Ordering goods online

Customs duties are levied on the customs value, which consists of the purchase price including the cost of transport, loading and insurance. Value added tax is levied based on the value added tax on import, which includes the purchase price and the transport costs and customs duties on the goods, among other things.

Read more: Customs duties and taxes


The change is related to the comprehensive reform of the Tobacco act aimed at implementing the new Tobacco Products Directive (2014/40/EU).

The legislation was prepared by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health which is entrusted with the general administration and steering related to the Tobacco Act. The Tobacco Act (549/2016) enacted by the Parliament of Finland entered into force on 15 August 2016. The Tobacco Act provides that Customs is the executive authority responsible for supervising compliance with import prohibitions and restrictions enacted in the Tobacco Act. Customs is also responsible for carrying out inspections and performing controls on intra-EU movements, as well as on imports from the Åland Islands to mainland Finland.


The freight carrier sends the notice of arrival to the consignee. You need the information on it when you submit the customs declaration. The postal consignment can be cleared as soon as the following text appears in Posti’s item tracking service: "Delivery has arrived at the customs warehouse. You have to carry out customs clearance within 20 days of the arrival date”. If you have not received a notice of arrival, contact the carrier if necessary.


The recipient of a consignment is always responsible for clearing the goods through Customs.

If you have a Finnish personal ID number and Finnish online banking IDs, we recommend that you use our Import Declaration Service, free of charge 24 hours a day. You save time and effort when you do not have to visit a customs office.

Apart from online banking IDs for online customs clearance, you will need the order confirmation or the invoice for your purchase, as well as the data on the notification of arrival, which is also available at Posti’s item tracking service.

You can clear your postal consignment as soon as the item tracking service displays a notification saying that the delivery has arrived at the customs warehouse. You have to carry out customs clearance within 20 days of the arrival date. You can also wait for the notification of arrival from Posti.


When doing business with Customs you can pay customs duties, taxes and guarantees with these means of payment:

  • cash
  • cheque
  • Visa Debit/Credit
  • Visa Electron
  • Mastercard Debit/Credit
  • Maestro and
  • V Pay.

Observe that when using the Import Declaration Service, the import taxes can only be paid directly from your bank account. Credit card functions cannot be used.


The customs offices that handle postal clearances and their service hours can be found here: Contact information The contact information shows, whether the customs office also handles customs clearances of postal consignments. Note that the opening hours vary from office to office!


  • When the total value of the goods in a consignment without the transport costs is no more than 22 euros, the consignment is free of VAT. However, this value limit is not applied to tobacco products, alcohol, alcoholic beverages or perfumes.
  • The minimum amount of VAT levied is 5 euros. For imports of alcoholic beverages and tobacco products sent to private persons, this limit is not applied. The VAT is levied also when it amounts to less than 5 euros.
  • The minimum levy of 5 euros is also not applied to imports of these products by travellers or to imports of alcoholic beverages or tobacco products by crew members of a vehicle in professional traffic between Finland and a country or region outside the EU.

Read more: Examples of calculating import duties and taxes


If the total value of the goods in a consignment is no more than 150 euros, the consignment is free of customs duty. However, this value limit is not applied to alcoholic products, tobacco, tobacco products, perfumes or eau de toilette products.

Read more: More on customs clearance


You cannot use the Import Declaration Service if you do not have a Finnish personal identification number and Finnish online banking ID or Mobile certificate.

Items that cannot be cleared via the Import Declaration Service are e.g.

  • removal goods
  • firearms
  • hunting trophies
  • live animals.

You can clear the consignment when you have received a notice of arrival from the freight carrier. The notice of arrival can also be sent to you electronically. The postal consignment can be cleared as soon as the following text appears in Posti’s item tracking service: "Delivery has arrived at the customs warehouse. You have to carry out customs clearance within 20 days of the arrival date.”


You can download games, computer games and music off the internet tax-free from any country you chose. They do not have to be cleared through customs either.


Only such radio equipment that fulfil the EU requirements can be sold and used within the EU. Radio equipment sold in countries outside the EU and EEA, may not satisfy these requirements. The equipment might work on the wrong frequency or with too much power or be otherwise incompatible with radio equipment and radio systems used within the EU. High powered radio equipment or equipment working on the wrong frequency, can interfere with radio equipment of other users. Foreign online stores can provide equipment that use the wrong frequency or too much power, but importing them to Finland and distributing and using them in Finland is prohibited.

