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  1. #1

    Exclamation Shipping Perfume

    I am having increasing difficulty shipping perfume for swap from the DC area. Today, it took me 3 post offices and 2 UPS shipping locations before finally finding a place that would accept my package.

    I am also noticing that they have started specifically asking if there is liquid in the package and what that liquid is.

    I have dug through the US Postal Service regulations and can only determine that the reason I am starting to get a blanket "no" from the post offices in the area is that they are

    a) being audited
    b) being paranoid
    c) don't want to think or help
    d) all of the above.

    Anyone else running into the same problem? Other recommendations?

    Thanks for your help and input.

    BTW - USPS Postal Service regulations are found here. http://pe.usps.com/text/pub52/welcome.htm

    I managed to piece together a summary, but have not been able to test whether the recommendations from the USPS regulations actually work without a lot of hassle.
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  2. #2

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    and what was the shipping service you used after all? USPS? Fedex could be an option too.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    I think it all has to do with the alcohol content in perfume. In Canada, Canada Post will not deliver anything with alcohol in it (perfume included). They are considered as Hazardous Material (HazMat). I suspect the U.S. is also going in the same direction and hence, the delay and the many questions in the postal offices.

    FedEx recently imposed a "HazMat" charge (~$40.00), and they will deliver the package for you. Maybe USPS wanted to grab a piece of that pie.

    A suggestion, you can always tell them it is make up/cosmetics.......
    Last edited by Omega Man; 18th April 2008 at 06:10 PM.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    I don't understand. I don't tell them what I am shipping.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    I've recently started running into the same problem at my local post office.
    I'm always asked if I'm sending liquids... and if it contains alcohol. Then they tell me that my package won't be allowed on a plane for faster delivery, and that the only other method would be to send it USPS ground.
    Depending on what clerk I happen to get, they may make an exception as long as the package "isn't alcohol based in an aerosol container."

  6. #6

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    I was once refused at USPS because they were "not allowed to ship perfumes or colognes" and the lady proceeded to give me some explanation like "they have pressure points so they are more likely to explode." Utter B.S. if you ask me. I then went to the other post office in my town and didn't tell them what it was I was shipping.

    Anyone else get a flat out refusal like me to ship bottled fragrances?

  7. #7
    Mattybumpkin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    How come online vendors can as well as Nordstroms and of the like? I've often wondered if you can ship fragrances since they always ask "is it liquid, perishable, fragile...".
    "I have the simplest tastes. I am always satisfied with the best." - Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)

  8. #8

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    I wound up using UPS (the main depot) because they didn't ask.

    I also wonder why it's ok for Sephora, Nordstroms et al to ship scents and not individuals. I'm not seeing any difference in how they package and how I package.

    The only other way I can figure our how to do this is to take my kitchen scale, do my own weighing, put my own stamps on it, put it in the mail and hope for the best.

    Any other recommendations? All are welcome. Thanks.
    Sakecat's Scent Project
    "Wardrobe" and Reviews of everything I've tried to date. Please come visit and let me know what you think.

  9. #9

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    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    Perfume is perfectly okay to ship. The only reason they ask is because it cannot go on an airplane. It will be sent by ground so it will take longer to arrive.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    Quote Originally Posted by akshay03 View Post
    I was once refused at USPS because they were "not allowed to ship perfumes or colognes" and the lady proceeded to give me some explanation like "they have pressure points so they are more likely to explode." Utter B.S. if you ask me. I then went to the other post office in my town and didn't tell them what it was I was shipping.

    Anyone else get a flat out refusal like me to ship bottled fragrances?
    This happened to me once. I was filling out the shipping labels, and didn't have the box taped up. The lady came over and asked if I needed help and saw the scents, and wouldn't let me ship them. I just went to another post office with the box already taped up, and when they asked me "is it liquid, perishable, fragile...", I just said no. I haven't had a problem since. Just make sure you do a good job of protecting the contents in the box, and you should be fine....

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    Quote Originally Posted by Mattybumpkin View Post
    How come online vendors can as well as Nordstroms and of the like? I've often wondered if you can ship fragrances since they always ask "is it liquid, perishable, fragile...".

