Customs regulations for your trip to Vietnam

Last modified: July 24, 2023
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Customs regulations

Free import

For 18 years old and over:

  • 400 cigarettes or 100 cigars or 50g of tobacco
  • 1,5L of spirits or 2L of alcohol containing up to 22% volume of alcohol or 3L of beer (or similar light alcoholic beverages)
  • 3Kg of coffee
  • 5Kg of tea
  • Non-commercial number of gifts and unused items of up to the value of VND 5,000,000
  • Items for personal use (clothing, toiletries etc.)

Used Household Goods and Personal Effects

Documents Required :

  • Copy of passport (identification pages only) with entry stamp*
  • Packing list in English
  • Bill of lading (telex release) / air waybill (AWB)
  • Vietnam entry visa (valid at least 3 or more months) / temporary residence card*
  • Original Vietnam arrival-departure card (3 copies shipment) **
  • Letter of employment
  • Copy of labor contract (Hanoi only)
  • Copy of business license.
  • Vietnam employer’s company license copy
  • Copy of work permit (for all sea / air shipments over 300 kgs gross) *
  • Application letter
  • Owner of the goods’ address in Vietnam

Specific Information

  • All air shipments are physically inspected by Customs at the air terminal.
  • The average time is approximately 1-2 days.
  • Sea shipments will normally undergo physical Customs inspection.
  • The average time for Customs clearance is 2-3 days for full container load (FCL) shipments and 3-5 days for less container load (LCL) shipments.
  • Sea or air shipments of diplomatic status are exempt from Customs inspections (diplomats).
  • All shipments undergo cultural inspections.
  • This process takes approximately 3-4 days.
  • Inspection may include, but is not limited to, books, art works, DVDs, CDs, antiques.
  • All documents should be signed and stamped by the owners of the goods’ registered local employer in Vietnam.
  • Antiques shipped into Vietnam should be clearly photographed and well documented.
  • Antiques should be inspected and registered upon entry (takes an additional 2 – 3 days).
  • Details should be clearly noted on packing list and carton.
  • 3 copies of each document are required for each shipment.
  • If there are multiple shipments, a separate set of documents (of 3) are required.
  • Ho Chi Minh:
  • *Certified true copies required; this can be obtained by bringing the original document to the People’s Committee Office of Ho Chi Minh City
  • **Documents must be signed and stamped (company seal) by the owner of the goods’ registered local employer in Vietnam.
  • Hanoi:
  • Customs requires labor contract copy in additional to above documents.
  • All documents must be signed and stamped (company seal) by the owner of the goods’ registered local employer in Vietnam.
  • Certified true copies are only required for passport and entry visa / temporary residence card.

Restricted/Dutiable Items

Duty shall be payable on the following types of liquor at the rate expressed as a percentage of the value of the liquor:

  • Liquor with alcohol by volume of less than 30% measured at 20°C:
  • 125-150%
  • Liquor with alcohol by volume of more than 30% measured at 20°C:
  • 125-150%
  • Wine (10-20 bottles duty free):
  • 125-150%
  • Duty shall be payable on tobacco at the following rates:
  • >100 cigars: 150%    prepared tobacco (> 50 grams):                 45%
  • >400 cigarettes: 150%    all other manufactured tobacco products:      45%
  • Personal computers are charged import duty at 15%.
  • Personal printers are charged duty at 10%.
  • Non-perishable food items and items in cans and other durable packaging can be imported in small amounts.

Prohibited Items


  • Counterfeit items
  • Cultural artefacts and other objects of cultural importance
  • Explosive material
  • Weapons
  • Ammunitions
  • Explosives
  • Military equipment
  • Radio transmitters
  • Satellite dishes
  • Poisonous chemicals
  • Cultural products
  • Articles of anti-government nature
  • Fireworks
  • Toys and games which affect public moral education and security.
  • Pornographic or subversive materials
  • Motorbikes


  • Live animals – health certificate required along with complete and valid inoculations. Contact nearest embassy to obtain permission.
  • Endangered species and any products or parts thereof as outlined by CITES maybe be brought in only with CITES permission.
  • Medication

Miscellaneous (Pets, Motors, and others.)

Documents Required

  • Original passport
  • Residency card
  • Proof of ownership
  • Original purchase invoice

Specific Information :

  • Owners of the goods cannot bring / import any type of vehicle into Vietnam unless they are working for an UN organization or an Embassy / Consulate, which are under diplomatic status.

Pets :

Documents Required

  • Owner of the goods’ passport
  • Vaccination record
  • Owner of the goods’ entry visa (valid at least 3+ months)
  • International health certificate
  • Import permit.
  • Flight arrival details
  • Original Vietnam arrival – departure card (3 copies per shipment) (pets traveling as cargo)
  • Vietnam employer’s company license copy (pets traveling as cargo)
  • Application letter and Power of Attorney (pets traveling as cargo)
  • Airway bill (pets traveling as cargo)

Specific Information

The import permit is required by the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department.

Quarantine for pets traveling as cargo is not required.

Pets should arrive on a weekday (M – F) before 3:30 p.m.

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