USPS can provide a convenient and affordable shipping solution, whether you’re a small business owner, an online seller, or need to send something to a friend or family member.
This article will look at 18 common items that can be shipped with USPS, including letters and documents, packages and boxes, and even some unusual items like live animals and hazardous materials.
We will also discuss the different shipping options available and the factors that can impact the cost of shipping with USPS:
1. Does USPS Ship Live Animals?
You can ship some types of live animals with USPS, provided that you will be following their strict packaging instructions.
Here are the types of live animals that you can ship via USPS:
- Day-old poultry, for example, chicks
- Adult birds
- Geckos and lizards
- Other small and harmless cold-blooded animals
When shipping live animals such as those listed above, you must strictly follow USPS’s shipment protocols.
You should securely contain them, and the type of container used should adhere to USPS shipping standards. This ensures that the live animals arrive safely at their destination without harming USPS staff and other packages.
2. Does USPS Ship Live Plants?
Since USPS ships certain live animals, you may wonder if they also ship live plants.
However, it is generally not recommended since the inside of shipping vehicles does not get enough sunlight and carbon dioxide for plants.
USPS does ship live plants as long as they are properly marked.
You won’t need some special type of sticker or label for this. You can take any marker and write on the box that the package contains live plants.
USPS recommends wrapping the roots with moist paper towels when shipping live plants.
You can also spray the roots with water before putting them in plastic wrap. This is to ensure that the plants make it through the entire journey.
Does USPS Open Your Package? They may be if you are shipping something hazardous.
3. Does USPS Ship Frozen Food?
Food is a commonly transported item anywhere.
Generally, it is easy to ship food packaged in airtight containers, such as chips and chocolates. But what about frozen food?
USPS does ship frozen food as long the items are secure and sufficiently packaged.
When shipping frozen food through USPS, you’re responsible for ensuring that these items do not go bad. USPS does not offer any special form of packaging for frozen items, so it is up to you to pack them securely.
You can use frozen gel packs or ice bags to keep frozen food fresh while being transported.
You can also use food-grade bags that can be sealed securely to prevent water and moisture from destroying the box and other packages.
4. Does USPS Ship Cell Phones?
You can ship cell phones with USPS, but this is only available for domestic locations since USPS will not ship any gadgets internationally if they contain lithium-ion batteries.
The most affordable shipping service you can avail of for this is the USPS First Class Mail, as long as the package weight does not exceed 13 ounces.
5. Does USPS Ship Laptops and Tablets?
Since USPS ships cell phones, you may wonder if they also ship other gadgets, such as laptops and tablets.
USPS does ship laptops and tablets but only in domestic locations.
Any electronics that use lithium-ion batteries cannot be shipped internationally because they risk catching fire or exploding under certain conditions.
6. Does USPS Ship Alcohol and Cigarettes?
Alcohol and cigarettes fall under the restricted item category, which means there are very strict policies when shipping them through USPS.
USPS does cigarettes and tobacco products with certain restrictions but will not ship alcohol under any circumstances.
If you’re thinking about mailing alcohol through USPS, then forget about it. USPS does not ship alcoholic beverages with an alcoholic content of 0.5% or more.
When it comes to cigarettes and tobacco products, there are some circumstances where you can ship these products through USPS:
- For business or regulatory purposes, with proper documentation
- As gifts but in small quantities
- When returning unacceptable tobacco products to a manufacturer
7. Does USPS Ship Vape Products?
Since USPS ships cigarettes and tobacco products in certain circumstances, you may wonder if the same applies to vape products.
USPS does NOT ship vape products because they believe it is unsafe to transport them via mail.
8. Does USPS Ship Liquids?
You can ship liquids through USPS, but this only applies to non-flammable and non-hazardous liquids.
When shipping liquids through USPS, ensure they are placed in a secure, waterproof, and properly sealed container.
This is to prevent them from spilling inside the shipping box, which could end up damaging the box and other packages.
Read also: Are USPS Packages Insured Automatically? (How It Works)
9. Does USPS Ship Aerosol Cans?
Some couriers may restrict aerosol cans, but you can ship them through USPS.
USPS ships aerosol cans as long as the contents are non-flammable and non-hazardous.
However, even if they are non-flammable, you can only ship them to domestic destinations.
10. Does USPS Ship Batteries?
Batteries may seem to fall under the restricted item category, but USPS ships them.
Alkaline batteries, or common dry-cell batteries in different sizes, such as AA, AAA, C, and D, can be shipped through USPS since they are non-hazardous items.
11. Does USPS Ship Guitars?
USPS ships guitars as they are usually less than the weight limit for packages.
When shipping guitars, remember to pack the guitar securely and properly. This is to make sure that it arrives safely at the destination.
12. Does USPS Ship Golf Clubs?
USPS also ships golf clubs.
If you’re looking to ship some golf clubs, you can get free Priority Mail Cardboard Mailing Tubes from the USPS online store or at your local post office.
The size of these mailing tubes is perfect for shipping golf clubs.
13. Does USPS Ship Bikes?
Bikes can be bulky, but USPS ships them as long as they are under the maximum allowed package weight.
If the bike weighs under 70 lbs and is securely packaged in a box that measures 108 inches in combined length and girth, then USPS will ship it.
If the box measures 108 to 130 inches, then oversized fees will apply.
14. Does USPS Ship Furniture and Mattresses?
USPS also ships furniture and mattresses. It has cost-effective shipping options that can safely transport these items.
When shipping furniture, the only condition is that it has to weigh under 70 lbs, and the box should be no more than 108 inches in combined length and girth.
If the box measures 108 to 130 inches, then oversized fees will also apply, amounting to as much as $100.
15. Does USPS Ship Pallets?
You can ship pallets through USPS. Pallets are very good containers when shipping something big yet fragile.
If the pallet and the items inside it weigh at most 70 lbs and the size does not exceed the maximum allowed, then they can be shipped through USPS.
16. Does USPS Ship Suitcases and Bags?
Suitcases and bags can be shipped via USPS.
When shipping suitcases, placing them inside a box is optional, but they have to be within the maximum allowed weight.
However, the same doesn’t apply to bags.
You must place them in a box when shipping other types of bags, like duffel bags and backpacks.
17. Does USPS Ship Fragile Items?
While some people may not feel at ease with fragile shipping items in general, many couriers actually ship these items as long as they’re not included in the list of prohibited items.
USPS does fragile ship items.
When doing so, you may want to consider using the Special Handling-Fragile service.
This service would entail placing a “Special Handling-Fragile” sticker on the box so that it will be handled with care.
18. Can You Ship Oil With USPS?
Oils are generally considered hazardous materials, so certain restrictions may apply when shipping them.
You ship oils with USPS, but they can only be transported through ground-based mailing services.
Some oils, such as essential oils, are diluted in highly flammable solvents when exposed to a certain temperature level. This is why oils are restricted items.
What Other Items does USPS NOT Ship?
Apart from those items mentioned above, we’ve also looked at prohibited items.
These are items that USPS will not ship under any circumstance.
- Air Bags
- Marijuana, even if it is for medical use
The items listed above cannot be shipped to both domestic and international locations.
USPS Shipping Restrictions And Prohibited Items
Can I Ship Live Animals With USPS?