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Import/Export

United Kingdom to United Arab Emirates

Country or Territory Regulations Topics:

Import Documentation

For charges made for Export Shipments from United Kingdom to the destination country or territory, please refer to Brokerage Services and Charges-Export Shipments with United Kingdom as the destination.

Driving Licenses

Valid Driving Licenses can be shipped as documents. The description must clearly state 'driving license'. Shipping driving licenses require the approval of the UK customs authorities. A delay of minimum one day has to be calculated.

Please check the import related information if driving licenses are allowed for importation.

Mobile phones to all destinations from United Kingdom can be delayed on export due to security checks from government bodies.

Export procedure ex United Kingdom

A formal electronic export declaration must be sent to customs authorities by the exporter or their representative. Customs authorities grant the release for export and issue an Export Accompanying Document (EAD) with a unique Movement Reference Number (MRN). UPS operated simplified procedures allowing export formalities to be completed upto 14 days after export.

Informal Declarations
An informal declaration is possible for shipments up to a national threshold. The informal declaration is based on the invoice value and is restricted to shipments not subject to prohibitions and restrictions (for example, embargo regulations) or special export procedures (for example, temporary export). The informal clearance will be done by UPS at the point of exit.

National Requirements
Shipments up to a value of 873.00 GBP can be declared informally on the basis of the invoice.

Shipments in the value range 873.00 GBP - 2000 GBP have full and formal individual electronic export declarations which are completed within 14 days of export.

Shipments exceeding 2000 GBP and those that need control on export (for example, temporary exports, return after repair, export licenses) require formal and full electronic export declaration and positive Customs clearance prior to export.

UPS service
UPS offers the service to prepare export declarations on behalf of the exporter without additional fees.

Export Documentation

It is not required for all, however shipments can be held by local authority in United Arab Emirates after screening due to lack of MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet) or NON DG (Dangerous Goods) declaration letter from the shipper resulting to misconnections and impacting end-to-end service.

It would be advisable for all shipments originating, transiting and terminating in UAE to have MSDS or NON DG declaration from shipper enclosed in the shipment and copies to be uploaded in IDIS.

Valid passports can be shipped as documents. The description must clearly state 'passport'. Shipping passports require the approval of the UK customs authorities. A delay of minimum one day has to be calculated.

Please check the import related information if passports are allowed for importation.

Clearance Information

Commercial Importers must provide UPS with a valid importer code for the customs clearance of their import and export shipments with a CIF value equal to and above 1000 Dirham (approximately US$270.00).

The Customs authorities issue the importer code based on application of the importer. UPS offers the valued added service of obtaining new importer codes and renewals on behalf of the customer at a nominal service charge of 150 AED & 125AED respectively in additional to the fee charged by the customs authority.

Shipments addressed to Sharjah Airport customers or shipments requested to be transferred to Sharjah Airport will incur an additional cost of 810 AED (approximately US$232.00) which is charged by the authority. Shipments addressed to Saif Zone customers are bonded as requested whereby the declaration charge of 30 AED (US$9) + UPS disbursement fee of 20AED (US$ 6) is billed.

Shipments addressed to Hamriya , Fujairah and Ras Al Khaimah Free Zones are cleared through Dubai Customs against their company importer code /personal name on a duty paid basis.

The following fee is charged;

Disbursement Fees

A fee of 2.00% of the value, subject to a minimum of 75.00 AED will be charged.

Implementation of Excise Tax Payment:

Effective 1 October, 2017 clearance of Customs Declarations containing Excise Tax applicable goods will be subject to verification of Excise Tax payment in Declaration Taxable Goods.

The consignee is responsible to provide the Excise Declaration Taxable Goods Transaction Number to UPS in order to process the customs declaration against each of the applicable commodities.

To avoid any delay in clearance of Customs Declarations containing Excise Tax applicable commodities, the consignee must ensure that Excise tax is paid prior to submission of Customs Declaration and provide the Excise payment transaction number and an electronic copy of it to UPS.

In addition to customs duties, Excise Tax shall be imposed on the following selective goods as per the tax rates mentioned below;

 Tobacco and its derivatives at 100%

 Energy drinks at 100%

 Soft drinks at 50%

Please note that not only the value(s) of the commodity/commodities have to be considered when calculating duty and tax, but also the freight charge and other fees.

