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Import Declaration for private persons

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Frequently asked questions on import declaration for private persons

Yes, you can. You may clear a consignment and pay the import duties on another person’s behalf. You can provide the authorisation either verbally or in writing.

If you clear goods on someone else’s behalf it means that you are liable for the customs duties due and for the details provided only in cases where you are were aware or you should have been aware of the incorrectness of information provided in the declaration. In other cases, the person you are representing is responsible for both the customs debt and possible post-clearance. (Direct representation).

Posti delivers the postal consignment directly to the recipient stated on the consignment or to a pick-up point. Other transport companies deliver the consignments directly to the recipient as agreed.


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


Yes, they can. You may authorise another person to clear a consignment and to pay the import duties on your behalf. You can provide the authorisation either verbally or in writing.

If another person clears goods on your behalf, the person is only liable for the customs duties due and for the details provided in cases where they are were aware or they should have been aware of the incorrectness of information provided in the declaration. You are responsible for both the customs debt and possible post-clearance. (Direct representation).

Posti delivers the postal consignment directly to the recipient stated on the consignment or to a pick-up point. Other transport companies deliver the consignments directly to the recipient as agreed.


You can apply for repayment of the duties and taxes if, for example, you have sent the goods back to the seller outside the EU. How to submit a claim for a revised decision


You can change your email address when lodging a declaration. 

The email data are transferred to our service from the register of the Digital and Population Data Services Agency (DVV) when you log in. You can check and change your contact details on the website of the DVV.


Ask the sender for an order confirmation, an invoice 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.


You can declare goods stored in a customs warehouse (e.g. a car or boat you have bought) in the Import Declaration Service for private persons. 

On the start page of the service, enter the consignment’s arrival ID or the number of the transport document, or if you have neither of these, the reference number (MRN) of the customs warehousing declaration. You will usually receive the reference number from the warehouse keeper. Select “Other transport company” as the transport company. 

Select “Removal of goods from a customs warehouse” on the page Consignment details. Enter the warehousing MRN or the warehouse deposit number. You will usually receive this information from the warehouse keeper. 


Postal consignments can be cleared free of charge via Import Declaration Service for private persons.


If for example you have ordered multiple items, the arrival notification from Posti does not necessarily indicate which consignment has arrived. It is also possible that the tracking code of the consignment has changed, and therefore you cannot know what the specific consignment is.

For declaring your consignment, you will need an item tracking ID which can also be the original ID. You will also need to find out what consignment is in question, that is, the contents of the consignment and their value.

Check the order history in your online shop. Very often, the order history shows the price details and item tracking ID for each consignment.

Posti may issue a new tracking ID for the consignment. You can search for information on the consignment with both tracking IDs in the Posti item tracking service. You can also use other tracking services for finding out the location of your consignment and any possible changes in the tracking ID. For example, the weight details and the date of order can be useful in finding out the contents.

If the consignment is a gift, you should ask the sender to provide information on the contents and value.

Customs is not able to find out the contents of consignments. Customs does not store or transport consignments. Instead, consignments are kept in the storage facilities of transport companies.


Declare the consignment in the Import Declaration Service for private persons. The most convenient way to clear it is through online clearance: Customs clearance of a consignment after delivery


Declare the gift consignment in the Import Declaration Service for private persons. Choose that you wish to declare a gift sent by a private person. For the declaration, you’ll need to know the content and value of the gift, and you’ll need the notice of arrival.


  • Log in again to the Import Declaration Service for private persons.
  • You can find the declaration and the request for additional information on the page My declarations.
  • Follow the instructions in the request.
  • For more specific instructions, see the message sent by the customs clearance team. You will usually be asked to upload and send the order confirmation or some other document. You can also send the documents by email to the email address provided in the service.
  • Regarding gift consignments, you usually need to know what the gift contains and what the value of the contents is. Ask the sender (consignor) of the gift to provide this information in writing, for example by email or text message, and send the information to Customs.

Customs cannot process your declaration without the additional information.


  • Log in again to the Import Declaration Service for private persons
  • You can find the declaration and the request for additional information on the page My declarations.
  • Follow the instructions in the request.
  • For more specific instructions, see the message sent by the customs clearance team. You will usually be asked to upload and send the order confirmation or some other document. You can also send the documents by email to the email address provided in the service.

Customs cannot process your declaration without the additional information. 


Because there are errors or details missing in your declaration, you have to make some changes or additions to the details you’ve submitted.

  • Log in again to the Import Declaration Service for private persons
  • You can find the declaration and the request to correct it on the page My declarations.
  • Make the changes or additions to the details as requested.
  • Send the corrected declaration to Customs.

Customs cannot process your declaration without the corrected details.


Always provide them in the same currency as was used for them in the order confirmation, invoice or other document.


