Elsewhere on DAFF
Tips For Shopping Safely Overseas
Before you buy
- Know what's restricted or what must be declared - before you go.
- Check handicrafts made from raw materials carefully, including woven plant products (mats, bags, placemats) - don't buy items showing signs of insect infestation or damage.
- Wooden items – avoid souvenirs with holes (a sign of insect activity), and items with bark on them.
- Animal skin products, including drums must be declared, and may require treatment.
- Products made from seeds, including juggling and stress balls, necklaces and bracelets must be declared for quarantine inspection (and maybe treatment) when you get home.
- Don’t bring food home, including pet food and plane food.
- Beware of claims (on packaging or by vendors) that products meet Quarantine / Import requirements. They often don’t.
- If you plan on sending your shopping home by freight or mail, declare the contents accurately – penalties will apply for false declaration. You may also be charged for a quarantine inspection.
- Be aware that ALL international mail is screened, and that your items might need to be inspected and/or treated (at a cost).
When you arrive in Australia
On the plane you’ll be given an Incoming Passenger Card. This is a legal document, and you must tick YES to declare any food, plant material or animal products you're bringing home with you.
To make clearance quicker
- Complete the Incoming Passenger Card and remember to list all your declared goods.
- Clean all footwear, camping or sporting equipment to remove any traces of soil.
- Pack goods for quarantine inspection in one bag - and, if possible, at the top of the bag.
When you declare items of quarantine concern, you’ll be directed to a Biosecurity Officer to have them inspected. Declared items won’t automatically be confiscated; in most cases they will simply be inspected and returned to you (some items may need treatment to make them safe before they’re returned).
Some items are prohibited. If you declare them, you’ll be given the option of re-exporting them. If you don’t declare them, they’ll be destroyed and you could be prosecuted.
If your items have to be treated to make them safe, you’ll be advised when they are available for collection (in most cases there’s a small fee for treatment).
For more information check:
01 Nov 2011