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International Shipping Prohibitions

Updated on July 29, 2013

Shipping overseas

If you sell online at sites such as eBay, ETSY, Bonanza, Amazon, Webstore, Artfire, or if you have your own website, etc., you already might know what restrictions and rules apply to items you want to ship worldwide. In addition, non-sellers ship items every day to family and friends overseas.

This article contains helpful tips and information for shipping out of the United States. There is also information on items that the United States prohibits from being imported.

Anyone can be impacted by the information set forth in this article. Last week I was standing in line behind a customer at the post office who was shipping four large boxes across country in the United States. The boxes were recycled cell phone packages and still showed the words "cell phone" on the side. The postal clerk informed the customer that if the boxes contained batteries, they could not be shipped.

The information posted in this article is up-to-date as of the publication date. According to sources, the information per country changes periodically. Before shipping, consult your local post office or customs office to make sure that your packages won't be delayed for other reasons listed herein. (For example, one country shows a current ban predicted to lift in year 2016.)

As a paper artist, I need to stay current on what prohibitions might apply to works of art. For example, Bulgaria bans musical greeting cards! Many other countries prohibit imported fabric or post cards embellished with fibers!

Some countries have regulations concerning invoices included in parcels exported overseas. There is a short synopsis explaining invoice terminology and types of invoices that can be included in shipments.

Import licenses are required in many countries. That means anyone receiving shipments overseas need to have proper documentation from their home country allowing them to receive shipments or the items will be confiscated.

Sources

The information herein came from the United States postal regulations, UPS, USDA, US Customs and Exports information, International Trade Administration Office of Textiles and Apparel (OTEXA), several worldwide shipping companies, and fumigation companies.

How to use this article:

  1. Each country is followed by a list of items that cannot be shipped to that country (see Lists 1 through 4 for additional prohibitions).
  2. Take note of exclusions next to the countries that have them. These could impact what you ship and how you ship it. (For example, some countries require waterproof mailing coverings.)
  3. At the bottom of this article are individual lists by type of items (instead of by country):
  • List 1 includes countries that prohibit valuables. The majority of the countries that prohibit valuables do so because they don't want to be responsible in the event the package is lost or stolen.
  • List 2 includes countries that prohibit live plants. (This list does not include seeds, root plants or specific flowers that some countries ban. For best results, also check each individual country you are shipping this item to.)
  • List 3 includes countries that prohibit or have special importation regulations concerning medicines and/or pharmaceuticals or medical/dental equipment.
  • List 4 includes countries that prohibit or have special requirements for importing honey or items containing honey (such as hives and beekeeper items).

You will also find synopsis of information pertaining to different bans and the history behind them.

Have you ever shipped anything internationally that you found out later was prohibited in the country you shipped to?

See results

Disinfectant or fumigation certificates are needed for exports to protect domestic resources.

ISPM 15 (wood packing restrictions in international shipments): ocean freight shipments using any species of raw wood packaging must be fumigated or heat treated, prior to international shipping, to kill insects or fungus.
Exports containing wood packaging must be fumigated before shipping to protect forests in destination countries from insects that may reside inside of timber. (Exceptions to fumigation include cardboard boxes, plywood, blockboard, hardboard, fiberboard, and particle board because they are produced under high temperature and high pressure which removes all of the insects.)

Table of Export Forms

  1. Application for Inspection and Certification of Domestic Plants and Plant Products For Export. Found at USDA website. A/K/A Phytosanitary Export Certificate from the country of origin. (Apply with USDA Form PPQ 572. The certificate is Form PPQ 578.)
  2. Commercial Invoice. A bill for the goods from the seller to the buyer. These invoices are often used to determine true value of goods for assessing customs duties.
  3. Certificate of Origin. Required by some countries for certain products. In many cases, a statement of origin printed on company letterhead will suffice. Other times, a certificate must be certified by local chamber of commerce. It contains information about the number of packages, weight, and where item was manufactured. (See Columbia's specific rules.)
  4. Export packing list. Information contained herein states, seller, buyer, shipper, invoice number, date of shipment, mode of transport, carrier, and itemizes quantity, description, the type of package (box, crate, drum, or carton), the quantity of packages, total net and gross weight, package marks, and dimensions. It is not a substitute for a commercial invoice.
  5. Disinfection certificate (a/k/a Fumigation Certificate) is required by many countries for importation of used clothing and other agricultural goods.

Used Clothing Bans.

Based on my research for writing this article, there are many countries that ban used clothing outright. (No used clothing can be imported to those countries without exception.) Then there are other countries that will allow imported used clothing with the exception that a certain type of Certificate is included with the clothing (and sometimes adhered to the outside of the carton as well).

The questions most people have are:

  1. Where do they get a Certificate of Disinfection in the United States to export used clothing to countries that require such Certificate?
  2. Where do they get the used clothing disinfected?

From what little I've been able to ascertain, the Certificate of Disinfection has been referred to by other names such as Heat Treatment Certificate and Fumigation Certificate.

Pursuant to the post office regulations, a Certificate of Disinfection can be signed at a local health department, but after a quick phone call my local health department denied ever knowing about this requirement or form.

Other suggestions included having Goodwill or a dry cleaning establishment verify the clothing is ready for export. Neither of these places provide the export documentation required.

How does one go about getting this elusive Certificate?

I was able to find one fumigation company in New York who provides fumigation certificates per truckload at a cost of $499. There were also several companies who ship used clothing worldwide. It was through one of these shipping companies I was able to track down the actual Certificate (see photos and instructions for completing below), but they do not specifically state whether they do the disinfecting or if they have to hire a licensed fumigation company to do it for them.

One thing every one of my sources agrees on though, is that the shipper is responsible for fumigating at their expense within 15 days prior to shipping.

Please refer to each individual country to determine whether or not they will import used clothing.

Certificate of Disinfection (for used clothing) United States export form

This form was the only Certificate of Disinfection form I could find in the United States.  Source:  Suntrans International Inc.  (international shipping company)
This form was the only Certificate of Disinfection form I could find in the United States. Source: Suntrans International Inc. (international shipping company)

United States Certificate of Disinfection Instructions for exporting used clothing

This information is from the form above.


  • Title: Certificate of Disinfection
  • No. ______________________
  • Date of Issue ______________________ (mm/dd/yy)
  • Port of Airport _______________________________
  • Applicant: (name and address)
  • Consignee: (name and address)

In compliance with the provisions of the Quarantine Law, disinfection has been executed with the under-mentioned Cargo at the above mentioned Port as follows. Therefore, this certificate is issued.

  • Insert table with the following information:
  • Name of Cargo Disinfected
  • Volume & Number of Cargo disinfection
  • Method of Disinfection
  • Date of Disinfection
  • Remarks
  • Chemical (active ingredients)
  • Duration and Temperature
  • Concentration
  • Distinguishing NO


  • Signature (Director of Quarantine Station)
  • Signature (Quarantine Officer Concerned)

Saccharin (sugar substitute) banned in some countries.

History of Saccharin
In the 1970s, Saccharin was linked with bladder cancer in rodents. Foods containing Saccharin in the US were labeled with a warning.
Sweetness Act December 21, 2000 ~ repealed warning labels on Saccharin because scientists discovered rodents bladders are different than humans.
2001 United States declared Saccharin safe for consumption.
December 14, 2010 ~ Saccharin was no longer considered a potential hazard to human health.
Saccharine is the artificial sweetener in the popular Sweet'N Low coffee sugar substitute.

Check this list for countries that prohibit (or require special permits for) importation of Saccharine!

List of countries that ban Saccharine (with notations about similar products banned):

  • Belize (including Cape Verde) (Includes similar substances and articles containing them.)
  • Benin
  • Brazil (Includes other artificial beverage sweeteners. Requires permission from the Brazilian Department of Public Health for importation.)
  • Burundi (Requires special permission for importation.)
  • Chile (Includes beverages and food containing it and similar substances.)
  • Congo (Democratic Republic) (Includes products containing it. Requires the authorization of the Ministry of Economic Affairs.)
  • France (Includes tablets or packets.)
  • Greece
  • Indonesia (Includes all sugar substitutes.)
  • Italy (Includes all products containing it.)
  • Libya (Requires special authorization.)
  • Luxembourg (Mozambique) (Requires special authorization for it and similar substances.)
  • Madagascar
  • Mali (Includes artificial flavors for beverages and confectionery.)
  • San Marino (Includes all products containing it.)
  • Senegal (Includes artificial flavors for beverages and confectionery.)
  • Spain (Includes food containing it in any amount.)
  • Taiwan
  • Togo - Zimbabwe (Includes similar products.)
  • Trinidad and Tobago (Requires the permission of the Trinidad health authorities.)
  • Tunisia (Includes similar products, except in very small amounts imported as remedies by pharmacies or physicians.)

The following is a list of countries and their prohibited imports:

See additional lists at the end of this article for specific item bans.
These lists eliminate the repetitious items that are prohibited by multiple countries.

Albania

  • Extravagant clothes and other articles contrary to Albanian's taste.
  • Literature, publications and other articles; Photographic films, paper and publications contrary to the country.
  • Used clothing and articles.

