibited itemWe reserve the right to refuse any other item banned by law or that in our opinion may be harmful or dangerous to our customers or employees. If you send dangerous goods and do not comply with the applicable terms and conditions and legal requirements then we may deal with the goods as we see fit including destroying or disposing of the relevant goods.* Detailed information

Aerosols not for personal grooming or medicinal purposes

Including spray paints, lacquers, solvents, air fresheners, oven cleaners, etc.

Aerosols for personal grooming or medicinal purposes are allowed in the UK (including deodorants, body sprays, hair sprays, shaving and hair removal creams, asthma inhalers, etc.) but subject to packaging, volume, quantity and labelling restrictions. Please see the Restricted Goods page.
Alcoholic beverages

With an alcohol content greater than 70% ABV.

Alcoholic beverages with an alcohol content of 70% ABV or less are allowed in the UK (including whisky, vodka and most spirits and liqueurs) but subject to packaging, volume and quantity restrictions. Please see Restricted Goods page.
Ammunition Except lead pellets and other airgun and airsoft projectiles.
Asbestos Except when sent as a sample fixed in a resin, plastic or glass matrix.
Batteries

Batteries that are classed as dangerous goodsClassified in the latest edition of the International Civil Aviation Organisation’s Technical Instructions. by the latest edition of the International Civil Aviation Organization’s (ICAO) Technical Instructions are prohibited. This includes wet spillable lead acid/lead alkaline batteries (such as car batteries), used alkaline metal, nickel metal hydride (NiMH), nickel cadmium (NiCd), zinc-air batteries, and damaged batteries of any type.

Lithium ion/polymer/metal/alloy batteries when not sent with, or contained in/connected to an electronic device, are prohibited.

Lithium ion/polymer/metal/alloy batteries are allowed when sent with or contained in/connected to an electronic device, but are subject to packaging, volume and quantity restrictions. Please see Restricted Goods page.  

For more information on lithium batteries please see the IATA Lithium Battery Guidance Document.

Sealed lead acid batteries are allowed in the UK, but are also subject to packaging, volume, quantity and labelling restrictions. Please see Restricted Goods page.

Alkaline metal, nickel metal hydride (NiMH) and nickel cadmium (NiCd) batteries may only be sent when new and in their original packaging. Please see Restricted Goods page.
Clinical and medical waste For example contaminated dressings, bandages and needles.
Controlled drugs and narcotics Including cannabis, cocaine, heroin, LSD, opium and amyl nitrate.
Corrosive substances Substances which can cause severe damage to living tissue, other freight or transport by its chemical action are prohibited including aluminium chloride, caustic soda, corrosive cleaning fluid, dyes, acids, corrosive paint and rust removers, mercury and gallium metal.
Counterfeit currency, bank notes and postage stamps Including any false instrument, or copy of a false instrument (within the meaning of section 5 of the Forgery and Counterfeiting Act 1981) except copies of old denominations, which are now obsolete and worthless except for collectable value and cannot be passed as tender. Please see Restricted Goods page.
Dry ice For example UN1845 when used as a coolant for UN3373 or for other perishable items.
Environmental waste Including used batteries and used engine oil.
Electronic items containing any batteries exceeding 100Wh Including some high performance laptops and power tools.
Explosives

Any chemical compound, mixture or device capable of producing an explosive or pyrotechnic effect with substantial instantaneous release of heat and gas is prohibited e.g. ammunition, blasting caps, Christmas cracker snaps, fireworks, flares, fuses, igniters, nitro-glycerine and party poppers.

Items that appear to be prohibited explosive ordnanceAll munitions containing explosives, nuclear fission or fusion materials, and biological and chemical agents. may be subject to additional checks and delays.

Flammable liquids

This includes mixtures of liquids or liquids containing solids in solution or suspension which give off a flammable vapour and includes acetone, benzene, cleaning compounds, lighter fuel, paint thinners and removers, petroleum, solvents, varnishes, enamels and nail varnish removers.

