You can't ship magnets through USPS

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Original Post

jessprkle says

did you know this?!

it's news to me. i went to ship a custom order of magnets today. it was international. i filled out the customs form like i always do. The conversation goes like this:

USPS worker: "You can't ship this"
Me: "Why?"
USPS worker: "You can't ship magnets"
Me: "I have dozens of times before"
USPS worker: "Then you haven't been saying what you're shipping"
Me: "Yes, I have. I always fill out the customs form"
USPS worker: "We don't even ship magnets through first class mail."
Me: "I haven't had a problem before"
USPS worker: "Sorry, but I can't accept this package"

So, i go to the UPS store. they will ship magnets overseas... for 40 of my glass magnets it would have cost $60.00

i am SO pissed off right now. not only because i have to let down this customer, but because incompetent postal workers in the past obviously Ne-Ver read my customs forms before.


AND i have to go through and edit all of my listings of magnets to take away the international option.

Posted at 6:54 pm Sep 21, 2007 EDT


jessprkle says


i must be the only person who didn't know this.

Posted at 6:59 pm Sep 21, 2007 EDT

tiddlyinks says

news to me!
Is because they are magnets or because they are glass?

Posted at 6:59 pm Sep 21, 2007 EDT

I ship magnetic sheets all the time First Class with no problem.

Posted at 7:00 pm Sep 21, 2007 EDT

I think they may mess up their electronic sorters or machinery or something like that???

Posted at 7:01 pm Sep 21, 2007 EDT

ouch I have mailed several magnets before and never had a problem. I wonder why they wont do it?

Posted at 7:01 pm Sep 21, 2007 EDT

That's crazy- I mean, I stick a magnet in with everything I sell (it's my business card). No one's come after me saying it's destroyed the post office yet.

Posted at 7:03 pm Sep 21, 2007 EDT

GemsByEm says

no, i know exactly what you mean. it's frustrating as all hell when one person at the PO ruins your experience and to top it off, they can be nasty about it.

Posted at 7:04 pm Sep 21, 2007 EDT

jessprkle says

no, because they are magnets, not because they are glass. i didn't even have the word 'glass' written on the customs form.

they told me magnets can not go on planes. they can only be shipped through parcel post, and because they only do airmail overseas.... well....

but that seems odd, b/c UPS will ship magnets overseas and they only do airmail as well.

whatever. i'm so upset about this.

Posted at 7:04 pm Sep 21, 2007 EDT

from the USPS website - looks complicated:

Mailing Magnets
Mailing refrigerator-type (flexible) magnets is often a source of concern because their design can disrupt on interfere with the efficiency of mail processing equipment.

Over the last 4 years the Postal Service Engineering has conducted extensive testing that has identified guidelines for mailing refrigerator-type magnets. These efforts along with the technical advancement in our processing equipment, now allow some greater flexibility in accepting certain magnets.

The following guidelines should be used when preparing magnetic mailpieces containing magnets:

Refrigerator-style magnets may be mailed at First-Class Mail and Standard Mail machinable or nonmachinable letter or nonletter rates, pending the applicable standards.
The maximum size of the magnet cannot exceed 4 1/4 inches in height and 6 inches in length.
The magnetic side must face the reverse (nonaddress) side of the mailpiece, whether prepared as card-style or enclosed in an envelope.
The magnet must be right-justified (leading edge) on the mailpiece. If the magnet is enclosed in an envelope it must be secured, right-justified inside the envelope.
Magnets prepared as card-style mailpieces must pay the appropriate letter-size rates. These card-style mailpieces are often enclosed in some type of plastic material that can make the mailpiece subject to the nonmachinable surcharge.

Posted at 7:05 pm Sep 21, 2007 EDT

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