Customs duty is calculated on the CIF value (Cost/Insurance/Freight) for shipments valued at 1000 Dirham (AED) and above.

Discounts mentioned on the invoice will not be considered and duty would be calculated on the full value of the items. For more information see "Invoice Requirements"

Although non-document shipments to the United Arab Emirates are dutiable, the shipments addressed to free zones companies are duty exempt based on their customs registration. The invoices must be addressed to the consigned company in the free zone, with line item declarations of the relevant HS codes, and country or territory of manufacture along with the item description.
Credit card payments are accepted upon delivery for freight and import charges by this destination. Contact UPS or the UPS service partner in the destination country or territory to determine which credit cards are accepted.

Restrictions may apply for freight collect shipments from the origin country or territory. Contact UPS or the UPS service partner in the origin country or territory prior to shipping.

Consignee's full name and a valid telephone number, company name (if applicable), building name and or number, and apartment number (if applicable), street name, area name, and city are required. A valid phone number (preferably mobile) is vital to recover any missing clearance documents and/or validate the delivery address if needed. Please note that missing address requirements will cause a delivery delay. A P.O. Box address is not valid as we do NOT deliver to a P.O. Box.

Important Note: Shipments addressed to a P.O. Box are excluded from the UPS International guarantee regardless of the payer. A delay in delivery may occur due to the need for the consignee's physical address in order to complete delivery.

To ensure timely clearance and delivery of shipments, all importers in UAE must register their VAT ID against their Customs Import/Export registration code.

Importers/Exporters must ensure that their Import/Export code is valid and active for processing customs declarations.

Areas Served

Service is provided to and from certain cities.

Note: Not all parts of each city are fully served. Please check TnT for full details.

Consignee's full name and a valid telephone number, company name (if applicable), building name and or number, and apartment number (if applicable), street name, area name, and city are required. A valid phone number (preferably mobile) is vital to recover any missing clearance documents and/or validate the delivery address if needed. Please note that missing address requirements will cause a delivery delay. A P.O. Box address is not valid as we do NOT deliver to a P.O. Box.

Important Note: Shipments addressed to a P.O. Box are excluded from the UPS International guarantee regardless of the payer. A delay in delivery may occur due to the need for the consignee's physical address in order to complete delivery.

Friday, and official holidays.
In addition all Government Ministries/Offices and schools are closed on Saturdays.
Spring +0400/ Fall +0400
Arabic
UAE Dirham(AED)

Billing Options

  • Shipping charges can be billed to the shipper, receiver or a third party.
  • When billing the receiver, either the shipper or receiver's account number is required.
  • When billing to a third party, the third party's name, country or territory and account number are required.
  • Duties and taxes can be billed to the shipper, receiver or a third party.
  • When billing a third party, the third party's name, country or territory and account number are required.
  • If the duties and taxes are billed to an account outside of the destination country or territory, a "Duty and Tax Forwarding" surcharge will be applied.
  • Please note the following third party billing exceptions:
    • Shipments to and from the same country or territory (domestic shipments) cannot be billed to third party payors in other countries or territories. For example, shipments from Mexico to Mexico or Canada to Canada cannot be billed to a third party payor in the U.S. This rule does not apply to UPS domestic services in European Union countries or territories. For example, shipments from Germany to Germany can be billed to a third party payor in the U.S. (as long as the payor is a business and has a VAT or Tax/EIN ID on file with UPS).
  • When paying by credit card, check, or cash, only the shipper can be billed the shipping charges

Commodity Specific Stipulations

There are special stipulations on the following commodities when shipping to United Arab Emirates. If you plan to ship one of the commodities listed below, be sure to adhere to the following stipulations in order to avoid delays and holds at customs.

Shipments of Antennas,GPS and related equipment will be automatically RTSd at the shippers expense,if not cleared within 30 days of arrival.
Bank Cards which are requested to be sent out of the United Kingdom should be declared for referral to HMRC and await their approval to send.
Cosmetics are regulated by the local municipality authorities in the United Arab Emirates,and approval needs to be obtained before clearance of any cosmetic items.

Shipments of Cosmetics not cleared within 30 days of arrival,will automatically be RTSd at the shippers expense.

