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Follow These Five Simple Steps to Make it Past the Customs Department

Posted on October 20th, 2010 by

Okay so you just landed in the United States from a foreign country, and the last thing you want to do is spend hours at the airport waiting to clear Customs. You know, those departments where they go through your baggage to make sure you are not importing anything illegal? Although you won’t be able to control the number of people ahead of you in line, you do have some control over how quickly your customs agent stamps your passport once you make it to the front. Before you panic, know that the process can be extremely simple unless you make it difficult.

Follow These Five Simple Steps to Conquer Your Fears of Making it Through Customs Without the Help of Professional movers.

  1. Pack wisely: Before you board the plane, you already know Custom agents will be waiting for you once you get to America. So, why would you try to pack pieces of meat and a marijuana plant? When you pack your clothing, try to mix in some old pieces with anything that you recently bought. If an agent opens a bag full of clothing with tags attached, you may be in for paying a heavy fee. Make sure that you place items that are low duty or duty-free at the top of your suitcase. The last thing you want is to be pulled in the back room with airport security.
  2. Collect receipts: If you are coming back to America with electronics such a lap top computers or big screen televisions, receipts will be required to show proof of purchase. After all, it does look a bit suspicious if you can’t produce one.
  3. Fill Out Your Declaration Form Early: When you check in with your respective airline, ask them for a Customs Declaration form. This is a form where you basically list everything that you purchased while outside of the United States. The form will also ask you to put a total amount of money for the goods you are importing.
  4. Be Honest: Although this may be the hardest step to follow, it’s important that you declare everything you didn’t purchase in the United States. Leaving out items that may be illegal could land you in a heap of trouble.
  5. Claim Exemption: If you have less than $800 worth of goods and it is your first time entering/re-entering the country in the pass 30 days, you can claim personal exemption. This option disqualifies you from paying duty and warrants a quick stamp on your passport. If you have a large amount of goods that you need cleared, try using international moving companies to relocate all your belongings instead of doing the move yourself.

Tags: customs, moving cross country, overseas moving, traveling

This entry was posted on Wednesday, October 20th, 2010 at 9:37 am and is filed under Learning Center. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

One Response to “Follow These Five Simple Steps to Make it Past the Customs Department”

  1. Palmdale homes

    The very best idea is to have it shipped internationally. I agree that is a great way to get through customs–just don’t bring anything that can make them start questioning you.

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