I missed this last week, but the government has published what duty free we will be allowed when travelling after the 1st January.
It is being branded as ‘extending duty free to the EU’, but that’s only partially true.
We will indeed be able to bring duty-free alcohol and tobacco back into the UK, subject to the following limits (the article fails to mention we can bring back what we want as members of the EU or during the transition period).
- 42 litres of beer
- 18 litres of still wine
- 4 litres of spirits OR 9 litres of sparkling wine, fortified wine or any alcoholic beverage less than 22% ABV
- 200 cigarettes OR
- 100 cigarillos OR
- 50 cigars OR
- 250g tobacco OR
- 200 sticks of tobacco for heating
- or any proportional combination of the above
However, it also says:
We are also ending tax-free sales in airports of goods such as electronics and clothing for passengers travelling to non-EU countries, following concerns that the tax-concession is not always passed on to consumers in the airport. In some instances these tax-free goods are brought back into the country by UK residents, putting high street retailers at a disadvantage.
Either they are passing the discount on to the passengers, which puts the high street retailers at a disadvantage, or they are not, surely? It can’t be both.
I have found the odd discount with duty free electronic shopping, but they’re rarely large, and will that stop people buying duty-free electronics, or will they just do it at the other end on the way back?