The CE conformity marking shows that the manufacturer has ensured that the product fulfils the EU requirements. When you order radio equipment from outside the EU, make sure that the equipment has the CE conformity marking. Moreover, check the packaging, the user instructions or ask the seller if there are restrictions regarding the use of the equipment in Finland.

More information from the Finnish Communications Regulatory Authority:


If the combined value of the goods in a consignment does not exceed 22 euros or the consignment is a gift from a private individual and not worth more than 45 euros, you do not (with some exceptions) have to fill in a customs declaration or pay any taxes. You will need to send the following to Customs:

  • the order confirmation, or some other account stating the gift and its value
  • the arrival ID and your contact information

by email to lentoposti(at)tulli.fi for the parcel to be released. More information: The Customs website or the E-services telephone service, tel. +358 295 5206.


If you don’t wish to receive the consignment, you should not clear it. If the consignment is not cleared within 20 days, the consignment will be returned to the sender. In the case of ordered goods, inform the seller that you have cancelled your purchase.

Before the expiration of the storage time you may notify Posti that you refuse to receive the consignment and that you wish for it to be returned to the sender.


Ask the sender for an order confirmation, an invoice, a receipt or some other credible proof of the value of the goods. Please note! A bank statement or bank receipt is not sufficient proof of the value of the goods.


To submit a customs declaration, you will need, among other things, the following information:

1. A notice of arrival from the freight carrier with the following information on the consignment:

  • the date of arrival
  • the weight of the consignment (not always indicated)
  • the arrival ID of the postal consignment
  • the previous document (in freight consignments, the previous document is generally the MRN + the goods item number; not used for postal consignments).
  • the location of the goods

2. An invoice/ order confirmation from the seller
3. The product´s commodity code, which is provided in the list of choices, or if not, the telephone service can provide it for you. (Note! The commodity code is not declared if the consignment is transported from the Channel Islands, including Jersey.)

If you are missing any of the information mentioned above, you will not be able to submit a declaration.


For the purposes of the Tobacco Act,

  • tobacco product means products made wholly or partly of tobacco (nicotiana) and suitable for consumption. The nicotine-containing liquid used in electronic cigarettes is not regulated as a tobacco product, but as a nicotine liquid through a special provision.
  • smokeless tobacco product means a tobacco product not involving a combustion process, including chewing tobacco, nasal tobacco and tobacco for oral use.
  • tobacco products for smoking means tobacco products other than a smokeless tobacco product. These include cigarettes, cigars and roll-your-own tobacco. In accordance with the Tobacco Products Directive, waterpipe tobacco is also deemed to be a tobacco product for smoking when applying the Tobacco Act.
  • smoking accessories refers to an accessory or implement used for smoking or for the preparation of smoking. For example, cigarette paper and pipes are regarded as smoking accessories.
  • cigarette means a roll of tobacco as defined in section 4(1) of the Act on Excise Duty on Tobacco (1470/1994).
  • cigar means a roll of tobacco as defined in section 3(1) of the Act on Excise Duty on Tobacco.
  • cigarillo means a cigar that weighs no more than three grams.
  • roll-your-own tobacco means tobacco which can be used for making cigarettes by consumers or retail outlets. Tobacco which can be used both as roll-your-own tobacco and via waterpipes shall be deemed to be roll-your-own tobacco.
  • pipe tobacco means tobacco that can be consumed via a combustion process and is exclusively intended for use in a pipe.
  • waterpipe tobacco means a tobacco product which can be used exclusively for smoking via a waterpipe.
  • chewing tobacco means a smokeless tobacco product exclusively intended for the purpose of chewing.
  • nasal tobacco means a smokeless tobacco product that can be consumed via the nose.
  • tobacco for oral use means a tobacco products for oral use, except those intended to be inhaled or chewed, made wholly or partly of tobacco, in powder or in particulate form or in any combination of those forms.
  • herbal product for smoking means a tobacco substitute made of plants and intended for smoking. Instead of tobacco, the product contains other plants, such as herbs and fruits, and can be consumed via a combustion process. Herbal products for smoking include so-called herbal cigarettes as well as tobacco-free herbal mixtures intended for smoking via a waterpipe.
  • electronic cigarette means a product used for inhaling nicotine-containing vapour via a mouth piece, and any component of that product.
  • nicotine liquid means a liquid containing nicotine which is intended to be vaporised using an electronic cigarette and which has a nicotine concentration of no more than 20 milligrams per millilitre and which is not to be used for a purpose defined in section 3(1) of the Medicines Act (395/1987).
  • nicotine-free liquid for vaporisation means a liquid which is intended to be vaporised using an electronic cigarette or in another similar manner and which is not a nicotine liquid.
  • refill container means a receptacle that contains a nicotine liquid, which can be used to refill an electronic cigarette.

