You must declare goods that you take with you to sell outside the EU - for example if they’re in your baggage or in a private vehicle.
The same rule applies to the following EU special territories:
- Åland Islands (Finland)
- the Canary Islands
- the Channel Islands
- Guadeloupe, French Guiana, Martinique and Reunion
- Mount Athos, also known as Agion Poros (Greece)
There’s a different process if you take goods abroad temporarily (for example samples for a trade fair) or use a courier or freight forwarder.
If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, you’ll need to declare goods you take to sell anywhere outside the UK.
Making a customs declaration
Arrive at the airport or port at least 2 hours early to make your declaration. If you’re taking restricted goods, take the licence or certificate with you.
You must present your goods and a customs declaration form to the export officer at your place of departure.
You can either:
HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has guidance on how to complete the customs declaration form.
If you move goods within the EU
Moving your goods between EU countries is seen as supply of goods for VAT purposes. This is liable to VAT in the same way as other supplies moved within the EU.
If you’ve moved goods worth over £250,000 within the EU in the last calendar year, register for Intrastat. You do not need to do this if you’re not registered for VAT in the UK.