Shipping overseas is a necessity in today’s global economy. The Internet makes it easy from someone in Hoboken, NJ to sell something to Hamburg, Germany. However, it is important to know what you can and cannot ship to specific destinations. Did you know that if you sent a playing card to someone in Germany using the United States Postal Service there is a good chance it will never get to the recipient? “Playing cards, except in complete decks properly wrapped” are prohibited commodities! See the excerpt from the International Mail Manual (IMM) here.
Get very comfortable with the IMM and the country restrictions. It may save you from having your shipments confiscated and dealing with unhappy recipients.
Here is an list of some interesting prohibited items & their destination countries:
- France – Feeding bottles, Measuring instruments marked in units not complying with French law
- Italy – Toys not made wholly of wood, Leather goods, Footwear of any kind, Clocks and supplies for clocks.
- Great Britain and Northern Ireland – Horror comics and matrices, Switchblade knives.
- Chile, Philippines + other countries – Coins; platinum, gold, or silver (whether manufactured or not); precious stones; or other valuable articles.
Note: Most countries have restrictions against importing medications, so be careful and research this properly before shipping.