Customs and VAT?
Customs clearance of consignments from abroad
- For most shipments from abroad, you pay VAT and any other taxes (customs and special taxes) when you buy goods in the online store.
- Posten customs clearance of goods over 350.– kroner, if fees are not paid through the online store in advance.
- Gifts can have a value of up to NOK 1000 before you have to declare.
When do I have to pay customs?
Initially, all purchases of goods abroad are subject to VAT, but only textiles, foodstuffs and restricted goods may have additional costs as customs and special duties.
New customs rules from 2020
From 1st January 2020, new regulations came from the authorities for the purchase of food from abroad.
From 1.4.2020 there are new rules for buying goods from abroad which means that you have to pay taxes from the first krone. Read more about VOEC (VAT on E-commerce) and the new customs rules.
The main rule is that VAT must be paid in a foreign online store, just like when you shop in Norway. This scheme applies to all goods (which are not restricted) with value up to 3000.– kroner. Read more at regjeringen.no.
Our customs services
In cases where fees are not paid through the online store in advance, Posten offers the following customs services:
You will normally receive items with a value of up to 350.– kroner in the mailbox
For the time being, Posten will not declare most low-value shipments (value up to 350.– kroner) until the new regulations are implemented. Once it is in place, there will be a solution for the payment of VAT, customs duties and customs clearance on posten.no/en before taking the goods in use.
Items with a value between 350.– and 3,000.– kroner will be simplified customs declared *
Simplification means fewer requirements for detailed product descriptions, as well as Posten do not need your birth and social security number to declare. You can pick up the shipment at Posten. Then you pay the fees and Posten's customs clearance price.
Digital payment service
Posten is testing the digital customs payment solution of the future for individual shipments. This means that you can receive customs cleared items directly in the mailbox. If you have the Posten app, you will receive notification and have the opportunity to pay in the app. If you do not have the Posten app, you will receive a payment notification via Digipost or a letter and you can pay at posten.no/en/import-duties.
NB! You will never receive an SMS or e-mail from Posten informing you to pay to receive shipments. We only use our own secure channels (Posten app, Digipost and letter).
Exceptions to simplified customs clearance are goods where the authorities require full customs clearance. Examples of this are art, antiques, as well as restricted goods such as alcohol, tobacco, medicines, supplements and all food and beverages.
Items with value over 3,000.– kroner or items requiring full customs clearance **
Full customs clearance means that Posten reports the goods for import to the Customs Authorities, calculates fees based on a detailed description of goods and we link the recipient's birth and personal identity number to the customs clearance. You can pick up the shipment at Posten. Then you pay any import duties and Posten's customs clearance price.
Cost of customs clearance
|What is priced||Pris|
|Simplified customs clearance.
Applies to items with a value from 350–3000 kroner*
|Customs clearance per shipping with value over
3000 kroner and for shipments with restricted goods **
|Own clearance expedition and customs warehousing fee||149.–|
|Reimbursement of duty paid||599.–|
|Obtaining customs documentation||149.–|
|Customs clearance per shipment to Svalbard||299.–|
Lack of information at customs
Customs clearance often requires detailed information on goods and the receiver. It is possible that the information provided with the shipment is not sufficiently detailed. Then Posten will contact you. In the message you receive, we state what we are missing and what you need to do in order for Posten to declare the shipment for you. You can submit missing information here.
Pending response from you, the consignment is stored at Posten's customs warehouse. The response deadline is 14 days before we return the shipment.
Age control on some items
When purchasing tobacco products and alcoholic beverages, Posten will carry out an age check at delivery.
The recipient must pay the control fee of 49.– kroner for this control.
Sanctions implemented in the event of the war in Ukraine
Russia's war against Ukraine is ongoing. The current war situation affects customs handling, among other things with a number of export and import bans. We recommend our customers, who trade with Russia, Belarus and certain areas of Ukraine, to use the following channels to obtain the latest updated information on what applies at any given time.
Question & answers
Posten works to ensure that you can receive as many shipments from abroad as possible right where you prefer to receive them. To pay for shipments that have been cleared through customs and delivered to your mailbox, you can use the Posten app or posten.no/en/import-duties.
Posten works to ensure that you can receive as many shipments from abroad as possible right where you prefer to receive them. To pay for the shipment you have been notified about, use posten.no/en/import-duties.
Posten works to ensure that you can receive as many shipments from abroad as possible right where you prefer to receive them. To create a good solution for as many customers as possible, we test delivery directly to the mailbox and digital payment solution for import VAT, customs and customs clearance for a small selection of shipments.