Algeria

  • Articles made of tortoise-shell, mother of pearl, ivory, amber (natural or reconstructed) worked jade and mineral substances similar to jade.
  • Canned vegetables, fish, plums and nuts.
  • Household articles made of tin.
  • Used clothing, accessories, blankets, linen, textile furnishings, footwear and headwear.
  • Watches and clocks.

Angola

  • Books, printed matter, films and drawings contrary to the law of the country.
  • Games.
  • Used Clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Antigua and Barbuda (includes Redonda)

  • Fruits, nuts, dried, tinned, crystallized or otherwise preserved fruit must be accompanied by a Certificate of Origin.

Argentina

  • Radio and television receivers, or phonographs.
  • Ready-made clothes and fabrics unless they are gifts and have no commercial value.
  • Used clothing and linens.

Armenia

  • Food that spoils easily.
  • Photosensitive materials.
  • Printed and typographic materials and reproductions of paintings contrary to the country.

Exclusion(s)
Powdered or concentrated milk, and other dairy products require permission to import from Australian quarantine authorties.

Australia

  • Fruit cartons (new or used).
  • Literature contrary to the country.
  • Used bedding.


Austria

  • Certain books and printed matter which are prohibited by order of the courts in Austria.
  • Fruit, onion and flower bulbs and other root plants must be accompanied by a Certificate of Origin and USDA Plant-Health Certificate.

Exclusion(s)
Radio, electric media, and high-frequency apparatus require prior authorization by the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications of the Republic of Azerbaijan.

Azerbaijan

  • Films and printed matter (books, newspapers, pictures and other products of the printing industry; manuscripts, typescripts, and plans) contrary to the country.


Bahamas

  • Articles, books, pictures, and printed matter contrary to the country.
  • Skimmed milk in tins.

Bahrain

  • Cultured, imitation, artificial, or bleached pearls.

Bangladesh

  • American cotton.
  • Coffee plants, coffee seeds, and coffee beans.
  • Books, pamphlets, papers, drawings, paintings, figures or articles contrary to the country.
  • Piece goods ordinarily sold by the yard or by the piece manufactured outside of Bangladesh and not stamped to indicate the length in meters, yards, or fractions thereof.

Belarus

  • Articles of cultural value.
  • Belarus currency.
  • Metalized yarn made with or of gold thread.
  • Ornamental trimming or woven fabric made with or of gold thread.
  • Perishable items.
  • Photographic and cinematographic films, undeveloped photographic plates, and photographic paper.
  • Printed books, newspapers, pictures and other products of the printing industry; manuscripts, typescripts, and plans containing information contrary to the country.
  • Substances harmful to the ozone layer.
  • Meat, milk, and dairy products, including animal feeds.

Belgium

  • Empty ink cartridges or empty laser toner cartridges.

Benin

  • Gramophone records.
  • Mineral waters.

Exclusion(s)
Used clothing requires a Certificate of Disinfection. There is a ban on used shoes and hats.

Bolivia

  • Articles that violate the Bolivian trademark laws.
  • Books, pamphlets or other printed matter, paintings and illustrations, figures and objects contrary to the country.
  • Advertisements imitating currency or postage stamps except for historical or collector purposes.

NOTE: Priority Mail International parcel service is suspended due to lack of available air transportation.

Botswana

  • Used clothing, including boots and shoes.

Brazil

  • Playing cards.
  • Primary educational books not written in Portuguese.
  • Salted or smoked meat.
  • Seeds and seedlings of coffee, shrubs.
  • Used consumer goods (including clothing).

Brunei Darussalam

  • Books, magazines, religious materials, cassettes, and video tapes are subject to clearance from the Controller of Publications or the Religious Affairs Department.
  • A license must be obtained from the Director of Medical Services for the importation of insecticides.

Bulgaria

  • Food products unless sealed in clear containers.
  • Bulgarian currency except with the permission of the Ministry of Finance of Bulgaria.
  • Musical cards that play a sound recording when opened.
  • Printed matter, photographs, films, sound recordings, manuscripts, drawings, musical notes, and similar articles, except single copies for personal use and not contrary to the country.
  • Religious materials connected with prohibited organizations.
  • Samples of merchandise.
  • Used clothing, footwear, and bed coverings. Disinfection certificate required for all allowed used articles.

Exclusion(s)
Works of art (including photographs), printed forms, account books, manuscript books, labels, advertising matter (except trade catalogs and circulars), picture books, almanacs, maps, old paper, and old newspapers serving as packing paper may not be sent as merchandise at the First-Class Mail International or First-Class Package International Service price if they are liable to customs duty.

Burma

  • Wireless telegraph equipment, and transceivers and receivers, require a permit from the Director General of Posts and Telegraphs; receivers alone may be imported upon application to the customs authorities.




Cameroon

  • Used Clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Canada

  • A publication in which more than five percent of total advertising space is primarily directed to a Canadian market.
  • Butter substitutes, including altered butter.
  • Reprints of Canadian or British works copyrighted in Canada.
  • Reproductions of Canadian postage stamps unless printed in publications in black and white only and with a defacing line drawn across each reproduction.

Cape Verde

  • Fresh and frozen fruit; fats and vegetable oils, except olive oil; tinned meat; fish and preserved fish; and salt require authorization by the Cape Verde Secretary of State for Commerce.

Central African Republic (including Chad)

  • Preserved fish, vegetables and plums not clearly marked with the country of origin or contained in tins of more than 2 pounds.

Chile

  • Used Clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.
  • Shipments must be accompanied by commercial invoices that bear a declaration of origin in English or Spanish, signed by the shipper stating:

“Under oath, we declare that we are the owners (or shippers) of the above mentioned merchandise; that the prices and other details are exact; that the said merchandise is a product of the soil or industry of (country of origin) and that we accept the legal consequences that might arise through any inexactitude contained in this account.”

Table B

Description of item allowed
Quantity or value per item
Notes
Pocket electronic calculator
1 per year
The addressee must submit a prior request to Customs.
Magnetic tape
5 cassettes
 
Cotton or synthetic fabric
10-1/4 yd (10 m)
Width must not exceed 50 inches (130 cm).
Philatelic stamps
100 stamps
 

China

  • Sealed articles in nontransparent containers.
  • Chinese currency.
  • Manuscripts, printed matter, photographic negatives, gramophone records, films, magnetic tapes, video tapes, etc., contrary to the country.
  • Meat and meat products.
  • Radio receivers, transmitters or receivers of all kinds, walkie-talkies and parts thereof; valves, antennae, etc.
  • Used clothing and bedding.
  • Wrist-watches, cameras, television sets, radio sets, tape records, bicycles, sewing machines, and ventilators.

NOTE: The importation of personal articles is limited to those intended for personal use and imported in reasonable quantities. See Table B for exclusions and quantities/values allowed.

Columbia

  • New and used clothing is permitted when mailed separately from other items. The words "equipaje no acompanado" and the owner's passport number must be shown on the address label AND the accompanying document. Used Clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.
  • Books and other printed matter require an import license. (A commercial invoice, numbered, certified and signed by the sender, must accompany each package containing books and periodicals of a commercial nature. In addition, the value of each item, the number of packages comprising the shipment, and gross weight must be shown on the invoice. One copy of the invoice should be sent to the post office of destination. A note must be made on each package of the number of books contained therein, its weight and the total number of packages comprising the shipment.)

NOTES:

Each shipment valued at $20 or less requires two copies of the sender’s commercial invoice, one of which must be enclosed in the parcel and the other sent under separate cover to the addressee. The invoice must include a Certificate of Origin, in Spanish, reading as follows:

“Certificamos bajo juramento que los precios de esta factura son los mismos que cargamos al cliente y que la mercancia a que se refiere esta misma factura es originaria de (Country of Origin). En fe de lo expuesto firmamos la presente declaracion en (City, State) (Day) de (Month) de (Year) (Signature of shipper)”.

(Translation: We certify under oath that the prices in this invoice are the same that we charge our customers, and that the merchandise in this same invoice comes from (Country of origin). In faith of which we sign the present declaration at (City, State), on (Date).

For shipments valued over $20, the sender must have a copy of his or her commercial invoice legalized by a Colombian Consulate, and must prepare 4 copies of a consular invoice, one of which must be sent direct to the addressee with the legalized commercial invoice.

Exclusion(s)
Importation of gold ingots require authorization by the Central Bank.

Comoros

  • Newspapers, publications, and works that are contrary to the country.

Exclusion(s)
Used Clothing requires two Certificates of Disinfection for enclosing with the items and endorsing the outer packaging.

Costa Rica

  • Dual-graduation feeding bottles.

NOTE: Commercial shipments must be accompanied by a commercial invoice in duplicate. These invoices must be attached to the item or enclosed inside the item.

Exclusion(s)
Arabic books and prints are subject to special checking on importation.
Tinned fish, vegetables, and plums must bear special inscription.

Cote d'Ivoire

  • Foreign products, natural or manufactured, having markings, labels, or wrappings of any kind that may give the impression that they are of Ivory Coast origin.
  • Weights and measures not of the decimal system.

Croatia

  • Meat, milk, and dairy products derived from animals that are susceptible to foot and mouth disease.

Cuba

Exclusion(s)
Check before shipping due to suspensions in mail services.
Exclusion(s)
Used clothing requires a permit from the Ministry of Health.

