ntspelich
Posts: 740
Joined: Tue Aug 05, 2003 2:35 am

EU Customs Clearance Question

Sat Sep 06, 2003 1:42 pm

Next month I will be lucky enough to travel to a couple of destinations throughout the EU. My initial flight will be from BWI to DUB; then connecting service from DUB to various locations within the EU. My question is this: will I only have to go through customs once upon arrival to DUB. Or will it be necessary on intra-European flights also? My only previous experience with US-EU customs has been on final destination flights, so I wanted to know how much time I should allot myself since I will be making my own arrangements.

I am assuming that a formal customs process is only necessary on the initial US-EU flight. Thus, less time is needed for intra-EU flight connections. Am I correct?

Any help is appreciated.

Thanks,
NS
United 717 heavy, you're facing the wrong way. Any chance you can powerback to get off of my deice pad?
 
f.pier
Posts: 1405
Joined: Fri Aug 25, 2000 2:50 am

RE: EU Customs Clearance Question

Sat Sep 06, 2003 5:18 pm

The EU is made by 15 states, but one of these is a little bit "special", the UK.

In the whole EU there are no more custom checks except with the UK and Ireland.

Here's the list of the EU states without custom checks within them

Austria
Belgium
Denmark
Finland
France
Germany
Greece
Italy
Luxembourg
Netherlands
Portugal
Spain
Sweden

+ 2 countries non EU members but without custom checks with states listed above:

Iceland
Norway

As you can see, if you go to Dublin and then to Rome for examble, there will be custom checks, but them, from Rome to Frankfurt for example, there will not be any kind of custom checks.

[Edited 2003-09-06 10:19:27]
 
BIK
Posts: 54
Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2003 4:58 am

RE: EU Customs Clearance Question

Sat Sep 06, 2003 7:55 pm

I was just in London 3 weeks ago and since i was coming from an non-EU city (but still a European city) i expected to see customs control.
I was pleasantly suprised to see no customs at all. We did get to go through the red and green exits but there was no one waiting for us at all. We just walked through the deserted customs area.

So now im wondering if UK maybe stopped customs checks alltogether for Europe arrivals?

Or maybe they just needed a break =)
 
airsicknessbag
Posts: 4626
Joined: Thu Aug 17, 2000 2:45 am

RE: EU Customs Clearance Question

Sat Sep 06, 2003 8:33 pm


There are no customs controls on any flight within the EU, including the UK and Ireland.

These two however are not part of the Schengen agreement, meaning one will still have to go through immigration.

Some examples:

JFK-DUB-CDG
Immigration and customs at CDG.

JFK-DUB DUB-CDG
Immigration and customs at DUB; immigration at CDG

JFK-CDG-FRA
Immigration at CDG, customs at FRA

JFK-CDG CDG-FRA
Immigration and customs at FRA

FRA-LHR
Immigration at LHR

FRA-CDG
Nothing


Schengen = EU plus Iceland and Norway, minus UK and Ireland.

Daniel Smile
 
jwenting
Posts: 9973
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2001 10:12 pm

RE: EU Customs Clearance Question

Sun Sep 07, 2003 12:19 am

I think people are confusing customs checks and passport control...

Customs checks are cursory for all arriving passengers from anywhere unless there is a high-risk flight come in in which case they are strict (for example, a flight from the Netherlands Antilles or Colombia as that is a hotbed for drugs trafficking will cause customs officials to be extra alert at Schiphol).

Passport check depends on where you arrive from. When travelling from one Schengen signatory nation to another there is no passport check.
You can then also take the green lane always (and customs officials will see from your luggage tags that you arrived from a Schengen signatory country and not stop you, if you have no checked baggage your ticket will do if you're stopped).
In some airports there may be special terminals for Schengen arrivals without any customs checks at all, in other airports this is the procedure.
I wish I were flying
 
ntspelich
Posts: 740
Joined: Tue Aug 05, 2003 2:35 am

RE: EU Customs Clearance Question

Sun Sep 07, 2003 12:59 am

Thanks for the help

NS
United 717 heavy, you're facing the wrong way. Any chance you can powerback to get off of my deice pad?
 
airsicknessbag
Posts: 4626
Joined: Thu Aug 17, 2000 2:45 am

RE: EU Customs Clearance Question

Sun Sep 07, 2003 1:02 am

>>>I think people are confusing customs checks and passport control...

