Shipping Goods into Greece from the US


Greece is considered the birthplace of the colorful Western civilization. It is one of the strongest, most modern, and prosperous European Union countries. You may have found numerous business and income opportunities there, hence, your decision to relocate from the US.

You need not worry about leaving behind some of your most useful and loved household goods and personal belongings. Shipping such items to Greece from the US is not as tedious and as difficult as you may think. Before you drop by the nearest Greek Consulate or Embassy, you need to be more familiar about the country’s Customs regulations that would cover your shipping transaction.

First, you should be aware that you must already be in Greece by the time you obtain Customs clearance. At the same time, you must personally present your passport when claiming the shipped household and personal items. That is why proper and strategic timing should be observed when shipping goods to the country.

Documentary requirements
As mentioned, your passport would be the main document required not just before shipping goods but also before you are allowed to travel to the country. Before you coordinate with a shipping company, you should obtain a detailed inventory of your shipment as verified by the Greek Embassy or Consulate nearest to your US address.

You would have to complete the Law 1599 Form or Ipefthini di losi, which could be obtained from the consulate. The document would indicate your agreement to keep the goods to be shipped in your ownership or possession for not less than a year after arriving at Greece. This is to make sure you would not put the items up for sale within a time frame.

You should also present your certificate of secondary residence, a bank guarantee and a housing contract. For repatriating Greeks, secure a certificate of repatriation, which may allow you to ship goods to the country duty-free. To qualify for such repatriation, you must prove that you have been living out of the country for no less than two years.

Basic customs regulations
Household goods and personal belongings to be shipped by a relocating foreigner or repatriate are duty-free in general. By the time of shipment, you would have to agree that all of such items would be re-exported or shipped back to the US when you decide to move back to the country. Otherwise, customs duty would be assessed when you leave. However, all goods could be subject to value added tax.

Office equipment like photocopiers, telephone systems and facsimiles could be shipped but are not exempted from duties. If you are shipping an electrical appliance, only one type would be shipped without duty. Any excess would incur the charges.

Lastly, you know there are certain objects that are prohibited. Thus, do not try to ship any of the following items: matches, prohibited drugs, firearms, playing cards, tobacco and alcoholic beverages. If you are shipping food products, observe the limits imposed by the Customs office. You should strategically observe the right timing for the shipment so you could personally receive or claim it in Greece within a specified period.

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