Customs Regulation

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Customs Procedure for Moving Household Goods in to Philippines

Household and personal effects are dutiable. However, there is a provision for conditional exemption from duty, which is accorded, to certain categories of shippers: working foreigners, Diplomatic and USAIS, UN and similar staff.

Returning Philippine resident also receive limited exemption.

Documents Required
Ocean Bill of lading or Air Waybill
Inventory (in English) 

Used Personal Effects
Original Passport of employer (needed for few workdays)
Visa (obtained after shipper's arrival and needed for sea shipment and affidavits of Legal Membership.
Visa application letter copy from employer to Bureau of Immigration and Deportation and the Re-Export Bond Affidavits. A Certification of Employment on Company letterhead is sufficient for small airfreight only.
Imported goods should have been owned and in use at least 6 months before entry. The shipment should also arrive in the Philippines within 60 days of member's arrival. Brand new appliances or what might be construed as "commercial quantities" in a shipment are discouraged. Customs clearance usually takes 1 - 3 workdays for airfreight and 7 - 10 workdays for surface freight once all personal and shipping documents are available.
Foreign visa holders, (except "Diplomatic" and Filipino returning residents), with a shipment which arrives before visa approval, must post a Re-Export Bond for the conditional release of the shipment.

Prior to shipping, Authority/Clearance to import must be acquired to avoid seizure/penalty. Currently, only returning residents and Diplomats are allowed this permission. An import permit can be processed through the Bureau of Import Services, Department of Trade, and Manila. Personal documents are required plus Import Authority, stencils of chassis/engine numbers, Commercial Invoice or Deed of Sale, Car registration certificate and separate OBL (if vehicle is shipped in the container as the household goods).

Diplomatic Shipment
Shippers are exempted from duty and, in the case of Diplomats, from physical inspection of the goods. The Embassy concerned needs the shipping documents in order to apply for "free-entry" to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).
The processing times can vary and it is the Embassy's responsibility to follow up with DFA. Once completed, your MOVERWORLWIDE Agent receives a copy of the "free-entry" and can proceed with the release of cargo, which usually takes 2 - 3 workdays.

Prohibited Items
Firearms, ammunition and explosives (unless licensed in advance), obscene literature, photographs or films, politically "undesirable" literature, prohibited drugs, misbranded and adulterated drugs and foodstuffs, gambling machines and paraphernalia, transceivers.

Live Animals and Plants
Pets are dutiable. Prior to the importation must secure Import Permit from Bureau of Animal Industry (Manila). To get this, the client must provide the following information: Kind of pet, Breed Name, Name of Pet, Name of Member, Gender, Colour, Tentative flight details/arrival information, copies of health and vaccination certificates, contact fax of agent or person handling the export formalities overseas.

Disclaimer: This information is intended for general guidance and all users are allowed to reproduce this information. cannot however take responsibility for any errors, additions and omissions or for any loss or damage that may occur from its use. As such it is advisable to contact the nearest customs office or the moving company you select for your move to Philippines for full and current information prior to importation/relocation.