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Customs Declarations

As of 1 January 2021, any UK businesses involved with importing or exporting goods will have to declare their shipments to HMRC. This is done in form of a customs declaration, an official document, which lists exactly what is being imported or exported and provides information required to evaluate the safety and security aspects of the goods as well as to calculate and collect any applicable import duty and VAT. 
Our Customs Declaration team has a wealth of experience in a wide range of sectors and transport modes, and are ready to assist your business. 


LCCI is part of ChamberCustoms, the customs brokerage service from Chambers of Commerce in the UK. With our extensive knowledge, reputation, and first-class service in facilitating international trade, we can take the hassle out of your hands when it comes to exporting and importing goods into the uk. The service ensures that customs clearance is accurate, timely and avoids additional costs through delays or errors. 

Interested in the service? Register today

Complete an online form with your details. Once your form is submitted, a member of our Customs Declarations team will get in touch to finalise the registration process.

About Customs Declarations

What are customs declarations and why are they important?

Customs declarations are legally-required forms which are used to accompany goods that are entering or leaving a market. 

It is businesses’ responsibility to declare all movements of goods to HMRC promptly and accurately. This includes obtaining any applicable licences, permits and compliance with quotas. Incorrect declarations can lead to delays in clearing goods through ports and potential punitive action by HMRC.

Why choose LCCI customs declaration service?

  • It is the only customs broker in the country with direct links to all air, sea and road port terminals in the UK
  • This service sits alongside our regular trade documents offer of Certificates of Origin, Movement Certificates (for claiming preference) and other documentation required in international trade
  • It is staffed by an experienced unit of Customs Declaration operatives with experience in a wide range of sectors and transport modes.
Meet the team

What information is required for export entry?

  • Commercial invoice and packing list
  • Any applicable certificates or licences
  • Your EORI number
  • Tariff / commodity code for the goods
  • Customs Procedure Code
  • Port of exit
  • Name of the vessel, flight number or registration number for the vehicle

What information is required for import entry?

  • Commercial invoice and packing list
  • Any applicable certificates, permits or licences
  • Your EORI number
  • Tariff/commodity code for the goods
  • Customs Procedure Code
  • Name of the vessel, flight number or registration number for the vehicle
  • Port of arrival
  • Shipping and insurance costs
  • Incoterms
  • Subscription to Customs Declarations Service (CDS)

How much Custom Declarations cost?

Registration to LCCI's customs declarations service is free of charge. Costs will vary with the type of service required and the complexity of the declaration.

For example, mixed consignments will take longer to declare and may involve multiple certificates or permits. Export declaration fees start from £33.00 + VAT and Import fees from £71.50 + VAT per customs entry. Additional charges may apply depending on the service required.

LCCI were able to undertake all the checks, determine which application type basis, and forms should be followed to enable meaningful application and likely success 

Michael Cutler-Hodgson | Managing Director, BMEC

GMR Completion Service

GMRs (Goods Movement Reference) are a new UK customs requirement for traders moving goods into or out of Northern Ireland and Great Britain by road through GVMS linked ports. GMRs allow pre-lodging all existing customs declarations, ATA Carnets, and any relevant customs documents that relate to a particular shipment through a unique identifier (barcode) that links them together. GMRs can be obtained by traders directly or by their transport providers through the GVMS (Goods Vehicle Movement Service) platform. For companies and individuals that are unable to complete their GMRs, we are here to help. For a set fee of £15.00 + VAT*, we can complete the GMR on your behalf.

Find out more about GMRs.

* Excluding any other chargeable bank fees to the applicant.
Complete your GMR service request

Customs Procedures Consultancy Service

Our in-house Customs Procedures experts work closely with HMRC to ensure companies stay compliant with the latest rules and regulations. We have created a range of service packages to suit your trading requirements, from introductory guidance to bespoke consultancy services.


International Trade Training Courses

Designed to develop your staff’s skills in international trade procedures and promotion – covering topics such as international VAT, trade documents, and letters of credit.

find out more

Customs Declarations FAQs

What do I need to Import or Export goods from UK?

You must have a UK registered company with a GB EORI number.

Do I need to be VAT registered to import goods into the UK?

No, you do not need to be VAT registered.

How can I pay for import duties and taxes?

We will advise you how much duty and VAT is required to be paid. You can pay customs directly or you can pay us first and we will pay customs on your behalf.

How much notice do I need to give to LCCI to arrange the Customs clearance?

We recommend that you advise us before the goods have been picked up by the Haulier. We will need all the information and documentation related to the shipment in order to proceed with the clearance (i.e. transportation details, sales invoice, packing list, licences etc). Ideally this should be done a couple of days prior to arriving at the UK Port to ensure that the team has sufficient notice to process the entry through the system.

How long does it take to clear goods through Customs?

Depending on the Customs and the complexity of the shipment it can take from 30 minutes up to 48 hours.

I am moving my personal effects/ moving abroad, what do I do?

Please find information on the following links:
Removal Association website to get further support on your requirements
Detailed information on how to move goods between the UK and EU.

How do I find out the Rate of Duty and VAT applicable to my goods?

You can use the on-line service

What paperwork is required to Customs clear goods in the UK?
  • Commercial Invoice
  • Packing List
  • Certificate of Origin
  • Health Certificate (foodstuff)
  • Import Licence
  • EUR1 Certificate (or Invoice declaration if goods are shipped from Canada, EU, Japan or South Korea) - when claiming preference
  • GSP (Generalized System of Preferences) – when claiming preference for imports from GSP countries.

Get in touch

We know that navigating trade documentation can be complicated. Please get in touch if you have any queries or want to find out more about customs declarations.

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