Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Singapore Customs Reminds Travellers to Declare Dutiable and GST-payable Goods at Red Channel


With the long weekend arising from the Chinese New  Year round the corner, Singaporeans and travellers alike are expected to travel overseas for their holidays. Singapore Customs would like to remind holidaymakers and other travellers arriving at Changi Airport and other checkpoints to make customs declarations at the Red Channel if they have any cigarettes or tobacco products, liquors exceeding their duty-free allowance and/or taxable items with values beyond their GST reliefs.

Declaration at Checkpoints
Upon arrival at the checkpoints, travellers carrying taxable products are required to make a complete and accurate declaration in person  to the checking officers at the Red Channel. Alternatively, they can also proceed to make payment for duty and GST at Singapore Customs’ self-service Tax Payment Kiosks at Changi Airport or at its Tax Payment offices. They should retain the invoices or receipts to facilitate computation of the required taxes.

Cigarettes and Tobacco Products
All cigarettes, including those with ‘SDPC’ markings, and tobacco products are subject to duty and GST.  There is no duty-free concession on these products.


Liquors Exceeding Duty-Free Allowance
A traveller bringing in or purchasing liquor on arrival in Singapore is entitled to duty-free allowance for spirits, wine and beer if he/she meets all of the following conditions:

  1. 18 years old or above;
  2. Has spent 48 hours or more outside Singapore immediately before your arrival;
  3. Has not arrived from Malaysia; and
  4. The liquors are for personal consumption and not prohibited under the Customs Act

The traveller can choose any of the three options indicated in the table below for the duty-free allowance (Table 1).

There is NO duty-free concession on liquors for persons arriving from Malaysia. Travellers of all nationality arriving from Malaysia will have to pay the relevant duties and GST on their liquors.

Taxable Goods beyond GST Reliefs 
In general, all goods, both dutiable and non-dutiable, brought into Singapore for local consumption are subject to Goods and Services Tax (GST) of 7%.  To minimise inconveniences to travellers bringing small amounts of goods into Singapore for personal consumption, travellers (except for pass and permit holders) are granted the following reliefs on the value of the goods (Table 2):

Advisory from Singapore Customs
Arriving travellers and returning Singaporeans should acquaint themselves with
Singapore’s customs regulations.  It is the responsibility of travellers to make an accurate and complete declaration of the dutiable and taxable items in their possession. Failure to make a declaration is an offence under the Customs and GST Acts.  Offenders can be prosecuted in court and fined up to $10,000 and imprisonment for up to three years.  

If travellers are unsure of the duty-free allowance or GST relief they are entitled to, they could consult Singapore Customs officers at the Tax Payment office.  Members of the public can seek assistance or obtain more information by calling Singapore Customs at 6355 2000, email to  customs feedback@customs.gov.sg

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