Russian Customs Rules for Travelers

Russian customs

What can I bring into Russia and take out of Russia?

  • You can bring into Russia 10000 USD, 3 liters of alcohol, 250 g of tobacco, 5 kg of plant products
  • You can take out of Russia  10000 USD, 5 kg of fish and seafood, 250 g of caviar
  • You need special permission for guns, strong medicines, precious metals and stones, and items of cultural value

When planning your Russian vacation and then, when shopping during the trip, it's important to know the things that you can bring into and take out of Russia. Russian customs rules are similar to those in the West, still there might be some surprises. Please study the information below to make sure that you are not buying souvenirs that might be too valuable or too much caviar.

What you can bring into Russia: 

  • Money: Any currency and travelers cheques if the total value does not exceed 10000 USD. Otherwise, you will need to declare the amount, so when you leave the country you can prove that you are not taking money out of Russia. The money on your bank card doesn’t have to be declared. There's no need to bring cash into Russia, you can easily withdraw money from ATMs. Learn more about money in Russia.
  • Goods for personal use: If you arrive by air, you may bring goods for personal use (except for ethanol or other volatile substances) that have a total value of no more than €10000 and a total weight below 50 kg. If you come by land, the value should not exceed €500 and the weight should be below 25 kg). If the value or weight is higher, you will have to declare your goods and pay tax.
  • Alcohol: up to 3 liters (only for travelers over 18 years old) If you bring more you will have to pay tax.
  • Tobacco: a maximum of 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars (cigarillos) or 250 grams of tobacco (only for travelers over 18 years old).
  • 5 kg of plant products, except for seeds, planting materials, and potatoes; 5 kg of animal products in factory sealed packaging only. The Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Supervision may introduce prohibitions and restrictions related to the import of specific plant and animal products from certain countries.

Russian Customs Rules

What you can take out of Russia: 

  • Money: any currency and travelers cheques if their total value does not exceed 10000 USD. Otherwise, the amount must be declared. The money on your bank card doesn’t have to be declared.
  • Goods for personal use with a total value below 1 million rubles (approx. 15000 USD). If the value is higher, you have to declare your goods and pay tax.
  • Up to 5 kg of fish and seafood, as well as up to 250 g of sturgeon caviar in factory packaging. You should also have the receipts available for these products. Export in excess of these limits is strictly prohibited.
  • Up to 10 liters of fuel in a separate container. If you are travelling by car, you are also allowed to have full tank.
  • Diamonds worth no more than 75000 USD. Diamonds must always be declared

Russian Customs Rules

Special permission

Almost all products from the list below require mandatory documentary support. The owner must provide certificates from the relevant authorities proving that the goods are being transported legally. Please be attentive if you are planning to bring in or take out of Russia anything from the following list:

  • Items of cultural value. Cultural valuables may include: Artworks, including applied art and sculptures; Icons, prints, and lithographs; Valuable manuscripts, rare books  and antique weapons; Antique scientific and technical equipment and tools; Antique coins, postage stamps and medals; Archival photographs, phonorecords, film recordings, and video archives; Unique and rare musical instruments; and other items protected by the Russian Government as the country’s historical and cultural heritage. You can find more details here
  • Plants or animals on the verge of extinction
  • Vehicles
  • State awards and medals of the Russian Federation
  • Precious metals and stones
  • Guns, explosives, ammunition
  • Strong medicines (anesthetics, sleeping pills, etc.), psychotropic or narcotic medicines, poisons, strong sedatives. 

You can find more details on the official website of Russian Federal Customs Service using the 2 links below.
For information on items that do not require a Russian customs declaration click on Green Channel
For information on items that require a Russian customs declaration click on
Red Channel

Image by Peggy und Marco Lachmann-Anke from Pixabay 

Photo by Jason Leung on Unsplash

Image by opsa from Pixabay

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