Many advances have been achieved in biliary stenting over the past 30 years. Endoscopic stent placement has become the primary management therapy to relieve obstruction in patients with benign or malignant biliary tract diseases. Compared with plastic stents, a self-expandable metallic stent (SEMS) has been used for management in patients with malignant strictures because of a larger lumen and longer stent patency. Recently, SEMS has been used for various benign biliary strictures and leaks. In this article, we briefly review the characteristics of SEMS as well as complications of stent placement. We review the current guidelines for managing malignant and benign biliary obstructions. Recent developments in biliary stenting are also discussed.