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Questions frequently asked by private persons

This is our FAQ page.

You can browse the most popular topics or write your question in the field below.


Ordering goods online

No. It is prohibited to acquire and receive oral tobacco (snus), chewing tobacco and nasal tobacco from outside Finland by mail or in any other corresponding way.

Read more: Ordering tobacco products online

 


No. A private person is not allowed to obtain or receive by mail, as a goods shipment or by any other means from outside Finland tobacco products, electronic cigarettes or nicotine liquids ordered from a trader by means of distance communication.

Read more: Ordering tobacco products online

 

 


Customs neither receives nor stores parcels or any other consignments. If e.g. the consignor or the freight carrier sends you a notification saying ‘Lähetys on tullissa’ or ‘Held by Customs’, it usually means that the consignment has to be cleared through customs before you can receive it.

The easiest way is to clear it yourself on the internet. You can also buy the customs clearance as a service from Posti or the carrier.

The consignment to be cleared is always held by the carrier company. If your consignment is a postal parcel, it is held by Posti. If some other carrier company transports the consignment, it is in the freight carrier’s warehouse. For more information contact Posti or the freight carrier.


Consignments delivered by an express courier are “freight clearances”. When you clear the parcel, be especially observant regarding two things:

  1. declare the right parcel quantity and total weight and
  2. send to the express courier the decision on release, which you received from Customs. 

Without this information the express courier cannot deliver the consignment to you.


Customs clearance

If you have received a notification from Posti of the arrival of a consignment that you don’t have to clear, ask for the parcel to be released as follows:

Submit

  • the order confirmation or invoice or receipt as well as any additional documents,
  • the arrival ID of the postal consignment (on the arrival notification from Posti) and
  • your contact details

by email to lentoposti(at)tulli.fi.


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

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

Yes, you can use the credit feature or the debit feature of your card (VISA debit/credit and MasterCard debit/credit).

Please note that the minimum payment amount in the Import Declaration Service is 0.65 euros.


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: “Delivery awaits for your customs declaration. Please handle the customs declaration within 20 days from arrival.”

 


Customs control

Customs supervises and controls arriving and departing goods and travellers. Customs supervises the compliance with time limits concerning imports of tobacco products and nicotine liquids in connection with other customs enforcement through control measures aimed the flows of vehicles and travellers in different traffic types.

Section 66 of the Tobacco Act provides for the time limits on imports of tobacco products and nicotine liquids by travellers from non-EEA countries. The time limits are implemented to prevent illegal trade in tobacco products, and to prevent the entry into the Finnish market of tobacco products that are in violation of the Tobacco Products Directive.

Read more: Bringing back tobacco products from travels 

 


To carry out a customs inspection of a person does not require any evidence or suspicion of any offence. The selection is based on a risk assessment or other observation made by Customs.

According to a decision by the Parliamentary Ombudsman, stopping a person and discussing with him or her does not yet constitute a customs inspection.

Read more: Customs control

 


No, they won’t.

The radiation from Customs’ x-ray scanners has no effect on either foodstuffs or film materials.

Read more: Customs control


No. Before the vehicle is scanned, the driver assures Customs in writing that there is no one in the vehicle. Nevertheless, the radiation dose received during a scan is so small as not to pose any danger to humans. A normal medical x-ray examination gives a higher radiation dose to a patient.

Customs does not under any circumstances scan people. Customs can order a person to undergo a bodily search that is performed in the form of an x-ray examination. The x-ray examination of a person is a medical procedure and is always undertaken under the supervision of a doctor.

Read more: Customs control

 


Travelling

If you live in Finland and you arrive in Finland from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) other than by air and your journey has lasted no more than 24 hours, you are not allowed to bring in tobacco products or nicotine liquids.

Exception: You are allowed to bring in tobacco products and nicotine liquids if it is apparent that you obtained them before you left Finland. For instance, text warnings in Finnish and Swedish can be taken as an indication that the product was bought in Finland.

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

Read more: Bringing back tobacco products from travels 


If the unit packets of tobacco products do not bear the required health warnings – text warnings in Finnish and Swedish and the picture warnings – you are not allowed to bring in more than 200 cigarettes to Finland even if you pay the taxes.

Read more: Bringing back tobacco products from travels 


A private person is allowed to bring into Finland no more than a total of 1 000 grams of chewing tobacco, nasal tobacco and tobacco for oral use (snus) in one calendar day for his or her personal use. These products cannot be brought in as gifts.

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

Read more: Bringing back tobacco products from travels 


Customs supervises and controls arriving and departing goods and travellers. Customs supervises the compliance with time limits concerning imports of tobacco products and nicotine liquids in connection with other customs enforcement through control measures aimed the flows of vehicles and travellers in different traffic types.

Section 66 of the Tobacco Act provides for the time limits on imports of tobacco products and nicotine liquids by travellers from non-EEA countries. The time limits are implemented to prevent illegal trade in tobacco products, and to prevent the entry into the Finnish market of tobacco products that are in violation of the Tobacco Products Directive.