Cyprus

  • Postcards of private manufacture having illustrated designs not previously approved by the Cyprus Post Office.
  • Publications contrary to the country.

Exclusion(s)
Gift shipments must be sent by private individuals. Those sent by businesses are not accepted.

Czech Republic

  • Chain letter items.
  • Playing cards.
  • Publications, drawings, photographs, records, sheets of music, etc., contrary to the country.

Exclusion(s)
Danish and foreign stocks, bonds and coupons may not be imported unless the addressee possesses a permit issued by the National Bank of Denmark.

Denmark

  • Almanacs (except for single copies) that do not bear the University almanac stamp.
  • Dried or powdered milk, and food mixtures containing it.
  • Playing cards.

Dominican Republic

  • Books addressed to bookshops in care of banking institutions.
  • Games
  • Used clothing.

Exclusion(s)
Regardless of mail class or contents, items containing goods require a commercial invoice.
Any item containing vegetable components in any form must be accompanied by a health certificate as prescribed by the internal legislation of Ecuador.
Used shoes and clothing may be sent, but only in parcels weighing no more than 8.9 pounds.

Ecuador

  • All maps showing the territory of Ecuador with incorrect boundaries.
  • Bits and mouthpieces made of copper or any alloy containing copper.
  • Feeding bottles with rubber or glass tube.
  • Leather shoes in general; cloth and rubber shoes.
  • Preparations for erasing ink and handwriting.
  • Games.
  • “Panama” and “Mocora” hats and the straw used for making them.
  • Uncanceled postage stamps in ordinary mail.
  • Unrefined salt.

Eclusion(s)
Gramophone records of Arabic songs, cinema films and recording tapes require import permits issued in advance by the appropriate authorities.

Egypt (including Ghana)

  • Medals resembling Egyptian or foreign currency.
  • Books, engravings or printed matter contrary to the country.
  • Used clothing requires a Certificate of Disinfection.

El Salvador

  • Used clothing requires a Certificate of Disinfection.

Eritrea

  • Cassettes, video tapes, books, and magazines require authorization of the Ministry of Information and Education.
  • Radio communication apparatus requires authorization from the Telecommunications Authority.
  • Prepared foods and beverages authorization of the Ministry of Public Health.
  • Used clothing.

NOTE: All shipments must be carefully packaged in two separate waterproof covers to avoid dampness.

Estonia

  • Flour and cereals are permitted to private persons subject to inspection by quarantine officials.
  • Wireless transmission equipment is subject to addressee’s compliance with import restrictions, permits, or quota conditions.

Exclusion(s)
Certificates of Origin are needed for all shipments, and must be signed by Chamber of Commerce.

Ethiopia

  • Cassettes, video tapes, books, and magazines require authorization of the Ministry of Information and Education.
  • Prepared foods and beverages, and used clothing require authorization of the Ministry of Public Health.

NOTE: All shipments must be carefully packaged in two separate waterproof covers to avoid dampness.

Fiji

  • Dyes and coloring materials.

Finland

Exclusion(s)
Duplicate invoices are required for all commercial shipments regardless of value. The invoices must be affixed to the outside of the parcel or may be enclosed in PS Form 2976-E with the customs declaration.

France

  • Feeding bottles.
  • Imitation pearls containing lead salts and any articles of jewelry made with pearls of this type.
  • Measuring instruments marked in units not complying with French law.
  • Books in the French language printed abroad must have the names of the publisher and printer shown as prescribed by the French copyright laws.
  • Canned vegetables, fish, plums, and nuts must bear special inscription.

Georgia, Republic of

  • Articles and materials contrary to the country.

Exclusion(s)
Import licenses are required for meat products, pasta products, dairy products, and egg products.

Germany

  • Lithium cells and batteries.
  • Melatonin.
  • Playing cards, except in complete decks properly wrapped.
  • Pulverized coca beans.

Ghana

  • Used clothing requires a Certificate of Disinfection (and there is a 20% special tax levied).

Exclusion(s)
Many types of merchandise, unless sent as unsolicited gifts, require import licenses that the addressees must obtain from the British Board of Trade.

Great Britain and Northern Ireland

(Includes England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, Guernsey, Jersey, Alderney, Sark, and the Isle of Man)

  • Any postal item containing enclosures addressed to different persons at different addresses.
  • Articles, goods infringing British trademarks or copyright laws.
  • Cards decorated with mica or ground glass or similar materials unless they are placed in envelopes.
  • Citizens Band Radios, walkie-talkies, microbugs, and radio microphones that are capable of transmitting on any frequency between 26.1 and 29.7 megacycles per second and 88 to 108 Mhz per second.
  • Horror comics.
  • Articles, prints, paintings, cards, films, videotapes, etc. contrary to the country.
  • Foods or beverages to which any preservative or other substance has been added must comply with the British regulations for importation.
  • Animal products including dry sausage and dried milk require import license issued by appropriate UK Agricultural Department.

NOTE:

  • All goods sent to the UK are liable to customs duty and Value Added Tax on importation whether or not the package is marked as a “gift.”

Greece

  • Fresh meat, preserved meat, rawhides, wool, and other animal products must be accompanied by USDA approved Certificate.
  • Playing cards.
  • Cans of condensed milk require a label in the Greek language indicating the directions for its use.
  • Used clothing, bedding, and rags require Certificate of Disinfection.

Exclusion(s)
Tape, adhesive strips, or gummed paper should not be used to seal registered items unless the signature or name of the sender is written or stamped on the tape.

Guatemala

  • Feeding bottles and feeding bottles with glass tubes.
  • Police whistles.
  • Powder of all kinds.
  • Telegraphic apparatus.

Guinea

  • Foreign products, natural or manufactured, having markings, labels, or wrappings of any kind that may give the impression that they are of French origin.
  • Weights and measures not of the metric system.
  • Tinned fish, vegetables, and plums must bear special inscription.

Exclusion(s)
Tape, adhesive strips, or gummed paper should not be used to seal registered items unless the signature or name of the sender is written or stamped on the tape.

Guyana

  • All kinds of linen.
  • Clocks, watches, or other articles bearing any imitation of a British assay mark.
  • Furniture and fixtures.
  • Most food including, meats, fish, vegetables, nuts, fruit, bakery products, and confectionery.
  • Newsprint paper.

Exclusion(s)
If addressees in Haiti fail to pay the import duties after acceptance and verification of their shipments, the contents may be sold at auction by the customs authorities.

Haiti

  • Articles, documents, pamphlets, posters, books, printed papers contrary to the country.
  • Used clothing.


Honduras

  • Used Clothing requires two Certificates of Disinfection for enclosing with the items and endorsing the outer packaging.


Hungary

  • Import license required for used clothing.

Exclusion(s)
All merchandise imported by mail must be accompanied by an invoice in duplicate.

Iceland

  • Icelandic coins and banknotes, as well as any values payable in Icelandic currency.
  • Meat products including sausages.
  • Toys made of lead.
  • Wireless receivers and their accessories, parts, or batteries.
  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Exclusion(s)
Perishables or edible substances are admitted only by airmail.

India

  • Consumer electronic items, (except hearing aids and life-saving equipment, apparatus, and appliances and parts thereof).
  • Works of art (including photographs); forms ruled or printed; account and manuscript books; labels; advertising matter (except trade catalogs and circulars); almanacs in sheets or in cards; and other cards, as well as waste paper and old newspaper for packing, are considered to be merchandise, and may be liable to customs duty.
  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Exclusion(s)
Items not permitted in commercial shipments include pens and pencils ornamented with precious metal; calendar watches; linen clothing; natural silk goods; children's toys operated by steam or electricity; leather goods; coffee essences and substitutes; and molasses.
Addresses are required to obtain special authorization from the Indonesian authorities for importing luxry items: technical goods, food, office supplies, cameras, and projectors.

Indonesia

  • Books and periodicals printed in any Indonesian language and published outside of Indonesia, except educational books approved by the Indonesian Department of Commerce.
  • Cloth and batik designs and sarongs.
  • Cocoa leaves, dried, undried, or powdered.
  • Indonesian national currency (rupiahs).
  • Used articles including clothing.

Iran

  • Books, newspapers, printed matter, writing, records, pictures, emblems, and any other articles contrary to the country.
  • Fashion newspapers.
  • Games.
  • Musical instruments.
  • Radio systems that are equipped with a single sideband; upper sideband; lower sideband; beat frequency oscillator; continuous air wave band; police band; or an FM band having a frequency range of 76 to 87 MHz.
  • Sugar, brown sugar.
  • Used clothing.
  • The importation of foods, cosmetics, hygiene products, and beverages is subject to permission from the Ministry of Health of the Islamic Republic of Iran.
  • The importation of seeds, insecticides, etc. is subject to permission from the Ministry of Agricultural Jahad.
  • The importation of animal foods is subject to permission from the Veterinary Organization of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

NOTES: The importation of certain telecommunication products (wireless phones, transmitting and receiving sets, and other similar items) is subject to permission from the Ministry of Information and Communications of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Iraq

  • Binoculars.
  • Cameras.
  • Cell phones.
  • Laptop computers.
  • Non-preserved meats and soft fruits.
  • Tapes or cassettes.
  • Radio apparatus, and their accessories, require permission to be obtained by the addressees from the Iraqi authorities.