An invoice is required on all shipments containing a CD-Rom/Disk. Invoice should indicate the value of the Recording Media (eg. CDR/DVD) & the Intellectual/statistical value of the software/data separately
Shipments of films (promotion, training, commercial ) are subject to censorship and will require an approval from the ministry of information prior to clearance.
All food items imported into UAE require approval from Dubai Municipality before being released.Importers must submit customs documents and samples of the the food items along with the invoices and all other relevant documentation to the Dubai Municipality for approval. The required customs documents will be supplied to the importer by UPS.

UAE does not have a temperature controlled facility, therefore food items that require a temperature controlled storage can not be accepted.

Shipments of Food not cleared within 30 days of arrival,will automatically be RTSd at the shippers expense.

Shipments of Herbal Medicine not cleared within 30 days of arrival,will automatically be RTSd at the shippers expense. Herbal medication must mention all the composition.
Data shipments to United Arab Emirates require an invoice with the value of the CD-ROM or disk only.
Shipments of magazines are subject to National Information Office approval.
Shipments of Medical Items not cleared within 30 days of arrival,will automatically be RTSd at the shippers expense.
Items will be inspected by the Ministry of Health doctor - In case of controlled medication, consignee must provide local doctor prescription (personal) / import permit (commercial) prior to the release of the goods. Customers will be contacted if UPS is unable to obtain the approval whereby the consignee could approach the Ministry of Health.

Companies are required to obtain an Import Permit from the Ministry of Health in order to clear commercial quantities.

Customs does not permit the disposal of medication in the UAE. If the consignee is unable to obtain the clearance approval or refuses to accept the shipment, then shipper will be responsible for the RTS of the shipment. Customs charges apply for the preparation of RTS paperwork and will be assessed to the shipper.

Shipments of Medicine not cleared within 30 days of arrival,will automatically be RTSd at the shippers expense.

UAE does not have a temperature controlled facility therefore, medicine that require same should not be accepted. However, small quantities can be refrigerated( under 5kgs).

Shipments of military equipment requie approval from the Ministry of Defense. An Import License is also required.

Shipments of Military Equipment not cleared within 30 days of arrival,will automatically be RTSd at the shippers expense.

Shipments of parts require an invoice that includes a complete description of the part, the parts components, and the machine that will use the part.
Passports which are requested to be sent out of the United Kingdom should be declared for referral to HMRC and await their approval to send.
Shipments of tapes (audio, video, and magnetic) require Ministry of Information approval prior to clearance.
Shipments of Telecommunications Equipment need to be approved by the local TRA authorities before release.

Shipments which are not cleared within 30 days from arrival will be automatically RTSd and charged to the shipper.

Shipments of telephone equipment, telephones and/or cellular phones require an Import Permit from the local Telecommunications Authority.
All veterinary medication will be forwarded to the Ministry of Environment and Water (MOEW) for approval.For release ,the customer is required to submit the original stamped invoice,original stamped packing list, along with the Certificate of Origin, and airwaybill copy to be submitted to MOEW for the permit.

Shipments which are not cleared within 30 days from arrival will be automatically RTSd and charged to the shipper.

Vitamins will be inspected by the Ministry of Health doctor prior to release. Customers will be contacted in case shipments are not approved,whereby the consignee could approach Ministry of Health.

Shipments of Vitamins not cleared within 30 days of arrival,will automatically be RTSd at the shippers expense.

Gift Exemptions

0.00 UAE Dirham AED
no gift exemption
no gift exemption

There are no official exemptions on gift items; exemptions are left to the discretion of the Customs examiner. Gift items valued up to 1,000.00 AED are considered low value and are exempt from duty. Gift items valued higher than 1,000.00 AED are charged duty at 5% on CIF value.

Invoice Requirements

Non-document shipments to the United Arab Emirates must include 1 original and 2 copies of an invoice.

Proforma Invoices must state a detailed line item description of the goods and the country or territory of manufacture . Stating only 'samples' or 'parts' is unacceptable to UAE Customs. The correct harmonized code against each item is a mandatory requirement by UAE customs.

Invoices require the company's letterhead and signature.

It is a mandatory requirement to include the commodity classification code (Harmonized Code)on the Invoice.

Goods manufactured in Israel are prohibited.

Shipments of documents do not require an invoice.

The consignee's telephone number, mobile number and email address, if available, should appear on the invoice.

UAE customs authorities calculate duty on the base of the undiscounted CIF value of the shipment. Discounts will not be subtracted for the calculation of duty. The invoices must show the total undiscounted value. Invoices which stated solely the discounted value will not be accepted by the customs authorities.

