Country Guide: Portugal

Due to the current coronavirus/COVID-19 situation and restrictions in various countries, the below information may not be accurate. This pandemic is a fluid situation. Check with authorities for local laws and restrictions concerning movements.

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Updated: November 23, 2016

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Used Household Goods and Personal Effects

Documents Required                                          

  • Original passport (in color)
  • Copy of visa
  • Inventory list
  • TAX card copy
  • Baggage certificate
  • Residence certificate
  • Declaration as per European Union regulations 
  • Original bill of lading (OBL) / air waybill (AWB)
  • Photocopy of air ticket or declaration
  • Photocopy of work contract (if applicable)
  • Proof of application for residence permit
  • Copy of identity card (diplomats)


Specific Information

  • The original passport must state the place of residence abroad.
  • Photocopy of air ticket or declaration must include details (date of arrival, etc.).
  • The baggage certificate, “Certificado de Bagagem,” must state that all the items are used and have been in the owner of the goods’ possession for more than 6 months (do not show values).
  • The baggage certificate must state that the owner of the goods has been living in the origin country for more than 12 months.
  • Residence certificate “Atestado de Residencia” can be obtained in the Parish Council by the owner of the goods’ residence area in Portugal; it must state that the owner of the goods is living at the new address for no longer than 4 months.
  • Portuguese nationals are not required to provide proof of application for a residence permit. 
  • If the owner of the goods is not a citizen of the origin country, proof of residency for a period of at least 12 months is required; this can be proven through a photocopy of identity card, certificate issued by the Portuguese Consulate or employment contract from the origin country.
  • Transferees must be present for Customs clearance and must provide an exact date of arrival in Portugal.
  • Although normal goods are duty free, Custom’s broker fees are generally required and are based ad valorem.
  • Port handling charges and warehouse fees may be included in Custom’s broker fees but can be expensive; estimates should be requested from agent prior to import.
  • Used household goods are considered duty-free if they have been in the owner of the goods’ possession for a period of at least 6 months and are not for sale after the shipment has been released.
  • Goods must arrive within 6 months of owner of the goods’ arrival in the destination country.
  • Inheritance requires a certified copy of the death certificate as well as the will, to allow for duty free import.

Motor Vehicles

Documents Required

  • Registration certificate
  • Original title
  • International driver’s license
  • Insurance documents 
  • Import license
  • Purchase invoice
  • Inspection records


Specific Information

  • Duty-free entry for temporary import period of 6 months, during which definitive importation of the car must occur.
  • Costs of duties and taxes depend on value of the motor vehicle in Portugal.
  • If no definitive importation is performed, the motor vehicle must leave the country before a period of 6 months.
  • Boats are subject to the payment of duties.
  • Only 1 car allowed.
    • Other cars will incur duties.


Documents Required

  • Vaccination certificate
  • Veterinary health certificate
  • Owner of the goods’ passport


Specific Information

  • Pets must be identifiable with a tattoo or an electronic identification system and vaccinated against rabies.
  • The vaccination certificate must include rabies vaccination information.

Restricted/Dutiable Items

  • Wine
  • Tobacco
  • New items still in packaging
  • Essences for regional wine counterfeit
  • Systems for copying mail stamping systems
  • Fish if it is disemboweled (cannot exceed 20 kg)
  • Medicines and foodstuffs harmful to national health and drugs
  • Powdered milk for babies, food for children and special medical food (including pet food) may be allowed if not requiring refrigeration and with original, unbroken seal (unless in use at the time),
    • Quantity must not exceed the weight of 10 kg originating from Croatia, Faroe Islands, Greenland and Iceland, and of 2 kg if originating in other countries
  • Coats, fur and leather shoes made of protected animals (special authorization required)
  • Hunting and civilian guns only (guns needs a property title and also need to be mentioned on the Consulate certificate)
  • Firearms, cut and thrust weapons, and any instrument without specific application 

Prohibited Items

  • Meat and milk, and any by-products thereof, from non-European Union countries, with the exception of limited amounts from Andorra, Croatia, the Faroe Islands, Greenland, Iceland and small amounts of specific products from other countries;
    • Check with agent for details.
  • Protected species and products thereof as listed by the Washington Convention (CITES). 
    • For example, ivory, tortoise shells, coral, reptile skins, and wood from Amazonian forests.
  • Pornographic material / objects
  • Alcohol / spirits
  • Firearms / weapons
  • Drugs
  • Food

Consignment Instructions

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 Information

CIA World Factbook

Wikipedia Entry for Portugal

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.