How to Ship Ammo: Firearms or Ammunition

Posted On 9th July 2020

Shipping AmmunitionIf you want to learn about shipping ammunition, firearms, and other ammo, you’ve come to the right place.

Below, we will show you how to ship ammo the right way. The following is a guide on how to legally ship your ammunition and firearms without upsetting the Department of Justice.

If you are wondering how to ship firearms, you are also likely wondering what the process is for shipping ammo as well. But while you may think the process is the same for both, it is not. Here we will cover everything you need to know about how to ship firearms and how to go about shipping ammunition.

The first step in owning and transporting firearms and ammo is to get a FOID card. This is your concealed carry license, which you must have in order to possess and ship ammunition or firearms.

The next step when shipping firearms is that you must have the proper packaging material and you must have a firearms label to attach to the outside of your package. This label will read ORM-D.

No matter how your firearms are shipped, they must be sent to someone holding a Federal Firearms License. If you are legally able to own a gun, you are legally able to ship your gun to a holder of an FFL license.

Ammunition Shipping Rules in the USA

Can you mail bullets? The answer to that question is yes. If you are wondering how to ship firearms or ammunition, below we will cover it from all angles.

From shipping firearms and ammo to USPS, FedEx, UPS, and the special procedures for shipping ammo to different states such as California, Alaska, and Hawaii.

Special Procedures for Shipping Ammunition

So how do I ship ammunition? The ammo shipping restrictions are mainly in the weight of the package and the type of shipping service you will be allowed to use.

You will also need to put a specific shipping label on your box to identify the contents.

Can you ship ammunition internationally? No, the shipping services available to you do not allow for ammunition shipments outside of the United States.

Can Ammo be Shipped to My Home?

Ammunition cannot be shipped directly to your home. However, it can be shipped to a licensed firearms dealer in your state. You will need to provide the dealer with a copy of your driver's license or other government-issued photo ID and complete a background check before taking possession of the ammunition. Some states have additional requirements for purchasing ammunition, so be sure to check your local laws before buying.

If you're looking to buy ammunition in bulk, many online retailers offer discounts for buying larger quantities. But keep in mind that shipping costs can add up, so it's important to compare prices before making a purchase.

When buying ammunition online, always use a reputable dealer and be sure to read the terms and conditions of sale carefully. Some dealers may require that you have a firearms license or permit in order to purchase ammunition, so be sure to check before ordering.

How to Ship a Rifle?

There are a few things to keep in mind when shipping a rifle. First, you will need to make sure that the rifle is unloaded and the action is open. You will also want to remove any scope or other accessories from the rifle. Next, you will need to package the rifle securely for shipping. This can be done by wrapping it in bubble wrap or another protective material and then placing it in a sturdy box. Finally, you will need to address and label the box clearly with the recipient's information.

Shipping Ammo USPS

Can you ship ammo via USPS? No, you are not allowed to ship ammo via the United States Postal Service.

If you do, you will be arrested, your gun will be taken, you will be fined, and will have committed a felony. It is not worth the risk, especially because you have other options on the table, such as shipping FedEx or UPS.

Shipping Ammo UPS

When shipping ammunition via UPS the process is relatively simple. Here is how it will go:

  • You must go to a shipping center and not a typical UPS store. The shipping center will check your shipment in. These places are called UPS Customer Centers and will be found inside the facility. You can also use a UPS Scheduled Pickup Account if you have one.
  • Your shipment must weigh less than 66 pounds.
  • The shipment can only be sent via UPS Ground.
  • You must place a specific shipping label on the outside of your package that identifies what is inside. The label should read ORM-D and have a valid date.
  • You cannot ship ammo internationally.

Shipping Ammo FedEx

The FedEx ammunition shipping rules are similar to the UPS rules, but they are not exactly the same. Here are the regulations:

  • You must arrange a specific date and time for picking up or dropping off ammo at a shipping hub.
  • You can only ship inside the United States. Further regulations will be required for shipping ammunition to Alaska or Hawaii.
  • Rifle ammunition must be 50 caliber or smaller.
  • Your shipment must weigh less than 66 pounds.

If you have a FedEx account, the process becomes simpler. You may receive shipping supplies at no charge or be offered discounted rates. You will be able to easily track your shipment with emailed updates. And you will also be able to take advantage of the convenience provided by automatic payment.

Ammunition Shipping Restrictions by State

Shipping Ammo to California

In 2016, California passed Proposition 63 which completely changed the state law for firearms. The new ammo laws for California place much larger restrictions on acquiring ammo if you live in the state.

If you want to ship ammunition to California, you will have to send it to a licensed vendor first before you can receive it. You must be a California resident and pass a background check at the time of purchase, which will cost an additional fee.

