Transit declaration and transit authorisations

Transit declarations can be submitted in the Customs Clearance Service using or via message exchange. To use message exchange, you need, in addition to the software, a decision on registration for message exchange with Customs.

Data requirements for transit declarations

When filling in a transit declaration in the Customs Clearance Service, you can find guidance on how to fill in the declaration via the tooltips or via the link “Help and documentation”. In message exchange, you can find the information you need in the message implementing guidelines for transit. For each detail, information is provided on whether the detail is mandatory or optional and whether it should be given as a code, a number or in letters, and on how many characters are allowed.

Goods description and commodity code

The goods description is essential in the transit procedure. It has to be exact enough, so that the right amount of transit guarantee can be determined. Furthermore, if Customs wants to inspect the goods, it must be possible to identify them based on the description.

The commodity code is provided as a 6-digit or 8-digit code, but for the time being, it is optional to provide the code. Even if the commodity code provides more detailed information on the goods, the goods description must still be entered in the transit declaration by providing the common trade name of the goods. If the transit declaration contains many different goods, they have to be provided as separate goods items.

Please note that providing the commodity code speeds up the processing of the declaration. If no commodity code has been provided and you’re submitting the transit declaration in the Customs Clearance Service, the service will not be able to estimate the amount of guarantee to be reserved.

When do I need a transit authorisation, and what authorisations do I need?

If you want to use the transit procedure regularly, it’s worthwhile to obtain an authorisation for simplifications. Transit simplifications are: comprehensive guarantee, authorised consignor and authorised consignee for transit, and authorisation to use seals of a special type in conjunction with the authorised consignor authorisation.

  • The comprehensive guarantee authorisation gives you the right to use a bank guarantee, which means that you don’t have to provide a separate cash guarantee or guarantor’s undertaking to Customs for the amount of duties and taxes due for each transit operation.
  • If there is no customs office where your company is located, then it would be worth considering applying for status as an authorised consignor for transit. That way you won’t have to visit a customs office to open the procedure, and you can act as an authorised consignor from any location approved by Customs. The authorised consignor authorisation requires a comprehensive guarantee authorisation.
  • In addition to the authorised consignor authorisation, it is worthwhile to obtain an authorisation to use seals of a special type. The seals are needed in order to identify the goods and to facilitate border crossings. Holders of authorisations to use seas of a special type have the right to seal the transport or parcels themselves, and do not have to visit a customs office to attach the seal. However, the seals must still meet Customs’ requirements.
  • If your company has been granted status as an authorised consignee by Customs, you can request loading permission from Customs either in the Customs Clearance Service or via message exchange, and you don’t have to visit the customs office.

How do I apply for transit authorisations?

Authorisations involving transit are applied for using the Authorisations and Decisions Service (available in Finnish and Swedish).

Points to consider

If you have submitted the declaration in the Customs Clearance Service, you can correct it yourself by submitting an amendment request. The declaration can still be corrected when you’re opening the transit procedure at the customs office of departure. A declaration you’ve submitted via message exchange can be corrected up until you’ve received a release for transit message from Customs. After this, the declaration cannot be corrected; instead, you have to request that the transit declaration be invalidated and lodge a new declaration.

Request invalidation of the declaration by submitting an invalidation request to Customs. The invalidation request can be submitted

  • after registration or acceptance of the declaration before release for the procedure
  • when the goods covered by the declaration have been released for the procedure, but the transit movement has not yet crossed the border, exited the security area or arrived at the destination.
    • If one of the above has already taken place, the transit procedure is discharged at the destination or with messages sent by the authorised consignee.

Invalidation can be requested for the whole declaration or for a goods item. If the transit declaration has not yet been accepted but it has been registered, invalidation always concerns the whole declaration.