All shipments of goods that enter via Correos in Spain are subject to Customs controls, unlike postal items that contain documents or personal messages sent by other people.
If you are expecting an international shipment, remember that all goods, including online purchases, may be subject to restrictions and the payment of Customs duties and Correos management fees, depending on the content, their value and other criteria applied to shipments by Customs:
It is essential to present the commercial invoice, proof of payment via internet for any objects purchased online or for shipments of goods or any other document that may be required.
It is the recipient's responsibility to know the conditions for importing their shipment (prohibitions, restrictions, limitations, etc.) and to find out what documents may be required on arrival, including the commercial invoice, certificate of origin, licences and special authorisations for border controls, etc.
Correos offers you a series of services that you can sign up to so that we can be your Customs representative, and all your import formalities will be resolved without you having to leave home.
Importing postal items to Spain from the United Kingdom, except for the territory of Northern Ireland.
Since 1 January 2021, shipments containing goods from the United Kingdom, except for the territory of Northern Ireland, need to be presented to Spanish Customs for clearance so that Correos can proceed with the delivery thereof to the recipients in Spain.
The recipient will have to bear the costs corresponding to the customs processing and must also pay any taxes imposed in accordance with current customs regulations (VAT or the Canary Island General Indirect Tax (IGIC) in the Canary Islands) and Special Taxes. However, they may be exempt from the payment of customs duty when there is documentary proof that the goods contained in the shipment originated in the United Kingdom, except the territory of Northern Ireland.
Bringing goods from outside the European Union, Canary Islands, Ceuta and Melilla into the Iberian peninsula or Balearic Islands is subject to a customs import procedure.
Any goods that enter the Canary Islands are subject to customs import procedures.
Any goods imported into Ceuta may be subject to customs import procedures.
Correos does not carry out any customs representative services in this territory.
Depending on the legislation in each country, goods transported by post may be subject to import and export customs and quasi-customs controls both in the country of origin and destination. These controls are different as they are conducted by different authorities.
Imported goods must pay indirect taxes levied on consumption in the destination territory:
Shipments between private individuals that contain gifts with a value of more than €45 are subject to taxation.
This is because the Law considers that these are goods obtained outside the destination taxation territory which will be consumed/used inside that territory, which means they are subject to taxation.
They may only be exempt from taxation in the case of used personal items with prior SAD declaration and when they have been verified by Customs where appropriate. However, the recipient must pay for Correos’ Customs processing (SAD).
Personal items are those which have been used, not those acquired for personal use.
They are subject to customs processing, although they may only be declared exempt following verification and authorisation by Customs.
For this purpose, you must attach a pro forma invoice with the shipment, or complete Point 2 on the Delivery Notification to indicate the exact content and value of the goods (never €0). Indicating gifts or sample is not valid.
In order to carry out the Customs import declaration, companies must always provide a commercial invoice or a pro forma invoice.
On the other hand, if the importer is a private person who is unable to provide an invoice or any other type of receipt for the value of the goods (payment receipt, PayPal, etc.), they can complete a Sworn Declaration of Value (which is included in the Delivery Notice) accompanied by a bank payment receipt.
Shipments between private individuals that do not constitute a commercial transaction are subject to taxation, provided that the goods are valued at over €45.
Shipments considered to be personal items due to a change of residence may be exempt. In this case, a Declaration must be presented to Customs, you must be able to accredit that the items concerned are at least six months old, and that there really has been a change of address with a work contract, census registration, etc.
Once the Import Declaration has been submitted, Customs may inspect shipments before deciding whether they are exempt from taxation as they meet the requirements or not.
Duties must only be paid for goods indicated in the Law when their value is over €150.
Otherwise, goods with a lower value may be subject to payment of IVA in Mainland Spain, IGIC and AIEM in the Canary Islands, or IPSI in Ceuta and Melilla, as well as Excise Duties where applicable.
Some products may be free of duties or subject to additional duties depending on the country of manufacture and the product.
For any goods imported to Spain worth over €22, provided there is an economic transaction and regardless of whether the recipient is a company or private individual.
Shipments between private individuals that contain gifts with a value of more than €45 are also subject to taxation.
The general VAT rate for product imports in Spain is 21%, but certain products are subject to a reduced VAT rate (10%) and others have a highly reduced rate (4%).
Customs processing is formalised with the SAD (Single Administrative Document).
The SAD is a tax declaration and as such it requires the Tax ID of both the sender and the recipient for identification purposes (Resolution SAD of 27 June 2012 and additional provision six of Law 58/2003, of 17 December, the General Tax Act).
The Tax Agency is the only body legally authorised to open postal packages. That is why it is important to notify the sender that the invoice and other documents which may be required to process the import must be stuck on the outside of the shipment. All Postal Operators have special bags for this purpose.
If the invoice is inside and you have decided to process the customs import procedure with Correos, you can expressly state that you authorise Correos to remove the invoice from inside the parcel. This authorisation should be stated on the Postal Notification with the details of your shipment we will send to you and return it with your details to the address stated on it.