General Shipping

General Shipping Information


  • Opening an account with a transportation company (UPS, FedEx, etc.)
  • International shipments other than letters and documents.
  • Hazardous and/or dangerous goods shipments (heavy fines are being levied for errors, shippers must be federally certified to ship dangerous goods)
  • US Customs clearance
  • Import and export documentation
  • Duty free entry on foreign purchase
  • Personnel and laboratory relocations (household moves)


  • Complete "ship to" address (not a PO box), individual's name and phone number
  • KFS# (if the university is paying for the shipment)
  • Return authorization number from the vendor (if applicable)
  • Number of cartons, contents of the cartons and actual value
  • Pick-up information: Dept, bldg & room #, individual requesting shipment and phone number
  • Reason for shipment (repair, return, etc.)
  • Purchase order number (if applicable)
  • Mark each carton, such as: 1 of 10, 2 of 10 and so on
  • Maintain a list of all items shipped in each carton in case of loss
  • Never use paper or string to wrap boxes to be shipped
  • Retain pick-up receipt from Physical Distribution or carrier
  • Priority shipments should be taken to Physical Distribution, to a drop box or call the carrier
  • Don't over-insure; reimbursement will be for the proven value
  • For international shipments other than documents, contact the Transportation Manager at 301.405.5852
  • A "Commercial Invoice" is required for all non-document international shipments
  • A “Shipper’s Export Declaration” is required for goods valued at over $2,500
  • Non-document international shipments also require approval from the Export Compliance Office