Send express envelopes overnight

Delivery times & postage for shipments

Products can be sent with a consignment of goods, but not letters. No personal letters or notes may be enclosed with a consignment. At most, an invoice, a delivery note or an impersonal advertising insert are permitted.

"Goods" include both purchased and homemade products. Colloquially, the shipment of goods is also referred to as savings shipping. The postage is cheap, but the delivery time is quite long at 3 to 4 working days.

Shipments of goods may be sealed up by the sender. No sample bag clips need to be used, as was previously prescribed. Deutsche Post is allowed to open consignments for control purposes.

The following postage has been in effect at Deutsche Post since January 1, 2020:

  • Books and goods shipments may not exceed 35 x 25 x 5 cm.
  • Postage up to 500 grams weight: 1.90 euros
  • Postage up to 1 kilogram weight: 2.20 euros
  • Shipments may be sealed.

From July 1, 2019 to December 31, 2019, it was temporarily possible to send consignments of goods using the old postage. This possibility no longer exists.

The following information relates to shipments within Germany. For international shipping, please read our guide to shipping international goods.

Table of Contents

  1. Why does a shipment take longer?
  2. Postage for books and goods shipments 2020
  3. Regulations on content, packaging and labeling
  4. Special rules for sending books
  5. Tips, tricks and alternatives to sending goods

Why does a shipment take longer?

Normal, fully paid letters are usually with the recipient one day after they have been sent. The inexpensive shipments, on the other hand, take 3 to 4 days. How come

In order to understand the principle of Sparversand, you have to know that the Deutsche Post has two different priorities for the delivery of mail. Namely fast and less quickly. Standard letters, postcards, etc. are transported overnight in the fast transport network. All items franked at the normal price are usually delivered by Deutsche Post within 24 hours (from Monday to Saturday).

On the other hand, there are discounted forms of dispatch, such as advertising letters, Infopost or the consignment of goods. Such shipments are less urgent and therefore cheaper. Deutsche Post processes these shipping methods in the mail centers during the day, when there is less to do.

During the main working hours, in the evening and at night, priority is given to the "fast" shipping methods. Shipments of goods therefore usually remain in the mail center of the sender region and in the mail center of the recipient region for 1-2 days. This results in a total delivery time of 3-4 days.

Deutsche Post rewards the longer delivery time with inexpensive postage for consignments, Infopost, Dialogpost, etc. These slow types of dispatch ensure that the mail centers are evenly used, and Deutsche Post benefits from this economically.

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Postage for books and goods shipments 2020

On July 1, 2019, Deutsche Post introduced new postage and weight levels for books and goods. There was a six-month transition period for the old model, which ended on January 1, 2020. Since then, books and consignments of goods have to be franked according to the following postage table.

Uniform maximum dimensions of 35 x 25 x 5 cm apply; no matter if books or goods are sent. The shipping types compact and maxi consignments with a height of 15cm have been abolished.

Shipments may be sealed. Sample bag clips no longer need to be used. Note for traders: The postage for book shipments does not include sales tax.

productWeightPostage 2020
Large consignment500 grams1.90 euros
Consignment of goods Maxi1000 grams (1kg)2.20 euros
Book shipment large500 grams1.90 euros
Book shipment Maxi1000 grams (1kg)2.20 euros

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Regulations on content, packaging and labeling

Deutsche Post has issued some restrictions so that the inexpensive consignment is only used for its intended purpose. Source:

It is important to note the goods shipment above the delivery address. The note can be handwritten (capital letters in block letters) or printed or stamped.

It is forbidden to enclose letters, notes or other individual texts with a consignment of goods. This does not apply to factual information such as operating instructions for the product. An invoice or a delivery note may be enclosed, provided the document relates to the product being shipped.

Ideally, the invoice should not contain a salutation because such personal texts are not permitted according to the requirements of Deutsche Post. On the other hand, you may enclose an informal greeting card or brochures as long as they are not the main part of the consignment. Special regulations apply to the dispatch of paper goods, cardboard or calendars as consignments. Such products should be marked with a price tag so that they can be identified as sales goods in the event of a possible inspection by Deutsche Post.

Catalogs, vouchers, tickets or reports are generally prohibited in shipments of goods.

If you are sending a product that is in an additional packaging, you must give Swiss Post permission to open this outer packaging (e.g. a watch in a slipcase). To do this, put the following note on the product packaging: "May be opened by Swiss Post for inspection purposes".

Special rules for sending books

The same regulations generally apply to the dispatch of a book shipment as to a shipment of goods. Please write BÜCHERSENDUNG in block letters above the delivery address. The envelope may be sealed.

Also note:

► Brochures and books can be sent as book items. It is important that they are tightly bound and have a cover or envelope.

► A loose-leaf collection is not a book shipment. Maps and sheet music are excluded. These are not bound by their nature and are still allowed as a book shipment.

► A book shipment may not serve any business purposes. So you are not allowed to send advertising brochures to sell something to the recipient. Printed advertising material is only permitted as an insert in a book shipment. They must not be the main shipment item.

► There is also the restriction that publications that mainly deal with a company or its products are prohibited in book mailings.

Business reports, catalogs, flyers and similar printed matter are also prohibited in book shipments. A small exception rule can be found on the Post website: "In the case of the main delivery item, promotions / advertising are permitted on the envelope and on four consecutive pages at the beginning and end of the work."

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Tips, tricks and alternatives to sending goods

If you buy Deutsche Post internet stamps, you should not frank standard letters with stamps for goods or books. The internet brands contain a product code that automatically separates slow mail items from standard letters in the mail center. If you frank a regular large letter for € 1.55 with an internet stamp for € 2.20, it may not be with the recipient the following day because the sorting systems consider it to be a consignment.

A consignment of goods does not always have to be the first choice. Regular shipping methods of the Deutsche Post such as the maxi letter for € 2.70 also allow the sending of relatively large and heavy products. Often a maxi letter is even a better alternative to a parcel, because parcels are more expensive on the one hand and are also not as fast as a letter.

Tip: You don't necessarily have to use an envelope, you can also send goods in a box. This applies to all shipping methods of Deutsche Post that fall into the "Letter" category. The box only has to comply with the maximum dimensions of the respective shipping method. In the case of a maxi letter, therefore, no more than 5 cm thick.

On Amazon or eBay you will find numerous offers with boxes that are precisely tailored for maxi letters or consignments.

If you send predominantly regional - i.e. not Germany-wide - mail, private postal services can be the cheapest form of mail for you. Newspaper publishers often also offer postal services because the newspaper deliverers are out and about every day and deliver letters at the same time. Inquire with the newspaper publisher in your region whether they offer mail delivery. Regional shipping is usually a few cents cheaper than with Deutsche Post.

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Your questions about consignments