Nail varnish, perfumes and aftershaves are allowed in the UK but subject to packaging, volume, quantity and labelling restrictions. Please see Restricted Goods page.
Flammable solids Solid materials which are liable to cause fire by friction, absorption of water, spontaneous chemical changes or retained heat from manufacturing or processing, or which can be readily ignited and burn vigorously e.g. adhesives, calcium carbide, cellulose nitrate products, fire lighters, matches, metallic magnesium, nitro-cellulose based film, phosphorous, potassium, sodium, sodium hydride, zinc powder, zirconium hydride.
Frozen water Including packs of ice.
Gases

Gases that are compressed, liquefied or dissolved under pressure, permanent gases which cannot be liquefied at ambient temperatures, liquefied gases which become liquid under pressure at ambient temperatures, dissolved gases which are dissolved under pressure in a solvent.

1. All flammable compressed gases are prohibited e.g. blowlamps; butane; lighters and refills containing flammable liquid or gas; ethane; gas cylinders for camping stoves; hydrogen; methane and propane.

2. All toxic compressed gases are prohibited e.g. chlorine; fluorine etc.

3. All non-flammable compressed gases are prohibited e.g. air bags; scuba tanks, carbon dioxide; fire extinguishers; neon and nitrogen.

Goods made in foreign prisons Except those imported for a non-commercial purpose, of a kind not manufactured in the UK, or those in transit.
Human and animal remains Including ashes.
Infectious substances UN2814 or UN2900 Category A Infectious Substances are prohibited e.g. Ebola, Anthrax, Foot and Mouth disease as detailed in the latest edition of the International Civil Aviation Organization’s (ICAO) Technical Instructions. For more information please see the IATA Guidance Document on Infectious Substances.
Lighters and refills containing flammable liquid or gas

Including used butane, petrol cigar and cigarette lighters.

New and unused empty lighters may be sent unopened in their original retail packaging.Please see Restricted Goods page.
Living creaturesSuch as insects used to feed exotic pets. , animals and reptiles Except certain insects. Please see Restricted Goods page.
Lottery tickets Except UK lottery tickets.
Magnetised material Magnetised material with a magnetic field strength of 0.418A/m or more at a distance of 4.6m from the outside of the package.
Matches Including safety matches and windproof matches.
Obscene publications and unlawful indecent images Including obscene or extreme pornography as detailed in Part 5 of the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008 and indecent photographs or pseudo-photographs of a child as detailed in section 160 and 161 of the Criminal Justice Act 1988.
Oxidising materials and organic peroxides These are substances such as disinfectants that may cause or contribute to combustion of other substances. They may also be liable to explosive decomposition, react dangerously with other substances and injure health e.g. bromides, chlorates, components of fibreglass repair kits, disinfectants, nitrates, per chlorates, permanganates and peroxides, including hair dyes and colourants containing peroxide.
Pesticides Including weed killer and any chemical that is used to kill pests and insects such as fly sprays.
Poisonous, toxic liquids, solids or gases Including substances that are liable to cause death or injury if swallowed or inhaled or by skin contact, such as arsenic, beryllium, cyanide, fluorine, rat poison.
Radioactive materials Radioactive materials and samples that are classified as radioactive using Table 2-12 of the latest edition of the International Civil Aviation Organization’s Technical Instructions e.g. fissile material (uranium 235, etc), radioactive waste material, thorium or uranium ores and luminous dials from aircraft.
Solvent-based paints, wood varnishes and enamels Including gloss paint. See Flammable liquids above.
Tickets and related advertisements for illegal lotteries  
Waste, dirt, filth or refuse Including household waste or rubbish.
Weapons

Including Section 5 firearms (e.g. handguns, machine guns), CS gas and pepper sprays, flick knives, tasers and stun guns. Items that appear to be prohibited weapons may be subject to additional checks and delays.

Guns for sporting use, including Section 1 (e.g. hunting rifles), Section 2 (e.g. shotguns) firearms and low-powered air weapons may be sent in compliance with UK law and subject to domestic controls on the possession of firearms. Please see Restricted Goods page.

*We reserve the right to refuse any other item banned by law or that in our opinion may be harmful or dangerous to our customers or employees.

Things we can carry in UK post but with restrictions

If you need practical guidance on posting restricted goods use this comprehensive A-Z list, which gives full details of restrictions which apply to certain items posted with us in the UK as well as highlighting any areas where there may be exceptions.

