CUSTOMS REGULATIONS AND INFORMATION FOR IMPORTS
Customs Form DA 302 and P.1.160
Original Passport (including page with Entry Stamp)
Detailed inventory for attestation
Permanent residence documents / Temporary Residence Permit and Work Permit
Affidavit (stating reason for arrival in to South Africa)
Original Bill of Lading (OBL) / Air Waybill (AWB) Diplomatic Clearance (Diplomats) Certificate from Embassy, signed by South African Department of Foreign Affairs (Diplomats)
The shipper must be present for Customs clearance.
The shipper must possess required documents and forward a copy to agent prior to import.
The shipment of household items, new furniture, and precious metal objects are treated as a commercial import and subject to the payment of full duties.
The following household goods may be imported duty free if meeting the following requirements:
o Works of art forming a part of a bona fide household shipment or are over 100 years old.
o The articles have been in the use and possession for more than 12 months and are not for sale or other disposal.
Returning residents must have been abroad for a period of at least 6 consecutive months.
Diplomats may import items duty free.
Motor Vehicles Import to South Africa
Automobiles / Motorcycles
Customs Form DA 304/A
Document showing that vehicle has been in the owner’s use and possessions abroad for more than 1 year before the importation of the vehicle (e.g., original Purchase Invoice, Insurance Certificate, etc.).
OBL / AWB
Letter of Authority (LOA) issued by the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS) in Pretoria (must be submitted at the time of clearance)
Mopeds / Power-Driven Boats with Inboard Engines
Document showing that vehicle has been in owner’s use and possession abroad for more than 1 year prior to importation of the vehicle (original Purchase Invoice, Insurance Certificate, etc.)
LOA / SABS in Pretoria
Caravans / Trailers
LOA / SABS in Pretoria
B. Specific Information
Only left-hand drive motor vehicles purchased after January 1, 2000, can be imported.
The transferee must be in possession of the Import Permit and LOA prior to the arrival of any
motor vehicles, motorbikes, motor scooters, or motorcycles (anything motorized); delays
related to the permit may result in demurrage charges.
The shipper must be in the country at least 10 business days prior to arrival of an ocean
A faxed copy of the LOA and the Import Permit must be received by the agent to avoid a
delay of Customs clearance.
Motorized vehicles should not be shipped until transferee has proven possession of all
required documents to Customs and has received written permission for import.
Temporary residents must pay in cash.
Vehicles cannot be sold for at least 2 years after the date of importation.
The rate of value added tax (VAT) is assessed on the import value of the vehicle.
A fee of R1800.00 per vehicle, payable to the SABS is required.
Incomplete or missing documents may result in the detainment or destruction of the shipment.
Returning residents must pay full duties and taxes.
Temporary residents must provide a Customs bond to cover full duties and taxes and do not
need an Import Permit. A refund may be possible at the time of export; contact agent for
Foreign Diplomats pay no duties or taxes, subject to provisions of the Diplomatic Clearance
Certificate, and proof of value.
RESTRICTED / DUTIABLE ITEMS
Items are subject to the payment of duties.
Local currency of over $10,000; gold coins, coin and stamp collections and unprocessed gold
must be declared.
Endangered species of plants or wildlife, alive or dead, including parts and articles made from
them (require CITES Permit)
Animal and animal byproducts
Medicines for personal use (note from physician and prescription required)
Cigarettes (200), cigars (20), tobacco (250 g)
Perfume (50 ml)
Eau de toilette (250 ml)
Wine / Liquor / Alcohol
o Import Permit and Liquor Removal Certificate required.
o Items subject to payment of duties.
o Documentation requirements must be met prior to the arrival of the shipment.
Dangerous Goods / Firearms
o Import Permit and South African Police Firearm Registrar Certificate SAP 312 are
Note: Travelers may be asked to pay deposit on expensive items like laptops, which is refunded at
re-exported. Returning residents are advised to register personal items (jewelry, watches, cameras,
laptops, etc.) before leaving the country to avoid paying duty on these items upon re-importation.
Plants and vegetable products
Pornographic books and magazines
Walkie-talkies and radios (may include other prohibited communication devices)
Animal products (certain feathers, furs, skins, tusks, or animals identified under protected