Ireland

  • Articles bearing false trademarks or lacking the indication of origin required by the Irish regulations.
  • Coins minted in a foreign country, except gold and silver; false or counterfeit coins.
  • Hay, straw, including articles made of straw.
  • Peat moss litter except under license.
  • Carbon paper (except typewriter carbon paper that must be described on customs declaration as follows: “Typewriter carbon paper coated with wax and containing no oxidizable or fatty substances.”)
  • Tea.
  • Fruit, vegetables and other food, and seeds are subject to special regulations.
  • Margarine, skimmed milk, and altered food must be suitably labeled.
  • Oiled or varnished cloth or similar articles must be accompanied by a certificate as follows: “The oilcloth or similar articles in this parcel have been stored at a temperature of 140ºF until completely dried, and then cured for at least a month before packing.” Only in Priority Mail International parcels.

NOTE: The following goods are subject to quota restrictions and require an import license: boots and shoes, brushes, electric lamp bulbs, screws, tapered thread; felt hats and caps for women and girls; brushes and mops; wheaten flour and any commodity or product of wheat; rubber proofed wearing apparel; sparking plugs and component parts; silk and artificial silk hose; and certain woven fabrics.

Israel (including Lithuania)

  • Agricultural tools and accessories.
  • Blank invoices with headings.
  • Dairy products, except for canned powdered milk.
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables.
  • Games.
  • Marks, paintings, photographs, books, cards, lithographs, or engravings contrary to the country.
  • Seeds.
  • Meats.
  • Organic fertilizers.
  • Seafood and fish (includes canned fish or seafood).
  • Soil and sand.
  • Spices exceeding 2 pounds.
  • Import licenses are required for many articles including radios, televisions and other transmitters; medical or scientific instruments; underwater equipment and cinematographic film; and postal stamps exceeding 100 Israeli pounds.
  • Records, films, recording wire, computer cards, QSL cards, and magnetic film are admitted only if sent in First-Class Mail International or First-Class Package International Service shipments.
  • Spices may be mailed in quantities not to exceed 1.1 pounds per spice. To import larger quantities from abroad, the prospective recipient must obtain an import license issued by the Israeli government.
  • Vitamins, minerals, and food supplements may be mailed in quantities not to exceed 3.5 ounces or one package per product. To import larger quantities from abroad, the prospective recipient must obtain an import license issued by the Israeli government.
  • Fabrics.
  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Exclusion(s)
Shipments containing books must bear a PS Form 2976.

Italy

  • Albums of any kind (of photographs, postcards, postage stamps, etc.).
  • Artificial flowers and fruits and accessories for them.
  • Bells and other musical instruments and parts thereof.
  • Clocks and supplies for clocks.
  • Coral mounted in any way.
  • Used photographic and cinematographic films.
  • Footwear of any kind.
  • Sewn articles of any kind, including trimmings and lace; handkerchiefs; scarves; shawls, needlework including stockings and gloves; bonnets, caps, and hats of any kind.
  • Hair and articles made of hair.
  • Leather goods.
  • Lithium cells and batteries, including items containing lithium cells and batteries.
  • Nutmeg, vanilla; sea salt, rock salt; saffron.
  • Perfumery goods of all kinds (except soap).
  • Playing cards of any kind.
  • Ribbons for typewriters.
  • Roasted or ground coffee and its substitutes; roasted chicory.
  • Salted, smoked or otherwise prepared meats; fats; and lard.
  • Toys not made wholly of wood.
  • Treated skins and furs.

Jamaica

  • Citrus fruits and plants and parts thereof.
  • Cocoa; coffee; condensed milk; cornmeal; edible oils; and sugar.
  • Cotton seed and plants and parts thereof.
  • Meats.
  • Electronic items, including cellular telephones, are not accepted unless they are sent in the original manufacturer's packaging. Specific packaging regulations apply.

Japan

  • Items that infringe on patent rights, utility model rights, design rights, trademark rights, copyrights, neighboring rights, or layout design rights.
  • Meat products are prohibited unless accompanied by an inspection certificate issued by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Jordan

  • Essences and oils for use in making altered or imitated beverages.

Exclusion(s)
Radio-electronic and high-frequency equipment requires authorization by the country’s Ministry of Transport and Communications.
Recording media require that information be supplied on the type of computer and operating system used for recording.
Works of art, antiques, and other valuable objects of art, history, science or culture require authorization by the country's Ministry of Public Health, Education and Culture.

Kazakhstan

  • Cultural artifacts.
  • Deer horns, hooves, and antlers.
  • Foreign currency.
  • Natural precious stones, waste thereof, powder from precious stones, pearls, yellow amber.
  • Perishable food.
  • Seeds.
  • Precious metals, alloys, minerals, concentrates, rubble and waste from precious metals.
  • Printed matter, plastic materials, stock footage, photographic material, audio and video material contrary to the country.
  • Rare vegetable products.
  • Rare metals, raw materials, alloys, combinations and products.
  • Sturgeon and salmon caviar.
  • Substances harmful to the ozone layer.


kenya

  • Material contrary to the country.
  • Used clothing, bedding and other similar items, textile and fabrics require a Certificate of Disinfection.
  • Articles bearing Boy Scout or Girl Scout insignia must have authorization of the Kenya Boy Scout or Girl Guide Commissioner.

Kiribati

  • Dye obtained from coal tar.

Korea, Democratic North Korea

  • All merchandise is prohibited.

Korea, Republic South Korea

  • Counterfeit postage stamps.
  • Documents, books, printed papers, engravings or other articles contrary to the country.
  • Salt.
  • Textile fabrics.
  • Weights and measures.
  • Monthly or weekly journals are admitted to the extent of three copies per person and per issue; they are subject to a permit from the government if they exceed the limit of three copies.
  • Ginseng may only be imported by the Korean government.

Exclusion(s)
Preserved meat and dairy products require import licenses.

Kuwait

  • Magazines or other printed matter containing illustrations contrary to the country.
  • Tapes and cassettes must not be sent in Registered Mail. Such articles are admitted in ordinary mail.
  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Kyrgyzstan

  • Printed matter, plates, negatives, films for exposure, phonographs, tapes, video cassettes and video discs, information for electronic calculators, manuscripts, disks and other sound recordings, drawings and other printing and plastic arts contrary to the country.
  • High-frequency radio-electronic devices and apparatus; ultrasonic apparatus; industrial, scientific, and medical generators; and radar detectors are admitted only on the authorization of the Ministry of Transport and Communications.
  • Seeds intended for planting require authorization of the Ministry of Agriculture.

Exclusion(s)
A veterinary service certificate must accompany animal products (with the exception of canned foods).

Latvia

  • Hyacinth bulb, carnation and chrysanthemum seedling and cuttings, seeds of leguminous plants.
  • Publications and works contrary to the country.

Lebanon

  • Artificial butters.
  • Essences, essential oils, and products derived therefrom for the use in the manufacture of imitated beverages, ices, and pastries.
  • Liquids.
  • Glass or similarly fragile articles.
  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Lesotho

  • Eau de cologne.
  • Printed matter relating to football games.
  • Used clothing or articles.

Liberia

  • Used clothing.

Exclusion(s)
Special authorization is required for plant material including seeds.

Libya

  • Tea
  • Salt


Liechtenstein

  • Miniature wireless transmitters.
  • Radar detectors.

Exclusion(s)
A tax will be applied to books, newspapers, and periodicals.

Lithuania

  • Articles whose nature and packaging may constitute a danger to postal employees or that may spoil or damage other postal items.
  • Articles contrary to the country.
  • Nonprecious metals, their alloys, wastes, and scrap.
  • Prepared food and raw materials of animal origin if their industrial packaging is damaged, the use-by-date has expired, or the sensory features (i.e., smell, taste, and touch) have been altered.
  • Watch straps, watch bands, and watch bracelets, and parts thereof, of precious metal or of metal clad with precious metal whether or not gold-plated or silver-plated.
  • Objects of cultural value, works of art, and antiques may be sent only with a permit from the Ministry of Culture’s Department of the Protection of Objects of Cultural Value.
  • Radio-electronic apparatus and electrical equipment that may emit radio waves require authorization from the National Electrical Equipment and Communications Inspectorate.
  • Sugar may not exceed 11 pounds per shipment.

Exclusion(s)
An import license is required for the importation of a number of agricultural; textile; iron and steel; and general products.
Special authorization is required for fruit, seeds, meat, and meat products.

Luxembourg (Mozambique)

  • Postcards embellished with fabrics, embroidery, metal, spangles, or similar materials except in sealed envelopes.
  • Printed pamphlets, without indication of the name of the printer.
  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.


Exclusion(s)
Watches are admitted only in packaging consisting of strong metal boxes or cases made of woods and only by Priority Mail international parcels.

Madagascar

  • Articles violating the copyright laws.
  • Boxes of preserved sardines weighing more than 2 pounds.
  • Playing cards.
  • Preserved fish, vegetables, and plums not bearing place of origin stamp.
  • Products bearing false indications of origin.

Malawi

  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Malaysia

  • Undersea fishing instruments.
  • Articles contrary to the country.

