What can and cannot be sent in a courier package?

happy woman is opening her parcel

What can and cannot be shipped in a courier parcel

Can live animals, flammable materials, tropical plants, works of art or musical instruments be sent in a courier parcel? Find out what items should definitely not be included in such a shipment. Find out what can be sent by courier.

Let's start with the weight limit and maximum package size.

  • For GLS, a courier package can weigh up to 31.5 kg (both domestic and international). What happens if the parcel exceeds this limit? It will be classified as overweight, which means an additional fee. Therefore, weigh your parcel before sending.
  • The maximum size of each parcel is: width up to 80 cm, height up to 60 cm, and length up to 200 cm. While the sum of the circumference of the package (2 x height plus 2 x width) and the longest side must not exceed 300 cm. It is always a good idea to check before sending.
  • Oversized (non-standard) parcels cannot be sorted automatically, and such a method is used to separate parcels into different directions as quickly as possible. So if a parcel needs to be sorted manually - due to its size or packaging method - a surcharge is needed for it. Contact a GLS branch, you will find out whether the transport of a non-standard parcel is an option. Each case is considered on a case-by-case basis, as everything depends on the actual size, shape and contents of the shipment.

What can be sent

The rule applies here as on the road and in many other areas of life: what is not prohibited is allowed. You will find a list of goods and items excluded from carriage below. Remember, however, that anything that can be sent in a package must first be properly packed.

Pack as necessary:

  • Packaging should be like clothing: just right. And, besides, also adequately sturdy. Therefore, take into account the type, weight and resistance of the goods you are sending.
  • The outer packaging should be adequately durable - new cardboard boxes are usually the best in this regard. E.g. computers, both desktops and laptops, should only be shipped in proper, original packaging.
  • Remember to fill in the empty spaces inside the package, so that individual items do not move during transport and do not touch each other. Seal the package carefully with a wide and strong tape.
  • Place the address label on the larger side of the package.
  • Parcels prepared non-standardly or inappropriately are usually not accepted for transport.

You can track the status of a package - that is, its entire journey, from sending to receiving - in real time. How to do it.

  • All you need to do is enter your shipment number or Track ID.
  • In this way, you can track both domestic and international shipments.

What not to send

Here is a list of items and goods that should not be sent by courier. They can be divided into several groups.

What the law says

GLS does not accept for carriage:

  • items whose movement is prohibited by law or by international agreements, conventions or accords to which Poland is a party,
  • items excluded from air carriage under applicable laws in the case of combined air-road movement,
  • items transported on the basis of a temporary customs clearance document or on the basis of an ATA carnet (this is an international customs document that allows and facilitates customs clearance of temporarily exported goods).
  • tobacco products and alcoholic beverages, including items for which excise tax markings are required,
  • items transported under a customs seal.

Value matters

  • It is forbidden to send goods with a value exceeding 6,000 PLN in a courier parcel, unless a separate written agreement between the Customer and GLS Poland provides otherwise.
  • It is also forbidden to send particularly valuable goods, such as gift certificates, precious metals and stones, jewelry, works of art or antiques, as well as valuable stamps or coins and other items of collector value.
  • Cash and documents with monetary value, such as gift certificates, checks, debit and credit cards or securities, should also not be included in a courier shipment.

Too fragile

  • This group includes goods that are very fragile and, in general, things that require particularly careful handling, such as transporting in a certain position, including glass, ceramics, televisions or car body parts.
  • The situation is similar with stringed and plucked musical instruments.

Requiring suitable conditions

  • This group can include living plants (regardless of whether they are tropical) and animals.
  • Of course, it also includes raw materials that require controlled storage temperatures (especially refrigeration lines).
  • And perishable products or foodstuffs within the meaning of the Food and Nutrition Safety Act.

Medicinal products

  • The courier package should not contain medicinal products within the meaning of the Pharmaceutical Law, components for the production of medicinal products, drugs and psychotropic and hallucinogenic substances.
  • With the exception of those sent for scientific research purposes by institutions authorized to do so under separate legislation. However, GLS Poland reserves the right to consent to such service.


  • You will not send flammable, explosive and other materials listed in the ADR Convention by courier.
  • This also applies to weapons and ammunition.
  • And all other goods that are considered dangerous or that could damage or destroy other packages.

What else you must not send by courier

These include:

  • Phone cards and pre-paid cards for cell phones.
  • Items that require specialized phytosanitary testing.
  • Tender documents, bids or business contracts, accounting documents, billing documents, medical and insurance documents.

What can be sent in a package abroad

Parcels sent abroad can contain almost the same things as parcels sent domestically. Almost, because there are a few exceptions. In this case, what can't be sent abroad? For example, tires. However, restrictions may vary from country to country. Here you can check what can be shipped to the European country of your choice.

For a full list of items excluded from GLS shipping services, see the terms and conditions .