The following tips are recommended for most parcels but check our postal guide for information on how to package specialized items that require additional precautions.
- Choose a rigid, good quality, corrugated cardboard box. If you’re reusing a box, be sure to remove old shipping labels or cover up old addresses.
- Wrap the item in tissue paper or newspaper (if fragile). For items mailed in a frame, like pictures, protect the front and back with strong cardboard larger than the frame. Place soft material between the frame and the cardboard to reduce pressure on the glass.
- Pack and seal the item in a container or box small enough to fit inside your shipping box.
- Label the inner container with the address and return address and then put it inside the shipping box.
- Surround the inner container with cushioning material (like an old t-shirt or bubble wrap) on the top, bottom and all sides to limit movement and protect the item.
- Close the shipping box with reinforced tape.
- Wrap the shipping box in kraft paper.
- Tape all seams with reinforced tape.
- Write the address and return address on the top — the largest side of the box.
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If you’re using a shipping label, make sure it is visible and affixed flat and wrinkle-free to the largest side of the box. The label must not wrap around the edges of the box or be applied over a seam or box closure. Do not cover the label with strapping or tape.
When you’re done, mail your parcel at any post office. If you used prepaid shipping supplies, drop it in any street letter box.