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How much duty-free can we bring into the UK?

This information applies to England, Wales and Scotland

There are no longer any duty-free allowances for journeys within the European Union (EU). Instead, you can bring back an unlimited amount of goods from travel in any EU country, as long as it is for your personal use or as a gift. In practice if you are over 17 you will be allowed up to 800 cigarettes, 10 litres of spirits, 90 litres of wine and 110 litres of beer. If you bring in more you will have to persuade customs that it is for personal use. There are further allowances for different tobacco products and alcoholic drinks.

There are still duty-free allowances for travel from other countries outside the EU which are much smaller.

If you are aged over 17, you are allowed to bring in:

  • 200 cigarettes or 100 cigarillos or 50 cigars or 250g of tobacco;
  • 4 litres of still table wine;
  • 2 litres of sparkling wine or 1 litre of spirits;
  • 16 litres of beer and
  • £390 worth of other goods including perfume and souvenirs.

You are allowed to 'mix and match' alcohol or tobacco products as long as you do not go over the total allowance on each product. For example, you can bring in 100 cigarettes and 25 cigars which is 50% of your cigarette allowance and 50% of your cigar allowance. You cannot 'mix and match' alcohol and tobacco allowances.

If you are bringing in more than that, you must declare the goods at customs, and may have to pay duties. If you don’t, you are breaking the law. Your undeclared goods can be seized, you may have to pay penalty charges, and you might even be prosecuted.

The same duty-free allowances apply for business trips as well as holidays.

If you are travelling from a non-EU country to the UK, you must declare any cash you are carrying if it is 10,000 Euros or more (or the equivalent in other currencies). This rule also applies when you're travelling to another non-EU country from the UK.

You don't need to declare cash if you are travelling from or to another EU country.

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