UPS Paperless Invoice is available for small package exports from this country or territory.
UPS Paperless Invoice is accepted by Customs for small package imports into this country or territory.

Items Classified as Documents

The destination country or territory considers the following items document shipments. If criteria are listed, the shipment must meet the criteria to be considered a document shipment.

Documents exceeding 5 kg (11 lbs.) require a commercial invoice.

Tickets for events like stage performances, football matches or concerts can be sent as documents up to a limit of 1 kg per shipment.

Event tickets coming from a printing company and send to the organizer of the event or ticket sales offices can not be sent as documents.

Intercompany mail shipments requires a Waybill only if the shipment is for non-commercial purposes.
  1. The waybill must include a description of intercompany mail.
  2. The value should be of no commercial value or zero value.
  3. Shipments not meeting this criteria require an invoice.

UPS can recommend which forms you need based on a few simple criteria. Forms can be completed online or printed. See which forms you need.

Prohibited or Restricted Commodities

In addition to the prohibited commodities listed here, it is prohibited to ship the following commodities to United Arab Emirates.

The import of balloons and light aircraft may require special clearance approval.The importation of aircraft parts,accessories and materials are restricted to airlines/flight academies.
Antique shipments are restricted from Europe, the Middle East and Africa and can only be shipped with an International Special Commodities (ISC) contract. Antiques are defined as a work of art, piece of furniture, decorative object, or silverware that is 100 years old or older.
Artwork shipments are restricted from Europe, the Middle East and Africa and can only be shipped with an International Special Commodities (ISC) contract.

Paintings or other works of art can be accepted if the artist is still alive, the artwork is replaceable and an art dealer or gallery has appraised the artwork within the last year. If the declared value of the artwork is greater than $100.00 and there is a claim, the shipper must provide a copy of the original invoice, a bill of sale, or other proof certifying in writing the actual cost or replacement cost of the item.

Artwork includes the following: Original engravings, prints, lithographs, original sculptures, statuary.

The term "Artwork" does not apply to: architectural, engineering, industrial, topographical, commercial drawings, hand-painted or hand-decorated manufactured articles.

Religious books are prohibited. Shipments containing books will be dutiable if the value exceeds AED 1000 or US$270.00. However, if the shipment contains educational books the duty exemption may apply after approval from the National Information Office.
On line approval needs to be obtained for Chemicals from Dubai Municipality in case the shipment is detained for approval.

Consignee will require the MSDS for this purpose.

Shipments which are not cleared within 30 days from arrival will be automatically RTSd and charged to the shipper.

Electronic Cigarettes are prohibited.
Fireworks are prohibited.
Gambling devices are prohibited.
Goods originating in Israel are prohibited.
All shipments containing precious metal or stones in jewelry form must comply with the following:

Shipments cleared by consignee or other agent need an original invoice under shipper's letter head with the company stamp. If this cannot be provided, the consignee has to pay a deposit of AED 1000 ($US 280.00) which can be refunded when the original purchase receipt is submitted by them. Online declarations can be processed using IDIS invoice if shipment is cleared by UPS.

Shipment invoice must state the item along with the value/weight/carats Example : Description - 1 pair diamond earrings Value - US$ 2,000.00, Gold Weight - 10grams Diamonds - Carats of the diamonds. If the shipment contains gold/silver/platinum jewelry, the weight in grams must be mentioned.

The consignee needs to submit their passport copy with the visa page.

Jewelry shipments are subject to a $500 value limit without an International High Value Waiver (IHVW).

Jewelry for which the retail price is lower than US$150.00 per item and which do not contain precious metal(s) and/or stone(s) are considered costume jewelry and can be shipped only up to this value from the origin country or territory.

Knives are prohibited except for kitchen knives.
Shipments of Lithium Metal Batteries are prohibited on Emirates Airlines flights which UPS uses to this destination country or territory.

Alternative arrangements are in place, but expect transit delays if the normal planned flow of the package is via Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Time in Transit may be extended due to solution found.

Pork products are subject to municipality approval.
Mobile phones to all destination countries from United Kingdom can be delayed on export due to security checks from government bodies.
Personal Effects cannot be shipped between these countries or territories
Adult toys for pleasure,Movies or pornographic material is prohibited in the United Arab Emirates

Products made in Iran are prohibited in our service due to a current embargo.
Swords are Prohibited.
Tobacco Products are prohibited.

