2. Arrivals from EU countries

When you’re bringing in goods you must:

  • transport them yourself
  • make sure they’re for your own use or a gift
  • have paid tax and duty in the EU country where you bought them

You can bring in motor fuel in your vehicle’s tank and reserve fuel for that vehicle in an appropriate container without paying duty.

Customs checks

If a customs officer thinks you might be bringing in goods to sell, they might stop you to make checks and ask:

  • the type and quantity of goods you’ve bought
  • why you bought them
  • how you paid for them
  • how often you travel
  • how much you normally smoke or drink

Although there are no limits to the alcohol and tobacco you can bring in from EU countries, you’re more likely to be asked questions if you have more than the amounts below.

Type of goods Amount
Cigarettes 800
Cigars 200
Cigarillos 400
Tobacco 1kg
Beer 110 litres
Wine 90 litres
Spirits 10 litres
Fortified wine (eg sherry, port) 20 litres

Declaring goods to customs

You have to tell customs about any restricted goods and show them the relevant paper work, eg licences, permits, that allow you to bring these into the UK. To do this you use the red channel or the red-point phone. The customs officer will tell you if any tax or duty is owed and how much you have to pay.

If you don’t have the correct paper work or are bringing in banned goods, customs will seize these immediately.

There’s more information about going through customs on the HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) website.

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