The Import Declaration Service works best with the latest versions of the following browsers: Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Apple Safari.


Please use the warehouse IDs found here when using the Import Declaration Service for private persons.


A seller who has an IOSS number, charges the Finnish VAT at the time of purchase. The VAT is included in the price of the goods and you don’t need to pay any additional VAT in connection with customs clearance. The postal company will usually declare the consignment on your behalf, and no action is required on your part. Consignments from other transport companies will need to be declared by you, unless you have agreed with the transport company that they will clear the goods on your behalf.

IOSS sellers are registered for VAT within the EU territory. This means that the VAT is included in the price of the goods purchased and the seller accounts for the VAT to the EU. This has been possible since 1 July 2021.

Where can I find the IOSS number?

The IOSS number is in the order confirmation or the invoice. If necessary, request it from the seller.

When do I need the IOSS number?

Generally, you don’t need an IOSS number.

You only need the IOSS number if you have paid the VAT when you purchased the goods and the following text is not shown in the Import Declaration Service for private persons on the page ‘Consignment details’ ‘The VAT has been charged at the point of purchase, but you must still declare the consignment.’ In that case, enter the IOSS number in the service.

How do I provide the IOSS number?

In the Import Declaration Service for private persons, you are asked ‘Have you paid the VAT for the consignment already at the point of purchase?’

Only choose ‘Yes’ if you have bought the goods from an IOSS-seller and you paid the VAT at the point of purchase. You should also consult the postal company or other transport company to find out if they will clear the parcel on your behalf or if you need to do it yourself.

The service asks you to provide the IOSS number. The IOSS number is in the order confirmation or the invoice. If necessary, request it from the seller.

You can read more about the topic on our page on IOSS identifier.


Fill in a customs clearance for each notice of arrival. You can only clear the goods of one notice of arrival with one customs clearance.

Example: If you have three notices of arrival, fill in three customs clearances.


When you receive a newspaper or magazine from outside the EU

You must declare each newspaper or magazine individually to Customs and pay the VAT due for it. Even if you have subscribed for the newspaper or magazine for a longer period, each newspaper or magazine issue included in the subscription must be declared separately.

In the service, select that you wish to declare “goods I’ve purchased”.

If your newspaper or magazine subscription started before 1 July 2021, you will only have to pay VAT for the newspapers or magazines that arrive after that date. You can calculate the value of a single newspaper or magazine issue by dividing the total price of the subscription with the number of issues included in it.

  • Example: The subscription period is 12 months, that is, 1 January–31 December 2021. The magazine is delivered once a month. The price of the subscription period is USD 80. Divide the price of the subscription period, USD 80, with the number of magazine issues. The price of an individual magazine issue is USD 6.67 (80 : 12 = 6.67).

On the page “Consignment details”, under “Value of the consignment without transport costs”, enter the price and currency of a single magazine issue.

On the page “Goods details”, enter “magazine” in the search field and select “magazines and comics”. Under “Price and currency”, enter the price and currency of the individual magazine issue.

Fill in the missing details and submit the declaration. You can pay the VAT straight away.

If an undeclared newspaper or magazine is delivered to you, be sure to submit the declaration afterwards.

When you receive a newspaper or magazine sent from another EU country to the Åland Islands

You can submit a declaration and pay the VAT for all newspapers or magazines included in the subscription period (or for remaining issues of the subscription period) at the same time.

In the service, select that you wish to declare “an undeclared purchase already delivered to me/a newspaper or magazine subscription”.

Under “Goods description”, enter the name of the newspaper or magazine, the invoice due date and the subscription period for which you are paying VAT.

Under “Price and currency”, enter the price and currency of the subscription period.

  • Example: The subscription period is 12 months, that is, 1 January–31 December 2021. The magazine is delivered once a month. The price of the subscription period is EUR 80. Divide the price of the subscription period, EUR 80, with the number of magazine issues. The price of an individual magazine issue is EUR 6.67 (80 : 12 = 6.67). As the price of the subscription period, enter only the value of the magazines delivered from July onwards, that is, 40 euros (6 x 6.67 = 40), and EUR as the currency.

Select “10% books, newspapers and magazines” as the VAT rate.

Fill in the missing details and submit the declaration. You can pay the VAT straight away.

You can also declare each magazine issue individually and pay the VAT for it.

  • Example: The subscription period is 12 months, that is, 1 January–31 December 2021. The magazine is delivered once a month. The price of the subscription period is EUR 80. Divide the price of the subscription period, EUR 80, with the number of magazine issues. The price of an individual magazine issue is EUR 6.67 (80 : 12 = 6.67). Enter 6,67 as the price and EUR as the currency.

On the page “Consignment details”, under “Value of the consignment without transport costs”, enter the price and currency of a single magazine issue.