Customs levies value added tax and possible customs duties on goods brought into the country. Certain products are also subject to excise duty, e.g. alcohol and tobacco products.

When the total value of the goods in a consignment without postage fees is no more than 22 euros, the consignment is free of value added tax. However, this value limit is not applied to tobacco products, alcohol, alcoholic beverages or perfumes. If the value of the goods in a consignment is more than 22 euros but no more than 150 euros, the goods are exempt from customs duty. However, value added tax will be levied if the calculated VAT is more than or equal to 5 euros. Value added tax is always levied on tobacco products, alcohol and alcoholic beverages, though. The value added tax levied on import is calculated by multiplying the value added tax basis by the applicable tax rate (24 %, 14 % or 10 %).

If the value of the goods in a consignment is more than 150 euros, excluding postage fees, import will be subject to customs duties, in other words, a customs value will be defined for the goods. Customs duties are generally ad valorem duties, meaning that they are calculated as a percentage of the customs value.

Read more: What are import duties and taxes?


The freight carrier only sends a notice of arrival for a consignment that needs to be cleared through Customs. On the arrival notice, the arrival ID for the postal consignment may end in an EU country code, even though the consignment originally was dispatched outside the EU.

Always declare the actual country of consignment.


  • Counterfeit products can pose a risk to health or public safety. Counterfeit medicines, vehicle spare parts and electrical devices involve a particularly significant risk.
  • There is no reliable research available on counterfeit products. For example, a clothing item can catch fire or cause an allergic reaction, and children’s toys may contain harmful ingredients and parts that may come loose. Hazardous materials used in counterfeit products can cause cancer. Counterfeit spare parts of vehicles may cause malfunctions and accidents, and counterfeit electronics products may cause short circuits.
  • There is no guarantee for counterfeit products, and the people responsible cannot be tracked down when the product breaks down or causes damage.
  • Vast amounts of money are involved in the counterfeiting business, and they are used to fund organised crime. Do you want to support that?
  • Counterfeits corrode the market for genuine products. As a result, around 100 000 jobs are lost annually in Europe. Your job might be at risk too.
  • Counterfeit products do not yield any tax revenue. The money must be levied by society from some other source, for example your salary.
  • The selling of pirated copies of music, computer software, films and other similar products is depriving their makers of their income.

A postal consignment with a notice of arrival sent by Posti

When you receive a notice of arrival of the subsequent delivery, call Customs on 0295 5206. Before calling, ensure that you have all the necessary details and documents on hand:

  • customs clearance number
  • order confirmation or invoice
  • arrival ID for a subsequent postal consignment. 

The postal consignment can be declared as soon as the following text is displayed in Posti’s item tracking service: “The delivery has arrived at the customs warehouse. You have 20 days from the day of the delivery to take care of the customs declaration.”

If you have queries, contact Posti, since Customs does not send arrival notifications. Nor does Customs transport or store any consignments.

Read more: The roles of Posti and Customs in online purchases

 


If you do not know or you cannot find out the contents of the postal consignment even from its sender, you can make a forwarding agreement with Posti, in which case Posti takes care of the customs clearance. Posti’s service is subject to a charge. You can contact Posti on 020 451 5900 or huolinta(at)posti.com.

Please note: Customs will not find out the contents of consignments at the request of customers.

Read more: The roles of Posti and Customs in online purchases


You can only order Medicines corresponding to three month’s use from within the EEA (not at all from outside the EEA). A larger amount requires a prescription or a patient instructions sheet issued by your physician. Also note the sizes of Finnish packages intended for self-treatment, i.e. you can only order Burana in packages of 30 pieces. Remember that you can only order the substances from a trader with a sales permit.

Read more: Medicines

 


Ask Evira about the restrictions and regulations regarding the importation of pets.

When clearing the animal through customs you have to pay 24 % value added tax on the purchase price of the dog as well as on transport costs and other costs. Read more about import duties and taxes.


As of 1 November 2016, the Åland Islands have imposed import restrictions and prohibitions on tobacco products and nicotine liquids equivalent to those in mainland Finland. As of 1 November 2016, a private person is allowed to bring from the Åland Islands to mainland Finland no more than a total of 1 000 grams of chewing tobacco, nasal snus and oral tobacco (snus) in one calendar day for personal use. The said products cannot be brought to the mainland as gifts.

