Whilst on holiday here in Benidorm, one of the things on your shopping list may be cigarettes, tobacco and spirits - almost everyone will take back at least one of these things as they are cheaper here in Spain then back in the UK.
However, as of 1st October 2011, HM Customs & Revenues have revised the guidelines on cigarettes and tobacco of when to start questioning you about the amount of goods you are bringing into the UK.
"If a customs official from the UK Boarder Agency (UKBA) thinks you may be bringing in excise goods such as alcohol and tobacco from the EU for commercial use - perhaps to sell to other people or simply for reimbursement - they may ask you questions and make checks". You may be asked;
- the type and quantity of goods you have bought.
- why you bought them.
- how you paid for them.
- how often you travel.
- how much you normally smoke or drink.
Cigarettes = 3200
Cigars = 200
Cigarillos = 400
Tobacco = 3kg
Wine = 90 litres
Spirits = 10 litres
From 1st October the new guidelines have changed for cigarettes and tobacco only to:
Cigarettes = 800
Tobacco = 1kg
This does not mean that these are the new limits BUT if you do have more than 800 cigarettes or 1kg of tobacco then the customs have the right to stop and question you. If questioned and you do not satisfy them that they are for your own personal use or as a gift ie. no payment will be taken, they can seize them. It is possible to appeal if you have had items seized but this can be a long and drawn out process. Customs have guidelines much like railway tracks .... they go from A to B only.