Questions and answers about shopping online
Answers to frequently asked questions about shopping online are given here.
I’ve ordered goods several times without having to pay customs duty and VAT. Why do I have to pay them this time?
It may be that your earlier orders were not declared to customs correctly and came into the country as goods on which no duty was paid. If, looking back, you realise that your orders were not correctly notified and declared to Swedish Customs, you must inform us that you have received so-called “duty-unpaid goods”.
The company I’m ordering my article from says that it will pay customs duty, VAT and any other taxes and that everything is included in the price. How does that work?
Swedish Customs is unable to answer this. You must ask whoever is sending your article, or the business selling it.
What must I do if I have bought an article and notice that the company that carried said article has not paid customs duty, VAT and any other taxes?
You must inform Swedish Customs. We will help you calculate what you should have paid and send out a periodical customs bill so that you can do what is right.
What happens if I want to return an article that I have not yet collected?
Contact the carrier and ask if you can return the article to the consignor. You do not have to pay any customs duty, VAT or any other taxes.
Are the rules that apply to online shopping the same as those for other types of distance shopping, e.g. mail-order purchases?
Yes, the rules are the same. The rules are also the same if you win something online that is then sent to you from a country outside the EU.
What is the rate of customs duty on an article that I order online?
That depends on the article you have ordered. The rate of customs duty is between 0 and 20 per cent. All goods can be found in the Tulltaxan (Customs Tariff), web-based, search service.
What is the rate of VAT on an article that I order online? Is the VAT different on different goods?
For most goods, VAT is 25 per cent. However, for foodstuffs it is 12 per cent and for printed items such as books and newspapers it is 6 per cent.
Do I always have to pay customs duty on goods I order online?
If the total value of the goods is no more than SEK 1,700 exclusive of freight, you do not have to pay any customs duty. However, you always have to pay VAT. So that we can see whether you have to pay any customs duty, it is crucial that the value of your goods is clearly stated in the documents that are visible to Postnord or the company making your customs declaration.
I have to pay customs duty even though the value of my goods is under SEK 1,700. Why?
It may be because you have ordered goods that are excluded from the general rules, e.g. tobacco goods, perfume and toilet water. In such cases, you have to pay both customs duty and VAT on the goods. It may also be that you have to pay VAT, but not customs duty.
How do I calculate the import charges on my order?
To calculate the import charges, i.e. customs duty and VAT, you must start by calculating the customs duty value of your article. The customs duty value is the price of the article plus the freight charge and any transport insurance. Use the customs duty value to calculate the customs duty on the article. You then calculate VAT on the total of the customs duty value and the customs duty.
Do I have to pay customs duty on goods I use electronically, for example mp3 files and software?
Customs duty is paid only on “physical” goods. VAT should already be included in each article’s price.
How do I find out the rate of customs duty on my article?
Can I recover customs duty, VAT and any other taxes if I want to return an article that I have already collected?
It is possible in certain cases. You have to be able to present a so-called “corroboratory document” proving that the article has been returned. A receipt from the return recipient is an example of a corroboratory document.
Is there any age limit for ordering goods?
There is a minimum age limit for certain goods. For example, to order tobacco, you must be at least 18.
May I bring in counterfeit and pirate goods?
I’ve ordered a pullover from a company in the USA. I haven’t yet received a parcel. I’ve queried this via their website. Is it possible to check whether a parcel has “got stuck” in customs?
Last updated: 2020-09-03
What is updated: Quality assured