Shipments travelling to and from any country outside of the European Union undergo customs, which in some instances can mean paying additional customs clearance costs such as taxes and duties. Even though shipments travelling Europe are not subject to customs fees, there may be some exceptions. Additionally, goods that travel from abroad, outside of the EU undergo customs duties and charges, even if they are declared gifts. Find out everything you need to know about taxes, customs procedures, the required documentation and how to calculate the declared value of goods.
DUTIES AND TAXES
The European Union is a customs-free zone. Goods produced in member states of the EU, or any other country with specific contracts for free circulation of goods, will not be subject to customs charges. In most cases, when shipping within the European Union, there are no additional customs clearance fees.
Different rules may apply to goods subject to a state monopoly, which is the case with alcoholic beverages and tobacco products. Depending on the local legislation, some goods may be forbidden to leave or enter a specific country.
Shipments entering from non-EU countries to the EU may be subject to additional charges. There are several cases in which one may be exempted from payment of customs duties for your international shipping during the customs clearance procedures on your international parcel:
You pay for VAT and customs duties on some international parcels for specific goods when shipping outside of the EU. Every country has distinct and different regulations, so we advise you to check in detail with the importing and exporting countries.
When shipping internationally, the declared value of the goods is essential for the customs officers when imposing customs duties. It depends on the country regulations, but in general, when shipping internationally, the declared value for customs is calculated based on the following methods:
However, we advise you to check this in detail with the selected country. Some costs may be added or deducted from the customs value of the product, and this depends on each case specifically.
The declared value for carriage is computed from the value of the shipment. It serves as a basis for imposing freight charges, which is generally not amounted to the same and is lower than the declared value for customs.
Customs, or the customs duty office, is a national body of the local government whose task is to uphold customs clearance procedures for international parcels. Each country has different regulation systems and if you are shipping outside of the EU, we have compiled a guide on all you need to prepare beforehand!
Exporting outside the EU
European Union – For most countries, you will not have to pay customs duties and VAT for shipping gifts. However, you should check the country’s regulations in more detail before shipping.
Non-European Union – When you are shipping goods marked as gifts from abroad, outside of the EU, different customs duties and charges will apply, based on the specific country. However, each country has its own set of rules for charging customs fees.
When shipping globally, outside of the EU, a proforma invoice, commercial invoice or customs declaration (CN23 or CN22) is required to contain all the necessary information about the content you are sending. Customs authorities will need each item in the parcel to be listed separately with its own description on the invoice.
The shipment should also contain the receiver’s information, which will allow the customs officers to contact the designated person.
Customs regulatory authorities around the world are automating their processes to optimise clearance speed and efficiency. The details you provide in your customs invoice (commercial/proforma) will be transmitted electronically to the customs authorities to clear your shipment faster. This is why providing correct, high-quality information is extremely important. Follow the steps below to fill in your customs documentation properly:
Bear in mind that the failure to provide the required documentation for the customs clearance or refusing to pay the applicable fees will result in further delays in the shipping process or in having the goods returned to the sender.
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