Guidance

Customs declarations for goods taken out of the EU

Most declarations should be submitted electronically using the National Export System.

In a no-deal Brexit, you’ll need to follow these rules if you export to anywhere outside the UK.

If your business is exporting goods out of the EU you’ll need to submit a customs declaration.

You’ll also need to submit a declaration if you’re exporting goods to:

  • international organisations
  • special EU territories

Completing a customs declaration is complicated and you’ll need software. So you may want to appoint someone to deal with customs on your behalf.

How to submit

Most declarations are submitted electronically using the National Export System. If you’re going to do this yourself, rather than appoint an agent, you’ll need to:

There are different rules for:

In a no-deal Brexit, businesses carrying merchandise in baggage or small vehicles will follow different rules.

When to submit

Full declarations

For most goods you will complete a full declaration, unless you’re:

Your declaration must be made before the goods leave the UK. If you do not your goods could get stopped at the border.

Boxes you need to complete

There are different boxes to complete depending on the type of declaration you’re submitting.

Find out the boxes you need to complete on your declaration.

Published 14 January 2019
  1. Step 1 Check if your business has a UK EORI number

    Your business will have a UK Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number if you’ve traded with countries outside the EU. UK EORI numbers start with GB.

    You'll need to get a UK EORI number if you do not have one.

    1. Get a UK EORI number
  2. Step 2 Decide who will make the customs declarations

    Contact the organisation that transports your goods out of the country to find out if they can make customs declarations for your goods.

    If they cannot, you can either hire an agent to make the declarations, or make the declarations yourself.

    1. You are currently viewing: Find out how to make customs declarations yourself
    2. Find out how to hire an agent to make customs declarations for you
  3. Step 3 Apply to make exporting easier

  4. Step 4 Check what your customers will need to pay

  5. Step 5 Check what you need to do for the type of goods you export

    Depending on what you're exporting, there might be other things you'll need to do to get your business ready. For example, you might need to change the labelling on the packaging for your goods, or apply for licences.

    1. Check if you'll need to apply for an export licence
    2. Check what else you need to do for the type of goods you export