Whether you’re a citizen of another country and you’re moving to South Africa for work or personal reasons, or you are a citizen of South Africa who has lived abroad for several years but is ready to return, you may be wondering– what are the import duties you’ll pay for importing household goods in South Africa?
Will you face a hefty tax bill when you move back to the country, or can you benefit from tax breaks that will allow you to bring your household goods to the country free of charge? Get the travel advice you need from The Southern Times now.
Importing household goods To South Africa Duty-Free
All immigrants and returning citizens to South Africa are allowed to import both their personal effects and household goods duty-free. However, you are only allowed one duty-free import, so you will need to make sure that you can consolidate all of your items into a single shipment before moving to South Africa.
It is possible to qualify for a second duty-free import in some circumstances, but to do so, you will need to fill out paperwork and be approved by SARS Customs, which can be a difficult process. In most cases, it’s best to plan your move so that you will only need one shipment of personal and household goods.
There is some other fine print, too. If you’re a returning South African citizen, you must have been outside of the country for at least 6 months, for purposes other than touring (vacationing). For example, if you’ve been working or going to a university abroad for at least 6 months, you qualify for this deduction.
And, no matter what citizenship you hold, you must not sell or get dispose of your personal items and household effects for at least 6 months after moving to South Africa. If you do, applicable duties and taxes must be paid.
During the shipping process, you will need to create a complete inventory of the goods you’re bringing to South Africa, and will need to fill out several forms, such as Form DA 304 and Form P1.160. You will also need a certified copy of your passport and residence permit (if applicable) with an entry stamp into South Africa.
An experienced international shipping company can help you fill out the appropriate paperwork and arrange for your shipments in order to ensure a smooth process once your household goods arrive in South Africa.
Exceptions & Limitations For Importing Household Goods To South Africa
a1autotransport.com says that there are a few limitations and restrictions that you should keep in mind when you’re moving to South Africa. Depending on the country of origin, there are some banned items and items that may incur additional import duties when you make your move.
The following articles are restricted, and require a separate licence or import permit before being brought to South Africa:
- Firearms, which should be packed separately and prepared for inspection by customs
- Liquor, which is subject to duty. If you have obtained approval to bring liquor, you must have an inventory of the liquor including notes of the value, label name, and percentage of alcohol
- Plants, seeds, and bulbs, which must be approved by authorities to bring to South Africa.
There are some other items that cannot be brought into South Africa under any circumstances:
- Any type of ammunition or explosives
- Narcotic drugs
- Pornography or other explicit materials
- Agricultural products of any kind
- Meat and poultry that are uncooked
- Unwrought gold and uncut diamonds
- Honey, bees, bee eggs/larvae, beeswax, or any used beehive appliances
The presence of any of these items can lead to penalties and delays in releasing your household goods, so you must make sure that you do not have any corresponding items in your shipment.
If you have questions about your household goods and are wondering if you have any items that may be troublesome when you arrive in South Africa, you can find FAQs and get answers online at the SARS website.
Choose An Experienced International Shipping Company When Moving To South Africa
The process of getting through customs in South Africa isn’t always easy, which is why you need the help of an experienced international shipping company to ship your household goods into the country.
You can follow this link to learn more about A-1 Auto Transport and how they can assist you as you move to South Africa and begin your new life. With assistance from a team of international logistics experts, you will be able to get through the process quickly and easily.