Country Guide: South Korea
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Used Household Goods and Personal Effects
- Copy of passport (photo, entry stamp, & long term visa pages)
- Detailed inventory / packing list (in English)
- Copy of bill of lading (OBL) or sea waybill / air waybill (AWB)
- Alien registration card (ARC) (from Korean Immigration Office)
- Certificate of entry and exit (returning citizens and accompanying family members only)
- Application for duty exemption issued by Ministry of Foreign Affairs Korea (diplomats)
- Customs declaration form
- Power of attorney
- Passport copy should be a copy of the owner of the goods’ passport, and each of the accompanying family members.
- The ARC must be valid for at least 12 months.
- Goods must arrive at port of entry / airport of entry (POE / AOE) in Korea within 6 months of the owner of the goods’ arrival.
- Clearance should take place at a Customs bonded warehouse (except for diplomats).
- Personal effects cannot be Customs cleared prior to the owner of the goods’ arrival.
- All incoming shipments, excluding diplomatic shipments, are subject to open inspection by the Korean Customs Authority.
- However, even diplomats, due to container access restriction within Seoul’s four main gates area, must have containers de-vanned and trans-loaded to mover’s van but without inspection.
- Evidence of at least 12 months abroad must be shown in passport (returning citizens).
- Original title
- Original registration certificate
- Copy purchase receipt or invoice
- Insurance policy documents
- Detailed inventory (diplomats)
- Customs duty exemption showing frame number, chassis number, engine number, model, and type (diplomats)
- Vehicle must be listed on the inventory with full technical specifications (make, model, chassis number, plate number, etc.)
- Insurance policy should be issued in Korea prior to removing the car from the Customs bonded warehouse.
- In order to register and to drive in South Korea, the vehicle must pass the following Government tests:
- Emission gas level test
- Noise and vibration test
- Type and model approval
- Vehicles cannot be sold or transferred by a diplomat to a non-diplomatic individual for 3 years; however sale or transfer between diplomatic individuals is authorized.
- If a vehicle is sold or transferred to a non-diplomatic individual by a diplomat, duties and taxes shall be charged by Korean Customs.
- The vehicle must be identified on the detailed inventory.
- Valid health certificate
- Vaccination record (must include rabies vaccination)
- Proof of identification
- Animals will be quarantined upon arrival to South Korea; currently, there is a 10-day quarantine required.
- Animals should have vaccinations at least 30 days prior to import.
- If rabies vaccinations are not older than 30 days, pets must remain in quarantine the 10-days plus the number of days to total 30 full days since the rabies vaccination.
- The following household goods may be imported duty free by persons 19 years and older within the limits indicated:
- Alcohol (1 L)
- Cigarettes (200), cigars (50), tobacco (250 g)
- Perfume (2 oz.)
- Personal items (gifts, new items, etc. up to $400)
- Firearms, ammunition, and explosive materials, including fireworks (permission from the Korean authorities is required)
- Narcotic and psychotropic drugs
- Food items are allowed in sea shipments only.
- If the owner of the goods is shipping food items ensure all food items are sealed and labeled.
- Duty free entry for small amounts.
- The shipment is subject to payment of 20% duty if total amount is too large for a household good shipment.
- Check with destination agent for more details.
- Plants and plant byproducts (subject to quarantine and approval by the authorities; denial of entry is possible)
- Illegal drugs
- Pornographic material
- Counterfeit goods or materials
- Subversive and treasonous materials
Recommended: Contact the destination agent to ensure all requirements have been met prior to import, especially for differences regarding air / sea shipments.
Cultural and Other InformationCIA World Factbook Entry for South Korea
IAM Note: Customs regulations can change at any time with or without notice. This document is provided as a guide and for information only. While IAM has exercised reasonable care in publishing this document, IAM makes no representation, either expressed or implied, as to its accuracy or applicability.