Please note also that it is prohibited to acquire and receive chewing tobacco, nasal snus and oral tobacco from outside Finland by mail or in any other corresponding way. 


Postal consignments can be cleared free of charge via Customs’ Import Declaration Service.

Bear in mind that regarding freight consignments (not postal consignments), the carrier may charge you for clearing the consignment yourself. Check the service fees from the carrier.


If you receive goods produced in Germany or goods cleared in Germany, then you do not have to pay any import taxes to Finnish Customs.

Note that goods you have ordered from Germany can be delivered from outside the EU. In that case, the goods have to be cleared through Customs, and taxes usually have to be paid. You will receive a message from the freight carrier, when the consignment has to be cleared through customs.

Remember also that Helgoland and Büsingen in Germany are not a part of EUs customs and fiscal territory.

If you order alcoholic beverages or tobacco products, please read the related instructions on our website.


You can submit a customs declaration in the Import Declaration Service on behalf of another person if you have a power of attorney. The authorisation can be given either verbally or in writing. You can fill in and print out a complete power of attorney here for signing: Open power of attorney.

Having been authorised, you commit to submitting the customs declaration and paying the import duties on behalf of the recipient of the consignment.

Instructions for the authorised person: Log into the Import Declaration Service using your online banking IDs. Submits the declaration in your own name and provide your own details as recipient details. Provide the name of the person whose consignment is in question in the field “Name of the recipient” e.g. Anna Anybody/Andy Anybody.

Posti delivers the postal consignment directly to the recipient stated in the consignment or to the post office closest to the recipient even though the customs declaration is lodged by an authorised person.

The warehouse keeper storing the freight consignment releases or delivers the consignment to the recipient.


You can clear goods through customs in the following ways:

 1. Use the Customs Import Declaration Service

 2. Commission a forwarding company to clear your consignment through customs (subject to a charge). The import forwarding of postal consignments is handled by Posti. Further information on customs clearance

 3. You can clear a postal consignment at any customs office that handles postal clearances. Freight consignments can be cleared at the customs office closest to where the goods are. Take the notice of arrival with you as well as your order confirmation, or a receipt of your purchase and some official identification.


You can visit a customs office that handles postal clearances or you can commission a forwarding company to handle the consignment. The import forwarding of postal consignments is handled by Posti.


You may authorise another person to clear a consignment and pay the import duties to Customs on your behalf via the Import Declaration Service. The authorisation can be given either verbally or in writing. You can fill in and print out a complete power of attorney here for signing: Open power of attorney

Instructions for the authorised person: Log into the Import Declaration Service using your online banking IDs. Submits the declaration in your own name and provide your own details as recipient details. Provide the name of the person whose consignment is in question in the field “Name of the recipient” e.g. Anna Anybody/Andy Anybody.

Posti delivers the postal consignment directly to the recipient stated in the consignment or to the post office nearest to the recipient.

The warehouse keeper storing the freight consignment releases or delivers the consignment to the recipient.


When you order and download an admission ticket from the internet:

  • No custom clearance is required for tickets sent via the internet and no import taxes have to be paid to customs.

When the admission ticket is sent to you:

  • Customs duties and value added tax on import are only levied on goods, not services. For instance, when buying a concert ticket or a ticket to a soccer match, you only buy the right to partake in the event and the value is considered to be the paper it's printed on, not the price of the ticket. When the value of a consignment without transport or other costs does not exceed 22 euros, then the import is free from value added tax. Consignments considered of low value, i.e. worth under 150 euros, are free from customs duties.

Read more about consignments of low value and customs clearance

 

 


A private person is not allowed to obtain or receive by mail, as a goods shipment or by any other means from a country outside of Finland tobacco products, electronic cigarettes or nicotine-containing liquids purchased from a trader by means of distance communication. 

Read more: Ordering tobacco products online

 


It is prohibited to acquire and receive oral tobacco (snus), chewing tobacco and nasal snus from outside Finland by mail or in any other corresponding way.

Read more: Ordering tobacco products online


You cannot order or bring in whale meat. Importing whale meat from any country, including all EU countries, is prohibited by national legislation.

