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Changes to ‘personal use’ limits on tobacco imports from the EU
29 September 2011
On Saturday 1 October 2011, the minimum indicative levels (MILs) for tobacco and cigarettes brought into the UK from the European Union (EU) will be reduced to 800 cigarettes and 1 kg of hand-rolling tobacco, to align them with levels applied elsewhere in Europe.
MILs are guide levels set by EU member states to determine whether imported goods are for travellers' own use. There are no limits to the volumes of tobacco that travellers can bring back from the EU, if the goods are transported by them and are genuinely for their own use.
HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) spokesperson Bob Gaiger said:
'Law-abiding individuals who genuinely import goods for their own use will not be affected. This change will only affect individuals who are abusing the current limits to avoid paying excise duty on tobacco products which are subsequently resold.'
The change to the MILs was announced in April 2011 in HMRC's renewed tobacco strategy Tackling tobacco smuggling: building on our success.
We will update our customs leaflet 'Travelling to the UK (Notice 1)' on 1 October to incorporate the new MILs. The leaflet is available on this website and at UK ports and airports.