The table below covers all Royal Mail’s UK mail services including 1st Class, 2nd Class and Special Delivery Guaranteed®.

Customers posting items overseas should note that the rules may be different for international post. Please visit our international pages for more details.

You are responsible for checking whether or not an item is prohibited or restricted. If you send prohibited goods or restricted goods (and you do not comply with the relevant terms and conditions), we may deal with your items as we see fit, including but not limited to, disposing of the parcels concerned (in whole or in part).

For more information, download the prohibitions and restrictions leaflet.

If you are not sure about the item you wish to post, please call Customer Services on 0345Calls to 0345 will cost no more than calling a standard geographic number starting with 01 or 02 from your fixed line or mobile and may be included in your call package dependent on your service provider 7740 740. Textphone users should call 0345Calls to 0345 will cost no more than calling a standard geographic number starting with 01 or 02 from your fixed line or mobile and may be included in your call package dependent on your service provider 6000 606.

Restricted itemWe reserve the right to refuse any other item banned by law or that in our opinion may be harmful or dangerous to our customers or employees. If you send dangerous goods and do not comply with the applicable terms and conditions and legal requirements then we may deal with the goods as we see fit including destroying or disposing of the relevant goods.* Detailed information

Aerosols for personal grooming or medicinal purposes

Including deodorants, body sprays, hair sprays, shaving and hair removal creams, asthma inhalers, etc.

Valves must be protected by a cap or other suitable means to prevent inadvertent release of the contents during transport. Aerosols must be tightly packed in strong outer packaging and must be secured or cushioned to prevent any damage. Volume per item must not exceed 500ml. No more than two aerosols can be sent in any one package. An ID8000 label must be applied. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

These items must be presented at a Post Office® counter.

All other aerosols, including those containing spray paints, lacquers, solvents, air fresheners and oven cleaners are prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page.

Alcoholic beverages and liquids (24% ABV or less)

Including beer, lager, wine and champagne.

Wrap in polythene and seal with tape. Surround with absorbent material such as newspaper and sufficient cushioning material to protect each item from breakage. Volume should not exceed 1 litre per item. Mark as ‘FRAGILE’ when sending glass bottles. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

Alcoholic beverages and liquids (more than 24% ABV but not more than 70% ABV)

Including whisky, vodka and most spirits and liqueurs.

The items must be securely closed and placed in a leak-proof liner, such as a sealed polythene bag. Surround with absorbent material and sufficient cushioning material to protect each item from breakage. Volume must not exceed 1 litre per item. No more than two items can be sent in any one package. Mark as ‘FRAGILE’ when sending glass bottles. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

These items must be presented at a Post Office® counter.

Alcoholic beverages and liquids with an alcohol content greater than 70% ABV are prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page.
Balloons Balloons filled with non-flammable gases are permitted but these must be clearly marked on the outer packaging with the words ’BALLOONS FILLED WITH NON-FLAMMABLE GAS’.
Batteries - new alkaline metal, nickel metal hydride (NiMH) or nickel cadmium (NiCd)

Including D, C, 9V, AA, AAA and AAAA alkaline batteries. Must be new and sent unopened in their original retail packaging. Surround with cushioning material e.g. bubble wrap. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

Batteries - lithium ion/polymer batteries contained in/connected to an electronic device

Each package must contain no more than four cells or two batteries installed in equipment. The maximum net quantity of cells or batteries is 5kg per package. Watt-hour rating must not exceed 20Wh per cell or 100Wh per battery. Each cell and battery must be of a type proven to meet the requirements of each test in the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria, Part III, section 38.3. Batteries are subject to these tests irrespective of whether the cells of which they are composed have been so tested.

Cells and batteries must be manufactured under a quality management programme as specified in the International Civil Aviation Organization’s Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air. Cells or batteries that are defective for safety reasons, or that have been damaged, are forbidden. Any person preparing or offering cells or batteries with or in equipment for transport must receive adequate instruction on the requirements commensurate with their responsibilities. Cells and batteries must be protected against short circuit.

The equipment containing cells or batteries must be packed in strong rigid packaging and must be secured against movement within the outer packaging and packed to prevent accidental activation. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

These items must be presented at a Post Office® counter.

