Do I have to pay import costs on gifts from family or friends?

On gifts from family or friends from outside the EU, customs charges import costs as from 1 July 2021. You can dispute these costs and apply for an exemption as long as the value of the contents does not exceed €45.

How to apply for an exemption

As soon as the parcel arrives in Belgium, customs tries to determine the value based on the documents that must be present on the parcel.

The customs documents are not present

If these documents are missing, you will receive a letter asking you to provide proof of value. The instructions for how to do this are in the letter. If your shipment is a gift, ask the sender to send you an email confirming:

  • the contents of the shipment
  • the value (in €) of the shipment
  • that your shipment is a gift

You can then upload this email as proof via the online form.

The customs documents are present

If customs can determine the value, you will receive an email, text message or letter inviting you to pay the import costs. You can dispute these costs or apply for an exemption as long as the value of the contents does not exceed €45. You can do this via the My bpost app or via Track & Trace. Ask the sender to send you an email that confirms:

  • the contents of the shipment
  • the value (in €) of the shipment
  • that your shipment is a gift

You can then upload this email as proof via the online form.

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