Importation of honorary awards or decorations

You can import the following honorary awards or decorations without payment of Customs Duty and Value-Added Tax (VAT):

  • Decorations awarded by the government of a non-European Union (EU) country.
  • Cups, medals or symbolic articles awarded in a non-EU country acknowledging your activities in arts, science, sport and so on. (A non-EU person or organisation who intends to present them in the EU may also import these awards).
  • Awards, trophies and symbolic articles to be given to non-EU residents attending a business conference or similar event in the EU. These awards must be of a limited value and given free of charge at the event.

These awards or decorations must not be of a commercial nature.

Procedure at importation

You will need a letter from the organisation or host in the non-EU country explaining the reason for the award.

The sender of the goods should:

  • attach the letter mentioned above to the outside of the parcel and mark it ‘customs documents’.
  • provide information about the goods to the postal service or courier that is handling the parcel. This information about the goods should include the following:
    • an accurate description
    • a commodity code
    • and
    • the value.
  • mark the parcel ‘Honorary decorations or awards - exemption from import charges claimed'.

The courier or postal service handling the package can use this information to complete an electronic customs declaration by using Revenue's Automated Import System (AIS).

On this customs declaration they should:

  • declare the goods as honorary decorations or awards
  • and
  • enter code C27 in D/E 1/11 of the declaration.

Further information

If you require further information, please contact the Authorisations and Reliefs Unit.