Gifts containing alcohol, tobacco, weapons or pharmaceuticals
If you are going to receive a gift with alcohol, tobacco, perfume, weapons or pharmaceuticals sent from another country, there are certain rules that you have to follow. In certain case, you also have to apply for authorisation.
Gifts containing alcohol or tobacco from a country outside the EU
If the total quantity of alcohol and tobacco you receive as a gift from a country outside the EU is worth SEK 500 or less and does not exceed the quantities set out below, you do not pay customs duty. The SEK 500 value limit includes any other gifts in the same parcel. VAT and excise duty also always have to be paid.
The quantity of alcohol you can receive as a gift without paying customs duty
- 1 litre of spirits or
- 1 litre of fortified wine or sparkling wine and
- 2 litres of wine; and,
- beer (within the gift limit of SEK 500).
The quantity of tobacco you can receive as a gift without paying customs duty
- 50 cigarettes or
- 25 cigarillos or
- 10 cigars or
- 50 g of smoking tobacco or
- a proportional selection of these products.
Alcohol and tobacco tax
You must always pay Swedish tobacco tax and alcohol tax on tobacco and alcohol. It is the company transporting your parcel that will debit the tax. If you have questions about tobacco or alcohol tax, you can contact the Swedish Tax Agency.
Gifts containing alcohol or tobacco from another EU country
You do not have to pay any charges if, from another EU country, you receive individual* gifts with alcohol that is intended for personal use by you or your family.
* "Individual” relates to both quantity (whether the quantity is reasonable is determined from case to case) and number of occasions (sending a gift every week is not to be regarded as individual).
Special rules for receiving gifts containing alcohol or tobacco
- Tobacco and alcohol may be sent in a parcel as a gift between two private individuals.
- To receive tobacco or alcohol as a gift, you must be at least 18 or 20 years old respectively.
- To be classed as a gift and thus free of charge, only an individual* parcel is allowed.
- The tobacco and alcohol must be for personal use.
- The tobacco and the alcohol must be carried by a transport company.
- If you send tobacco as a gift to another country, you should find out what rules apply there.
Gifts containing perfume
If the total quantity of perfume you receive as a gift from a country outside the EU is worth SEK 500 or less and does not exceed the quantities set out below, you do not pay customs duty, VAT or other taxes. The SEK 500 value limit includes any other gifts in the same parcel.
The quantity of perfume you can receive as a gift without paying customs duty or VAT
- 50 grams perfume, or
- 0,25 liter EdT (eau de toilette).
Gifts containing pharmaceuticals
If you fulfil the requirements of the Swedish Medical Products Agency and have any necessary authorisations, you may receive, from another EU country, medicines transported by letter, parcel post or transport company. You may never receive medicines from a country outside the EU. Read more about the rules on the Swedish Medical Products Agency’s website.
You may never receive medicines classed as narcotics or doping agents and sent via letter or parcel post or as a parcel (regardless of which country they are sent from).
Gifts containing weapons or dangerous objects
If you are having a firearm, ammunition, dangerous object or laser pointer sent to you, you may need a permit from the Swedish Police Authority or the Swedish Radiation Safety Authority. Find out what each authority requires in your case. Remember to apply for permits in good time before receiving the parcel.
The carrier transporting your parcel is responsible for giving notification to Swedish Customs at the border. If the parcel contains a firearm, the carrier bringing the parcel into Sweden must ensure that it can present any permits for the weapon and that it has the following forms (completed and signed):
If a gift with a weapon or dangerous object comes from a country outside the EU, whoever brings the parcel into Sweden must ensure that the following forms are also completed and signed:
These are firearms
The following are regarded as firearms:
- Weapons that fire bullets and/or shot.
- Tear gas and pepper spray devices.
- Electroshock weapons and similar.
- Certain weapon parts.
This is ammunition
Ammunition means cartridges and projectiles for hand guns as well as percussion caps and other means of ignition for such cartridges and projectiles.
This is a high-power laser pointer
High-power laser pointer means a battery-powered, hand-held laser pointer in laser class 3R, 3B or 4. In most cases, this means a laser pointer stronger than 1 milliwatt (1 mW).
To bring a high-power laser pointer into Sweden, you need a permit from the Swedish Radiation Safety Authority.
These are “dangerous objects”
Dangerous objects mean flick knives, flick stilettos, butterfly knives, knuckle-dusters, throwing stars, batons, nunchakus, blackjacks, chain or studded gloves, spiked clubs and similar. To bring any such object into Sweden, you must have a special permit from the Swedish Police Authority.
These rules apply to “other weapons”
There are other sorts of weapons that are not legally defined as firearms. Different weapons are covered by different rules and require different permits.
Air and carbonic acid weapons (limited-effect weapons)
Air and carbonic acid weapons means so-called “limited-effect weapons”. They are weapons that are powered by, for example, gas, carbonic acid, a spring or other comparable propellant.
You may bring an air or carbonic acid weapon into Sweden without a permit if:
- you are over 18,
- the weapon has effect limitation resulting in the fired projectile having an impact energy of less than 10 joules at four metres from the weapon’s muzzle,
- for an automatic or semi-automatic weapon, the impact energy is no more than 3 joules at four metres from the weapon’s muzzle,
- the projectile (paint capsule) has a minimum diameter of 16 mm (applies to paintball weapons).
An example of an effect-limited weapon is an air rifle with a 4.5 mm air rifle pellet that travels at no more than 200 metres per second measured at four metres from the weapon’s muzzle.
If your air and/or carbonic acid weapon does not satisfy the above-listed requirements for not needing a permit, you must have a licence for the weapon. The rules for ordinary firearms then apply and you must always notify Swedish Customs when you take the weapon across the border.
To bring a harpoon weapon into Sweden, you need a permit from the Swedish Police Authority if:
- You are under 18.
- The distance between the front of the bow to the latching device is over 50 cm.
- The harpoon is powered by more than one string/cord/etc.
- The harpoon is propelled by an explosive substance such as carbonic acid, compressed air or a coiled spring.
Do I have to pay customs duty and VAT on my gift?
If you fulfil the requirements for bringing in these particular restricted goods (alcohol, tobacco, parfume, weapons or medicines), you can read more about the rules for receiving a gift free of charge on the Receiving a gift from a country outside the EU page.
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