Exclusion(s)
The following articles are subject to special regulations on importation: phonograph records, Arabic books, and prints.

Mali

  • Weights and measures not of the metric system.
  • Preserved fish, vegetables, and plums must be marked plainly with country of origin.
  • Boxes of fish weighing more than 2 pounds.

Exclusion(s)
Used clothing, sacks, bags, carpets, embroidery, fruit, vegetables, and many other food items are subject to local health regulations.

Malta

  • Articles contrary to the country.




Mauritania

  • Printed or written matter, including designs or emblems, contrary to the country.
  • Watches.
  • Weighing and measuring instruments not calibrated in the metric system.

Exclusion(s)
Import permits are required for radiosets and spare parts.

Mauritius

  • Corn.
  • Tea.
  • Printed matter, paintings, books, and publications contrary to the country.
  • Used clothing.


Exclusion(s)
Chocolate and products made of chocolate require prior authorization from the Mexican Secretary of Commerce.
Beauty products, cosmetics, and toiletries are admitted only by prior approval of the Department of Public Health in Mexico.

Mexico

  • Meat and products derived from pork.
  • Perishable confectionery, pastries, fruit, and vegetables.
  • Works infringing copyrights covering Mexico.
  • Used clothing.

Moldova

  • Printed books, newspapers, pictures, publications, manuscripts, and other products of the printing industry that are contrary to the country.

Morocco

  • Used clothing.

Namibia - Portugal

  • Used clothing.

Nepal

  • Cameras.
  • Cardamon.
  • Cinnamon.
  • Cloves.
  • Photographic paper.
  • Synthetic fibres.
  • Watches and spare parts.

Netherlands

  • Meat or meat products and milk or milk products cannot exceed 2.2 lbs., and any such products must be accompanied by a USDA veterinary certificate.

Exclusion(s)
Each commercial shipment must be covered by a commercial invoice showing the current domestic price of the goods (that is, what the price would be if sold in the United States) and the selling price to the purchaser in New Zealand. The invoice must include a certificate as to the value of the goods, prepared in prescribed form, and signed by the shipper.

New Zealand

  • Meat or meat products and fish and fish products are admitted only conditionally.
  • Merchandise for the addressee’s personal use, not for his or her business or professional use or for sale or trade, and not exceeding 20 New Zealand dollars in value.
  • Used clothing and used bedding must be for personal use of persons in New Zealand, or with permission of the New Zealand Minister of Customs. Worn clothing not for personal use requires Certificate of Disinfection, or it will be done at the addressee’s expense.

Exclusion(s)
Tape, adhesive strips, or gummed paper should not be used to seal registered items unless the signature or name of the sender is written or stamped on the tape.

Nicaragua

  • Material or literature contrary to the country.
  • Police whistles.
  • Telegraph equipment.
  • Plant and animal-based substances require a Phytosanitary Export Certificate.
  • Used clothing.

Niger

  • Publications in Arabic.
  • Tins of fish exceeding 2.2 pounds
  • Weights and measures not of the metric system.

Nigeria

  • Hardware of all kinds.
  • Used clothing.

Exclusion(s)
A duplicate commercial invoice is required for customs clearance on all commercial items.

Norway

  • Cosmetics and perfumes must be approved by the Technical Alcohol committee.
  • Importation of radio and telecommunications equipment (radio remote controls or wireless systems including walkie-talkies, and wireless telephones) is prohibited without the authorization of the Norwegian Telecommunication. Regulatory Authority. Ordinary TV and radio receivers are exempt from the regulation.
  • A list of products of animal origin intended for consumption by humans and or pets can be obtained from the Ministry of Agriculture in Norway. Imports are subject to authorization by the Veterinary Department of the Ministry of Agriculture.

Oman

  • Radio sets, transmitters, receivers, and telegraphic apparatus require a permit from the Ministry of Posts, Telegraphs, and Telephones.

Pakistan

  • Mobile telephones, watches, fountain pens, cameras, eyeglasses, toys, and other valuable consumer products must be mailed in insured parcels.
  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Panama

  • Perishable fruits.
  • Sweetmeats and pastries.

Papua New Guinea

  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Exlusion(s)
Printed matter in general use such as receipts and commercial invoices are not admitted in Priority Mail International parcels.

Paraguay

  • Batteries.
  • Foods including butter and cheeses; sugar; peanuts; salt; fats of vegetable origin; rice; fruit; and tomato juices.
  • Plastic toys.
  • Soaps.
  • Stocking and socks except those made of jersey.
  • Suitcases; leather bags.
  • Wool blankets.
  • Used linen and clothing require Certificate of Disinfection.

Peru

  • Agricultural pesticides.
  • Used clothing and shoes require Certificate of Disinfection.
  • Used tires.

Philippines

  • Coffee.
  • Glass and any other fragile items.
  • Used clothing.

Poland

  • Articles, printed matter, written documents or other articles contrary to the country.

Qtar - Slovak Republic

  • Liquids of any type.
  • Articles contrary to the country.

Romania

  • Books, cards, photographs, manuscripts, typescripts, or other products of the printing industry contrary to the country.
  • Products of animal or vegetable origin are admitted only by a permit.

Russia

  • Color copiers.
  • Cultural artifacts.
  • Currency of the Russian Federation.
  • Electric fishing systems and equipment consisting of electric signal generators with connected conductors and batteries, employed together to fish biological aquatic resources using electric current.
  • Knotted fishing nets made from synthetic monofilaments or other polyamides, with a filament diameter less than 0.5 mm and mesh size less than 100 mm (length of mesh at one side less than 50 mm).
  • Ozone depleting substances.
  • Perishable items.
  • Seeds.
  • Printed books, newspapers, pictures and other products of the printing industry, manuscripts, other types of articles and miscellaneous documents containing information contrary to the country.

Saint Lucia

  • Shaving brushes made in Japan.
  • Used clothing.

Exclusion(s)
Shipments containing books must bear a PS Form 2976

San Marino

  • Albums of any kind (of photographs, postcards, postage stamps, etc.).
  • Artificial flowers and fruits and accessories for them.
  • Bells and other musical instruments and parts thereof.
  • Clocks and supplies for clocks.
  • Coral mounted in any way.
  • Used photographic and cinematographic films.
  • Footwear of any kind.
  • Sewn articles of any kind, including trimmings and lace; handkerchiefs; scarves; shawls, needlework including stockings and gloves; bonnets, caps, and hats of any kind.
  • Leather goods.
  • Nutmeg, vanilla; sea salt, rock salt; saffron.
  • Perfumery goods of all kinds (except soap).
  • Playing cards of any kind.
  • Postage stamps.
  • Ribbons for typewriters.
  • Roasted or ground coffee and it substitutes; roasted chicory.
  • Salted, smoked or otherwise prepared meats; fats; and lard.
  • Toys not made wholly of wood.
  • Treated skins and furs.

Saudi Arabia

  • Books and prints contrary to the Islamic faith.
  • Recorded tapes (cassettes) are only admitted in ordinary mail (not registered).
  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Senegal

  • Weights and measures not of the metric system.
  • Phonograph records; Arabic books and prints are subject to special regulations.

Sierra Leone

  • Brushes of all kinds made in Japan other than nylon toothbrushes.
  • Postage stamps, whether used or not, except in registered First-Class Mail International and First-Class Package International Service shipments.
  • Used clothing requires a Certificate of Disinfection and must be approved before admittance.

Singapore

  • Meat products require an import permit. All shipments must be addressed to the addressee care of the Director of Primary Production, Singapore.

Exclusion(s)
Gift shipments must be sent by private senders. Those sent by businesses will not be admitted.

Slovak Republic

  • Chain letter items.
  • Publications, drawings, photographs, records, sheets of music, etc., contrary to the country.
  • Playing cards.

Solomon Islands (including Santa Cruz Islands)

  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Somalia

  • Radios and telephones.
  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

South Africa

  • Used clothing.

Spain

  • Playing cards.
  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Sri Lanka

  • Coffee products.
  • Fish products—tinned or canned.
  • Leather goods (handbags, sports goods (volleyballs, footballs, etc.)).
  • Most food and grains (sugar, flour, fruits, and oils).
  • Paper and writing products (envelopes, ink, pencils, pens, erasers, chalk, etc.).
  • Radios; tape recording machines and parts thereof.
  • Textile and apparel.
  • Perfume, and cosmetics.
  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Sudan

  • Playing cards.
  • Literature contrary to the country.
  • Unginned cotton.
  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Sweden

  • Meat, sausage and soups derived of animal origin requires USDA Certificate.

Switzerland

  • Miniature wireless transmitters.
  • Radar detectors.

Syria

  • Dietary supplements.
  • Footwear of all kinds and parts thereof.
  • High-frequency radio receivers (above 100 megacycles).
  • Margarine and other kinds of artificial butter and materials for its manufacture.
  • Salt.
  • Soap, except shaving soap.
  • Stockings of all kinds except wool stockings.
  • Television equipment.
  • Used clothes made of silk or cotton.

Taiwan

  • Extracts, essences, and concentrates of tea.
  • Sugar, molasses, and other sweetening substances.

Tanzania

  • Japanese shaving brushes.
  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Thailand

  • Playing cards.

Togo - Zimbabwe

  • Weights and measures other than those of the decimal metric system.