Lithium ion/polymer batteries sent in isolation are prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page. 
Batteries - lithium ion/polymer batteries sent with, but not connected to, an electronic device

The maximum number of batteries allowed in each package is the number that may be connected to the equipment plus two spares. The maximum net quantity of cells or batteries is 5kg per package. Watt-hour rating must not exceed 20Wh per cell or 100Wh per battery. Each cell and battery must be of a type proven to meet the requirements of each test in the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria, Part III, section 38.3. Batteries are subject to these tests irrespective of whether the cells of which they are composed have been so tested.

Cells and batteries must be manufactured under a quality management programme as specified in the International Civil Aviation Organization’s Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air. Cells or batteries that are defective for safety reasons, or that have been damaged, are forbidden. Any person preparing or offering cells or batteries with or in equipment for transport must receive adequate instruction on the requirements commensurate with their responsibilities. The consignment must be accompanied with a document with an indication that the package contains lithium ion cells or batteries; that the package must be handled with care and that a flammability hazard exists if the package is damaged; that special procedures must be followed in the event the package is damaged, to include inspection and repacking if necessary; and also a telephone number for additional information.

Cells and batteries must be packed in inner packagings that completely enclose the cell or battery. Cells and batteries must be protected against short circuit, including protection against contact with conductive materials within the same packaging that could lead to a short circuit. The equipment sent with cells or batteries must be packed in strong rigid packaging and must be secured against movement within the outer packaging and packed to prevent accidental activation.

Lithium battery handling label to be applied. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

These items must be presented at a Post Office® counter.

Lithium ion/polymer batteries sent in isolation are prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page.

Batteries - lithium metal/alloy batteries contained in/connected to an electronic device Each package must contain no more than four cells or two batteries installed in equipment. The maximum net quantity of cells or batteries is 5kg per package. The lithium content must not be more than 1g per cell or 2g per battery. Each cell and battery must be of a type proven to meet the requirements of each test in the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria, Part III, section 38.3. Batteries are subject to these tests irrespective of whether the cells of which they are composed have been so tested.


Cells and batteries must be manufactured under a quality management programme as specified in the International Civil Aviation Organization’s Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air. Cells or batteries that are defective for safety reasons, or that have been damaged, are forbidden. Any person preparing or offering cells or batteries with or in equipment for transport must receive adequate instruction on the requirements commensurate with their responsibilities. Cells and batteries must be protected against short circuit.

The equipment containing cells or batteries must be packed in strong rigid packaging and must be secured against movement within the outer packaging and packed to prevent accidental activation. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

These items must be presented at a Post Office® counter.

Lithium metal/alloy batteries sent in isolation are prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page.
Batteries - lithium metal/alloy batteries sent with, but not connected to, an electronic device

The maximum number of batteries allowed in each package is the minimum number required to power the equipment plus two spares. The maximum net quantity of cells or batteries is 5kg per package. The lithium content must not be more than 1g per cell or 2g per battery. Each cell and battery must be of a type proven to meet the requirements of each test in the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria, Part III, section 38.3. Batteries are subject to these tests irrespective of whether the cells of which they are composed have been so tested.

Cells and batteries must be manufactured under a quality management programme as specified in the International Civil Aviation Organization’s Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air. Cells or batteries that are defective for safety reasons, or that have been damaged, are forbidden. Any person preparing or offering cells or batteries with or in equipment for transport must receive adequate instruction on the requirements commensurate with their responsibilities.

The consignment must be accompanied with a document with an indication that the package contains lithium metal cells or batteries; that the package must be handled with care and that a flammability hazard exists if the package is damaged; that special procedures must be followed in the event the package is damaged, to include inspection and repacking if necessary; and also a telephone number for additional information. Cells and batteries must be packed in inner packagings that completely enclose the cell or battery. Cells and batteries must be protected against short circuit, including protection against contact with conductive materials within the same packaging that could lead to a short circuit. The equipment sent with cells or batteries must be packed in strong rigid packaging and must be secured against movement within the outer packaging and packed to prevent accidental activation.

Lithium battery handling label to be applied. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

These items must be presented at a Post Office® counter.

Lithium metal/alloy batteries sent in isolation are prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page. 

