Australia Post: Why carrier is suspending sea mail

Australia Post has suspended mail and items coming into the country via sea amid a spike of prohibited items being shipped across the border.

The carrier said it had suspended sea mail temporarily from October 1.

An Australian Post spokeswoman said that it was working with international carriers to get the suspension lifted as soon as possible.

The move does not affect Australia Post’s air freight service, through which a vast majority of its packages are sent and processed.

The suspension will only affect a fraction of Australia Post’s international capacity.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, when international borders were closed, there was a large spike in the number of items being processed via sea mail, however that has since subsided.

“Due to an increasing number of prohibited mail items coming into Australia by sea, Australia Post temporarily suspended incoming sea mail effective 1 October 2022,” Australia Post said in a statement.

“The increase in sea mail volume was a direct result of Covid air restrictions and decreased aircraft capacity.

“Australia Post currently has only one facility capable of managing sea mail, and significant delays and safety concerns have been experienced due to the volume of prohibited items arriving and requiring intervention.”

Australia Post said that it would process any sea mail containers which had already arrived in the country, as well as any items which were currently en route via sea.

However the suspension affects any sea mail items sent after the suspension date of October 1.

“Australia Post is in the process of reviewing its sea mail capacity in order to remove the suspension as quickly as possible,” Australia Post said in a statement.

“Australia Post is still processing sea mail containers in transit at the time the suspension was announced, and there remains no impact to mail items being sent by air to Australia or items being sent by sea from Australia.

“Australia Post apologises for any inconvenience during this time.”

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