How Come I Can’t Send an Item through Shipping Software that My Carrier Allows?

Learn why some shipping software companies restrict you from sending certain items that your carrier typically accepts and how to navigate these situations
can't send some items through shipping software
Written on:

When you use shipping software to buy discounted postage online, you may notice that you sometimes can’t send some items through your shipping software that your carrier typically allows. This is often the case for shipments containing live animals, reptiles, and plants…and it leaves many shippers wondering why they can’t go through shipping software to purchase labels for these kinds of shipments.

Not Being Able to Send Certain Items Comes Down to the Agreements Companies Have with Carriers

The situation of being able to send certain items through shipping software that your carrier typically allows for arises from time to time, and it isn’t a fluke. It also isn’t an error or a “bug” in a company’s software. Shipping software outfits all have individual agreements with the carriers whose postage they sell, and these agreements vary from company to company. Therefore, sending an item that your shipping software restricts may end up being a violation of the individual agreement they have with the carrier you’re attempting to ship with.

You’ll most often run into this situation when trying to send live animals, plants, or shipping items that contain hazardous materials. However, if you’re planning on shipping any kind of questionable item, we suggest browsing through the shipping software’s help center or contacting their customer service to see if your item is restricted or not.

Outside of live plants and animals, some other items that you may not be able to send through shipping software include:

  • Aerosols
  • Alcohol
  • Ammo
  • Hemp or CBD products
  • Prescription drugs

What Happens if I Need to Send an Item that My Shipping Software Restricts?

When you need to send an item that the shipping carrier of your choice allows but your shipping software restricts, your best bet is to go directly to your carrier to purchase your label. If you’re shipping with USPS, we suggest first walking into your Post Office and speaking to your local postmaster about what you’re shipping to make sure that USPS will accept it. The same goes for UPS and FedEx; you can visit your local UPS Store or FedEx Office and speak to the workers there before you’re ready to send your items (you can also give them a call!).

In many cases, your carrier will also provide special packaging you need to ship your item, as in the case of sending day-old chicks or shipping live honeybees. You’ll also need to follow certain guidelines that your carrier imposes, such as purchasing an express service (for instance, USPS requires you to use Priority Mail Express service when sending day-old chicks).

Of course, going straight to your carrier to send your items will be more expensive than purchasing your label on shipping software. However, it’s worth it to make sure you’re doing everything correctly and that you’re in compliance with your carrier’s rules and regulations!

The Items that Each Major U.S. Carrier Restricts

To see the items that each of the three major carriers in the U.S. restrict, navigate to these pages:

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Reddit Share via Email

No Comments

Be the first to comment!

Post a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Related Shipping Guides