It is of great importance if you buy your goods in or outside the EU.

If you purchase goods online which will be dispatched from a country outside the EU, you will generally have to pay Danish VAT and customs duties.

You must pay special duties on some goods such as for example spirits, coffee and sweets. Online shopping and special duties.

Customs duties

You must pay customs duty if your purchase is worth more than DKK 1,150 excluding shipping costs. Customs duty is charged on both the price of the goods and the shipping costs. You must always pay customs duty on spirits, wine, beer, tobacco products (cigarettes etc.), perfume and eau de toilette, regardless of how much you purchase.

  • Example (you have to pay duties): You buy a watch for DKK 1,000 and a watch strap for DKK 500 and both items are shipped together in one package. As a result, the total value of the package exceeds the maximum of DKK 1,150, and therefore you will be charged customs duties despite the fact that the package contains two separate items. You will be charged customs duties on the DKK 1,500 and on your shipping expenses.
  • Example (you do not have to pay duties): You buy a watch fro DKK 1,000 from one online shop and then you buy a watch strap from another online shop so that the items are shipped separately. Both items are below the maximum and therefore you will not have to pay customs duties.

VAT

You must pay VAT on all goods purchased in countries outside the EU. VAT is charged on the price of the goods, the shipping costs and the customs duty. The Danish rate of VAT is 25%.

On 1 July 2021, the EU VAT e-commerce package entered into force. Among other things, this means that you, as an EU citizen, must pay VAT on all goods purchased from non-EU countries. This also applies to goods worth less than DKK 80, which were previously exempt from VAT. One of the aims of the new VAT rules is to help ensure equal competition between EU and non-EU businesses.

Special duties (excise duties)

In addition to customs duty and VAT, you must pay special duties on goods such as spirits, wine, beer, tobacco products (e.g. cigarettes), sweets, tyres, disposable tableware and mineral oils. This applies regardless of how much you purchase.

Fees

The goods you purchase must be declared to the Danish Customs Agency (Toldstyrelsen) so that you can pay any customs duty, taxes and VAT on the goods. In practice, it will usually be the carrier you choose (e.g. PostNord or GLS) when you accept the seller’s terms of delivery for your purchase who declares the goods and clears them through customs for you.

You as the purchaser must reimburse the carrier for customs duty, taxes and VAT. Often the carrier will also charge a fee for performing this work. The Customs Agency has no influence on this fee or the amount you will pay.

Special rules apply to:

  • Spirits, wine, beer, tobacco (cigarettes etc.): You must always pay VAT, customs duty and possibly special duties on these goods regardless of the amount you buy.
  • Computer programmes and entertainment downloaded: As a private individual you must pay Danish VAT on computer programmes, music, web hosting and similar purchased outside the EU. VAT is charged by the seller.
  • Products bearing forged trademarks and pirated products.

The carrier charges VAT, customs duty and special duties - and a fee

When you purchase goods online from a non-EU country, these must be declared to the Customs Agency so that you can pay VAT, taxes and any customs duty on the goods. In practice, it will usually be the carrier (e.g. PostNord, GLS, DHL, TNT etc.) you choose that declares the goods and pays VAT on your behalf. 

You as the purchaser must reimburse the carrier for VAT, taxes and any customs duty. Often the carrier will also charge a fee for performing this work. You agree to the seller’s terms of delivery when you make your purchase. The Customs Agency has no influence on the carrier’s fee or how much you pay. You must contact the carrier in question about the fee.

Some carriers notify you that your package is ready for delivery, but that you have a bill to pay first. Once you have paid the bill, you will receive your goods. Other carriers will deliver your package before you receive the bill.

Goods undergoing customs clearance

Customs clearance means that the carrier will store your goods while they make customs duty and VAT declarations.

It is the carrier, i.e. the business transporting the goods to you (e.g. PostNord or GLS),  who will have your package during customs clearance.

If you have to ship your goods for repair to a non-EU country, you only have to pay VAT and customs duty on the repair expenses - and shipping.

If you do not ship the goods under the rules on outward processing traffic, you will be charged VAT and customs duty when it is returned after it has been repaired.

We recommend that you contact your courier or the Danish Customs Agency (Toldstyrelsen) ( 45) 72 22 12 12 before you ship your goods for repair.

If you wish to return goods purchased online from a non-EU country, you can apply for a refund for the customs duty and VAT paid as follows:

  • You must have already returned the goods to the supplier.
  • Your request for the customs duty and VAT to be refunded must be made no later than three months after the goods were cleared through customs.

Follow the steps below

  1. Return the goods to the non-EU supplier. Remember to get a receipt that specifies where you sent them.
  2. Once you have received a refund, you can apply for a customs duty and VAT refund (in Danish).

Please see our legal guide (in Danish) for further legal information.