getting ready to send 1st care package

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-28-2003
getting ready to send 1st care package
Tue, 04-15-2003 - 3:24pm
And I wanted to know if there was anything that should go in the first one I have not heard from DH yet so he hasnt been able to tell me if there is anything he really needs is there something that should forsure go in my first one socks boxers ect? I have a good 5 page list of great things to put in your care packages but I just wanted to know if there was something that your DHs are asking for that is really needed. Another ??? I have is Does the packages have to be in brown paper and if so can I just get that at the post office and also I know that you can get boxes from mailboxes ect but are they also able to send out to APO addresses? thank you for your help getting me started or in the right direction

forgot one more thing I have a site that says how big packages can get to but I have been hearing here and there that the care package box should not be bigger then a shoe baox is that true?


Edited 4/15/2003 3:28:20 PM ET by happydaze101

Avatar for rececup
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Tue, 04-15-2003 - 3:37pm
hi there,

yes mail boxes etc. ships apo i just asked them that question yesterday, as far as things to send i am working on sending mine in a few days and my dh says don`t send chocolate bc of the heat he wants,books,baby wipes beef jerky, and sweetened koolaid ,lol. so that is all i am working with hope this helps


iVillage Member
Registered: 04-09-2003
Tue, 04-15-2003 - 4:01pm
I heard that the box had to be the size of the shoe box but when I went to the post office they said it can be any size. My parents sent my husband a package using a computer box, it was huge!

My husband asked for Easy Mac along with any food! He said he is so sick of MRE's.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Tue, 04-15-2003 - 7:29pm
Most APO/FPO addresses have the following general restrictions:

Packages may not exceed 70 lbs. (Some zip codes have lower limits)

Packages may not exceed 130 inches in combined length and girth. (This means if you have a package that is 100" in length and 40" when you measure around it, you cannot send the item)

All packages must be sent via the U.S. Postal System. The post office also requires companies or individuals to hand deliver packages being sent to APO/FPO addresses. (This is one reason why many merchants won't ship to APO/FPO addresses.)

Firearms, alcohol, perishable foodstuffs and certain hazardous items also are restricted. Each zip code has a more detailed list of the restrictions for certain types of products.

For a complete description of the restrictions at your APO/FPO address, enter your zipcode in the box on the left. This database is kept current with the twice-monthly Postal Bulletin Publication, which outlines all APO FPO zip code changes.

Other Considerations for Overseas Military Shoppers

There are several facts you should take into consideration when ordering items from an APO/FPO address:

Priority Mail is only way to go. If a merchant ships a package to your APO/FPO address using standard or "surface" mail, it will likely be a while before you see it. This is because all Priority Mail eventually makes its way onto an airplane. Surface mail does not. Sending a package via surface mail may take up to 8 weeks because it will be placed on a ship instead of a plane.

Some items just can't be shipped to APO/FPO. Just because a merchant won't ship an item to you does not mean that they don't ship to APO/FPO addresses. If you are planning on ordering a new range for the kitchen, you aren't going to find anyone who will (or can) ship it to you. We take great care at to ensure that our merchants will ship to APO/FPO addresses within the limits imposed on them by the MPO and the law.

"AE", "AA" and "AP" The APO/FPO "states" of "AE", "AA", and "AP" are the only legitimate states to use for an APO/FPO addresses. It is common knowledge that you can use "NY" for "AE", "CA" for "AP", and "FL" for "AA", but you run the risk of having your credit card rejected because the billing address they have on file (with AA, AE or AP for the state) does not match what you submitted online. For this reason we are very hesitant to put merchants on who do not have the APO/FPO "states" available in their drop-down boxes. We review all sites for this feature prior to listing them and have helped dozens of merchants improve the APO/FPO capabilities of their site.

Finally, we exist to help overseas military servicemembers, DOD employees, government contractors and expatriates improve the quality of their lives by providing a vast selection of merchants who ship to APO/FPO addresses. Should you have additional questions or comments that are not currently addressed on our website, please don't hesitate to send us an email message at We would love to hear from you and help you with any of your APO/FPO shipping problems (this includes merchants, too.)

Thanks for your overseas service!

The Team

For Merchants Researching APO FPO Shipping

How do I ship to an APO or FPO address? This is a common question that we get from merchants who are exploring the possibilities of serving overseas military shoppers through their websites. For starters you must use the United States Post Office (USPS) to send the items (see above). While there has been some recent discussion and negotiation to allow Federal Express and UPS to send packages to these addresses, the only way to send an item to an APO or FPO address as of right now is to use the USPS. Shipments to APO FPO addresses also require some additional customs paperwork to be filled out by the shipper. For a complete list of requirements and restrictions for a particular APO or FPO zip code, please enter the zip code into our online validator (located in the middle of the left hand margin on every page on

What is an APO address or an FPO address? APO stands for "Army Post Office," and is associated with Army or Air Force installations. FPO stands for "Fleet Post Office," and is associated with Navy installations and ships.

The official definition of APO/FPO mail is (according to the Military Postal Service Agency):

APO/FPO Mail - domestic mail and international mail that bears a U.S. military delivery address or return address and that, in some stage of its transmission, is in the possession of the DOD. This is mail that is being sent to or received from military installations located outside the Continental United States (CONUS). This mail may be official or personal in nature. This mail is centralized at certain locations such as San Francisco and New York for transport overseas. When mail is received in the CONUS from these facilities, letter mail is normally received in sleeved half trays, flats are received in sleeved plastic flat tubs, and parcels are received in #1 sacks.

How do I make my site APO/FPO friendly? Over 70% of our APO/FPO shoppers indicated in a recent survey that they have abandoned their shopping carts when they could not find their APO or FPO "state" in the state dropdown box. The only legitimate APO or FPO states are "AA," "AE," and "AP." The should appear in a dropdown box like this:

AA - Armed Forces Americas AE - Armed Forces Europe AP - Armed Forces Pacific

You don't need to provide anything except for a standard text box for the city portion of an APO or FPO address. The city will always be either "APO" or "FPO" in a properly formatted APO FPO address. Here's an example:

PFC Gomer Pyle

CMR 345, Box 12334

APO AE 09250

A note about fraud: There has been an increase in the fraudulent use of APO/FPO addresses over the past few years. Usually the crooks use a legitimate U.S. zip code with a bogus APO or FPO address. Since many credit card verification systems don't deal very well with APO or FPO addresses, the address may not be rigorously verified. Since the zip code is valid, the Post Office will ship the item to the proper destination, which is usually a P.O. Box that is rented for a short period of time. The crook will use the P.O. Box until someone becomes suspicious and then find another P.O. Box to use. For this reason we recommend the use of our APO FPO zip code validator if you have any questions about an address. If the zip code that you put into our validator comes back as "not found," it is not legitimate and further investigation should be undertaken prior to shipping the product.

Visitor (not verified)
anonymous user
Wed, 04-16-2003 - 5:43am

Mine is asking for thin socks, deodorant, shower gel, baby wipes, cotton buds.

I also have been posting 'doing'things such as cards, dominos, travel scrabble, whoopie cushion, squirty guns.

Joke books are good.

Fruity sweets, crisps, fruit in pots/cans.

Our parcels are just free from tomorrow, has been costing me £7 per parcel and I have been sending a couple a week.