But now you´re doing exactly that, confusing "Schengen" with "travelling without being checked by customs"  Smile

>>>You can then also take the green lane always (and customs officials will see from your luggage tags that you arrived from a Schengen signatory country and not stop you, if you have no checked baggage your ticket will do if you're stopped).
In some airports there may be special terminals for Schengen arrivals without any customs checks at all, in other airports this is the procedure.

No. You might be on a JFK-CDG-FRA connexion: your passport will be checked by immigration at CDG, your baggage, provided it´s checked through all the way, will be delivered into the same hall as the o/d passengers´. Then everybody goes through customs, but only YOU may be subject to a closer inspection, not those who only originated at CDG.

I´m afraid it gets more and more confusing for poor ntspelich  Smile/happy/getting dizzy

Daniel Smile
 
ntspelich
Posts: 740
Joined: Tue Aug 05, 2003 2:35 am

RE: EU Customs Clearance Question

Sun Sep 07, 2003 2:19 am

I´m afraid it gets more and more confusing for poor ntspelich

doh!

NS
United 717 heavy, you're facing the wrong way. Any chance you can powerback to get off of my deice pad?
 
N6376M
Posts: 2310
Joined: Tue Aug 12, 2003 12:54 am

RE: EU Customs Clearance Question

Sun Sep 07, 2003 9:02 am

Jwenting -

I guess I'm a bit confused by the explanation of passport control procedures.

I've flown into AMS 10 - 15 times in the past three years from a variety of places (the US, the UK, Eastern Europe). Every time, passport control was a "communal" sort of queue with passengers from flights from all origins (inter-European and intra-European) joining the same lines. At times there are special lines for EU passport holders but all non-EU holders join the same line(s) regardless of their point of origin.

I will say that AMS passport control seems to be much more efficient than immigration in the US where lines for colleagues of mine who are non-US citizen have waited up to 3 hours to clear customs in ATL. I've never waited more than 5 minutes at AMS.

Same goes for customs - though I've never seen anyone stopped.

-76M
 
RickB
Posts: 807
Joined: Mon May 19, 2003 3:11 am

RE: EU Customs Clearance Question

Sun Sep 07, 2003 9:26 am

Ntspelich,

On intra European flights - your passport will be checked and you will have to proceed through customs - as others have pointed out - there is a specific 'blue' channel through customs if your flight originated in another Eu country. Usually the customs side of things involves nothing more than walking through the blue aisle - occasionally people are stopped and searched but not often - you dont need to make any declarations prior to landing as you would do if you land in the US from a foreign country.

The passport side of things is slightly different and entirely based on the visa requirements of an individual country. In the UK - you would have to fill in a landing card before passing through immigration. This can vary from one EU country to another so its worth checking out if any EU countries have any specific entry - although the chances are you will be fine.

I very much doubt you will have any problems with intra european flights - relax and have a nice trip !!

RickB

 
DFWLandingPath
Posts: 208
Joined: Thu Aug 30, 2001 12:17 pm

RE: EU Customs Clearance Question

Sun Sep 07, 2003 9:36 am

I felw from CDG-MAN and was checked by UK customs at MAN. (the agent was quite confused as my connecting flight was to LHR) When I flew CDG-LHR I would have had to go through customs at Heathrow if I wasn't connecting to IAD.

Cheers,
DFWLandingPath
 
jwenting
Posts: 9973
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2001 10:12 pm

RE: EU Customs Clearance Question

Sun Sep 07, 2003 2:32 pm

yes, at AMS there is no separate handling of Schengen and other arrivals.
At some other airports there is.

Same with customs checks, those too can be either separate or combined.

The main difference is at departure, where Schengen passengers are now concentrated in different areas where there are no tax-free shops (at least that's the situation at Schiphol).
I wish I were flying

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