Used Household Goods and Personal Effects
- Copy of passport (copy must be certified by a lawyer)
- Rated original bill of lading (OBL) / airway bill (AWB)
- Packing list in English or Spanish
- Proof of residence abroad from origin country
- Customs clearance takes approximately 10 business days from the date of shipment arrival.
- The items and weights identified on the OBL must match the actual items in the shipment or a fine of
250 USD will be levied and clearance will be delayed.
- All shipments are subject to physical inspection.
- Diplomat shipments are duty free.
- Returning citizens may receive a partial tax exemption if having lived abroad for at least 24 months
preceding import; proof from the Costa Rican consulate in the origin country is required and must
indicate the number of years of residence lived abroad.
- Liftvans, airvans, wooden crates, and boxes arriving in containers or single shipments must be
fumigated per ISPM-15 guidelines and visibly marked on at least two opposite sides of the container in
permanent black ink.
- Certain wood packing materials are exempt from ISPM-15 regulations; contact the destination agent
for specific information.
- Original title
- Original purchase invoice
- Emissions certificate in Spanish (or translated), verified by the Consul at origin
- Duties range from 45% to 70% of the retail value of a vehicle.
- The import of motor vehicles is not recommended as duties may exceed the value of the vehicle.
- Contact the destination for additional information.
- Rabies vaccination record
- Veterinary health certificate (2 copies)
- International certificate (APHIS Form 7001) is recommended
- Authorization from the Costa Rican Health Ministry obtained at origin from the Consulate / Embassy
- Documents must be received by the destination agent prior to the arrival of the animal and are
subject to examination upon arrival.
- Animals over 3 months of age must be vaccinated against rabies.
- Quarantine is not currently required unless the pet is deemed unhealthy upon examination then the
pet may be kenneled in a government facility.
- The following items are subject to taxes:
- Arms and ammunition (a permit from the Ministry of National Security is required for returning
citizens or residents)
- Dangerous objects (a permit from the Ministry of National Security is required for returning
citizens and residents)
- Plants (a phytosanitary certificate and permit from the Ministry of Agriculture are required
prior to import)
- New household goods / new furniture (an original invoice or a statement under oath of the value
of the item is required)
- Household / electrical appliances (the brand, serial number, and model must be listed on the
- Wedding trousseaux, inheritances, gifts and souvenirs
- Antiques and works of art
- Furniture (wooden items / ornaments require a permit from the Ministry of Agriculture)
- Precious metal objects, such as jewelry, coins, etc. (purchase receipts / invoices are required)
- Non-motorized vehicles, such as bicycles, watercraft, etc. (duties depend on value, year, model,
cubic centimeters, and features)
- Wine and alcohol (permits from the Ministry of Health /Ministry of Economy are required)
- Tins and food (a permit from the Ministry of Health are required) (3 copies)
- Narcotics, drugs and medicines (permits from the College of Pharmacy and Ministry of Health are
- Pornographic and subversive materials
Recommended: Contact the destination agent to ensure all requirements have been met
prior to import, especially for differences regarding air / sea shipments.
Movguru note: These policies can change as per customs regulations at
any time without notice. Treat this document as informative guide. Movguru has published this document
as guide only for information purpose on its sole discretion and holds no depiction of expressing or
inferred to the precision or applicability of its content.