Forget About Air Shipping Lithium Batteries Via Australia Post

Remember back in 2006 when lithium batteries were exploding left, right and centre? I don't know about you, but my laptop became a notebook overnight when I realised what an exploding battery might do to my manhood. Australia Post has had a similar epiphany, albeit three years later, and are now refusing to ship anything with a lithium battery by air.

Craig Simms over at CNet has the report that the Lithium batteries are now classed as dangerous, and Australia Post is restricting how they are sent. Lithium-ion batteries can still be sent by road, so long as they are "rated for 2 grams, 100-Watt-hours or under" (whatever that means). And although most Lithium-ion batteries fit that requirement, there's another hitch in that batteries with more than four cells are considered not safe to send, which rules out a whole heap of laptop batteries.

As CNet points out, this could have a huge knock-on effect on grey importing of electronics as well. Of course, it still seems a bit weird that Australia Post won't let you ship the batteries by mail, even though you can still carry them with you on a passenger flight, but at least nobody loses their testicles this way...



    I came across this problem a couple days ago when I wanted to send my laptop to a friend. It was bizzare, I wasn't allowed to Express Post it, I could Registered Post it for road delivery, and I wasn't allowed to take out insurance on it.

    Came across this yesterday when I went to send a laptop I sold on eBay. Not only could I not send it by Express Post (also ended up sending it Registered Post) but they also wanted me to pack the battery separately from the rest of the computer. Not cool when your delivery time suddenly blows out by 3-4 days thanks to a pointless rule.

    Shameless promotion for myself here.

    Australia Post won't take it, but Pack & Send stores can still send them.

    Basically to send Lithium Metal/Ion batteries, you have to become a registered agent.

    Australia Post have declined to do this, we are registered agents and can send them internationally/nationally on overnight services if you want.

    Things like mobiles are $30 delivered next day, laptops around $50 depending on the size.

    Of course, this is a lot more expensive than the post was, but if you need the service it is there.

      well yeah, but im sure the extra few dollars in the cost will be used to replace the jumbo jets that get blown out of the sky by the batteries. so its understandable.

      i just sent mobile phone from perth to sydney through your store in balcatta w.a. cost me $50 not $30 as you have stated. Something smelly here

      Hi Darren,

      Are you still offering this service? Please drop me a line if you are.



        Be very careful.....Pack and send want anything from $115-175 to send inernational for just over .600 grams. Not the 30-50 as quoted by the guy on this page.

      Is they any ways I can send laptop and battery separetlly but they have to go to gether I'm sending overseas in Kenya

    i know that most of the international mail service in P.R.China refused to post mobile phone batteries. they can do the phone itself though, but without batteries I don't know what is going to be the point.

    Does this affect cheap batteries purchased off ebay from china etc.?

    A bit more info from the Red Giant, thanks Aus Post for responding :)


    Australia Post has reviewed its position in relation to the carriage of lithium batteries following changes to the International Civil Aviation Organisation's (ICAO) Technical Instructions for the Safe Transport of Dangerous Goods..

    All lithium batteries are now considered Dangerous Goods and as such Australia Post is not able to accept lithium batteries and equipment containing lithium batteries for mailing overseas or for domestic air transport. Domestic items can be sent by road transport only using Ordinary, Registered or COD Postal Services. Such items will be carried in the mail within Australia via Australia Post’s parcels service provided that certain conditions are met.
    To make sure that your item is safe to send you must:
    -Check that the amount of lithium in the battery is not more than the permitted amount. This is 2grams / lithium ion battery or 100 Watt-Hour / lithium ion batteries. Most lithium batteries used in consumer electronic devices will not contain more than the allowed amounts.
    -Package the item properly. Batteries must be packaged so that they are protected from damage or short circuit. Ask counter staff for assistance if you’re unsure.
    -Send your package as a parcel and put a Road Transport Only sticker or clearly write Road Transport Only (preferably in red) on the package next to the delivery address.
    Most lithium batteries used in consumer electronic devices contain less than the permitted amount of lithium. For example the following devices and batteries for such devices will be safe to send by land only:
    Mobile phones, ipods, cameras, MP3s players, portable DVD players, most lap-top computers, camcorders, power tools, GPS navigation systems, watches, clocks, calculators, toys, remote car locks, bicycle lights, electronic shavers and other consumer electronic devices.
    If you are unsure however or think that a battery may have a high lithium content contact the manufacturer.

    The new rule doesn't make all that much sense considering that nearly everyone on every flight will be carying at least a mobile phone, possibly a camera, possibly an MP3 player or hand held game or GPS etc. All of these have lithium batteries. So, there will probably be more lithium batteries on the plane from the passengers than from the small amount being sent by online retailers and others via cargo.

    I really wonder if it has anything to do with shutting down smaller operators and grey market dealers.

    Pack and send charge anywhere from $115.00 to $200 for a phone and packaging weighing just more than 600 grams for International freight. So if you need to send to china send DHL.....however the receiver will have to pay duty and clearance upon receipt.

    Hi guys does anyone know about sending a computer (iPad) to
    China from austrlia? Apparently you need some certificate... Or could I send it through austrlia post??? Cheers

    I have failed to understand the logic or the sense of this lithium battery ruling. 1. Technology continues to improve and the cause of the earlier flaming problem has been addressed. 2. Australia Post must process thousands of devices coming in from overseas that contain the very same batteries. 3. Why penalise Australians internally and ignore imports. Millions of these devices are shipped by air around the world ,possibly daily, based on this the occurrence of any problem must either be a minute percentage or now non existent. Surely Australia Post and aviation authorities need to update their knowledge.

    If you read the Australia Post guidelines it places a total shipping by air ban on any equipment carrying a lithium battery. Only within allowable limits for shipping by road. This means no lithium battery product movement by air, therefore no transport between countries. How ridiculous!!!!!
    The main concerns that cause fire are a short circuit or physical damage to the battery. These issues can be simply solved. 1. The device must be switched OFF or battery removed and protected from damage and terminal shorting. 2. Strong and secure packaging.
    Australia Post is unrealistic in offering no solutions to enable overseas shipment. Frankly a poorly constructed over reaction and it does not stack up with the reality that millions of devices travel by air AND many are OPERATED within aircraft (higher risk) admittedly postal goods are in containers and inherently more dangerous if failing, however there are solutions that will allow commercial reality to prevail. Get Real with solutions.

    You get the odd airport nazi stopping it but a few times mine have gone through. No doubt by sheer luck. Other times they have come back saying it's a federal offence to give out incorrect info on those forms. Ship To Anywhere were a great alternative until I called them and was told their courier service DHL are not shipping batteries overseas until further notice. I have to send these laptops today but can't afford the stupid prices of these courier companies. I have to go to different post offices now cuz it's embarrassing..
    The only reason they allow iphone and computers on the plane, is because the cabin is pressurised.

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