risks with sending gifts

Sending gifts

In the holiday season, many gifts are sent, to destinations around the world. But risks are also associated with such a friendly gesture. Complex international customs rules and provisions concerning Dangerous Goods can disrupt your good intentions.

Customs has responsibilities in the areas of safety, health, economy and the environment. They are critical of gifts that contain, for example, foodstuffs, other organic material or hazardous goods.

Here are some useful tips:

  • An increased risk applies both nationally and internationally when sending alcohol, batteries, aerosols, food of animal origin (for example, sausage and cheese) and fireworks. Goods can be held or confiscated, however innocent the content may seem.
  • Include a commercial or pro forma invoice. This document must be clear on matters such as content, country of origin, HS codes and Incoterms. Uncertainty about the contents of the shipment can lead to delays. Therefore, make sure to include clear labels on your package.
  • The value stated on the commercial invoice must be a fair value, preferably in the currency of the country to which the goods are to be sent. Shipping costs must be added to the value of the gift. If the stated value is questioned, this can lead to delays and penalties.
  • The addressee must act as an importer. Obviously, not every recipient will find this equally pleasant. (This applies only to international transport outside the EU.)

Want to know more? Please direct your question to tradecompliance@baselogistics.com.