Parcel delivery services and preparing for EU Exit

If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, there may be changes that affect your business.

Your business may need to make changes before the UK leaves the EU. Please visit Prepare for EU Exit to find more detailed guidance on policy changes relevant to your sector and to sign up for updates.


Paying import VAT on parcels you sell to UK buyers

If the UK leaves the EU with no deal, sellers outside the UK (including within the EU) must pay the import VAT for any parcels worth £135 or less, sent to UK buyers after 31 October 2019.

This will include parcels worth £15 or less as the existing Low Value Consignment Relief (LVCR) will no longer apply.

The import VAT can be paid by either:

  • using the online service to report and pay the import VAT due to HMRC
  • paying a parcel operator that offers a service to pay import VAT to HMRC

Read the guidance on import VAT on parcels.

Further information is provided in HMRC’s guidance on VAT for businesses if there’s no Brexit deal.

Preparing to move goods between Ireland and Northern Ireland

If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, goods moving between Ireland and Northern Ireland will face different procedures compared to other UK-EU trade. This approach will apply until longer-term arrangements are made.

Read the guidance on customs procedures and VAT for goods moving between Ireland and Northern Ireland.

Regulations and standards

Driving in the EU

UK hauliers can continue to use their EU Community Licence until 31 December 2019. You will not need any extra permits to transport goods in EU countries until 1 January 2020.

You will be allowed to:

  • journey to and from the UK, for example, a journey from the UK to Germany, or a journey from Italy to the UK
  • drive through EU countries to reach another EU country, for example, driving through France to reach Spain
  • do limited cabotage or cross-trade journeys – the rules on what you can do will change from the day the UK leaves the EU

Read the guidance on preparing to drive in the EU after Brexit.

Your employees

Employing EU workers

If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, EU citizens will be able to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to get settled or pre-settled status. This will mean they can continue to live, work and study in the UK.

Workers will need to be living in the UK before it leaves the EU to apply. The deadline for applying will be 31 December 2020 if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

You can use the EU Settlement Scheme guidance for employers to give further information to your employees.

Applying for skilled-work or unskilled-work visas

If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, there will be a new process for EU citizens arriving in the UK before 31 December 2020.

From 1 January 2021, a new skills-based immigration system will launch.

For non-EU nationals, EU Exit will not affect the application process for work visas.

Travelling to the EU

If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, British passport holders travelling to the EU will need to have 6 months remaining validity on their passport, not including any extra months added to a 10-year passport if it was renewed early.

Read guidance about travelling to the EU with a UK passport if the UK leaves the EU without a deal and check your passport to see if you need to renew earlier than planned.

Trade associations

Mail Competition Forum
Association of International Courier & Express Services (AICES)
Mail Carriers Association

Published 27 February 2019