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What parcels need to be declared?

Customs clearance and the amount of import duties to be paid on a parcel are determined by its value and the country of dispatch. Import duties include value added tax, customs duty and excise tax which are usually paid in connection with customs clearance.

Parcels arriving from within the EU territory need not be declared. All parcels arriving from outside the EU must be declared. With our Customs Duty Calculator, you can estimate how much customs duty and VAT you must pay for your parcel. 

Note that used goods must be declared in the same way as new goods. They can also be subject to import duties. Services downloaded on the Internet such as games, software and music need not be declared, and they are not subject to customs duty. Read more on the Tax Administration website (in Finnish).

Parcel from the EU, for example from Germany or the Netherlands

As a rule, such a parcel need not be declared. You are also not required to pay any value added tax, customs duties or excise tax for the parcel. 

When you order goods from within the EU, they may be sent to you from outside the EU. When necessary, you should check with the seller whether the goods have already been declared for entry to the EU. If the goods have not been declared for entry to the EU, you must declare the parcel in the same way as a parcel arriving from outside the EU.

Parcel from outside the EU, for example from China or the United States

The parcel must be declared and, as a rule, VAT must be paid. Customs duty can be required as well if the value of the parcel is more than 150 euros excluding transport costs. Please note that, for example, the United Kingdom and Norway are not EU member states.

However, customs duties must always be paid for alcohol and cigarette products, perfumes and eau de toilette items. Some products such as alcoholic beverages are also subject to excise tax.

If the seller of your goods has an IOSS identifer, you have already paid VAT in connection with your purchase, and it is no longer required in connection with customs clearance. 

Parcel from inside the EU customs territory, but from outside the EU fiscal territory, for example from the Åland Islands or Canary Islands

For example the Åland Islands and the Canary Islands belong to the customs territory of the EU but not to its fiscal territory. Parcels from such territories must be declared and VAT must be paid for them. However, customs duty is not required. Some products such as alcoholic beverages are also subject to excise tax.

Is the region a part of the EU customs territory or the EU fiscal territory? You can check it from the EU customs and fiscal territory chart.

Points to consider

Have you received a customs clearance request concerning a letter, a card or a parcel containing for example a certificate, passport or some other document? Very often, such items are not commercially valuable. However, you are required to declare such a parcel, as a value was determined for it upon dispatch.

You can declare the consignment yourself in the Import Declaration Service for private persons. On the start page, select the option of declaring “purchased goods”. On the “Consignment details” page, enter the value of the parcel. Usually the value of a document 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 “Printed products ” 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.

This is how you clear documents if you cannot use the e-service

If you cannot use Import Declaration Service for private persons, e.g. because you don’t have Finnish online banking ID codes, a certificate card or a mobile certificate, clear documents with the form “Private person’s declaration of goods imported from outside the customs and fiscal territory of the EU” (1143). See also the detailed instructions for completing the form.

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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