HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is urging businesses and shoppers to consider some top tips before they start browsing online to ensure they’re not hit with unexpected customs charges and end up over budget this holiday season.

Changes introduced on 1 January 2021 mean that in the same way that consumers have previously had to pay charges when buying certain items from non-EU sellers, they may now also need to do so when buying goods from the EU.

HMRC recommends people look at 7 key areas to determine whether there will be charges on their goods. If there are charges to pay, customers are being warned that they may also need to pay a ‘handling fee’ to the courier company before their goods are released.

Top tips

  • Top Tip 1: Be aware of where you, the recipient, are based
  • Top Tip 2: Check if your order contains goods subject to excise duties, such as tobacco, alcohol or perfume
  • Top Tip 3: Check if your order is worth more than £135, before extra costs, such as shipping and insurance are applied
  • Top Tip 4: Remember there are new charges if you’re sending presents overseas – or if someone abroad sends gifts to you
  • Top Tip 5: Be aware of how and when you could be notified of charges
  • Top Tip 6: Check the guidance available to you
  • Top TIP 7:Check with the seller whether the goods originated in the EU and whether they qualify for a zero tariff

For further information visit GOV.UK

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