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This article applies to selling in: United States

Shipping and routing requirements

Packaging your shipment correctly is crucial to making sure your inventory reaches us safely and that it's optimized for entry into our fulfillment centers.

The following requirements apply to all boxes shipped to Amazon fulfillment centers whether by small parcel delivery, less than truckload (LTL), or full truckload (FTL) shipping.

Some shipments have additional requirements:

Download our shipping guides:

Box content information

Providing box content information improves the management of your inventory within Amazon and helps your products become available for sale more quickly. For more information, see Provide box content information.

If you select Skip providing box contents, make sure that:

  • Each box contains inventory from only one shipment ID. Do not combine items from multiple shipments in the same box. You can find the shipment ID on the Summary page for that shipment.
  • The shipment details listed on your shipping plan match the shipment being sent to the fulfillment center, including:
  • Units are prepped according to the requirements found on the Packaging and prep requirements page

Packaging shipments

Following these instructions helps ensure shipments arrive undamaged and ready for intake to our fulfillment centers:

  • Use a rigid, six-sided box with flaps intact.
  • Use a single address label that has clear, complete delivery and return information.
  • Each box you include in the shipment must have its own unique FBA shipment label printed from your Shipping Queue.
  • Each pallet requires four labels, one on the top center of each side. Each box on the pallet also requires its own label.
  • When shipping multiple case packs in a master carton, apply the unique shipping label on the master carton.
  • If you are reusing boxes, remove all old shipping labels or markings.
  • Cover existing barcodes with opaque tape or use a black felt-tip marker to render the barcode unscannable. This prevents the incorrect barcode from being accidentally scanned during the receiving process.
  • Wrap all items separately.
  • Use adequate packaging material.
  • Use strong tape designed for shipping.
  • Use 2 inches of cushioning between each of your items and the inside of the box.
  • After you pack your box, shake it gently. The contents should not move when shaken.
  • Using boxes with dimensions measuring at least 6 x 4 x 1 inches and weighing at least 1 lb (but no more than 25 inches on any side and under 50 lb total) can reduce delays in receiving.

Avoiding the following also helps ensure shipments arrive ready for intake to Amazon fulfillment centers:

  • Do not use point-of-sale containers. Point-of-sale containers are part of the product you are selling and typically contain one single unit. (For example, a coffee maker shipped and sold in its original container.)
  • Do not use open boxes typically used for display purposes. (For example, open- front boxes or boxes without tops.)

  • Do not use pallet-sized boxes (also known as "gaylords").

  • Don’t use string, straps, or over-wrap (plastic or paper).
  • Do not bundle multiple boxes together.

Picking the right-sized box for what you are shipping is important. If the container is too large, you will need to fill it up with enough packaging material so that the box will not collapse if heavier boxes are stacked on top during shipping.

Tip: For best results, use a new, single-wall, corrugated shipping container with a high burst- or crush- strength stamp.

Acceptable standard boxes:

  • Regular slotted carton (RSC)
  • B flute
  • ECT-32 (edge crush test)
  • 200 lb./sq. inch (burst strength)

Use a minimum of 2 inches of appropriate packing material around each item and the same amount in between your products and the walls of the box. If your items are being shipped in the manufacturer's case pack, the 2 inches of packing material is not necessary.

Box dimensions

Boxes containing multiple standard-size items must not exceed 25 inches on any side. A box may exceed the 25 inch limit if it contains oversize units that measure longer than 25 inches. Boxes that are excessively large relative to the oversize units may be subject to restriction of shipping privileges, additional fees, or refusal at a fulfillment center.

Important: Carton dimension policies are strictly enforced. Sending oversize cartons to the fulfillment center may lead to blocking of future shipments.

Box weight

If you are using an Amazon-partnered carrier, weigh and measure boxes and pallets accurately and ensure that the correct values are supplied for every shipment. In addition:

  • Boxes must not exceed the standard weight limit of 50 lb, unless they contain one single oversized item that exceeds 50 lb.
    • For a single oversized item that exceeds 50 lb, attach a label that clearly indicates Team Lift on the top and sides of the box.
    • For a single oversized item that exceeds 100 lb, attach a label that clearly indicates Mechanical Lift on the top and sides of the box.
  • Boxes containing jewelry or watches must not exceed 40 lb.
Important: Carton weight policies are strictly enforced. Sending overweight cartons to the fulfillment center may lead to blocking of future shipments.

Packing materials

Using appropriate packing material ensures your shipment quickly moves through the fulfillment center receiving process and protects our associates from potential safety issues.

Use these:

  • Bubble Wrap
  • Full sheets of paper (heavy-weight kraft paper is best)
  • Inflatable air pillows
  • Polyethylene foam sheeting

Do not use these:

  • All types of packing peanuts, including those made of biodegradable material or corn starch
  • Foam strips
  • Crinkle wrap
  • Shredded paper
  • Thermocol chips
  • Styrofoam

Tip: After you pack your box, shake it gently. The contents should not move when shaken.

Watch the videos:

Breaking down the material benefits

Bubble Wrap or small cell bubble sheeting provides surface protection as well as shock absorption. It can also be wrapped around almost any product, regardless of shape or size.

Paper, specifically kraft paper intended for packing applications, can be used to fill empty space in your shipping box. For best results, use kraft paper with a minimum basis weight of 60 lb to ensure that it is thick enough to provide protection.

Inflatable air pillows use air pressure to secure and hold products in place inside the shipping container, and provide an air barrier of cushioning. They generally come in a strip of air pillows that you can easily use as lightweight dunnage to fill the empty space in your box.

Warning: Inflatable air pillows can lose pressure in low-temperature and high-altitude environments.

Polyethylene foam sheeting is thin, soft, resilient, and provides surface protection and cushioning properties. This type of packaging is good for protecting lightweight items.

Additional requirements

All products require a scannable barcode. For more information, see FBA product barcode requirements.

Each box in a shipment requires an Amazon shipment label in addition to the carrier label. For more information, see Shipment label requirements.

Additional requirements apply based on the shipping method you use:

In addition, boxes and box contents must be packaged in such a way that the contents arrive safely and intact at the fulfillment center. For more information, see Packaging and prep requirements.

Refused shipments

Some common issues that may result in the refusal of inventory at the fulfillment center include shipments that are larger than expected, damaged, or sent to the wrong fulfillment center. Such shipments may be rejected at the dock and returned to you at your expense. Merchant Damage refers to any inventory that is delivered to an Amazon fulfillment center in an unsellable condition. Shipments considered Merchant Damage or Defective incur a return freight charge.

You cannot refuse or return shipments that are returned to you without first contacting Amazon. Shipments that you refuse or return without first contacting Amazon may be refused a second time, and any costs incurred will be at your expense.

Shipping directly to a fulfillment center from a distributor

Make sure your distributor has the correct Amazon shipment labels for your shipment. You can grant limited access to your seller account to access labels. For more information, see Set user permissions.

In addition, your distributor must adhere to all Amazon shipment requirements.

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