    I would bet retailers like Nordstroms have in-store pickup of packages to be shipped by USPS and with the number of packages they ship daily they are just taken as a group by the USPS employee without question. It would be terribly time consuming for both USPS and the store to ask/answer questions about each one. I would bet also that the questions asked of the general public about liquid/fragile/perishable are never asked larger shippers using in-store pickup locations
    Our job is to live joyfully in this world of sorrows--Joseph Campbell

  12. #12

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    I believe you need a special licence to ship fragrance, the stores will have completed these.

    Even here in the UK they now ask if it is fragrance and tut at you.

    Just say used cosmetics and if asked if it is liquid say yes, but either foundation or body lotion,

    The truth is we all know we actually drink the stuff that is why they don't want us shipping alcohol LOL.
    DONNA

  13. #13

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    For shipping within the U.S., my local post office always asks me if I'm shipping anything that's "liquid, fragile, or perishable." I usually say it's liquid & fragile, and if they ask for more detail, I say it's perfume. They just stamp FRAGILE on it and send it on it's way.

    The one time I specified that I was shipping perfume overseas, the postmaster stressed that the liquid had to be in a quantity of 3oz. or less, "because it can be a fire hazard on the planes." Maybe he was taking his cue from the TSA, because I couldn't find a "3 oz." rule in the postal regulations
    .
    Sniff and let sniff.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    I blame George Bush and the now overly-concerned-with-terrorism US. We have to put up with the same shit now in Aus too, not being able to ship perfumes via air mail. People still do it, but if its caught it gets confiscated,
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  15. #15

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    Perfume MUST go by air! I order from FM in Paris and places in the US all the time (I live in Perth, ground shipping is via Camel here, over the 'ghan, I think!!) and the stuff gets here just as fast as if I order from Sydney on the other side of the country! I can believe that some places have licenses to ship by air or something, but.... I order from Perfume Court and it gets here in two or three weeks, so they have to be flying it in to Perth. I dunno. When I ship to the US, I always say - gift; cosmetics.
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  16. #16

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    I just sent samples and a full bottle not too long ago, told the lady at the post office what it was and had no problem. I had already written "fragile" on the packages. Not a prob.
    The splendor of the rose and the whiteness of the lily do not rob the little violet of its scent nor the daisy of its simple charm. If every tiny flower wanted to be a rose, spring would lose its loveliness.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    When they ask if it is "fragile perishable liquid", you must LIE. Say it is an electric shaver or a moisturizer.

    Just lie and you will be fine. They expect you to lie.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    Everytime I ask someone from Australia Post about shipping perfume, I always get a different answer. The answers are usually:

    1. Yes you can if the alcohol concentration is only very small.
    2. Yes you can, only if you properly package it in accordance to the Dangerous Goods guideline.
    3. Or they simply give me a blunt, "No, we can only deliver perfume by road only."

    It's confusing and frustrating!!

  19. #19

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    I ran into the same problem last year when I sent off my Mom's mother's day gift. I went to one office and they asked if I had any liquids in the box and I said yeah perfume. He told me I had to take it out and rewrap the box. Well, I sent the one box on and just took the other box to another post office. When they asked me if I had any liquid in the box, I just nope. They took the box and it arrived with no problems. I'm doing the samething this year, cause I have to get my Moms a big bottle of her signature frag Coco Mademoiselle.
    Diva is fartin in your perfume mist before you walk through it!! Walk slow and let it marinate......

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  20. #20

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    Once again.....

    Perfume can be shipped by air freight if it is properly packaged, booked, and DOCUMENTED. A friend in my same business (export logistics) just recently shipperd a few pallets of assorted goodies from The Thymes (including alcohol based fragrances) from ORD to JNB.

    Sephora, Nordstrom, et al have commercial accounts with their nominated carrier. Find be a Sephora box of anything remotely classifiable as "Dangerous goods" that does not have an official "ORM-D" sticker on it and I will eat my words.

    If you don't have IATA certification to handle/ship dangerous goods, you cannot tender them to a carrier.

    Nordstrom shipping warehouse has trained people in their shipping department, as does Sephora - or they outsource the whole thinjg to a 3PL who does. .

    This last costs a fair sum of money and they can only do it because of the volume of shipments of DG they make.

    Fedex is charging that $40 as their 3PL fee - consider that a bargain, please. I charge $50 as a <i>minimum</i> surcharge for a hazardous shipment & am neck deep in shipping requests right now.

