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What?! Perfume and mobile phones are dangerous goods?

A Christmas parcel: fragrances for your brother, table crackers for the grandkids or a bottle of schnapps for your mother-in-law. You’ve packed the parcel in no time. But be careful: not everything can be sent by post. Special rules apply to dangerous goods.

Lena Zweifel

Rich Content Section


Dangerous goods are items that are potentially hazardous to humans or the environment. This category also includes seemingly harmless everyday products such as perfumes, mobile phones and sparklers, because even everyday products can be explosive, highly flammable, poisonous or corrosive.

For this reason, special rules apply: some dangerous goods cannot be sent by post at all, and others only under certain conditions. Additionally, rules for shipping within Switzerland differ from the rules for shipping abroad. 

Whatever the case, you as the sender are responsible for legally compliant shipping.

Switzerland and Liechtenstein

Within Switzerland and Liechtenstein, it is not generally forbidden to ship dangerous goods in parcels. 

Permitted dangerous goods

  • Alcoholic drinks of up to 70 percent alcohol by volume
  • Devices containing lithium batteries, such as watches, laptops, mobile phones and e-cigarettes
Dangerous goods in limited quantities
  • Spray cans, up to 1 litre
  • Perfumes and nail varnish remover, up to 5 litres
  • Flammable paints, up to 5 litres
  • Methylated spirits, flammable liquids, up to 1 litre
  • Hair bleach, up to 5 litres
  • Matches, up to 5 kg
  • Gas cartridges, up to 1 litre
  • Small gas canisters for carbon dioxide devices, up to approx. 430 g (please also refer to the supplier’s instructions)


These dangerous goods may be sent as parcels. However, only a certain quantity can be sent per inner packaging. The inner packaging is what contains the dangerous goods, e.g. a spray can. If you wish to send a spray can, it may hold a maximum of one litre. However, it is possible to send two spray cans in the same parcel, each holding one litre. Please bear in mind that, even for dangerous goods, parcels cannot weigh more than 30 kg in total.

Prohibited dangerous goods

  • Explosive substances such as fireworks, table crackers, sparklers, rockets, fountains, etc.
  • Gas canisters for barbecues, oxygen consumption, diving gear, etc.
  • Lithium batteries with more than 100 watt-hours of energy 
  • E-bike batteries
  • Car batteries that are not leak-proof
  • Radioactive substances
  • Dangerous goods of any kind in letters

This list is not exhaustive. You can find more information under Domestic dangerous goods or in the Dangerous goods manual (PDF, 1.8 MB). If you are unsure of anything, you can call us on 0848 888 888 or e-mail us at


For safety reasons, Swiss Post is not allowed to transport postal items containing dangerous goods abroad. This includes everyday products such as deodorant and hairspray, alcoholic drinks or perfumes with over 24 percent alcohol by volume, and shaving cream.

There are isolated exceptions. These are electronic devices containing lithium batteries, including watches, laptops, mobile phones and e-cigarettes. If the battery is installed in the device and is in immaculate condition, these devices may be sent abroad. However, you must bear in mind the following: each parcel may contain a maximum of two batteries or four cells. The power of the lithium ion batteries must not exceed 20 Wh per cell or 100 Wh per battery. Lithium metal batteries must not contain more than 1 g lithium per cell and 2 g lithium per battery. If lithium batteries are not installed in devices or are damaged, they cannot be sent abroad by post. Specific information about your batteries can be found on their packaging or from your retailer.

You can find more details at International dangerous goods. If you are unsure about anything, you can call +41 848 48 48 47 or write to

Which items do not fall under dangerous goods?

There are many goods you can send by post without a problem. Below, you will find a list of items you may be unsure about but which can be shipped domestically and internationally.

Please note: if you are sending items abroad, you must follow the relevant import regulations for the destination country.

  • Clothes
  • Spices
  • Face creams
  • Alcoholic drinks of less than 24 percent alcohol by volume

written by

Lena Zweifel