Batteries - wet non-spillable Sealed lead acid batteries, absorbed glass mat and gel cell batteries.

Batteries must comply with Special Provision 238 of the UN Recommendations on the Transport of Dangerous Goods, Model Regulations (please check with the manufacturer or distributor).

No more than one battery in any one package. Maximum weight 1.5kg. Item must be protected against short circuit (by the effective insulation of exposed terminals) and securely packaged.

Package must be marked “NOT RESTRICTED” and “SPA67 / SP238”. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

Wet spillable lead acid/lead alkaline batteries (such as car batteries) are prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page.
Biological Substances (Category B)

Human or animal material including, but not limited to, excreta, secreta, blood and its components, tissue and tissue fluids. These items may be carried within the UK provided the following conditions are met.

May only be sent by, or at the specific request of, a qualified medical practitioner, registered dental practitioner, veterinary surgeon, registered nurse or a recognised laboratory or institution. The total sample volume/mass in any parcel must not exceed 50ml/50g. All biological substances must be posted in packaging that complies with Packaging Instruction 650, such as our Safebox product. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

Frozen water and dry ice are prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page.
Christmas crackers Crackers can only be sent in their complete made-up form and in their original retail packaging.
Counterfeit currency and stamps

Restricted to copies of old denominations or pre decimalisation postage stamps which are now obsolete and worthless except for collectable value and cannot be passed as tender.

Any false instrument or copy of a false instrument (within the meaning of section 5 of the Forgery and Counterfeiting Act 1981) is prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page.

Electronic items sent with new alkaline metal, nickel metal hydride (NiMH) or nickel cadmium (NiCd) batteries

Must be new and sent unopened in their original retail packaging. Surround with sufficient cushioning material to protect each item from damage. Wrap each item, including plugs, individually. Place item in a rigid container and cushion to avoid movement. Any equipment sent with batteries or cells must be secured against movement within the outer packaging and must be packed to prevent accidental activation. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

Electronic items - sent with lithium ion/polymer batteries contained in/connected to the device

Each package must contain no more than four cells or two batteries installed in equipment. The maximum net quantity of cells or batteries is 5kg per package. Watt-hour rating must not exceed 20Wh per cell or 100Wh per battery. Each cell and battery must be of a type proven to meet the requirements of each test in the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria, Part III, section 38.3. Batteries are subject to these tests irrespective of whether the cells of which they are composed have been so tested.

Cells and batteries must be manufactured under a quality management programme as specified in the International Civil Aviation Organization’s Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air. Cells or batteries that are defective for safety reasons, or that have been damaged, are forbidden. Any person preparing or offering cells or batteries with or in equipment for transport must receive adequate instruction on the requirements commensurate with their responsibilities. Cells and batteries must be protected against short circuit.

The equipment containing cells or batteries must be packed in strong rigid packaging and must be secured against movement within the outer packaging and packed to prevent accidental activation. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

These items must be presented at a Post Office® counter.

Lithium ion/polymer batteries sent in isolation are prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page.
Electronic items - sent with lithium ion/polymer batteries where the battery is not connected to/contained in the device The maximum number of batteries allowed in each package is the number that may be connected to the equipment plus two spares. The maximum net quantity of cells or batteries is 5kg per package. Watt-hour rating must not exceed 20Wh per cell or 100Wh per battery. Each cell and battery must be of a type proven to meet the requirements of each test in the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria, Part III, section 38.3. Batteries are subject to these tests irrespective of whether the cells of which they are composed have been so tested.

Cells and batteries must be manufactured under a quality management programme as specified in the International Civil Aviation Organization’s Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air. Cells or batteries that are defective for safety reasons, or that have been damaged, are forbidden. Any person preparing or offering cells or batteries with or in equipment for transport must receive adequate instruction on the requirements commensurate with their responsibilities. The consignment must be accompanied with a document with an indication that the package contains lithium ion cells or batteries; that the package must be handled with care and that a flammability hazard exists if the package is damaged; that special procedures must be followed in the event the package is damaged, to include inspection and repacking if necessary; and also a telephone number for additional information.


