Postal Updates

New customs regulations in effect for U.S. international packages to the European Union

Mar 10, 2023, 8 AM
New customs regulations that went into effect March 1 affect packages mailed from the United States to countries in the European Union. Image courtesy of the U.S. Postal Service.

By Linn’s Staff

Starting March 1, customers shipping packages to countries that adhere to European Union customs rules will need to follow new customs regulations, the United States Postal Service recently announced on its website.

The new rules apply to parcels sent to the following countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.

Every item in a package must be listed on the customs declaration form, according to the USPS. If detailed descriptions of the contents are not provided on customs forms, packages may be returned or refused.

Also, customers must include a specific, accurate description of each item in a shipment.

“For example, if you are sending electronics, you must indicate what type of electronics (e.g., television, computer, mobile phone) for the description to be acceptable,” the Postal Service said.

Effective July 2021, all shipments to European Union member countries had to include a formal customs declaration.

According to the USPS, the formal customs declaration must include sender information, recipient information, item description, item value, package weight and a Harmonized System (HS) tariff code.

“HS Tariff Codes are identifiers linked to specific goods descriptions,” the USPS said.

Further information is available on the USPS website.

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