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Importing personal belongings

Over the last 25 years we have been working with the Australian customs authorities to make this process as easy as possible particularly for our customers.

Each region has their own customs authority and managing the export and the import of your personal belongings into Australia sadly isn’t straight forward. As much as you may feel that this is a silly rule that Seven Seas Worldwide made up, we can assure you we didn’t.

We also have more general information on avoiding unnecessary charges and a complete list of prohibited goods in the ‘Other information’ section at the bottom of the page.

Did you know?

You have to ensure the soles of your shoes are clean and free of dirt when shipping them into Australia.

Importing your personal effects and household items

Your shipment of personal effects and household items can be imported duty-free if you fulfil this criterion:

  1. You are a returning Australian citizen, or, non-citizen with long stay / permanent residence visa who are returning to take up permanent residence after a period of more than 12 months outside Australia;
  2. If you are not already in Australia, then you do not need to be present when your shipment is imported but you must be planning to return within 6 months of importing your shipment;
  3. The items you are importing as your personal effects and household items have been owned for more than 12 months and are not for resale, disposal, gifted, leased / hire out or otherwise used for business purpose.

The Department of Agriculture and Water Resources has the right to inspect all shipments of personal effects and household items. They have the right to demand that items within the shipment be either cleaned, irradiated or removed for deep burial which will incur additional charges.
You can find out more from the official Australian Government website here.

If you are sending any of the items below they are covered by this restriction.

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil, livestock or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

If you are using our baggage service (boxes, bags and suitcases), you need to pack any kind of boots and shoes, e.g. walking / hiking boots, golf shoes, rugby boots, everyday shoes, inside your boxes at the top, with the soles facing upward or, with suitcases, on top of your clothes with the soles facing upward, so they are visible for quick inspection. This may not be possible with boots but placing inside the box on top should be enough.

If you are using our MoveCube® service, you will be provided a white box within which you need to pack all your shoes and boots of any kind, e.g. walking / hiking boots, golf shoes, rugby boots, everyday shoes. This “Shoe & Boot Box” will need to be packed at the door of the MoveCube for quick inspection.

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil, livestock or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

  • All types of BBQ / Braai, BBQ / Braai equipment and charcoal.
  • Lawn mower, spades, forks, ladders, wheelbarrow and other garden tools, etc.
  • Gazebo, folding chairs, garden games, etc..
  • Rattan screen.

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil, livestock or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

  • Mountain bikes, child’s bicycle, scooters, etc..

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil, livestock or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

  • Russian Maryoshka doll.
  • Christmas decorations made of wool.
  • Christmas tree.

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil, livestock or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

  • Sea shells, corals.
  • Feathers, feather pillows.
  • Leather hides.
  • Reeds, wicker baskets.
  • Rattan chairs, rattan screen, rattan chest.
  • Bamboo, bamboo steamer.
  • Plant pots.
  • Wood carvings & wooden ornaments.
  • Wheat bags.

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil, livestock or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

  • All general strollers and prams.

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil, livestock or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

  • Golf clubs, golf bags with clubs, golf bags with trolleys – soil is often found at the bottom of the golf bag.
  • Cricket gear: stumps, bats, balls, leg protectors, gloves, etc..
  • Hockey gear: sticks, balls, gloves, etc..
  • Mountaineering equipment: ropes, gloves, etc..
  • Tents, tent poles & pegs, camping chairs etc..
  • Walking stick.
  • Saddles, bridle, girth, etc..
  • Fishing rod, fishing lure, fishing tackle, etc..
  • Hunting equipment: bow & arrow.
  • Swimming pool equipment.

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil, livestock or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

  • Brooms, mops, vacuum cleaner (remove bag or clean filters), dustbin, step ladder, etc..

We recommend that if you plan to send any of the items listed below you first clean and dry any item that has been in contact with household dust, soil, livestock or vegetation before packing. Please also ensure they are easily accessible for inspection by customs.

  • Importing car parts or bike parts into Australia will require the appointment of a Customs broker with additional charges.

This list is not exhaustive but indicative.

Importing inheritance items

Your inherited items can be imported duty-free provided you, the beneficiary named in the will, are living permanently in Australia and the items will not be used for trade or business purposes.

In addition to our online documentation, you will need to provide a copy of the death certificate; a letter from the executor explaining you are the beneficiary with the list of the inherited items and a statement listing the items, the estimate value of the items and that they are not for re-sale.

Importing antiques and precious metals

You can import an antique i.e. the item is more than 100 years old, duty-free but you will have to pay 10% GST. You will need to produce a Lapada or BADA certificate of authenticity; if not, then the authorities may require verification via an approved antiquity expert which will incur additional charges.

Precious metal objects can be imported duty-free as personal effects and household items, if you fulfil the criterion.

Prohibited goods

At Seven Seas Worldwide our aim is to make the shipping process stress-free and simple, with that in mind our moving experts have created a comprehensive list of prohibited goods along with any service based restrictions.


This page was last updated on 1st July 2021.

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