When items are too large to be delivered in the mailbox, they can be picked up at Posten. You still pay in the Posten app or at posten.no/en/import-duties.
From 1.1.2020, new rules came from the authorities for when you buy food from abroad. This means that Posten must clear customs and collect fees for this type of goods. Read more about restricted goods.
The calculation basis is taken from the customs documentation the sender has attached to the shipment.
Posten uses the Norwegian Customs' exchange rate. This is changed weekly and is based on the exchange rate from Norges Bank. Since Norges Bank adjusts exchange rates more frequently than the Customs Service, there will be deviations.
Posten has sent you a message that we have a shipment for you. The shipment lacks/or has incomplete customs documentation.
It is important that you get what we demand. When we receive information from you, we will process the shipment and forward it to you as soon as possible.
Posten must cover costs we have in connection with the processing of all shipments, including shipments to customers who clear customs themselves.
The price shall cover our costs for performing statutory tasks such as: arrival processing, registration of the consignments and mandatory customs warehouse accounts to the Norwegian Customs.
We also have to carry out these statutory tasks on consignments that customers customs themselves. Posten does simplified customs clearance automatically, but for full customs clearance (item value over 3,000.– kroner), you as a customer can reserve yourself and carry out the customs clearance yourself.
The pick-up notification states which import duties have been calculated. To calculate taxes, we use the goods and value statement that accompanies the shipment. If you think the calculation is incorrect, you must document the error. Contact customer service before picking up your shipment.
If Posten cannot be charged for errors in the tax calculation, you must apply for a refund via Altinn. See the Norwegian Customs Service's website which provides good information and guidance when you want to apply for a refund of overpaid VAT and customs duties, as well as in those cases where you demand a refund of fees when you return goods.
The price covers the costs associated with statutory tasks that Posten must perform: arrival processing, classification and registration of the goods, calculation and collection of fees, settlement with the authorities, and storage pending payment from the recipient. Full customs clearance costs more than simplified customs clearance because the documentation requirement and the degree of detail in a full customs clearance is higher than for simplified customs clearance.
If you have not paid Norwegian VAT and other taxes through purchases in the online store, you must pay taxes when the item arrives in Norway. This also applies to gifts with a value of more than 1,000.– kroner. Read more at toll.no/en/online-shopping/.
We can carry out simplified customs clearance on goods to private individuals with a value of up to 3,000.– kroner (excluding transport and insurance) if the sender has not collected Norwegian fees in advance. The scheme does not cover restricted goods such as food, alcohol and tobacco products.
The simplification consists of minor requirements for a detailed product description and there is no need to identify the recipient with a birth and personal identity number.
The price for self-customs clearance and the price for simplified customs clearance are the same. This is because Posten's statutory tasks are about as extensive with simplified customs clearance as when you clear customs yourself.
Books are normally free of charge. If the shipment contains your other goods, they must be cleared through customs. You pay VAT and any other fees as well as customs clearance for these goods.
The books will be kept out as long as they are specified on the customs information from the sender.
No, you do not have to pay. The shipment will be returned after 2 weeks if you do not pick it up.
Contact customer service before you pick up the shipment, so we can clarify what has happened. The reason is probably due to a lack of labeling of the consignment from abroad. If you have picked up the consignment and paid import duties to Posten, you must contact the online store to ask them for a refund.
If it turns out that the shipment is correctly marked, we will apply to the authorities for a refund and refund you afterwards.
VAT, customs and excise duties. See the Norwegian Customs' summary of what you have to pay when you shop online.
Posten uses the Customs Service's official exchange rates, which are updated weekly. If you have traded in a currency that is not listed by the customs service, Norges Bank's daily updated exchange rates are used. In very rare cases, there may be currencies that are not listed by Norges Bank. Posten will then contact you to obtain documentation of the actual amount paid before the shipment is cleared through customs.
The calculation basis comes in customs documentation that is sent electronically from the sender.
Examples of typical personal information that Posten processes are name, address, birth number, telephone number and e-mail address. Birth number is required only in special cases. Read about how Posten processes your personal information.
Posten needs your personal information in order to be able to perform customs clearance services in line with the authorization given by Posten to the Norwegian Customs. Read about how Post processes your personal information.
The main rule is that you have to pay VAT for works of art you import to Norway. In certain cases, you can be granted a full or partial exemption from VAT, but then you must be able to document that the work of art meets the requirements for a tax-free import. This type of goods for import requires a full customs clearance and will provide a customs clearance price to pay.
For more information: Work of art and VAT – Norwegian Customs