Health & Safety

What Items You Should Watch Out For When Shipping, and Why You Should Be Careful

The internet has made shopping convenient but there are some items you have to be mindful of before you hit 'add to cart'

by Charlie Castillo June 01, 2020 10:00 AM

Nowadays, it’s so easy to shop from the comfort of your home. The Internet has made shopping so convenient that you don’t even have to get up from your bed to get what you need/want. You can just scroll through your feed, get tempted by that one item because it’s on sale, click ‘add to cart,’ and even choose to pay cash on delivery (COD). You just have to wait for 1-3 days in NCR, 3-5 days for the rest of Luzon, and 5-7 days in Visayas and Mindanao, and your usual delivery guy will be at your doorstep.

Because it’s so much easier now, it means that you have to be all the more discerning. Did you know that some items you order online can take longer to be delivered because of extra processing steps? Or that some items cannot be shipped at all? Unfortunately, this is information sellers rarely put on the fine print before you make your purchase. Here's what you need to know about them.

These tricky items can be classified into three categories: Dangerous Goods, Prohibited Goods, and Other Restricted Goods.

Dangerous Goods

Goods are labeled ‘dangerous’ if they are included in the orders and issuances of the Civil Aeronautics Board and Philippine Ports Authority, and other government agencies. This includes flammable items or poisonous substances. Regular couriers cannot handle these items because they present a danger or risk as they may cause accidents during delivery.

The list of prohibited goods includes but is not limited to the following:

  • Explosives—like firecrackers, dynamite, etc.
  • Hazardous waste—used syringe, vials, cotton swabs, etc.
  • Any type of gas—flammable, non-flammable, deeply refrigerated, and poisonous
  • Flammable liquids and solids—LPG, butane, etc.
  • Radioactive materials
  • Poisonous substances

Prohibited Goods

Prohibited goods are basically contraband, or items that are deemed unlawful or are regulated by law.

The list of prohibited goods includes but is not limited to the following:

  • Firearms, ammunition, weapons
  • Prescription, regulated, and illicit drugs
  • Narcotics
  • Pornography
  • Counterfeit goods
  • Smuggled goods

Other Restricted Goods

This type is the catch-all category: anything that cannot be classified as dangerous or prohibited, but is still restricted, falls under this category. Most of these items are subject to regulations set by relevant government agencies such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Bureau of Philippine Standards (BPS), Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI), Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI), and the like. These items require specific permits from these agencies, and as such, couriers can not accept them for shipment.

The list of prohibited goods includes but is not limited to the following:

  • Coins, cash, and other monetary goods
  • Perishables
  • Foodstuffs, perishable, animal origin, and controlled food articles and beverages
  • Precious metals
  • Live animals
  • Protected wildlife
  • Any wet goods
  • Any items that require a temperature-controlled environment

Restricted goods that online buyers often purchase are items with lithium battery (power bank, camera battery, earphones with charging cases, etc.), which cannot be shipped due to the chemical substances it contains; and fragrances, hair dye, hair tonic, hair spray, high-pressure spray, which either fall under high-pressure gasses or flammable items. If you end up buying — or maybe even selling — these items, you’d only suffer a loss, because couriers would not accept them for delivery, and you’d just end up discarding them.

So you better brush up on your knowledge so you can be more discerning before you hit 'add to cart.'



A technology-driven business solutions provider for the fulfillment and logistics needs of enterprises in the Philippines.

Entrego's courier and express parcel management is operated by Entrego Express Corporation. Entrego Express Corporation is an affiliate of Entrego Fulfillment Solutions, Inc.


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