You can bring some goods from abroad without having to pay UK tax or ‘duty’, as long as they’re for your own use. This is commonly known as your ‘personal allowance’.
The amount of goods you can bring in without paying tax or duty on them depends on:
- where you’re travelling from
- if you’re arriving in Great Britain (England, Wales and Scotland)
- if you’re arriving in Northern Ireland
Declaring goods to customs
Before crossing the UK border you must tell customs about (‘declare’) any goods:
- where you go over your allowances
- that are banned or restricted
If you go over an allowance, you will have to pay tax and duty on all the goods of the same type in that category.
You can declare goods online from 72 hours before you are due to arrive in the UK.
Your goods and any vehicle you use to transport them may be seized if you break the rules. You may also be fined or prosecuted.
You can report someone for breaking the rules to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).