Tunisia

  • Chalk and pencils.
  • Soap and detergents.
  • Leather and articles of artificial leather.
  • Carpets, tapestries, and bed coverings.
  • Footwear of rubber or plastic.
  • Hosiery of cotton or synthetic fibers, except women’s stockings.
  • Household articles of galvanized iron, galvanized steel or aluminum.
  • Nonelectric cooking and heating appliances for household use.
  • Nursing bottles, nipples, and pacifiers that are not made of pure rubber and marked accordingly, and vulcanized by heat.
  • Playing cards.

Turkey

  • Cosmetic products.
  • Fish items, canned animal products, cured spiced beef and sausage, edible fresh and dried fruits and vegetables, and other animal and vegetable products.
  • Food supplements and foods for athletes may be sent to Turkey only when a medical report, prescription, or national sportsperson's certificate is enclosed with the item by the addressee.
  • Used bedding, linens, clothing, carpets, empty sacks, etc., require Certificate of Disinfection.

Articles allowed by quantity (and must be for the personal use of the addressee):

Articles
Maximum Quantity
Clothing (coats, overcoats, jackets)
3 of each
All types of sound recording devices (cassettes, reels, laser disks)
10
Electronic radio and video equipment; Cameras, VCRs, movie cameras, and lenses; Electronic music equipment and electronic musical instruments (keyboards, synthesizers, etc.); personal computers; spare parts, and accessories
1 of each
Personal computer information storage media. Information storage media with prerecorded information are admissible only with information from the sender on the type of microcomputer and operating system used to record the information in question
15
Phonograph records
15 pieces or 2 sets
Fabric
10

Turkmenistan

  • Food, if use-by date is less than 70% of time left
  • Food products manufactured using GMOs
  • Printed materials, plates, negatives, developed films, photographs, movies, video recordings, magnetic computer information storage media, manuscripts, records and other sound recordings, drawings and other printed materials, and forms of plastic art contrary to the country. Books, newspapers, magazines, and other printed materials are admitted without restriction under this exception.
  • Undeveloped movies and photographic films, photographic plates and paper.
  • High-frequency radio-electronic devices (transmitters and receivers) regardless of strength, high frequency ultrasound equipment, and generators for industrial, scientific, and medical use, and location detection devices used to measure transportation speed.
  • Copying/reproduction equipment (with the exception of typewriters).
  • Seeds, plants, root tubers, bulbs and other plant parts, fruits, legumes, and fresh vegetables are admitted as authorized by the State Quarantine Inspectorate Agroindustrial Committee. Seeds and plants must be accompanied by USDA certificates.
  • Canceled or uncanceled postage stamps are admitted within the framework of organized philatelic exchanges.

Uganda

  • Japanese shaving brushes.
  • Used clothing, bedding, and similar articles require Certificate of Disinfection.

Ukraine

  • Agricultural products.
  • Articles of cultural value (works of art, collectors’ pieces, and antiques).
  • Radios and mobile telephones for personal use may be sent to Ukraine, provided that the addressee has obtained prior authorization from the Ukrainian State Center of Radio Frequencies and Telecommunications Supervision.
  • Used clothing and footwear require Certificate of Disinfection.
  • Meats, fish, milk and dairy products, fruits and nuts, coffee, tea, spices, vegetables, grains, cereals, flour, fats and oils, animal and vegetable by-products, sugar, cocoa, and other processed food must be packed by the manufacturer and require USDA certificates. Weight restrictions apply.

United Arab Emirates

  • Aerosol products.
  • Polished, whitened, artificial, or imitation pearls.
  • Pork products.
  • Printed matter offensive to Arabs and Muslims.
  • Radio transmitters and receivers except under permit.

Unites States of America (with explanations)

  • Automobiles. Automobiles imported into the United States must meet the fuel-emission requirements of the Environmental Protection Agency and the safety, bumper, and theft prevention standards of the U.S. Department of Transportation.
  • Ceramic Tablewear is not prohibited, but may contain dangerous levels of lead in the glaze.
  • Cuban-made products. Banned! These prohibitions are applicable to all goods of Cuban origin and are an important element of the comprehensive program of economic sanctions against the Cuban Government which have been in place since 1963. Those sanctions have had the support of the last seven Administrations.
  • Cultural Artifacts and Cultural Property. Most countries have laws that protect their cultural property.
  • Food products, prepared, including soup mixes. You may bring bakery items and certain cheeses into the United States. As a general rule, condiments, vinegars, oils, packaged spices, honey, coffee and tea are admissible. Because rice can often harbor insects, it is best to avoid bringing it into the United States. Some imported foods are also subject to requirements of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
  • Fruits and vegetables. Fresh fruits and vegetables can introduce plant pests or diseases into the United States.
  • Gold. Gold coins, medals and bullion, formerly prohibited, may be brought into the United States. However, under regulations administered by the Office of Foreign Assets Control, such items originating in or brought from Cuba, Iran, Burma (Myanmar) and most of Sudan are prohibited. Copies of gold coins are prohibited if not properly marked by country of issuance.
  • Meat. You may not import fresh, dried or canned meats, food products prepared with meat, or meat products from most foreign countries into the United States.
  • Medication. Vacationers are urged to bring their own medications on trips.
  • Photographic film. Certain guidelines apply.
  • Plants and seeds.
  • Soil.
  • Textiles and clothing.
  • Trademarked and copyrighted articles.

Source: US Customs

Uruguay

  • Used clothing requires Certificate of Disinfection.

Uzbekistan

  • Press publications, manuscripts, drawings, films, negatives, cinematographic films, video recordings, audio recordings, gramophone records contrary to the country.
  • Meats and meat products, milk and dairy products.
  • Cinematographic films, video recordings, and audio recordings may be imported with the authorization of the Ministry of Culture.
  • Seeds and other agricultural products are permitted only under authorization issued by the Head of Quarantine Inspection in Uzbekistan.

Venezuela

  • Coffee, coffee extracts, and similar preparations containing coffee.
  • Natural and cultivated pearls.
  • Food, plants and most merchandise requires prior authorization of the Venezuelan authorities.
  • Used clothing.

Vietnam

  • Cosmetics, with the exception of oral and hygiene dental products in individual packaging and shaving or aftershave products.
  • Invisible ink, codes, cyphers, symbols or other types of secret correspondence, and shorthand notes.
  • Mobile (cellular) telephones.
  • Radio transmitters and receivers and radio set accessories of any kind.
  • Sealed tinned food.
  • Unused postage stamps.
  • Used clothing, blankets, mosquito nets, and shoes.
  • Paintings, pictures, books, newspapers, cinema films, photographic films, records, miscellaneous articles for the stage, all other literary and artistic productions, objects of art and of sculpture, all kinds of children’s toys must have the authorization of the Ministry of Culture of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.
  • Coffee, tea, rice beans, dried sweet potatoes, groundnuts, cooked fat, dried meat, salted fish, dried fish, and dried cuttlefish may be sent in limited quantities.

Wallis and Futuna Islands

  • Weights and measures not of the decimal system.
  • Restrictions apply to the importation of flowers, fruit plants, products of animal origin, records, and sound recordings.

Zambia

  • Restrictions apply to blankets; quilts, mattresses, pillows and cushions; carpets, rugs, and mats; clothing; gloves; hats, caps and other headwear; footwear, stockings and socks; piece goods and lace; perfumes and cosmetics; cutlery; books; playing cards; watches; jewelry, articles of gold or silver; sporting and athletic goods; cups, medals, trophies, etc.; and harness and saddles.

List 1 - Money, Jewels, and other Valuables

Countries that prohibit Coins and Paper Money; Platinum, Gold, Silver (whether manufactured or not); and precious stones, jewels, expensive jewelry or other valuable articles:

