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Don't post anything that's not permissible on aircraft

2 December 2021

The SA Post Office appeals to customers not to attempt sending any item abroad that is not permitted in the hold of an aircraft.  The Post Office has recently seen an increase in the number of items returned by ACSA Cargo because the content may pose a danger to the aircraft and passengers on board.

The following items are not permitted in postal parcels:

- Explosives such as firecrackers, gunpowder, ammunition.

- Aerosols and any container under pressure. These can explode in the aeroplane.

- Flammable liquids, including perfume, aftershave, adhesives, nail polish, and alcohol.

- Toxic substances. These include chemicals, pesticides, and anything containing mercury, including thermometers.

- Corrosives, including batteries – also lithium batteries. 

- Magnetised goods.  They can affect the navigation system of the aircraft.

- Cash, jewellery or precious metals. An export and import permit is required for these items.

- Medication.  An export and import permit is required for these items.

- Drugs and other illegal substances.

- Biological items. Animals, plants or animal and plant matter. Naturally no live animals, including reptiles and insects, may be posted.

- No item that is declared illegal by law in the country of dispatch or destination may be posted.

Every item is x-rayed and screened before it is loaded on the aircraft. Should an item contain prohibited goods, it will be returned.

Each country has a unique list of prohibited goods that may not be imported.  For a list of these items, please consult the website of the postal administration in the country of destination.

The SA Post Office would also like to remind customers who send items to the United States of America that only surface mail is currently available to the USA.


For enquiries on any postal service, please contact the SA Post Office on:

SMS enquiries    31133
E-mail                   Customer.Services@postoffice.co.za
Customer Services telephone 0860 111 502
Twitter                  @PostofficeSA
Facebook             @PostofficeSA

Issued by the SA Post Office
Enquiries: Johan Kruger, 082 337-3116