Read more:


The right of private persons to bring in seeds is subject to plant health requirements. Read more in Evira’s instruction Import requirements for plants brought in by travellers (in Finnish)

  • For personal use you can bring in 200 g of seeds from European countries outside the European Union. Both from EU countries and from non-EU countries you can freely bring in seeds for which a phytosanitary certificate is not required. Note that in accordance with the Seed Trade Act, it is prohibited to bring in any seeds from Russia. It is also prohibited to bring in any pine and Douglas fir seeds.

You can read about the requirements according to the Seed Trade Act in Evira’s instruction for seed importers and marketers (in Finnish)

  1. A private person doesn’t need to register as importer in case of a single import transaction where the total amount of the imported seeds doesn’t exceed 200 grams.
  2. A private person doesn’t need to notify Evira’s Seed Certification Unit of the import transaction if the amount of seeds doesn't exceed 200 grams.
  3. When private persons bring in seeds, they have to make sure that the import country’s seed certification system corresponds to the EU system according to point 2.2 in the instruction. If the amount of seeds exceeds 200 g, the seed varieties must be listed in the EU’s catalogue of varieties, see Annex 2 to the instruction.

You can order or bring in a knife or a sword. According to the Public Order Act, the import of knifes and swords is not prohibited, but the possession of knifes and swords in a public place is subject to restrictions.

Read more:


The Tobacco Act imposes no restrictions on the import of nicotine-free liquids for use in electronic cigarettes or devices similar to single-use electronic cigarettes prefilled with nicotine-free liquid. It should be noted, however, that the nicotine concentration may not always be appropriately marked on products ordered from abroad. If, upon import, Customs suspects that the nicotine concentration of a product has not been appropriately marked, the product may be examined by the Customs Laboratory.

Read more: Ordering tobacco products online

 


You cannot order medicines and medicinal products from outside the EEA. Medicines corresponding to three month’s use and in packages with a maximum of 30 pieces, can be order from within the EEA without a prescription. When ordering larger amounts, you need a prescription.

Read more: Medicines


You cannot order brass knuckles, a stiletto or throwing stars, because importing them is prohibited.

Read more:


Consignments cannot be cleared through Customs in advance.

You can clear a postal consignment once you’ve received the notice of arrival. The notice of arrival can also be sent in electronic format.

The postal consignment can be declared once the following text is displayed in Posti’s item tracking service: “The delivery has arrived at the customs warehouse. You have 20 days from the day of the delivery to take care of the customs declaration.”

 


You can, under certain conditions. Acquaint yourself with the Tax Administration’s guide regarding Tax-free sales to travellers in Finland


The import from outside the EU to Finland of products made from seals is restricted, and the importer must have a certificate issued by the authority of the state of origin. Products made from seals that are intended for the traveller’s personal use do not require a certificate of origin, but they do have to fulfil the criteria in Customs’ restriction manual.

In addition to the general restrictions, the import of some seal products is prohibited altogether. The importation of raw hides, treated skins and products made out of white seal pups of Greenland and hooded seal pups is prohibited, also from another EU country.

Read more


According to the Tobacco Act, waterpipe tobacco means a tobacco product which can be used exclusively for smoking via a waterpipe. Passenger imports of water pipe tobacco are not restricted by the Tobacco Act, except when the product is brought to Finland from outside the European Economic Area. In such circumstances, the time limits for passenger imports as provided for by section 66 of the Tobacco Act must be noted.

To bring in tobacco products you must be aged 18 or over.

Read more: Bringing back obacco


Nicotine liquid which has a nicotine concentration of no more than 20 milligrams per millilitre and which is not to be used for a purpose defined in section 3(1) of the Medicines Act (395/1987) is subject to the Tobacco Act. A private person is not allowed to obtain or receive by mail, as a goods shipment or by any other means from a country outside of Finland tobacco products, electronic cigarettes or nicotine-containing liquids purchased from a trader by means of distance communication.

According to the Consumer Protection Act, a means of distance communication is defined as telephones, post, televisions, information networks that can be used for the conclusion of contracts without the parties being simultaneously present.

A private person is not allowed to import, obtain or receive by mail or by comparable means from a country outside of Finland a nicotine-containing liquid intended for vaporisation using an electronic cigarette when the liquid contains more than 20 milligrams of nicotine per millilitre or when it is to be used for a purpose defined in section 3(1) of the Medicines Act.


                            

Contact us
Customs Information Service, Private customers
Monday to Friday 8 am–4 pm

Contact Customs Information

The cost of a call from a landline or mobile phone subscription is 0 cents/min + local network charge/ standard mobile rate.
In car tax matters, kindly contact the Tax Administration (vero.fi)

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