  • Afghanistan (Precious stones and jewelry only in registered mail.)
  • Algeria (Gold or platinum, jewelry and precious stones must be licensed by the Algerian Ministry of Finance.) (Coins and paper money may only be imported by the Central Bank of Algeria or approved intermediary banks.)
  • Angola (Coins and paper money only.)
  • Antigua and Barbuda (includes Redonda) (Coins only in insured priority mail.)
  • Argentina (All of the above only in insured priority mail.)
  • Armenia (Except coins and paper money.)
  • Aruba (Coins and currency, including copper, bronze or nickel coins are prohibited. Precious stones, jewelry, and other valuable articles only in registered mail.)
  • Australia (Jewelry made from ivory or from endangered species (such as elephant or crocodile) that does not have an accompanying Import/Export Permit. Jewelry is permitted only in insured priority mail.)
  • Austria (Only exception: gold, silver and platinum must be of the fineness required by the Austrian regulations.)
  • Belarus (Precious stones in any form and condition, including natural diamonds, except for jewelry.) (Coins, paper money, platinum, gold and silver (manufactured or not), precious stones, jewelry and other valuable articles sent insured priority mail.)
  • Belgium (Bronze, copper, and nickel coins not legal tender in Belgium, unless imported for collectors.)
  • Belize (All of the above except coins or bullion; permitted only if intended for purposes of ornament.)
  • Benin (All of the above and gold and gold articles;Medals and coins or machinery used for minting coins; Uncut diamonds.)
  • Bolivia
  • Botswana
  • Brazil
  • Brunei Draussalam
  • Bulgaria (Except jewelry ~ and all others only in insured mail.)
  • Burkina Faso (All of the above only in registered mail.)
  • Burma (Money, gold or silver in bullion, except coins intended as ornaments.)
  • Burundi
  • Cambodia
  • Canada (All of the above only in registered mail, except coins sent to or from collectors/dealers may be mailed in uninsured parcels.) (Gold bullion, gold dust, and non-manufactured precious metals.) (Precious stones, set or not set; all items used as dress ornaments and coming under the term “jewelry” including articles of gold or other precious metal for personal use such as powder cases, card cases, opera glasses, fountain pens, watches, etc., are permitted in insured parcels provided the articles have value not over $5 U.S. A parcel containing a number of such articles valued at $5 or less may be insured for the total value of the contents up to a maximum of $200.)
  • Cape Verde
  • Chad
  • Chile
  • China (All of the above only in insured mail.)
  • Columbia
  • Congo (Republic)
  • Costa Rica
  • Cote d'Ivoire (Gold and gold articles (except jewelry and gold articles that are personal belongings in current use) require an import license from the Ministry of Economics and Finance.) (Loose or uncut diamonds.)
  • Cuba (Gold bullion and gold bars.)
  • Cyprus (All of the above must have license from the Cyprus Central Bank.)
  • Czech Republic (All of the above must have authorization from the State Bank.)
  • Dominica (Coins only.)
  • Dominican Republic
  • Ecuador (All of the above only in registered mail.)
  • Egypt (Ghana) (All of the above only in insured mail.)
  • El Salvador
  • Eritrea (Gold (non-ornamental) having commercial value is admitted by a special authorization of the Bank of Eritrea.)
  • Estonia
  • Ethiopia
  • Falkland Islands
  • Faroe Islands (All of the above only in registered or insured mail.)
  • Fiji (Coins and paper money only.)
  • France (Gold coins or other articles of gold require that the addressee have a permit issued by the Bank of France (not required for gold-plated articles or for ornaments or jewelry containing only small amounts of gold and weighing 500 grams or less).)
  • French Guiana (All of the above only in registered mail.)
  • French Polynesia
  • Gabon
  • Gambia (Coins and paper money are prohibited. Platinum, gold, silver (manufactured or not); Precious stones, jewelry, and other valuable articles only in registered mail.)
  • Georgia, Republic of
  • Ghana (Coins and paper money only in registered mail from one bank to another.) (Manufactured and unmanufactured platinum, gold, and silver; precious stones; and jewelry only in insured priority mail.)
  • Great Britain and Northern Ireland
  • Greece (All of the above only in registered first class mail. Paper money may only be sent in registered mail.)
  • Grenada (Only coins are prohibited.)
  • Guadeloupe (All of the above only in registered mail.)
  • Guinea
  • Guyana
  • Haiti (Jewelry only.)
  • Honduras
  • Hungary
  • India (All of the above including coins, except coins obviously intended for ornament.)
  • Indonesia
  • Iraq
  • Iran
  • Israel (All of the above only in registered mail.)
  • Italy (All of the above only in insured priority mail.
  • Japan (All of the above only in registered or insured priority mail.)
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kenya
  • Korea (South)
  • Korea (North) (All of the above only in registered mail.)
  • Kosovo
  • Kuwait (Jewels, precious stones, and metal imported for commercial or resale purposes are subject to prior authorization of the Ministry of Trade and Industry of Kuwait.)
  • Kyrgyzstan (All of the above only in insured priority mail.)
  • Laos
  • Latvia
  • Lebanon
  • Lesotho
  • Liberia (All of the above only in insured priority mail.)
  • Libya
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg (All of the above only in insured priority mail.)
  • Mongolia (Coins only.)
  • Mozambique
  • Macao (All of the above only in registered first class mail.)
  • Madagascar
  • Malawi
  • Malaysia (All of the above (except coins for ornament) only in insured parcels.)
  • Mali
  • Mauritania (All of the above including rough diamonds.)
  • Mauritius
  • Mexico
  • Morocco
  • Mozambique (Only coins for collectors are permitted.)
  • Namibia (Portugal) (Diamonds or precious stones only in registered mail.)
  • Nepal
  • Netherlands Antilles (Copper, bronze, nickel coins are prohibited.) (All of the above only in registered mail.)
  • New Zealand (All of the above permitted except by express mail.)
  • Nicaragua (All of the above only in insured priority mail.)
  • Niger (Rough, uncut diamonds only.)
  • Nigeria (Coins unless from a bank and addressed to a bank in Nigeria. Precious stones and manufactured gold, platinum, or silver are admitted only if not more than 5 francs in value.)
  • Pakistan
  • Panama
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Pitcairn Island
  • Poland
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Qtar - Slovak Republic
  • Reunion
  • Romania
  • Russia (Precious stones and natural diamonds. Jewelry is permitted.)
  • Rwanda (Precious metals are prohibited. Coins and paper money only in registered mail.)
  • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines (Currency only.)
  • San Marino (All prohibited except valuable articles, platinum or gold, and jewelry (only if sent as insured)).
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Senegal
  • Serbia, Republic of
  • Seychelles
  • Sierra Leone (All of the above and West African paper currency.)
  • Singapore (Coins except coins for purposes of ornament; nnmounted precious stones only in registered mail and if authorization is obtained from the Postmaster General of Singapore.)
  • Slovak Republic (All of the above need authorization from State Bank.)
  • Somalia (All of the above only in registered mail.)
  • South Africa (All of the above including diamonds and precious stones only in registered mail.
  • Spain (All of the above only in insured priority mail.)
  • Sri Lanka (All of the above only in insured priority mail.)
  • Sudan
  • Suriname (All of the above only in insured priority mail.)
  • Swaziland (All of the above and Diamonds or gems (mounted or not), metallic currency, and gold in powder or in nuggets.)
  • Sweden (Articles of gold or silver must comply with Swedish regulations as to fitness.)
  • Syria
  • Taiwan (Coins over one hundred years old only.)
  • Tajikistan
  • Tanzania
  • Thailand
  • Togo - Zimbabwe
  • Trinidad and Tobago (Coins only, except old coins intended as ornaments.)
  • Tunisia (All of the above including copper coins and obsolete silver coins, and jewelry made of precious metal or plated with it.)
  • Turkey (All of the above only in insured priority mail.)
  • Turkmenistan
  • Uganda (All of the above only in registered mail.
  • Ukraine
  • United Arab Emirates (Gold, jewels, platinum, precious stones, and silver only in insured parcels.)
  • Uruguay (All of the above except old coins intended for collections are admitted up to the maximum of 10 per package.)
  • Uzbekistan
  • Venezuela
  • Vietnam
  • Yemen (All of the above only in registered mail.)
  • Zambia (All of the above only in registered mail.)
  • Zimbabwe

List 2 - Live Plants

Countries that prohibit live plants:

  • Andorra
  • Argentina (Plants and seeds must be accompanied by a USDA certificate approved by the Argentine Consul.)
  • Austria
  • Azerbaijan (Seeds, plants, roots, bulk and other plant parts, fruits, legumes, and fresh vegetables must have prior authorization by the relevant State body in charge of plant quarantine in Azerbaijan.)
  • Belarus (plants and plant seeds)
  • Belguim
  • Brunei Darussalam (The importation of plants and seeds are subject to permit issued in advance by the Department of Agriculture.)
  • Denmark
  • Egypt (Plants require import permits in advance.)
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany (Plants and plant products require import permits.)
  • Gibraltar (Ireland)
  • Great Britain and Northern Ireland (Plants and parts of plants require import permit issued by the appropriate Agricultural Department in UK.)
  • Greece
  • Guatemala (Gardenia plants and seeds.)
  • Ireland
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Liechtenstein
  • Luxembourg (Mozambique)
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • Panama
  • Portugal
  • Russia
  • San Marino
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Uruguay (Plants or parts of plants must be accompanied by a health certificate.)

This list does not include countries that specifically prohibit root plants, seeds, etc. Refer to individual countries for further information.

