How to Ship Batteries with USPS

Learn how to ship batteries with USPS safely and compliantly.
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Last update:

July 20, 2023

Learn how to ship batteries with USPS safely and compliantly.If you would like to ship electronics, such as shipping phones, laptops, and power banks. These electronics belong to the category of battery shipping.  Lithium battery shipping with USPS may seem challenging, but with the right information, it can be a smooth process. This guide offers essential information for shipping batteries, packaging, prohibited items, labeling, and international considerations.

By following these guidelines, you can safely ship batteries while complying with USPS regulations. Let's simplify the process and make shipping batteries with USPS hassle-free.

Shipping Batteries

Can You Ship Lithium Batteries USPS

The short answer is yes but with strict conditions. USPS battery shipping allows you to ship it under certain conditions, but there are still some types of batteries that cannot be shipped.  The following introduces nonmailable and mailable situations:   


USPS has strict rules for shipping batteries, and one of the most critical factors is Watt hours (Wh). If you do not know how to calculate Watt-hours, here is the formula: Amps X Volts =Watt Hours.

  • Lithium batteries that power up scooters, hoover boards, electric skateboards, and e-bikes exceeding 100 Wh (Watt hours) cannot be shipped. 
  • Devices such as cellphones, watches, and vape with a single cell over 20Wh per cell cannot be mailed. 
  • Multiple cell batteries inside the housing or casing exceeding 100Wh for each battery are nonmailable. 
  • Damaged/recalled individual batteries are prohibited and need approval.


  • Domestic shipping via air: Maximum 8 cells or 2 batteries with or installed in the new or Manufacturer Certified Refurbished (MCR) equipment in the same package. (Max weight 11lbs.) 
  • Individual batteries can be shipped via Surface or Ground Transportation only (Max weight 5lbs). 

Shipping Batteries

Packaging Instructions for Shipping Batteries 

USPS has official instructions and guidelines for shipping batteries. ShipSaving helps you to highlight the following information: 

  • All packages containing lithium metal or lithium-ion batteries that can be mailed must be of sufficient size, sealed, and rigid. This ensures that the lithium battery mark can be affixed to the address without folding. Here is an example of a rigid container:
Example of a Rigid Container

Note: Small button cell-type batteries are not permitted to be placed in padded envelopes or poly bag-type outer packaging, while other types of batteries are allowed to be placed in such packaging.

  • The packaging should possess sufficient strength to prevent both package crushing and content exposure while being handled normally during the mailing process. 
  • If the equipment operates with no more than 4 cells or 2 batteries, the presence of a DOT label is not mandatory

Understanding DOT Labels 

When shipping certain hazardous materials, such as batteries, it is essential to adhere to safety regulations. One important aspect of these regulations is the use of DOT labels.

DOT stands for the Department of Transportation, and DOT labels are specific labels designed to communicate the presence of hazardous materials during transportation. Sometimes, people may call DOT labels “Lithium battery shipping labels.” Let’s understand different types of DOT labels in various situations. 

You first need to understand the difference between lithium metal and lithium-lon for lithium batteries. Lithium metal means the battery is non-rechargeable, and lithium-lon stands for rechargeable batteries. 

Here are the different types of DOT labels: 
DOT label

New marking use for Lithium lon battery packed with or in device (Permitted via Air) 

DOT label

New marking use for Lithium Metal Battery packed with or in device (Permitted via Air)

DOT label

New marking use for Lithium lon Individual Battery. NO device in box (via Surface Only) 

DOT label

New marking use for Lithium Metal Individual Battery. NO device in box (via Surface Only) 

Besides the above DOT labels, text markings are required for shipping individual batteries without the equipment. For example, the below box used text-markings besides DOT and shipping labels. 

How to Ship Lithium Batteries Internationally with USPS? 

For shipping lithium batteries with USPS overseas, you can ship a maximum of 4 cells or 2 batteries that are installed in the new or certified refurbished equipment or device it operates, without any lithium battery markings. However, individual batteries are prohibited from USPS international shipping. 

At the same time, a customs form is required for international shipping, and please check whether or not the destination country allows Lithium Batteries in the mail by using this link

Please use the following checklist to ensure your international batteries shipping: 

  • Maximum of 4 cells or 2 batteries
  • Installed in the new or certified refurbished equipment or device it operates
  • No DOT Lithium Battery Markings 
  • Check whether the final destination allows Lithium Batteries in the mail or not
  • A proper customs form. 
  • Batteries in a rigid container. 


In conclusion, shipping batteries with USPS requires careful adherence to their guidelines and regulations. It is crucial to determine the type and classification of the battery being shipped, package it appropriately, and label it correctly. Following these steps will ensure a smooth and compliant shipping process, avoiding any potential safety hazards or delays.

If you have further questions and would like to learn more, please read USPS Publication 52 Revision: New Mailing Standards for Lithium Batteries and USPS Packaging Instruction 9D. Lastly, do not forget to create a free ShipSaving account to help you minimize shipping costs.

Written on:

July 18, 2023
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