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Duty-free and tax-free goods: end of the booze cruise

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HMRC has published a summary of responses to the consultation on the post-transition period regime in relation to duty-free and tax-free goods purchased by passengers for their own use and carried across borders in their luggage.

The government responses confirm that from January 2021:

  • duty-free shopping will be extended to include EU countries;
  • tax-free sales in airports of goods such as electronics and clothing for passengers travelling to non-EU countries will end; and
  • VAT refunds for overseas visitors in British shops will be removed. Overseas visitors will still be able to buy items VAT-free in store and have them sent direct to their overseas addresses, while the costly system of claiming VAT refunds on items they take home in their luggage will be ended.

The government has also published the following new duty-free allowances for passengers bringing alcohol and tobacco into the UK from EU and non-EU countries.

Until the end of the Brexit transition period, there are no limits to the amount of alcohol or tobacco that can be brought into the UK for personal consumption, although customs officers are more likely to raise questions where certain ‘indicative’ limits are exceeded (110l of beer, 90l of still wine, 10l of spirits, 800 cigarettes).

Issue: 1501
Categories: News