Navigating Customs

Sep 12, 2019

As you’re reading this, you’re more than likely interested in exporting cross-border, but you may be confronted by one, well known obstacle – Customs. If you are exporting outside of the EU, whether it’s Canada, Japan, Russia or the USA, your parcels will need to clear Customs.

But what are Customs? Put simply, Customs are a government body who screen and collect tax on parcels entering their country.

A potential risk to your consumer’s delivery experience is a delay at Customs. To avoid this, research local regulations and Tax/Duty thresholds and relate them to your product range. Each country has its own requirements, such as labelling on specific goods for health and safety, or information regarding where the product is made. Knowing where you may have issues could help mitigate any Customs holds.

If a parcel is held by Customs, they potentially could hold the whole pallet of nearly 100 parcels whilst they search for the right one to check. We recommend avoiding this by having a partner who can support you through the process, ensuring your data is correct and parcels are properly cleared. 98% of Customs transactions are now made electronically, so having the right data is vital to a smooth international delivery experience.

Another area of Customs that can cause some issues are prohibited and restricted items. Most countries have the normal prohibited items, such as drugs and weapons, however, did you know Japan prohibit allergy relief and Saudi Arabia refuse (Halloween-like) full face masks? Ensure your exports comply to the prohibited and restricted items list, otherwise, they will be returned or disposed of.

At wnDirect we have a well-developed customs process which could help you and your business. Contact us here!

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