Prohibited Items

Here at forward2me, we can transport the vast majority of goods that you might need to ship, including large items, but to comply with various international regulations, there are certain items that, unfortunately, we are not able to ship.

Safety has to be our first priority when transporting goods around the globe and you might be surprised at some of the everyday items that can be classed as ‘dangerous’, such as things like perfumes and aerosols.

To ensure that you know exactly what can and can’t be sent, here’s our guide to what items and goods are prohibited or restricted by the IATA and thus can’t be sent by forward2me.

Note that this list isn’t necessarily exhaustive, so if you’re unsure on any specific items, be sure to get in touch and double-check with us first.

Commonly Prohibited Items

Export and important regulations prohibit the shipping of the following categories of goods:

High-Value Items

Courier will usually have a limit on the value of goods that can be sent, which means that they usually won’t be willing to ship things such as jewellery, precious metals and stones and antiques, especially if they’re breakable and/or fragile. If you are sending anything that is of high monetary or sentimental value be sure to opt for recorded delivery.

Monetary Items

Sending money might seem like a nice gift, any type of currency or things considered monetary items are prohibited from being shipped. This also includes things such as lottery tickets, traveller’s cheques, credit cards and credit card readers.

If you want to send money abroad, your best bet is to use a money transfer service, which will allow you to send money within minutes.

Unidentifiable Items

We’re unable to send any items which can’t be identified with a label, or in unmarked packaging. This includes but is not limited to substances and chemicals, liquids, non-prescription medications, vitamins and supplements, food items and powders.

Hazardous Materials 

It goes without saying that any hazardous items cannot be shipped, which includes explosive, toxic and dangerous products such as:

  • Asbestos
  • Irradiating apparatus and radioactive materials
  • Explosives including gunpowder and dynamite
  • Firecrackers and fireworks
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Poisons
  • Wastes as defined in the IATA regulations
  • Combustible material
  • Human body parts & remains, including ashes


Military Items & Weapons

Similarly, no military items can be shipped, but this doesn’t just refer to weapons. It also means that you can’t send things such as night vision or infrared cameras, tasers, pepper spray and any law enforcement uniforms, even if they’re just imitations.

Drugs and Tobacco Products

Of course, we won’t ship any illegal narcotics, but lots of countries also place restrictions on items such as tobacco, cigarettes and cigars, electronic cigarettes and liquids and even many prescription medications.

Pornographic and Obscene Material

Many countries prohibit the distribution of obscene material such as pornographic material including videos and DVDs.

Animals & Plants

In addition to live animals and insects, you also cannot ship animal carcasses or furs. You also can’t transport live plants and plant materials, or plant seeds.

Restricted Items

The following items are restricted (and generally incur an extra fee from our couriers) or cannot be shipped by our couriers to some countries. Please contact Customer Services for more information.

We may be able to ship some of these items depending on the product, the product size and the destination country.

  • Perfumes, Colognes, Eau de toilette, After Shave
  • Batteries
  • Aerosols
  • Nail polish and Nail Polish Remover
  • Cigarette lighters, gas lighters
  • Some hair care products
  • Compressed gas or gas cylinders
  • Engine and Motor oil
  • Turpentine and Paint Thinners
  • Some household cleaners
  • Paint and paint guns
  • Stains & Varnishes
  • Solvents, Glue and Adhesives
  • Printer toner cartridges
  • Alcohol – can only be shipped internationally with UPS and only to some countries
  • Steering wheels with Air Bags

Lithium Batteries

As you may know, there is a risk of certain lithium batteries catching fire. New regulations restrict the shipment of certain types of lithium batteries, which are considered "Dangerous Goods". Although not all lithium batteries are affected by these regulations, be sure to check your product specifications carefully against the restrictions below.

Lithium-Ion Batteries

  • Over 2.7 Wh and less than 100 Wh per battery and more than two batteries per box OR over 2.7 Wh and less than 100 Wh per battery and more than 8 cells per package.

Loose Lithium-Ion Batteries

  • Power banks, battery packs, cell phone batteries, laptop batteries. All external battery packs and power banks are now regulated to ship and listed as hazardous.

Lithium-Ion Batteries with Equipment

  • A laptop with a battery outside of it but shipping with it CAN ship, providing the battery is under 100 Wh and packaged with equipment (same box, inside of another box).
  • Camera & camera battery CAN ship only 1 new battery per shipment with equipment. Must be sent in the box.

Lithium-Ion Batteries Inside Equipment

  • Batteries inside iPhone, iPad, Kindle, Nook CAN be shipped.

Lithium-Metal Batteries

  • Cannot be shipped in any given situation.

We will not ship any lithium batteries (ion or metal type) that are confirmed or suspected to be defective or damaged.

For more information please see the IATA guidelines here:

forward2me prohibits any items which are prohibited by any laws, regulations, or statutes of any federal, state, or local government of any country through which the shipment may be carried. Any items that would require forward2me to obtain a special license to transport the shipment are also prohibited. Finally, forward2me prohibits items that would damage equipment, personnel, or other packages.

forward2me reserves the right to stop a shipment at any stage of the processing as per our Terms & Conditions here

Whilst forward2me ensures compliance with IATA shipping regulations we have successfully shipped millions of parcels to thousands of addresses in 200 + countries.