List 3 - Medicines

  • Albania (Medicines for personal use are allowed if the addressee has a medical certificate.)
  • Algeria (Medicines; medical, surgical, and dental instruments and prostheses require prior approval from Algeria's Public Health Dept.)
  • Angola (Patent medicines are admitted only under permit issued by the Angola Department of Health. Patent medicine definition: made and marketed under a patent and available without prescription.)
  • Austria (Medicines intended for personal use are permitted only under an import license.)
  • Australia (Permission of the Australian Health Director is required to import medicines.)
  • Azerbaiian (Medicine and vitamins require authorization from the Ministry of Health of Republic of Azerbaiian.)
  • Bangledash (Quinine (a common medication for leg cramps) colored pink.)
  • Belarus (Medication and vitamins require authorization of the Public Health of Belarus.)
  • Brazil (Medicines whose formulas are not official or licensed by the Brazilian Department of Public Health.)
  • Brunei Darussalam (A license must be obtained from the Director of Medical Services for the importation of medicines.)
  • Burundi (Medicines require special permits to import.)
  • Canada (Medicines must comply with Canadian law.)
  • Cape Verde (Medicines need authorization from the Ministry of Health.)
  • Central African Republic (including Chad) (Medical or pharmaceutical products, may only be addressed to licensed pharmacists.)
  • Congo (Democratic Republic) (Medicines require the authorization of the medical authorities of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.)
  • Czech Republic (Medicines are admitted provided the addressee is in possession of an import permit granted by the Czech Republic health authorities.)
  • Denmark (Medicines may be imported only by pharmacists, laboratories recognized by the State, or authorized dealers.)
  • Ecuador (Pharmaceutical products and compound medicines whose formula is not known.)
  • Egypt (including Ghana) (Medicines require import permits issued in advance by the appropriate authorities.)
  • Eritrea (Medicines require authorization of the Ministry of Public Health.)
  • Estonia (Medicines and other products used in medical treatment are subject to prior authorization by the Estonian Ministry of Social Maintenance Health Department or by the Estonian State Department of Veterinary.)
  • Ethiopia (Medicines require authorization of the Ministry of Public Health.)
  • Finland (Medicines may only be addressed to authorized officials for use or distribution in accordance with Finnish regulations. Such substances prepared in doses for use by patients must be clearly and correctly labeled showing the nature and quantity of the ingredients.)
  • France (Medicines and medicinal products require an import license issued by the Central Pharmaceutical Service of the Ministry of Health.)
  • Gabon (Medical or pharmaceutical products may only be addressed to licensed pharmacists.)
  • Greece (Medicines must be packaged in the manufacturer’s container bearing his or her distinctive marks. Since admissible medicines must be licensed or specially authorized by the Greek authorities for importation, mailers should ascertain in advance whether the addressees will be able to take delivery.)
  • Iran (The importation of medicines is subject to permission from the Ministry of Health of the Islamic Republic of Iran.)
  • Ireland (Certain pharmaceutical products are subject to special regulations.)
  • Jamaica (Medications must have the name and formula printed in English on the container and wrapper.)
  • Kuwait (Medicines and pills must be accompanied by a medical prescription or documents indicating their specifications or composition and import licenses are required by addressee.)
  • Lebanon (Medicines, surgical and dental instruments are admitted only under permit from the Ministry of Public Health in Lebanon.)
  • Liberia (Pharmaceutical products are admitted only under prior permit from the National Public Health Dept. in Monrovia.)
  • Madagascar (Compound medicines not appearing in an official pharmacopoeia.)
  • Malawi (Patent medicines must be plainly marked with the composition and dosage.)
  • Mauritius (Medicines may only be addressed to physicians, dentists, pharmacists, or veterinarians.)
  • Mexico (Medicinal products are admitted only by prior approval of the Department of Public Health in Mexico.)
  • Moldova (Medicines and other products used in medical treatment are subject to prior authorization granted by the Ministry of Health.)
  • Nicaragua (Pharmaceutical specialties not registered in Nicaragua: pharmaceutical preparations or secret remedies of unknown composition whose formulas have not been made public.)
  • Nigeria (Medicines require a license.)
  • Norway ( Pharmaceutical products of any kind, whether of synthetic extraction or classified as naturopathic preparations. Medicine and products used for medical treatment require authorization by the Ministry of Health.)
  • Oman (Medicines of all kinds must be authorized by the Ministry of Health.)
  • Paraguay (Medicines require a permit from the Ministry of Public Health.)
  • Romania (Pharmaceutical products are admitted only with the agreement of the Ministry of Health. Vitamins require a permit issued by the Ministry of Health or Ministry of Agriculture.)
  • Russia (Medicines with added vitamins are admitted with the authorization of the Ministry of Public Health of the Russian Federation.)
  • Rwanda (Medicines are admitted provided the addressee has a permit issued by the Chief Pharmacist in Rwanda.)
  • San Marino
  • Saudi Arabia (Medicines and pharmaceuticals are not admissible unless accompanied by prior authorization from the General Food and Medicine Authority of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. First-Class Mail International, First-Class Package International Service, postal parcels, registered items, and Express Mail International shipments are all subject to that documentation requirement.)
  • Senegal (Medicines are subject to special regulations.)
  • Serbia, Republic of (Importation of medicine into Serbia is possible only through a legal entity that has permission to import medicine and medical equipment from the National Law of Medicines and Medical Equipment of the Republic of Serbia. Individuals may receive samples of medicine in compliance with that law.)
  • Slovak Republic (Medicines are admitted provided the addressee is in possession of an import permit granted by the Slovak Republic health authorities.)
  • Sweden (Medicines are admitted only by authorized importers.)
  • Syria (Medicine must be approved by the Ministry of Health prior to admission, and quantities are limited to 10 packs per shipment.)
  • Togo Zimbabwe (Medical thermometers must bear the stamp of the Laboratory of Arts and Crafts.)
  • Tunisia (Aspirin, sulfa drugs, and vitamin compounds.)
  • Turkey (Clinical thermometers must be accompanied by an official certificate of inspection.)
  • Turkmenistan (Medicines and vitamins are admitted as authorized by the Bureau for Registration of Medicines and Pharmaceuticals.)
  • Ukraine
  • United Arab Emirates (Medicines require prior authorization.)
  • Venezuela (Pharmaceutical specialties/products must be authorized by the Minister of Health, Agriculture and Boviculture of Venezuela.)
  • Zambia (Medicines must be clearly marked as to their nature or composition in English on the label.)
  • Zimbabwe (Medicines must be labeled with the name, formula, and composition in English.)

List 4 - Honey and related products.

  • Botswana (Honey and items containing honey such as jelly or preserves.)
  • Canada (Used or secondhand hives or bee supplies.)
  • Cyprus (Honey requires permission of the Ministry of Agriculture.)
  • France (Honey and beeswax must be accompanied by a Certificate of Origin issued by a qualified official of the Government. Shipments less than 4 pounds are not subject to this requirement.)
  • Israel (including Lithuania) (Used beehives.)
  • Jamaica (Honey, beeswax and materials used by beekeepers.)
  • Namibia - Portugal
  • Russia (Honey, pollen, wax, and honeycombs.)
  • South Africa
  • Swaziland (Honey and preserves sweetened with honey.)
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Turkmenistan (Honey, pollen, wax, and honeycomb.)
  • Ukraine (Natural honey must be packed by the manufacturer; conform to sanitary standards of Ukraine; be accompanied by a certificate of conformity which has been issued by the Ukrainian State Committee for Standardization and Measures or by a comparable regulatory authority in the country of origin. Weight restrictions apply.)
  • Zimbabwe

Conclusion

This article is intended to be helpful. I hope it comes in handy if you ever need a quick reference source about international shipping.

This article is not intended to be a conclusive authority on international shipping. Always check with your shipping company of choice for current regulations before shipping.

If you choose to ship items without regard to the prohibitions and regulations set forth herein, your items might be destroyed before importing to another country. These rules and laws are in place for various reasons. If you were to ship an item that was destroyed, you would be out the money and the item.

Before shipping internationally, review all of the relevant sources I listed in the beginning of the article to see if that is something that makes sense for your internet business.

Comments

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    • GiftsByDiana profile image

      Diana Burrell-Shipton 3 years ago from Hubbard, Ohio, USA

      Thank you ! I've bookmarked this to help me in case I ever ship overseas :)

    • profile image

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    • CraftytotheCore profile image
      Author

      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      Hi MinSyd. Sorry it's taken me so long to answer your question. I was in line at the post office yesterday and a customer was trying to ship something to another country. Two of her packages were rejected. The regulations have become much more difficult. Another customer trying to send batteries was told he could not mail them. I apologize, but I don't know how to get around the regulations. Good luck to you.

    • profile image

      MinSyd 3 years ago

      I would like to know, how is it possible then to send a small gift to Namibia (jewellery)? A simple small birthday gift that I can't get there?

      Any suggestions?

    • CraftytotheCore profile image
      Author

      CraftytotheCore 4 years ago

      Thank you! I try to be thorough when I research things. It's fun to learn new things.

    • Seshagopalan profile image

      Seshagopalan Murali 4 years ago from Chennai, Tamil Nadu

      I had already bookmarked the page.. Hats off for your effort.. You have given attention to even tiny things.. Awesome.Voted up !

    • CraftytotheCore profile image
      Author

      CraftytotheCore 4 years ago

      Thank you! Recently while standing in line at the post office in my town, a few customers were shipping boxed cell phones overseas. The postal clerk informed them that batteries can't be shipped to certain areas. I didn't know that either until I started researching this information and was quite surprised at some of the things that are banned.

    • BahamasFinder profile image

      Eric Smith 4 years ago from Nassau, New Providence, The Bahamas

      Great article! You put so much information into this, and it is simply wonderful! Thanks for going that extra mile and putting in all the little extra information that really makes this unique and very helpful. I too will save this for future use. I had no idea that honey was not supposed to be transported. Thank you again for this great hub!

    • CraftytotheCore profile image
      Author

      CraftytotheCore 4 years ago

      Thank you Mel! It took me quite a while to write it because I not only went to the obvious places, but I also went to customs and places I had never even heard of before. It was a learning experience for me just writing this.

    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 4 years ago from San Diego California

      You did an incredible amount of work compiling this information. I think I will save the hub to my computer in the event that I need this for shipping. Thank you!