Country Guide: Latvia

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: January 24, 2017

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Used Household Goods and Personal Effects

Documents Required

  • Copy of passport
  • Diplomatic franchise (diplomats)
  • Detailed inventory in English
  • Pro-forma invoice with values
  • Formal letter to Customs with detailed information about reasons of moving into Latvia (the first time or return, temporary move or permanent, etc.)
  • Letter of employment (foreigners)
  • Copy of employment contract (foreigners)
  • Rental agreement (foreigners) / proof of real estate ownership (returning citizens or EU citizens from outside the EU)
  • Proof of living abroad from origin shipping country of European Union (EU) for a period of at least 12 months) (returning citizens, EU citizens from outside the EU)


Specific Information

  • The shipment must arrive within 12 months of the owner of the goods’ arrival.
  • Diplomats may import household shipments duty free.
  • Returning citizens may import household shipments duty free if having lived abroad for at least 12 months.
  • Returning citizens must present a letter issued by the Repatriation Centre of Latvian Citizenship and Migration Affairs of their status and may import household shipments duty free. 
  • If the owner of the goods is not a resident of Latvia, they must have a residence and work permit before arriving to Latvia.
    • If these documents are not present at the time of Customs clearance, the shipment will be delayed.
  • For shipments entering by roadway, Customs must be notified and receive documents at least 1 hour prior to shipment arrival.

Motor Vehicles

Documents Required

  • Technical passport
  • Proof of ownership for a period of at least 6 months


Specific Information

  • Motor vehicles must be registered in the owner of the goods’ name.
  • Motor vehicles may enter duty free only if owned and operated for a minimum of 6 months and the vehicle meets European requirements.
  • The vehicle must have a valid license plate and third party liability (TPL) insurance policy valid within the entire territory of the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland.


Documents Required

  • Rabies vaccination certificate valid for 12 months (dogs)
  • Original international vaccination book
  • Certificate of origin
  • Veterinary health certificate in English or Latvian 


Specific Information

  • The veterinary health certificate must be issued by a licensed veterinarian within 10 days of import.

Antiques, Artifacts, Carpets, Paintings

  • Antiques and artwork:
    • All antiques and artwork must be declared.
    • Two photographs for each item need to accompany documentation.
    • Contact the destination agent for specific information.

Restricted/Dutiable Items

  • Weapons:
    • For the import of personal arms, hunting weapons, gas pistols (revolvers) and munitions, the owner of the goods must apply for a license at the Home Affairs Ministry Police Department.
    • The license must be obtained prior to import as a valid firearms license from abroad must be presented upon entry.
  • Medications:
    • The owner of the goods can import all medicines as long as the owner of the goods can provide proof that they are for personal use only. 
    • It is recommended to attach a doctor’s prescription to prove the necessity.
    • Drugs and psychotropic substances, as well as equipment for the use of them, cannot be imported.
  • Alcohol:
    • The import of alcohol is restricted. 
    • Some exceptions may be allowed depending on the mode of transport used to enter the country.
    • Contact the destination agent for specific information.
  • Excise goods:
    • Excise goods such as tobacco, coffee, lemonade, etc. may be restricted.
    • Contract the destination agent for specific information.
  • Fur and hunting trophies:
    • A license is required for import.

Prohibited Items

  • Pornographic materials
  • Narcotics and illegal drugs
  • Subversive materials

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 Latvia

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.