Filling Out Customs Forms Online
When you ship items from the U.S. to another country, you must fill out customs forms (except for First-Class Mail International® letters and large envelopes under 15.994 oz):
- The form you need depends on the USPS® mail service you use (and the total value of what you send).
- You can print just a customs form or use Click-N-Ship® service to pay for postage and print an international shipping label and a customs form.
As of March 1, 2023: New Requirements for Packages to European Union (EU) Countries
Countries that follow European Union (EU) customs rules have new requirements for customs forms. If you’re sending packages to one of these countries, you must use more-detailed content descriptions on your customs forms. If you don’t, the customs officials in the receiving country may reject and return (or, in certain cases, may even destroy) your package.
Note: If you're mailing First-Class Mail International® service envelopes containing only documents that don't require customs forms, these new rules don't apply to you.
Before you send your next package, here's what you need to know:
- These rules apply to all international packages going to European countries that follow EU customs rules. This includes small personal gifts, ecommerce orders, and military and diplomatic mail (APO/DPO/FPO).
- For each item in your package, you'll need to provide a more-detailed description on the customs form. You can't just name a general category; your description must be specific. For example, you can't just say "electronics"; you have to be specific about the type of electronics, like "computer", "mobile phone," or "television."
Guidance for Acceptable Descriptions
|Clothes||Men's shirts, girls' vest, boys' jackets|
|Appliances||Refrigerator, stove, microwave oven|
|Artwork||Oil painting, pencil sketch, bronze statue|
|Gifts||Scented candle, remote-controlled car, cashmere scarf|
|Medicine||Painkillers, antiviral spray|
|Health & Beauty Products||Detergent, toothbrush, towels|
|Vegetables||Eggplant, onions, broccoli|
- These descriptions will help determine the "HS (Harmonized System) Tariff Code" (or just "HS Code"), a 6-14 digit number, for every item in your package, which is used for customs, including to help calculate applicable duties and taxes.
- TIP: If you give USPS a detailed description for each item you're sending, our tools (like Retail Postage Price Calculator or Global Shipping Software) will give you the HS Codes.
- USPS Tools may also ask for other types of information (like the Universal Product Code, known as "UPC Code," the brand name, etc.) to help give you the right HS Code for an item.
Harmonized System Tariff Codes are very complex. You can learn more about HS Tariff Codes here.
About Completing Customs Forms
You do not need a customs form if you're sending First-Class Mail International® that weighs under 15.994 oz.
First-Class Mail International must contain only nonnegotiable documents or correspondence.
If you didn’t complete your customs form online or are using postage stamps on a package that requires a customs form, visit your local Post Office™ branch, fill out form PS 2976-R, and present your package at the counter to have the clerk create your label.
Click-N-Ship will print a customs form for you if you use any of the services listed below and print international postage.
- First-Class Package International Service®
- Priority Mail Express International®
- Priority Mail International®
After you prepare your package, you can schedule a free Package Pickup or take your package to your local Post Office location.
For Global Express Guaranteed® (GXG®) packages:
- Fill out the GXG International Air Waybill.
- Fill out the Commercial Invoice PS Form 6182 if you’re mailing to certain destinations. Check Publication 141: Global Express Guaranteed Service Guide for individual country requirements. Insert all documents in PS Form 2976-E (plastic envelope) when complete.
- Create your GXG customs form with Click-N-Ship. You cannot complete a GXG customs form with our customs form tool.
For Priority Mail Express International® and all other USPS international services, including APO/FPO/DPO mail, use PS Form 2976-R, and take your package to the counter for the clerk to create the label.
In most cases, you'll need a customs form when you send shipments to overseas military bases and embassies.
Each country has specific customs requirements, which you can find in our Individual Country Listings.
Check these resources for more information about required customs forms.