Saturday Delivery

Saturday Delivery Available: Yes

Not available in all areas. Always check the international time in transit system for details of service availability within a country or territory.

Service Options

Always check Calculate Time and Cost for details of service availability and guarantee information within a country or territory. All Service Levels may not be available to or from every address within a country or territory.

  • UPS Express
  • UPS Worldwide Expedited
  • UPS Worldwide Express Plus
  • UPS Worldwide Express Saver
  • UPS WorldWide Express Freight

Special Clearance Requirements

The consignee must provide a letter from the exhibitor in UAE along with their passport copy for the clearance of exhibition goods. Shipments can be cleared on duty which is non refundable.

Temporary import shipments which must be returned after a specific time frame can be cleared against a deposit to be provided by the consignee in UAE. The deposit will be refunded after the shipment has re-exported.

All military equipment must be consigned to the Ministry of Defense. An Import License is also required.

Outward Processing Relief (goods exported from the UK for the purpose of repair)

The outward processing relief starts with the export from the UK and will be discharged with the re-importation of the repaired goods. Both steps need to be identified by UPS export or import operation. Repair Goods: Goods requiring Export from the UK for repair Invoice requirements:

  • Statement stating "Goods being sent for repair under Outward Processing Relief" should be clearly marked on the commercial invoice
  • Provide serial number of goods being sent for repair. If the goods are not serialized a statement to this effect must be made on the commercial invoice
  • Exporters authorized to export under OPR must include their authority number on all paperwork
  • Provide correct commercial value of goods as originally paid for not a nominal value for the goods.

Failure to provide any of the above information will result in shipments being delayed.

Repaired goods: Goods being re-exported returned after repair in the UK Invoice requirements:

  • Invoice should clearly state "Goods have been repaired under IPR"
  • Provide either IP authorization number or Import entry details
  • Provide full commercial value of goods plus cost of repair

Failure to provide any of the above information will result in shipments being delayed.

The invoice must include the value of the commodity before repair and the cost of the repair, along with the serial number. Export declaration processed through Dubai Customs must be submitted for clearance at the time of inspection to clear as duty exempt-however duty on the repair charges will be applicable.
The invoice must include the country or territory of manufacture and the reason for return,along with the serial number.

The export tracking number should be mentioned on the invoice for easy reference and value of outgoing and incoming should be the same.

The invoice must include a description of the sample and indicate if the sample is marked or mutilated.
New requirements have been implemented for small package shipments and are based on the International Standards for Phytosanitary Measures (ISPM) 15, which is entitled "Guidelines for Regulating Wood Packaging Material in International Trade". ISPM 15 was adopted internationally in 2002, and is gradually being introduced by countries or territories worldwide. Wood or wood products covered by ISPM 15 include items such as packing cases, boxes, crates, drums or similar packing, pallets, box pallets and other load boards, pallet collars and skids, but exclude such processed woods as orientated strand board, particle board, plywood or veneer, created using glue, heat and pressure or a combinations thereof, and, raw wood which is 6mm or less thick. It is recommended that if a question arises on this issue, please check with the authority that issues the Phytosanitary certificates in your country or territory.
Temporary import shipments which must be returned after a specific time frame can be cleared against a deposit to be provided by the consignee in UAE. The deposit will be refunded after the shipment has re-exported.

Value Limits


Private Shipments

  • 1000.00 UAE Dirham (AED)
    • In most cases, when the value of the shipment is less than the Deminimis Value, the shipment may enter the country or territory duty and tax free.
    Commercial Shipments

  • 1000.00 UAE Dirham (AED)
    • In most cases, when the value of the shipment is less than the Deminimis Value, the shipment may enter the country or territory duty and tax free.

    Weight and Size Limits

    70 kg (150 lbs.) per package
    274.00 cm (107.9 in.)  per package
    419 cm (165 in. ) per package
    Length and girth combined


    Convert metric quantity for weight, length, and area.


    NOTE: Information provided by UPS is provided AS IS, may not be current, and does not constitute legal advice. In no event shall UPS be liable for any errors in the information, forms or features made available by UPS, or by any third party site linked to from UPS. Selection and completion of proper forms for any given shipment is the sole responsibility of the shipper. All shipments are subject to the UPS Terms and Conditions of Service in effect at the time of shipping for the country or territory of origin.
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