Travel Tip of the Day: Never Trust Airport Vendors for Customs Advice

StoreNever Trust Airport Vendors for Customs Advice
I know so many people who’ve been burned by airport vendors selling them goods they then immediately lose at customs. If you ask a vendor if it’s okay to bring the items they’re selling into a country, agricultural (flowers, plants, etc.) or otherwise, they’re almost always going to say yes as they want to make a sale—or they just don’t know. When in doubt, just look up the item you want to buy on the U.S. Customs and Border Protection site to see if you can bring it home to the U.S.



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About the Author

Johnny Jet
I used to be afraid to fly and at times even leave the house! I conquered my fear (long story) and now I travel to 20+ countries a year sharing my firsthand knowledge, tips and deals with friends, family and readers. Please sign up to our free newsletters and tell your friends!

4 Comments on "Travel Tip of the Day: Never Trust Airport Vendors for Customs Advice"

  1. Truth spoken here. Do not believe anyone who sells you something “outside of the area
    where it is permitted as duty free.”

  2. Craig McMullin | April 29, 2014 at 2:04 pm | Reply

    Another thing to watch for – buying liquor or wine at a foreign airport and flying back into the U.S. (at least through DFW). You clear through Customs/INS and THEN, have to reclear through security. That liquor, wine you bought – unless you can pack it and recheck it after Customs/INS clearance, you will lose it at security.

    I almost got burned by this when coming from GRU to DFW and doing an ITI to YYZ (ITI – international to international – your bags are cleared straight through to destination hence, no checked bags to pack your liquor into in Dallas). Fortunately, AA bag recheck had a spare box I could pack the liquor into and rechecked it.

    If you are going to a domestic U.S. destination, your bags will show up for you to clear through customs. After clearing through customs, you could pack your liquor into them prior to rechecking for the onward flight.

  3. Excellent tip. This is especially important when you are coming back from Australia, where the duty-free shops have kangaroo jerky. Upon re-entering the U.S., I was asked 5 times whether or not I had any kangaroo jerky, since apparently I look like the sort of person who would try to smuggle kangaroo jerky into the United States. For the record, I did not.

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