Please find a list of links to guides on how to get your parcel or parcels from a range of destinations throughout Europe and rest of the World in to the UK.
Don’t worry if you’ve never imported into the UK before, as ParcelBroker will handle most of the work for you. However, there are some important things that you do need to be aware of when shipping overseas, many depending on whether you are sending items from within or outside the European Union (EU).
Sending from outside the EU
Whether you’re shipping to the UK from Australia, the United States, Africa or anywhere else outside the EU, it is important to make sure that you understand the rules and regulations to avoid unnecessary delays and charges.
• Banned/Illegal goods - laws can, and do, vary wildly from country to country and there are many items which are either not allowed into the UK/EU, or which delivery services will not carry. Take the time to check and understand whether what you are shipping falls into this category. Common mistakes include attempting to ship foodstuffs from outside the EU, which is generally not allowed.
• Import duty/VAT - depending on what you are shipping and its value, you may find that your delivery is subject to import duty or VAT charges on its arrival in the UK/EU. These must be paid before delivery. There is usually a deadline of 14 days to pay duty on arrival, before items are destroyed or auctioned off by Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs.
• Low-value gifts - gifts with a value of £36GBP or less are excluded from the rules on duty and VAT and attract no charge. However, they must be genuine gifts, sent from an individual to an individual and the £36 value applies to the entire shipment, not to individual items within it.
• 'Inward Processing Relief' and Duty relief - certain goods get automatic relief from Duty (though not usually VAT) and if you’re importing goods temporarily then you may be able to claim Inward Processing Relief (IPR) and pay no charges at all.
For information on IPR, VAT or Duty you should contact Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs in the UK by visiting www.hmrc.gov.uk or calling the customs helpline on +44 300 200 3700.
Customs paperwork and labelling
All packages from outside the EU will need to carry a valid CN22 or CN23 customs label, displaying full details of the contents of your delivery as well as its value.
You should also ensure that your package is clearly labelled with the recipient's details, as well as your own name, address and telephone number of the sender in case of any problems with your delivery, or at customs.
If you are importing commercial goods, you must also display the correct Harmonisation Code, and ensure that you obtain any necessary Import Licences before arranging shipping for your items. Full details on this are available from www.hmrc.gov.uk.
Sending from within the EU
Where you’re sending items to the UK from another EU country, VAT and Duty charges will not apply. However, it is still important to ensure that your delivery meets security and carrier rules, and is clearly labelled to ensure prompt delivery.