You also cannot bring ammunition you bought out of state back into the state of California.

Shipping Ammunition to Alaska and Hawaii

Because ammo is considered a hazardous material, it cannot be sent via air freight in order to prevent a potential ammunition ship explosion.

For shipping firearms or ammo to Alaska, this limits the options to shipping by boat, or by long-run truck. For shipping to Hawaii, your only option of course is to ship firearms or ammunition by boat.

Shipping Ammunition to Georgia and Mass

Can you ship ammo in Mass?

Yes, you can ship ammo in Massachusetts as long as it is properly packaged and labeled. You will also need to check with the carrier to see if they have any restrictions on shipping ammunition.

Can ammo be shipped to Georgia?

Yes, ammunition can be shipped to Georgia. There are no state-level restrictions on the purchase or possession of ammunition in Georgia. However, it is important to note that federal laws and regulations do apply, so it is always best to check with your local law enforcement agency or firearms dealer to be sure.

How to Package Your Ammunition (Cartridges and Small Arms)

UPS is now requiring that all firearms be packaged in a new corrugated material that confines with UPS Single Wall Strength Guidelines.

Since your ammunition is considered a hazardous material, and the last thing you want is an ammo ship explosion, you must package your ammunition with extreme care.

Pack boxes inside of boxes to keep everything separated and contained. Make sure that your ammo is well-cushioned and contained tightly.

Ammo Shipping Label is Required

No matter what method you use to ship your ammunition, you must have the ammo shipping label on the outside of your package to identify its contents. This goes for all methods of shipping firearms or ammunition.

Cost to Ship Ammo

Shipping ammunition can be expensive, especially if you are shipping it internationally. The cost of shipping ammo will vary depending on the type of ammunition, the weight of the shipment, and the distance it needs to travel.

If you are shipping ammunition within the United States, the cost will be lower than if you are shipping it to another country. Ammo must be shipped via a carrier that is licensed to ship dangerous goods, such as FedEx or UPS. The cost to ship ammo via FedEx Ground is about $25 for a small box (up to 8 lbs), and $50 for a large box (up to 70 lbs). UPS charges similar rates.

If you are shipping ammunition internationally, the cost will be much higher. You will need to use a shipping company that specializes in dangerous goods, such as DHL or TNT. The cost to ship a small box of ammo via DHL is about $100, and the cost to ship a large box is about $200. TNT charges similar rates.

Shipping ammunition can be expensive, but it is important to do it safely. Make sure you are using a reputable shipping company and following all of their guidelines for shipping dangerous goods. This will ensure that your shipment arrives safely at its destination.

Which Carrier Should You Use to Ship Ammunition?

Use whichever carrier you find the most convenient. Just remember, you cannot ship any firearm or ammunition through the United States Postal Service (USPS).

Shipping ammunition via FedEx or shipping ammo via UPS are both very similar processes with similar restrictions. Choose whichever carrier you have an account with or has the closest hub to your home.

Our Recommendation for Ammunition Shipping

Ultimately, our recommendation for you is to be safe and make sure you are following every regulation closely. If you are going to be shipping ammunition often, you should make sure to sign up for an account with a carrier that you will be able to consistently rely on to make each shipment more convenient.

Buy packaging in bulk so that you always have it on hand. Make sure that your FOID card is valid and up to date, and that you have ORM-D labels ready to go.

Remember that you are not allowed to ship ammunition internationally, and if you are planning on shipping firearms or ammo to California, Alaska, or Hawaii, there will be additional restrictions and lead time.

Update On Shipping Firearms and Ammo with UPS and FedEx:

To date, it appears to us that UPS yes accepts firearms as long as the shipper is a licensed federal firearms dealer (FFL), manufacturer, importer, or "collector."

We are unsure how one qualifies via UPS as a "collector." However, UPS also requires you to sign a Contract with them that is unique to UPS and has some requirements that the Dealer/Importer/Factory/Collector owner must certify to.

So if you want to ship via UPS you need prior approval, and a signed contract, to be familiar with their Tariff terms download, and also go through this webpage at UPS:

From comments we read online, you are not allowed to drop firearms off at a UPS counter anymore either; and ID is required to ship and to receive.

The community of FFLs and gun owners at the moment seems to prefer shipping via FedEx. However, on paper, it looks to us like they are the same rules. It does seem as though you can drop off firearms to ship at FedEx counters.

We recommend in addition to reading all the literature on UPS and FedEx websites, and signing the contracts they require, you stop by the local FedEx or UPS office and ask questions to see how they apply the rules. Because these rules are new and evolving, different locations may inadvertently be applying the rules differently.

Updates On ABF and Other Common Carriers

Each company's policies including ABF are changing every few months so before every shipment you will need to check with the Carrier directly to be sure you comply with all requirements.

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