What is allowed and prohibited to be imported into the Netherlands - Nalog.nl BV
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What is allowed and what is forbidden to import into the Netherlands


In fact, it is allowed to import quite a lot, however, pay attention to what you will then export back. Because not everything is cleared by customs.

The rules below apply to carry-on and checked baggage that you travel with on the plane. But also to the luggage that you take with you if you travel by another means, for example, by car or by boat.

Some things are prohibited in principle. (and this is not surprising):

  • drugs
  • weapons (including decorative), pepper spray, ammunition and explosives
  • protected species of animals and plants, as well as products from them, such as crocodile leather shoes or ivory jewelry.

There are special rules for some products.

Here is a list of these products:

  • Medicines.
    It is possible to bring the necessary medicines, but sometimes you need a medical report.
    Most medicines can be taken with you when traveling. For some, however, it is necessary to have a prescription or medical justification with them to use this medication. At the pharmacy, it is important to obtain a medical passport (medicijnenpaspoort). This will help prevent difficult questions at the border, and will also be helpful if you need to buy medicine abroad.
    In addition, some drugs are narcotic and subject to the opium law. This includes strong pain relievers, sleeping pills, or medical marijuana. These medicines require a separate medical certificate. Here, you can see how to get such a certificate. Well, in order to be completely safe, you should inquire at the embassy of the country you are going to if this type of medicine can be imported there at all. In addition, you must have a medical certificate in English for these drugs. You can get it from your doctor or pharmacy.
  • Copies of works of art.
    If you are bringing them in for personal use, it is not difficult. If you bring them in for sale, the tax office will confiscate them.
  • Pets.
    This is a separate story. What do you need to bring your pet to the NL?

    • You must have timely vaccinations and travel documents for the animal.
    • You can take a maximum of 5 pets.
    • You must be a pet owner or authorized owner.
    • Dogs, cats and ferrets must have a chip or legible tattoo and must be vaccinated against rabies.
    • You cannot import animals for sale, only your pet.
    • Each animal must have a health certificate or animal passport (indicating that it is vaccinated against rabies).

    If you want to travel with your pet somewhere within the EU, you will need an EU veterinary passport, which can be issued by your veterinarian. Also, the animal must be vaccinated against rabies (rabies) and have an identification chip.

  • Meat, fish and dairy products.
    If you are entering from another EU country, you can safely import these products. If you are entering from a non-EU country, you cannot import meat and dairy products, and you can import no more than 20 kg of fish.
  • Vegetables, fruits and flowers.
    There is a limit on the quantity. Maximum 5 kg of fruits or vegetables or 5 bouquets of flowers.
  • Plants (cuttings, seeds and trees).
    It is quite difficult to bring a plant to the Netherlands, there are special rather strict rules for them. This is done to avoid plant diseases entering Europe. There is also a risk that the plant itself could pose a threat to European flora, namely, it could displace native plants. You can find more information in English here: eppo. Therefore, if you want to import plants or plant products, you will need a phytosanitary certificate, namely a document confirming that the plant is healthy. It is issued by the authorities of the country from which you want to bring the plant (with the exception of Switzerland, plants from there do not require a certificate). For more information in Dutch, you can find here.

Some products are simply banned for import.

You can read more about this in Dutch here.

  • Antiquitiesor items of great value to the country, such as art, antiques and books over 100 years old. But this also applies to fragments of ancient buildings, that is, you cannot pick off a piece from the Colosseum in Rome and take it with you. If in doubt, it is better to clarify whether you need an export permit specifically in your case. This can be done, for example, at the Dutch embassy in the country where you buy the item you want to export. Or at customs when leaving this country, but it may be too late.
  • Money.
    If you are coming from a non-EU country, you do not have to declare at customs up to 10 euros, if you want to bring more money, you must fill out a customs declaration. You don't need to pay tax, but customs should know that you have this money. More, but in Dutch, you can read here.

The general rule for the importation of goods into the NL is the EUR 430 rule. If the total value of the imported goods is lower, you do not pay anything, but if it is higher, then in the amount after 430 euros you will have to pay taxes. You can read more about this. here.

And, of course, do not forget about the special rules for carry-on luggage, some things that you can carry cannot be carried in your carry-on luggage. To clarify these rules, check the information on the website of the airport or the company with which you plan to fly.

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