Relief from Customs Duty and VAT on gifts and consignments of low value

Rules for duty relief on gift consignments

You can receive a gift without payment of Customs Duty and Value-Added Tax (VAT) if:

  • the value of the gift (including insurance, freight and postage costs) is €45 or less
  • the gift is correctly declared
  • the gift has been sent from a private individual outside the European Union (EU) to a private individual within the EU
  • the gift is for the personal, or family use, of a private individual in the EU
  • there is no commercial or trade element, that is, the goods have not been paid for by the recipient
  • the gift is of an occasional nature only such as a present for a birthday or anniversary.

A gift received may contain two or more items with a combined value of greater than €45. In such cases relief is given for as many of those items as add up to a value not exceeding €45. For example, if you receive a gift containing three items with a value of €20 each, your relief applies to two of the items only. The value of an individual item cannot be split up.

Note

Gifts of alcohol, tobacco products, perfumes or toilet waters are not exempt from VAT or Excise Duty. They may be exempt from Customs Duty, but only if they are within the allowances (see below).

Gift relief allowances for tobacco products, alcohol products, and perfume and toilet waters, are as follows (Customs Duty only):

Tobacco Products:

  • 50 cigarettes
  • or
  • 25 cigarillos (cigars with a maximum individual weight of 3 gms)
  • or
  • 10 cigars
  • or
  • 50 gms of tobacco
  • or
  • a proportional assortment of the different products.

Alcohol Products:

  • 1 litre of distilled beverages and spirits over 22% volume
  • or
  • 1 litre of fortified or sparkling wine, and some liqueurs of 22% volume or less
  • and
  • 2 litres of still wines.

Perfume and toilet waters:

  • 50 gms of perfume
  • or
  • 0.25 litres of toilet water.

Next: What rate of Customs Duty is charged on gift consignments?