Guidance

Starting and ending transit movements in Northern Ireland using common and Union transit

Find out what you need to do if you start and end transit movements in Northern Ireland using common and Union transit.

Applies to Northern Ireland

Making a transit declaration

A separate version of the New Computerised Transit System (NCTS) has been created to enable you to start movements in Northern Ireland.

This version is only used in Northern Ireland and will only accept departure and arrival declarations in respect of Transit offices located in Northern Ireland.

It does not accept departure and arrival declarations for Transit offices located in:

  • Great Britain
  • the Crown Dependencies (Channel Islands and Isle of Man)

The submission channel for Northern Ireland departure and arrival notifications is by software only.

You need to make sure that your software is able to interact with NCTS using either email or XML.

You can still start and end movements in Great Britain using either the free to use web portal or a software package to interact with NCTS. This includes goods that originate in Northern Ireland and are moved to Great Britain under unfettered access.

If your software is unable to interact with NCTS using email or XML, you cannot use NCTS to start or end transit movements in Northern Ireland.

If you do not want to do this yourself, you can get someone to deal with customs for you.

Starting a transit movement

You can start a transit movement in Northern Ireland from:

  • the premises of an authorised consignor (your or an agent’s premises)
  • an office of departure

If you are starting your transit movement at the premises of an authorised consignor, you can present your goods to your authorised consignor. They can start the movement and issue the Transit Accompanying Document (TAD) and movement reference number (MRN).

Starting a transit movement at an office of departure

You’ll be required to present your goods at the office of departure specified on your transit declaration, along with your local reference number. The office of departure will only start the movement, issue a TAD and movement reference number once you have done this.

You must also provide Border Force with notification of planned departures before you arrive at the office of departure by emailing: BFPortteam@homeoffice.gov.uk.

You will need to include:

  • your name
  • your Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number
  • your local reference number (LRN) and either your:
    • movement reference number (MRN)
    • export reference number (ERN) from your export documentation (if applicable)
  • method of transport
  • the name of the port you will be departing from
  • the location where your goods will be held in Northern Ireland until the transit movement has been started
  • date and time of intended departure from Northern Ireland

You do not need to follow this process if you start your movements from the premises of an authorised consignor.

Ending a transit movement

You’ll be required to present your goods at the office of destination specified on your transit declaration, along with all your accompanying documents.

You must also provide Border Force with notification of planned arrivals before you arrive at the office of destination by emailing: BFPortteam@homeoffice.gov.uk..

You will need to include:

  • your name
  • your Movement Reference Number (MRN)
  • the method of transport
  • the name of the port you will be arriving into
  • the location where your goods will be held on arrival in Northern Ireland
  • the estimated arrival date and time of arrival of your goods at your stated location

You’ll also need to attach:

  • your TAD (or C88 document)
  • a confirmation of entry of the movement into another customs procedure, such as:

Your guarantee will be released when Border Force end your transit movement.

You do not need to follow this process if you end your movements at the premises of an authorised consignee.

Using the Trader Support Service

If you’re moving goods between Northern Ireland and Great Britain, you can check if the Trader Support Service can help you with the movement of your goods.

Get more information

Find guidance on planning your route before moving goods using transit.

You can read Community, Common Transit and TIR: newsletters for updates and changes to NCTS.

If you use in-house software you should contact the Software Developer Support Team at SDSTeam@hmrc.gov.uk.

The transit manual and transit manual supplement contain more information on TIR, common and Union transit.

Published 23 December 2020
Last updated 22 March 2021 + show all updates
  1. This page has been updated with information about what to do from 5 April 2021 when moving goods using transit in Northern Ireland.

  2. First published.