Basic information concerning the customs provisions for the travellers (and the pilgrims participating in the World Youth Days Kraków 2016)

    Basic information concerning the customs provisions for the travellers (and the pilgrims participating in the World Youth Days Kraków 2016)


    As a Member State of the European Union, Poland is covered by the customs union based on the elimination of customs borders between the countries of the union and the establishment of common customs territory.

    Trade between the individual EU Member States is characterized by the free movement of goods. This means the prohibition of application of import and export duties between the EU Member States as well as any other charges with the equivalent effect. Trade in goods between Poland and other EU Member States is carried out on the basis of internal turnover (intra-community trade).

    Therefore, the customs formalities and, in the case of import, customs duties are applied only to goods imported from or exported to non-EU countries. Thus, in case of import or export, it is necessary to present goods to Customs in order to assign them the appropriate customs procedure.

    Customs legislation allows  many facilitations depending on the type of goods, the purpose of import or export and the declarant. For example, the exemption from import duties is possible for certain goods brought from non- EU countries in case:


    - they were released for free circulation in the EU,


    - they were subject of  the suspension of import duties' collection while imported for a specified period under the temporary admission.

    Travelers (natural persons) are entitled to place the imported goods under the procedure for release for free circulation or temporary admission in the oral form or by any other act, deemed as declaration.

    Declaration "made by any other act" is the simplest document-free form of customs declaration of goods, which, in the case of import, is lodged at a  border customs office (for road, sea, air traffic) by:

    - passage through the green or "nothing to declare" channel at a customs border crossing point with two-channel system,

    - passage through a border customs office without two-channel system

    This form of customs declaration may be applied to:

     1) procedure for release for free circulation in the customs territory of the EU, without the obligation of re-exportation -  goods carried in the personal luggage of the traveler, of non-commercial nature, which are exempted from customs duties and taxes;

    "Personal luggage", mentioned above, means the whole of the luggage which a traveler is in a position to submit to the customs authorities on his arrival in the territory of the country, as well as any luggage submitted to the same authority at a later date, provided that evidence can be produced to prove that it was registered, at the time of the traveller's departure, as accompanied luggage with the company responsible for its transportation. Personal luggage includes fuel contained in the standard tank of any motor vehicle and fuel contained in a portable container in a quantity not exceeding 10 litres.

    If the traveler, in his personal luggage, carries the goods not exempted from import duties (e.g. exceeding the permitted value), he should verbally declare them to Customs. The customs officer will issue a "document confirming a customs declaration" including the calculation of  customs duties and taxes to be paid.

     2) temporary admission procedure with the obligation of re-exportation from the EU customs territory   - other personal belongings ("personal effects") imported by a traveler for temporary use and means of transport registered outside the customs territory of the EU and imported for a specified period of time or registered in the customs territory of the EU and re-imported, exempted from customs duties and taxes.

    "Personal Effects" means all articles, new or used, which a traveller may reasonably require for his or her personal use during the journey, taking into account all the circumstances of the journey (clothing, toilet articles, personal jewellery, portable TV sets, portable radio receivers and personal computers, still and motion picture cameras together with a reasonable quantity of film and accessories therefore, portable musical instruments, etc.), but excluding any goods imported for commercial purposes. The traveler must carry the personal effects on his person or in his luggage (accompanied and unaccompanied).

    In the case of temporary import of goods (including personal effects) into the EU customs territory, there is an obligation to re-export them from the EU customs territory at the latest when the person, who imported them, leaves the EU.

    Caution!Goods imported by travelers arriving from outside the EU and certain goods imported from other EU Member States into Poland are subject of prohibitions and restricions. Therefore, in such cases, the customs declaration in oral or any other document-free form does not apply.

    In addition to the simplest form described above, other forms of customs declaration are also used: the electronic declaration sent to the customs systems, the written declaration (the SAD document, the ATA carnet in the temporary admission of goods) and the oral customs declaration, which in the procedure of temporary admission is associated with the obligation of submitting an additional document. These forms of declarations are used both by natural persons as well as economic operators, in the trade in goods for commercial and non-commercial purposes


    Legal basis:

    Poland is directly applying the provisions of the EU customs legislation, in particular:

    - Council Regulation (EEC) No 2913/92 of 12 October 1992 establishing the Community Customs Code (OJ  L 302, 19.10.1992),

    - Commission Regulation (EEC) No 2454/93 of 2 July 1993 laying down provisions for the implementation of Council Regulation (EEC) No 2913/92 establishing the Community Customs Code (OJ L 253, 19.10.1992),

    - the above mentioned regulations are supplemented with national provisions, in particular the Act of 19 March 2004 - Customs Law (consolidated text in the Journal of Laws of 2015, item. 852, as amended) and the secondary legislation to this act.

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