Moving to Italy and importing your belongings duty free

May 10, 2023

Are you moving to Italy? Non-EU expats who are transferring their residence to Italy are entitled to import personal household goods tax-free.

You can ask for tax exemption documentation from the Customs Office or import agent at the port of arrival.

Conditions For Tax Exemption

To qualify for tax exemptions the Customs Office will ask you to fulfill the below conditions:

• If you are importing Household goods and vehicles you must have owned and used them for at least 6 months before the relocation;

• You shall prove to have lived in the country where the shipment is coming from for at least 12 months;

  • You shall prove to have applied for the residence registration at the city hall (iscrizione anagrafica) before the arrival of the shipment*;

• The importation shall take place within 12 months from the date of the residence registration in Italy.


When moving to Italy, please take into account the below exceptions:

  • Consumable goods such as food, beverage, and alcohol including wine are subject to duty taxes;
  • New furniture and household items are subject to duty taxes;
  • Electronic equipment requires a specific import permit issued by Italian competent authorities;
  • Electrical bicycles or electrical scooters must comply with EU requirements and have the “CE” logo to pass the Customs checks.

What to do if the Customs authority blocks the shipment because you are not resident in Italy yet?

Here are some possible solutions you may try to release the shipment: 

• Pay duties and taxes; or

• While registering as a resident in the Italian city hall, start the procedure of “Daziato Sospeso”: instead of paying a bond deposit, the shipment can be cleared through a “Polizza Fideiussoria” (Insurance policy) issued by your bank as a guarantee that you will either produce sufficient supporting documents for tax exemption or pay duties and taxes within the established date. Upon obtaining residency the guarantee can be withdrawn.

Last but not least, please make sure to hire a shipping company that has a clear understanding of Italian customs formalities before shipping your goods.

This article was written by Louise D. Machetti and Amal Sfar

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