Read more: Bringing back tobacco products from travels 

 


Åland

You are allowed to bring in two litres of beer free of tax from or to the Åland Islands. Otherwise, the same quantity limitations that apply to imports from outside the EU also apply to imports from Åland, as well as from the Canary Islands.

Read more: Bringing back alcohol

 


There are no quantitative restrictions on alcohol released for consumption (i.e. taxes have been paid).

Tax-free import allowances on alcohol bought from a tax-free shop are 1 litre of strong alcoholic beverages (over 22%) or 2 litres of other alcoholic beverages (max 22 %), 4 litres of still wine and 2 litres of beer.

Read more: Bringing alcohol from your trip


Moving to or from Finland

You may, if your permanent residence has been outside the customs and fiscal territory of the EU for a continuous period of at least 12 months before moving to Finland, and the other conditions for exemption from customs duties and value added tax are met.


You can bring in your removal goods to Finland free from customs duty and value added tax within 12 months after your move.

Read more: Moving to Finland from outside the EU customs and tax territory


If you are moving from outside the EU to Finland, your permanent residence will have to have been outside the customs and fiscal territory of the EU for a continuous period of at least 12 months, then you can be granted exemption from customs duties and value added tax if the other conditions are met.

If you are moving from outside the EU to another EU country, you will have to clear your removal goods through customs in that country. Then, if you move from that EU country to Finland, your move takes place within the EU and your removal goods will not have to be cleared in Finland.

Read more: Moving to Finland from outside the EU customs and tax territory


Gift consignments

You’ll find instructions on sending parcels abroad on Posti’s website. Posti’s website also has information on prohibited and dangerous items and country-specific bans and restrictions.

Many export restrictions also apply to gift consignments. Such goods include products derived from endangered animals and plants.

Please note that the sender is responsible for finding out what the current export restrictions are, as well as the import restrictions of the country of destination. You can get more information about the restrictions e.g. from the country’s embassy or authorities. Finnish Customs does not provide information about the import restrictions of other countries.


If you receive a gift you have to ask the sender to clarify what the gift is and how much it is worth, so that Customs can define whether it is a gift that can be released without customs clearance.

Gifts worth more than 45 euros are to be cleared through Customs, and import taxes are levied on them as for any other online purchase. 

Read more: Clearing gifts through Customs

Go to the Import Declaration Service


Gifts sent from outside the EU from a private individual to another that are worth up to 45 euros, and meant for the personal use of the consignee or their family members, are usually duty free and tax exempt, given that the nature and quantity of the goods does not imply commercial intent. Exceptions to the exemption from duty/tax: gift consignments containing alcohol products and tobacco products, perfumes, eau de toilette products, coffee or tea.

Value added tax and excise duty are always collected when the gift consignment arrives from outside the customs and fiscal territory of the EU and contains cigarettes, cigarillos, cigars, pipe tobacco and cigarette tobacco, alcohol or alcoholic beverages. Detailed information: Receiving gifts


Goods that arrive from outside of the customs and fiscal territory of the EU, or from the EU’s customs territory but from outside of its fiscal territory, are usually to be cleared through Customs. As a consignee, you always have to clear any gift worth over 45 euros, since it is subject to tax. Read more about other gift consignments that need to be cleared through Customs. Even if the consignment is a gift, you must provide a receipt, invoice or other credible proof for the customs clearance, so that the value of the gift can be confirmed. 

Read more about clearing gifts through Customs.


Restrictions

No. It is prohibited to acquire and receive oral tobacco (snus), chewing tobacco and nasal tobacco from outside Finland by mail or in any other corresponding way.

Read more: Ordering tobacco products online

 


Ask the Finnish Food Safety Authority Evira about the restrictions and regulations regarding the importation of pets.

Clear the pet through Customs when you enter the country. Present documents and the invoice for the pet in connection with the customs clearance. You can bring in the pet without paying duties or taxes as long as the value limit for imports by travellers is not exceeded. The value limit is 430 or 300 euros depending on which transport vehicle you use. If the value limit is exceeded, the amount of VAT payable is 24% of the purchase price plus transport costs and possible insurance costs. Read more about import duties and taxes.


You may bring less than 10 kg of forest mushrooms and berries for personal use without sampling or measurement of radiation level.


Some snakes are restricted by CITES, thus liquor containing snakes cannot be brought in without the appropriate CITES permits.                    

More information from Finland’s environmental administration


Import Declaration Service

Consignments delivered by an express courier are “freight clearances”. When you clear the parcel, be especially observant regarding two things:

  1. declare the right parcel quantity and total weight and
  2. send to the express courier the decision on release, which you received from Customs. 

Without this information the express courier cannot deliver the consignment to you.


Yes, you can use the credit feature or the debit feature of your card (VISA debit/credit and MasterCard debit/credit).

Please note that the minimum payment amount in the Import Declaration Service is 0.65 euros.


It is always Posti or the carrier that will send you a notice of arrival or notify you of the arrival of a consignment that needs to be cleared through customs. You will need the information you have received if you clear the consignment yourself. Please contact Posti or the carrier if you have any questions about the notice of arrival.


                            

Contact us

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

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In car tax matters, kindly contact the Tax Administration (vero.fi)

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