Subscriptions of newspapers and magazines and books

Did you order or buy a book, newspaper or magazine from abroad? The country where the book, newspaper or magazine is sent from determines whether your purchase has to be declared to Customs and import taxes paid. 

You don’t have to declare electronic books, newspapers and magazines that you read online. However, if the books, newspapers or magazines are delivered in a physical format (e.g. in CD format), they must be declared. 

Please note: 

Declaring newspapers and magazines

  • A newspaper or magazine does not need to be declared when
    • it is delivered from the customs and fiscal territory of the EU and
    • it has been produced in the EU or cleared into the EU.
  • A newspaper or magazine must be declared when
    • it is delivered to Finland from outside the customs and fiscal territory of the EU, or from the customs territory but outside the fiscal territory (e.g. from the Canary Islands) without having been cleared.
  • The VAT rate for newspapers and magazines is 10 % 
  • Exemption from customs duty is granted if the total value of the goods in the shipment, exclusive of transport costs, does not exceed 150 euros.

Declaring books

  • A book shipment does not need to be declared if
    • it is delivered from the customs and fiscal territory of the EU and
    • it has been produced in the EU or cleared into the EU.
  • A book shipment must be declared if
    • it is delivered to Finland from outside the customs and fiscal territory of the EU, or from the customs territory but outside the fiscal territory (e.g. from the Canary Islands) without having been cleared.
  • The VAT rate for books is 10 %
  • Exemption from customs duty is granted if the total value of the goods in the shipment, exclusive of transport costs, does not exceed 150 euros.

 

A subscription newspaper or magazine arriving 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 2022. 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.

A free membership magazine sent by an association or an organisation

You can declare the consignment yourself in the Import Declaration Service for private persons. On the start page, select the option of declaring “goods I’ve purchased”. On the “Consignment details” page, enter the value of the parcel. Usually the value of a membership magazine is very low. However, the declared value cannot be 0 euros. The lowest possible declared value is 0.01 €. If you do not know the value, you should ask the sender.

Enter any possible transport costs under “transport costs”.

On the “Goods details” page, find and select “Magazines and comics” and enter the value of the goods to be declared. Add the goods to the declaration basket, and enter any other required details.

If your consignment is transported by Posti and you paid tax for the customs clearance, remember to also pay the Posti handling fee so that Posti can deliver your parcel. This does not concern customers of Åland Post.


Read more

  • The terms newspapers and periodicals, as well as prerequisites regarding subscription sales, are defined in the guide Verohallinnon ohje on the Tax Administration website.
  • Customs clearance options (submitting a customs declaration and clearing consignments through Customs)

 

Any questions?

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