Fill in the missing details and submit the declaration. You can pay the VAT straight away.

When you receive a magazine sent from mainland Finland to the Åland Islands

Many Finnish newspaper or magazine publishers will declare the newspapers or magazines you have subscribed to on your behalf. In that case, you don’t have to declare them or pay the VAT to Customs; instead, the VAT will be included on the subscription invoice.

If the sender has not declared the newspaper or magazine issues, you must declare them in the Customs Clearance Service. You can declare the issues for the whole subscription period at the same time or each issue individually. You cannot declare the magazine subscription in the Import Declaration Service for private persons.


In the notice of arrival sent by the transport company and in the Import Declaration Service for private persons, the indicated country of dispatch may be an EU country, even though the consignment was originally dispatched from outside the EU. This can happen if the goods have been intermediately stored as undeclared in the EU, for example.  Enter the actual country of dispatch in the Import Declaration Service, and then you can clear the goods. 

You may need to check with the seller from which non-EU country the consignment was sent. You can get more information in advance about customs declaration upon import from the seller or, for example, from the terms of delivery of the online store you are using.


If you are a foreign private person who does not have a Finnish personal identity code and you are unable to identify yourself with Finnish identification tokens, you cannot, at the moment, identify yourself using the Finnish Authenticator Service when logging in to the Import Declaration Service for private persons or to the Customs Clearance Service.

Instead, you can authorise another person or an agent to declare the consignment on your behalf. See also Instructions for other service alternatives.


For declaring your gift, you need the following:

  • arrival notification from the transport company
  • information on the gift and its value, for example, a free-form account on the value or a receipt on the goods. (If necessary, ask the sender for the account in advance.)
  • Customs may also wish to see other documents.

 


Contact the transport company to find out if your consignment has already been sent back to the sender (consignor). If your consignment has not been sent back, contact Customs to find out the amount of interest on arrears due.

Before you can get your consignment delivered to you, you must also pay the interest on arrears. Please note that you cannot pay an invoice in the declaration service if its due date has passed. Pay for the clearance in your online bank the same day that you find out the amount of interest on arrears. Keep in mind that it can take 2–3 days for the payment to reach Customs.


Write a free-form claim for a revised decision and send it with the relevant enclosures to [email protected] Read the instructions on how to lodge a claim for a revised decision.


You cannot use the Import Declaration Service for private persons if you do not have an online banking ID, a certificate card or a mobile certificate.

Examples of items that cannot be cleared via the Import Declaration Service

  • removal goods
  • live animals
  • investment gold
  • VAT-free bank notes

  • goods you transport to Finland yourself.

You can declare consignments that contain such goods in the Customs Clearance Service.


- After you have personally lodged the customs clearance of your consignment in the Import Declaration Service for private persons, your customs clearance decision, decision on release and customs invoice will be available for 90 days in the service.

  1. Log in to the Service.
  2. Go to “My declarations”. If you’re using a mobile device, you can find the heading by opening the menu in the top right-hand corner of the service.
  3. Select your customs clearance and documentation.

- You will also find the documentation on your customs clearances in the Customs Clearance Service. The Customs Clearance Service also contains the customs clearances you have done using the Service.

  1. Log in to the Service.
  2. Go to the “Finished” tab. If you know the MRN of your customs clearance, you can search your customs clearance on the “Declaration search” tab in the Customs Clearance Service.
  3. The clearance documents are on the “Summary and submission” page.

- When you have personally lodged the customs clearance of your consignment before 11 February 2020, the customs clearance decision and decision on release are available in the Import Declaration Service.

- When a transport company or a forwarding company has cleared your consignment on your behalf, ask them for the documentation.

MRN required for submitting a claim for a revised decision

You are not required to attach the customs clearance decision to an application for a revised decision if the customs clearance was completed in the Import Declaration Service for private persons on 11 February 2020 or later. However, the MRN of the clearance should be filled in carefully in the application for a revised decision.

As a private person you should keep the customs clearance documents for the current year and an additional six years following the clearance. Customs may ask you to present these documents.


It is always Posti or the transport company that will send you a notice of arrival or notify you of the arrival of a consignment that needs to be cleared through customs.


Customs does not send separate customs invoices. Pay for the clearance when you are clearing a consignment in the Import Declaration Service for private persons or in the Customs Clearance Service (where e.g. live animals are cleared). If you need an invoice, you can get it from the service you are using.


Due to Customs’ rules on country of origin, it is not possible to select an EU country as the country of origin when the goods are imported from outside the EU. In such exceptional cases, the country of dispatch must be selected as the country of origin.


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Contact us

Contact Customs Information Mon–Fri 8 am–4.15 pm

Please have a look at the frequently asked questions.

If you have a question about the arrival of parcels, its contents or the handling fee, please contact Posti.

Customs Information Service