Cells and batteries must be packed in inner packagings that completely enclose the cell or battery. Cells and batteries must be protected against short circuit, including protection against contact with conductive materials within the same packaging that could lead to a short circuit. The equipment sent with cells or batteries must be packed in strong rigid packaging and must be secured against movement within the outer packaging and packed to prevent accidental activation.

Lithium battery handling label to be applied. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

These items must be presented at the counter.

Lithium ion/polymer batteries sent in isolation are prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page.
Electronic items – sent with lithium metal/alloy batteries contained in/connected to the device

Each package must contain no more than four cells or two batteries installed in equipment. The maximum net quantity of cells or batteries is 5kg per package. The lithium content must not be more than 1g per cell or 2g per battery. Each cell and battery must be of a type proven to meet the requirements of each test in the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria, Part III, section 38.3. Batteries are subject to these tests irrespective of whether the cells of which they are composed have been so tested.

Cells and batteries must be manufactured under a quality management programme as specified in the International Civil Aviation Organization’s Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air. Cells or batteries that are defective for safety reasons, or that have been damaged, are forbidden. Any person preparing or offering cells or batteries with or in equipment for transport must receive adequate instruction on the requirements commensurate with their responsibilities. Cells and batteries must be protected against short circuit.

The equipment containing cells or batteries must be packed in strong rigid packaging and must be secured against movement within the outer packaging and packed to prevent accidental activation. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

These items must be presented at a Post Office® counter.

Lithium metal/alloy batteries sent in isolation are prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page.
Electronic items – sent with lithium metal/alloy batteries where the battery is not connected to/contained in the device The maximum number of batteries allowed in each package is the minimum number required to power the equipment plus two spares. The maximum net quantity of cells or batteries is 5kg per package. The lithium content must not be more than 1g per cell or 2g per battery. Each cell and battery must be of a type proven to meet the requirements of each test in the UN Manual of Tests and Criteria,

Part III, section 38.3. Batteries are subject to these tests irrespective of whether the cells of which they are composed have been so tested. Cells and batteries must be manufactured under a quality management programme as specified in the International Civil Aviation Organization’s Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air. Cells or batteries that are defective for safety reasons, or that have been damaged, are forbidden. Any person preparing or offering cells or batteries with or in equipment for transport must receive adequate instruction on the requirements commensurate with their responsibilities.

The consignment must be accompanied with a document with an indication that the package contains lithium metal cells or batteries; that the package must be handled with care and that a flammability hazard exists if the package is damaged; that special procedures must be followed in the event the package is damaged, to include inspection and repacking if necessary; and also a telephone number for additional information. Cells and batteries must be packed in inner packagings that completely enclose the cell or battery. Cells and batteries must be protected against short circuit, including protection against contact with conductive materials within the same packaging that could lead to a short circuit. The equipment sent with cells or batteries must be packed in strong rigid packaging and must be secured against movement within the outer packaging and packed to prevent accidental activation.


Lithium battery handling label to be applied. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

These items must be presented at a Post Office® counter.

Lithium metal/alloy batteries sent in isolation are prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page.
Guns for sporting use

Guns intended for sporting purposes - including Section 1 (e.g. hunting rifles) and Section 2 (e.g. shotguns) firearms, low-powered air weapons and their component parts - may be sent in compliance with UK law and subject to domestic controls on the possession of firearms. Antiques, deactivated and imitation firearms are also permitted.  When sending deactivated firearms include proof of deactivation.

Items that appear to be prohibited weapons may be subject to additional checks and delays. Please see the Prohibited Goods page.

Use 1st Class as the minimum service. The sender’s name and address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.
Lighters New and unused empty lighters may be sent unopened in their original retail packaging.

Lighters and refills containing flammable liquid or gas (including used butane, petrol cigar and cigarette lighters) are prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page.
Living creaturesSuch as insects used to feed exotic pets. , insects and invertebrates

Including bees, caterpillars, cockroaches, crickets, destroyers of noxious pests, earthworms, fish fry and eggs, leeches and other parasites, lugworms, maggots, mealworms, pupae and chrysalides, rag worms, silkworms, spiders and stick insects.

