Baggage, Courier, Postal Articles

Baggage, post and courier


What is ‘baggage’ Baggage includes unaccompanied baggage but does not include motor vehicles [section 2(3)].

Baggage includes all dutiable articles imported by passenger or crew but does not include motor vehicles, alcoholic drinks (beyond limits) and goods imported through courier.

Taking out foreign currency and Indian Rupees Indians going out can take out any amount of foreign currency as long as it is obtained from authorised foreign exchange dealer. He can take out and bring in Indian currency only upto Rs 7,500.
Green channel and red channel Incoming passenger with no dutiable goods can pass through green channel. Passenger with dutiable goods should pass through red channel.
Customs duty on baggage General rate of duty on import of baggage is 36.05% (35% basic customs duty plus 2% education cess plus 1% SAH education cess). One laptop computer is exempt.
General Free Allowance (GFA) Bona fide luggage including used personal effects are exempt from customs duty. In addition to bona fide luggage and one laptop computer, Indian resident or foreigner residing in India over 12 years of age is allowed general free allowance (GFA) of Rs 25,000, after stay abroad for more than three days. GFA is lower when passenger comes from some countries like Nepal, Bhutan, Myanmar or China.

GFA cannot be clubbed with other person.

One laptop exempt Besides GFA, one laptop can be imported free of customs duty.
Import of gold and silver as baggage If a person comes after 6 months of stay, he can bring gold upto 10 Kg on payment of customs duty @ Rs 750 per 10 gms (plus education cess of 3%)  and silver upto 100 Kg on payment of customs duty @ Rs 1,500 per Kg (plus education cess of 3%).
Import of commercial samples Commercial samples can be brought in or taken out within prescribed limits.
Transfer of residence (TR) Additional concession is available if a person transfers his residence after stay abroad for two years. He is eligible for concessional rate of 15% duty (plus 2% education cess) of goods upto Rs 5 lakhs. In case of some goods, duty is Nil. He is also entitled to GFA.

In case of mini TR (i.e. person returning after 365 days), used personal effects and household articles upto Rs 75,000 can be brought duty free, in addition to GFA. However, items specified in Annex I, II and III as specified in Baggage Rules are not allowed duty free.

Baggage by foreign tourist coming to India and currency he can being in Foreign tourists can bring used personal effects and travel souvenirs free of duty. Articles upto Rs 8,000 can be brought as gifts duty free.

If value of foreign currency notes exceeds US $ 5,000 or aggregate value of foreign exchange (in the form of currency note, bank notes, traveller cheques etc.) exceeds US $ 10,000, the passenger has to make declaration in Currency Declaration Form (CDF)


Unaccompanied baggage Unaccompanied baggage can be brought. GFA is not allowed on unaccompanied baggage.


Import through courier and post

Import through Authorised Courier Import through authorised courier is treated as normal mode and usual customs duty is payable. ‘Authorised Courier’ should be registered with customs. Courier has to file Courier Bill of Entry (in case of imports). Free gifts and samples upto Rs 10,000 per consignment are permitted through courier for imports.
Export through Authorised Courier Authorised Courier has to file Courier Shipping Bill or Bill of Export (in case of exports). Free gifts upto Rs 25,000 per consignment permitted for export. Samples upto Rs 50,000 can be exported through courier.
Import by post In case of import by post, label/declaration on postal article is treated as ‘Entry’. Separate Bill of Entry is not required.
Assessment by customs Postal articles are sent to Foreign parcel Department of Post Office. The list is handed over to Principal Appraiser of Customs. He will inspect mail. Packets suspected of dutiable articles will be opened and examined by him . He will assess the goods and then seal the parcel.

Gifts upto Rs 10,000 are free. Post parcel is exempt if customs duty is upto Rs 100.

Payment of customs duty on postal articles Goods will be handed over by postmaster to addressee only on receipt of customs duty payable on the goods.