Country Guide: Poland

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Updated: September 09, 2016

Household Goods and Personal Effects

Documents Required

  • Bill of lading (telex preferred) / CMR / AWB
  • Packing list
  • Work permit (if required depends on nationality)
  • Residence permit
  • Confirmation of staying abroad at least 12 months
  • Copy of passport (ID page and visa stamp)
  • Letter of Employment (from future and previous employer)
  • Copy of Polish ID (returning citizens)
  • Confirmation of Polish address (returning citizens)
  • Written Statement (returning citizens)
  • Copy of diplomatic passport (diplomats)
  • Detailed inventory in Polish and signed by the owner of the goods
  • Certificate from the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs (diplomats)


Specific Information

  • Documents confirming that the owner of the goods spent more than 12 months abroad.
  • The letter of employment must state the person is employed in Poland, the duration of employment and the specific start and end dates.
    • The employment period cannot be shorter than 12 months.
    • The document must be prepared on company letterhead, signed, and stamped by the person identified in the company’s officially registered documents.
  • The Letter of Employment from the owner of the goods’ previous employer must state the exact employment dates (minimum 12 months), that the owner of the goods has terminated his permanent stay in country of origin, and is now changing his permanent place of residence to Poland.
    • The document must be written in the official language of the origin country and a copy provided in Polish or translated into Polish by a sworn translator.
  • The copy of Polish ID must include the page with the photograph, number, and address.
  • The written statement must affirm that the owner of the goods is not importing guns or narcotics.
  • The certificate from the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs must confirm the list of goods being imported into Poland (diplomats).
  • Citizens coming from non-European Union countries can import goods duty-free if they have been abroad for a 12 month period prior to re-entry and must present documents proving residence abroad for the entire 12 months. 

Motor Vehicles

Documents Required

  • Invoice / bill of sale
  • Proof of insurance
  • Original registration, or copy if original is not available
  • Signed valuation submitted by owner of the goods
  • Original vehicle documents proving ownership


Specific Information

  • The vehicle must be registered in the name of the current owner of the goods.
  • An owner of the goods may import only one of each type of a vehicle, trailer, or motorcycle.
  • The owner of the goods must have lived out of the European Union legally and continuously for at least 12 months.
  • The vehicle must have been used in the place of origin for at least 6 months.
  • After importation, the vehicle must continue to be used in the same manner.
  • In order to import duty and tax free, a person returning to Poland should submit proof to the Customs Office that they have both owned and operated the given vehicle they are importing for a minimum of 6 months.
  • Additionally, a vehicle imported into Poland cannot be sold, lent, rented, or used by another person (either free of charge or charged) for a period of 12 months following importation.
    • Infringement of this rule evokes a Customs charge on the vehicle in an amount based on the condition of the car, its value, and duties and tariff rates in force on the day the car was transferred.
  • Utility vehicles and company cars are not covered under the exemption.
  • If the car is imported from outside the European Union all duties and taxes must be paid.
  • Prior to import, it is advised to check with the local agent in Poland to obtain an estimate regarding possible duties and taxes.
  • A certificate of origin is needed in order to receive preferential treatment when Customs assessed duties.


Documents Required

  • Pet passport issued by a veterinarian
  • Copy of owner of the goods’ passport
  • Anti-rabies vaccination
  • Declaration of pet’s value
  • Copy of owner of the goods’ ticket as proof of residence
  • International health certificate


Specific Information

  • Pet must be chipped or tattooed if arriving from a non-EU country.
  • The vaccination record must be issued at least 30 days prior to arrival and cannot be more than 9 months old.
  • Protected species cannot be imported.
  • The anti-rabies vaccination record must be issued at least 30 days prior to arrival, but no more than 9 months old if the pet is arriving from a non-EU country.
  • Declaration of pet’s value if the pet is arriving from a non-EU country.
  • The international health certificate must not be issued more than 10 days prior to arrival, in compliance with European Union standards if the pet is arriving from a non-EU country.

Antiques, Artifacts, Carpets, Paintings

Documents Required

  • Detailed inventory
  • Certificate of antiquity
  • Two photographs for each item

Specific Information

  • The certificate of antiquity must be from a recognized authority for items older than 100 years.
  • The two photographs for each item made prior to 1945.
  • Detailed inventory with a full description and quantity of each item.
  • When importing jewelry, paintings, antiques and carpets two photos of each item of value are required.
    • These pieces must be registered upon arrival in Poland.
  • Items over 100 years old may be exempt from duties and taxes if the proper documentation is produced.
  • Items that originate prior to 1945 should be clearly marked on the packing list upon import.
    • The items should also be packed so that it is readily available when the shipment proceeds through Customs.
  • All forms and documentation acquired during the import process may be required for future export.

Restricted/Dutiable Items

  • Medications that are for personal use only
  • Plants:
    • Plants may be imported only if they are intended to be used in the shipper’s home in Poland.
    • Plants may only be imported from European Union countries
    • A phytosanitary certificate is not required.
  • Alcohol and Tobacco:
    • The allowance limit for the import of wine and spirits for personal consumption is indicated as follows:
  • Importing from Non-EU Country:
    • Alcohol not exceeding 22% alcohol (wine, beer, etc.) 2 liters
    • Spirits 1 liter
    • Tobacco 200 cigarettes, 50 cigars or 250 g tobacco
  • Importing from EU Country:
    • Wine 90 liters (but no more than 60 liters of sparkling wine)
    • Beer 110 liters
    • Other alcohol 10 liters
    • Tobacco 800 cigarettes, 200 cigars, or 1 kg tobacco


IAM Note:  Excess amounts brought into Poland are not recommended as the cost is greater than the retail price.  It is also very difficult to obtain a license to import alcohol or tobacco. There are extremely high taxes, excise and duties that apply to any amount brought into Poland over the limit.

Prohibited Items

  • Food, fluids, alcohol
  • Chemicals
  • Inflammable materials
  • Weapons of all kinds
  • Pornography
  • Narcotics
  • Plants
  • Medications that are for personal use only
  • Toxic and radioactive materials
  • Protected animal species

Consignment Instructions

Recommended:  Contact the destination agent to ensure all requirements have been met prior to import, especially for differences regarding air / sea shipments.


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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.