Must be boxed and packaged to protect the creatures, our staff and our customers from harm. Use 1st Class as the minimum service. Items must be clearly marked ‘URGENT – LIVING CREATURESSuch as insects used to feed exotic pets. - HANDLE WITH CARE’. The sender’s name and address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

Dead insects, sent as collectables, are also allowed.

Live animals and reptiles are prohibited, as are any creatures or insects classified as dangerous within the Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976 (including certain venomous spiders). Please see the Prohibited Goods page.

Magnetised materials Should be wrapped in soft packaging at least 2cm thick around each item. The sender’s name and address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

Magnetised material with a magnetic field strength of 0.418A/m or more at a distance of 4.6m from the outside of the package are prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page.
Nail varnish, polish and gel (solvent and water-based)

Volume per item must not exceed 30ml. No more than four bottles of nail varnish can be sent in any one package. Bottles of nail varnish must be placed in strong outer packaging and be so packed, secured or cushioned in such a way that they cannot break, be punctured or leak their contents into the outer packaging.

An ID8000 label must be applied. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

These items must be presented at a Post Office® counter.

Perfumes and aftershaves

Including eau de parfum, eau de toilette and alcohol-free perfumes, but excluding non-flammable perfumed creams, gels, oils or lotions.


Volume per item must not exceed 150ml. No more than four perfumes or aftershaves can be sent in any one package. The perfume or aftershave must be within its original retail packaging and then placed in strong outer packaging. The inner packagings must be packed, secured or cushioned to prevent breakage or leakage of their contents into the outer packaging.

An ID8000 label must be applied. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

These items must be presented at a Post Office® counter.

Perishable items

Including flowers, fresh fruit, vegetables and frozen or chilled foodstuffs.

Should be able to withstand a journey of up to 48 hours. Use 1st Class as the minimum service. Must be suitably sealed to prevent leakage or tainting of other items such as in sealed vacuum packs. Must be packed in a strong corrugated board box or purpose designed polystyrene pack. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

Frozen water and dry ice are prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page.
Prescription medicines and drugs sent for scientific purposes

May only be sent by, or at the specific request of, a qualified medical practitioner, registered dental practitioner, veterinary surgeon, registered nurse or a recognised laboratory or institution.

Medicines classified as non-flammable or non-toxic must be securely closed and placed in a leak-proof container such as a sealed polythene bag (for liquids) or a siftproof container (for solids). Must be tightly packed in strong outer packaging and must be secured or cushioned to prevent any damage. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

Medicines classified as flammable, toxic or flammable and toxic are prohibited. Please see the Prohibited Goods page.

Radioactive material and samples that are not classified as dangerous goods in the latest edition of the Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods by Air published by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) such as samples of granite rock. Surround with cushioning material e.g. bubble wrap. The sender's name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.
Sharp objects

Sharp objects like knives, kitchen utensils and gardening tools may only be posted if they are packaged appropriately so that they are no risk to employees, other postal items or recipients.

Wrap heavy cardboard around sharp edges and points, strong enough to ensure that the contents do not pierce the outer packaging. Wrap each item with cushioning material. Place in a suitable outer container such as a padded envelope. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

Vaccines May only be sent by, or at the specific request of, a qualified medical practitioner, registered dental practitioner, veterinary surgeon, registered nurse or a recognised laboratory or institution.

The vaccines must be securely closed and placed in a leak-proof liner such as a sealed polythene bag (for liquids) or a sift-proof container (for solids). Must be tightly packed in strong outer packaging and must be secured or cushioned to prevent any damage. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.
Water-based paints, wood varnishes and enamels The items must be securely closed and placed in a leak-proof liner, such as a sealed polythene bag, so that any inadvertent leakage is contained within the outer packaging. Surround with absorbent material such as newspaper and sufficient cushioning material to protect each item from damage. Volume per item should not exceed 150ml. No more than four items can be sent in any one package. The sender’s name and return address must be clearly visible on the outer packaging.

*We reserve the right to refuse any other item banned by law or that in our opinion may be harmful or dangerous to our customers or employees.

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For more advice on posting and packaging, call:

0845Calls to 0845 numbers may be charged at up to 5p per minute from a fixed line and calls from mobiles can be considerably higher. Calls may be monitored or recorded for training and compliance purposes. 611 2970

8.15am-6pm, Mon-Fri

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