Country Guide: Bhutan
Household Goods and Personal Effects
- Copy passport
- Original bill of lading (OBL) / air waybill (AWB)
- Letter of employment (must include dates of employment)
- Resident visa / work visa
- Import permit obtained from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
- Detailed inventory
- Diplomatic franchise (diplomats)
- Receipts of purchase (if new items are included in the shipment)
- All shipments are subject to inspection, except diplomatic shipments.
- Owners of the goods must be present during Customs clearance.
- Returning citizens are exempt from taxes subject to completion and availability of the required documents for entry (passport, OBL / AWB, letter of employment, IKEC, and BSTEC).
- Diplomats, personnel of the United Nations and its agencies, personnel of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and embassy employees with non-diplomatic status may import used household goods duty free.
- The IDEC and BSTEC are issued by the Department of Revenue and Customs in Thimphu upon request and submission of the documents required for entry and import.
- An import license is required for shipment through the Kolkata Port per treaty between India and Bhutan.
- Household goods and personal effects may be imported in small quantities only.
- Original certificate of title / registration
- Original purchase invoice
- Proof of insurance
- Only privileged personnel of foreign diplomatic organizations and international agencies may import or acquire new, used, and second-hand vehicles within 12 months of arrival in Bhutan duty free.
- Contact the destination agent for additional information.
- Vaccination record
- Veterinary health certificate
- Check with the destination agent for regulations and requirements regarding the importation of pets as transportation options are limited.
- Alcohol (2 L; 200% taxes and duties; however, alcohol is available in duty-free shops)
- Cigarettes (20 packs)
- Firearms (permission is required from the Royal Bhutan Army prior to import)
- Second-hand vehicles (only privileged organizations and Embassies may import)
- Drugs (drugs by medical prescription are permitted)
- Electronic goods (photographic equipment, video cameras, etc. are exempt from Customs duties but must be declared upon arrival)
- Military equipment
- Pornographic and subversive materials
- All narcotics and drugs (medically-prescribed drugs pare permitted)
- All wildlife products, including those from endangered species
Recommended: Contact the destination agent to ensure all requirements have been met prior to import, especially for differences regarding air / sea shipments.
Note: Bhutan is a land-locked country with no U.S. Embassy. Consular issues, including assistance to U.S. citizens are handled by the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi, India.