Pack Your Parcel

Packaging guidelines

To help ensure your parcel gets to its destination safely it's important you follow these simple guidelines to:

  • Protect your item against damage while it is being transported and delivered.
  • Protect other customers' items. You could be liable for damage to other items if it is caused by inadequate packaging of your parcel.
  • Protect CourierPost employees and equipment against injury or damage.

This guide will help you safely pack and send your parcels:

Your responsibility

As the sender, you are the only person who knows exactly what is inside your parcel. Therefore, it is your responsibility to ensure your item is packaged correctly and does not contain prohibited or hazardous goods.

By accepting a parcel CourierPost does not acknowledge the packaging is adequate or the contents are acceptable. That is up to you. To check if your item is prohibited or hazardous, see our Prohibited Items Guide.

 

Internal packaging

Internal cushioning and strong external packaging protect your article against knocks and shocks. Cushioning material should be packed around all sides. Suggested packaging materials are:

  • Handi Bubble Wrap
  • Polychips
  • Corrugated cardboard
  • Shredded or rolled paper
  • Polyethylene foam sheeting

Wrap the item enough times so that you can no longer feel the shape of the object. Items packed together in one container should be individually wrapped and separated from each other with more cushioning material.

If you are sending heavy items make sure they can't move within the parcel during delivery, as this could damage the outer packaging.

 

How to package special items

Bicycles

Remove pedals, handlebars and front wheel and pack with the remaining parts in a carton like those used by bicycle manufacturers. These cartons are generally available at bicycle shops.

Note: Cartons must still meet the normal maximum dimension criteria of the service being used.

Car parts, heavy hardware

Ensure all grease, oil, batteries, hydraulic fluid, brake fluid, antifreeze and fuel are removed and that the item is not prohibited or hazardous (refer to our Prohibited Items Guide). Protect all surfaces from possible scratches by wrapping in paper or polyethylene. Protruding parts should be wrapped well to prevent them from puncturing the carton. Pack in a double wall cardboard carton sealed with heavy-duty packing tape and binding or in a wooden crate. Use sufficient inner packaging to prevent movement.

China, crockery and glassware

Wrap individual objects with sufficient cushioning material so you cannot feel the shape of the object through the wrapping. Items packed together in one container should be individually wrapped and separated with cushioning material. Pack in a strong, rigid outer carton of cardboard, wood or metal. To help prevent movement of the items during delivery, ensure all gaps are filled.

Electrical equipment and radios (including toys, computers and games)

Pack in a strong, rigid cardboard carton. Keep parts well away from the side of the container by protecting them with adequate internal packaging. All computer parts must be packages in non-static internal packaging. All batteries must be removed from the item before sending to prevent it from activating during delivery.

Note: Some batteries are dangerous and cannot be couriered even when removed from the item. See our Prohibited Items Guide.

Fishing rods, umbrellas

Pack between two strong strips of wood or double wall cardboard slightly larger in length and width than the object. Wrap securely. HandiTubes or other strong cardboard tubes could also be used.

Note: Ensure the parcel does not exceed the maximum length dimension for the service being used.

Liquids

Ensure the item is not prohibited or hazardous (refer to our Prohibited Items Guide). Wrap bottles individually, surround with resilient cushioning material and place in a well sealed polyethylene bag. Pack in a strong cardboard carton with sufficient absorbent material such as newspaper or wood-shavings to soak up any possible spillage.

Millinery

Pack in a strong cardboard carton. Surround the articles with internal cushioning to prevent movement.

Musical instruments

Cases supplied with many musical instruments are not designed for protection during delivery. The existing case should be packed in double wall cardboard carton or a wooden case. Inner packaging must be used to stop movement of the instrument in its case and of the case within the outer carton.

The bridges of stringed instruments should be removed and packed separately.

Pictures in frames

Completely cover glass with adhesive tape that can be easily removed. This will help to prevent the picture from being scratched, should the glass break.

Wrap the frame at least twice in bubble wrap or polyethylene foam sheeting, taking care to use sufficient padding to protect the edges. Protective cardboard corners should be placed over the bubble wrap or foam. Place the picture between two sheets of solid cardboard or heavy weight corrugated cardboard and wrap in strong paper, or alternatively, pack in a strong cardboard carton with sufficient inner packaging to prevent movement.

Powders

Ensure the item is not prohibited or hazardous (refer to our Prohibited Items Guide). Enclose dry powders in an airtight plastic container or tin and seal in a polyethylene bag. Pack in a strong cardboard carton with sufficient inner packaging to prevent movement.

Sharp instruments

Place a protective covering or guard over the edges or points to prevent them causing damage to other articles, or injuring anyone handling the parcel. Pack in a strong cardboard carton with sufficient inner packaging to prevent movement.

 

External packaging

Cardboard cartons are generally strong enough to ship material of average weight and size. Obviously the strength of the carton required will depend on what you are sending. Wooden crates may be necessary for particularly heavy items.

 

Recommended carton grades

It is important that you choose a carton that's strong enough for your item. The strength of a cardboard carton is usually printed on it.

Weight of contents Grade of Carton
Average Load High Density Load*
Up to 5kg 111B 212C
5kg-10kg 212B or 212C 313B
10kg-15kg 313B 313C
15kg-20kg 313C or 623B 2112CB (double wall)

* Items exceeding 250kg per cubic metre (250kg/m3) e.g. hardware or auto parts.

Most cardboard cartons are single wall and are available in varying strengths. Heavy, large, or especially valuable items should be packed into heavy duty double wall board for extra protection.

Making a single wall carton double strength

  1. Take two cartons of similar size. Cut off flaps. Pack contents in smaller carton.
  2. Invert larger carton and slide over the smaller carton.
  3. Seal parcel

Reducing the size of a carton

  1. Mark desired height of carton (line A).
  2. Determine size of top flaps and mark a second line (B).
  3. Split all corners of box to line A.
  4. Cut along line B.
  5. Fold along line A.

Sealing parcels

Seal your parcel with strong, self-adhesive tape. Choose a tape that's at least 38mm wide. It's best to use parcel tape rather than a standard household or stationery adhesive tape. Apply the tape along the lengths of the flaps and along the ends to seal the openings of the carton. Never use metal staples.

For large and/or heavy parcels we recommend you use plastic strapping or binding as well as tape. The strapping should be applied twice from end to end and twice from side to side. The binding should be tight enough to remain in position throughout delivery of the parcel, but should not cut into the edges of the carton. Strap your parcels individually, not together.