    People on BN/POL/MUA get up in arms about international shippijng and domestic special handling charges - I doubt that you'd be willing to pay for a 3PL to handle you shipment or to sit thru three days of classes @ $900 for the session.and purchase all required DG Compliant packaging ( a wad of bubble wrap don't cut it).
    We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give - W. Churchill

  21. #21

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    Quote Originally Posted by jaelynn View Post
    Once again.....

    Perfume can be shipped by air freight if it is properly packaged, booked, and DOCUMENTED. A friend in my same business (export logistics) just recently shipperd a few pallets of assorted goodies from The Thymes (including alcohol based fragrances) from ORD to JNB.

    Sephora, Nordstrom, et al have commercial accounts with their nominated carrier. Find be a Sephora box of anything remotely classifiable as "Dangerous goods" that does not have an official "ORM-D" sticker on it and I will eat my words.

    If you don't have IATA certification to handle/ship dangerous goods, you cannot tender them to a carrier.

    Nordstrom shipping warehouse has trained people in their shipping department, as does Sephora - or they outsource the whole thinjg to a 3PL who does. .

    This last costs a fair sum of money and they can only do it because of the volume of shipments of DG they make.

    Fedex is charging that $40 as their 3PL fee - consider that a bargain, please. I charge $50 as a <i>minimum</i> surcharge for a hazardous shipment & am neck deep in shipping requests right now.

    People on BN/POL/MUA get up in arms about international shippijng and domestic special handling charges - I doubt that you'd be willing to pay for a 3PL to handle you shipment or to sit thru three days of classes @ $900 for the session.and purchase all required DG Compliant packaging ( a wad of bubble wrap don't cut it).
    I bet you feel a whole lot smarter after posting that.
    Its still not exactly fair (cost / policy wise) for your 'average joe' who wants to trade a boxed, sealed, glad-wrapped, bubble wrapped, stuffed-with-tissues, and sealed once more package interstate or overseas.
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  22. #22

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    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    Why not just spray it into a westerly wind?

  23. #23

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    Quote Originally Posted by jaelynn View Post
    Once again.....

    Perfume can be shipped by air freight if it is properly packaged, booked, and DOCUMENTED. A friend in my same business (export logistics) just recently shipperd a few pallets of assorted goodies from The Thymes (including alcohol based fragrances) from ORD to JNB.

    Sephora, Nordstrom, et al have commercial accounts with their nominated carrier. Find be a Sephora box of anything remotely classifiable as "Dangerous goods" that does not have an official "ORM-D" sticker on it and I will eat my words.

    If you don't have IATA certification to handle/ship dangerous goods, you cannot tender them to a carrier.

    Nordstrom shipping warehouse has trained people in their shipping department, as does Sephora - or they outsource the whole thinjg to a 3PL who does. .

    This last costs a fair sum of money and they can only do it because of the volume of shipments of DG they make.

    Fedex is charging that $40 as their 3PL fee - consider that a bargain, please. I charge $50 as a <i>minimum</i> surcharge for a hazardous shipment & am neck deep in shipping requests right now.

    People on BN/POL/MUA get up in arms about international shippijng and domestic special handling charges - I doubt that you'd be willing to pay for a 3PL to handle you shipment or to sit thru three days of classes @ $900 for the session.and purchase all required DG Compliant packaging ( a wad of bubble wrap don't cut it).
    Yadayadayada.
    2 flawed premises here, which I wish to point out:
    1. The rules are stupid in the first place
    2. It's not like packaging is rocket science - often what these "authorized" packagers do are shoddier than what I can come up with.

  24. #24

    Default Re: Shipping Perfume

    Quote Originally Posted by Anthony87 View Post
    I bet you feel a whole lot smarter after posting that.
    Its still not exactly fair (cost / policy wise) for your 'average joe' who wants to trade a boxed, sealed, glad-wrapped, bubble wrapped, stuffed-with-tissues, and sealed once more package interstate or overseas.
    You know? I think I do.

    And who on earth told you life was "fair"?
    --------------------------------------
    Quote Originally Posted by heythatslife View Post
    Yadayadayada.
    2 flawed premises here, which I wish to point out:
    1. The rules are stupid in the first place
    2. It's not like packaging is rocket science - often what these "authorized" packagers do are shoddier than what I can come up with.

    Flawed premises? No

    Flawed sense of entitlement? Yes
    Last edited by jaelynn; 21st April 2008 at 10:05 PM. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
    We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give - W. Churchill

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