Baggage rules are a part of the customs check that anyone going abroad or returning from there have to deal with. ‘Baggage’ does not include motor vehicle, fire arms and goods of commercial nature or in commercial quantities.
Exemptions and duty tax
Following are exempted from the general baggage rules and are thus, duty free:
- Used articles of personal use are exempted from baggage duty
- New articles up to Rs. 12,000/- per adult passenger (Rs. 25,000/- if a person is returning to India after more than 3 days) are exempted under the general Baggage Rules and don’t carry any baggage duty
- Laptop & Computer (computer notebook) brought by a passenger of the age of 18 years and above has been exempted w.e.f from 09-01-2004
- Alcoholic liquor or wines up to two litres, 200 cigarettes and jewellery up to Rs. 20,000/- for a lady and Rs. 10,000/- for a gentleman can be brought as part of the free baggage allowance
- 40% flat duty with no SAD or CVD is payable if the value of bona fide baggage exceeds the limit mentioned in point 4. above
- Import of cinematography films, exposed but not developed, brought as part of baggage is duty free
- 35% flat rate of duty with no SAD or CVD is payable on if the value of an article brought by NRIs/PIOs exceeds the limit of Rs. 12,000
NRIs and PIOs travelling from USA, Canada, Australia, and Europe are entitled to duty free allowance of Rs 25,000, a laptop and unlimited used personal effects excluding jewellery. The free allowance can not be combined with the free allowance of any other passenger. A tourist is supposed to take back the items which have not been consumed during the stay in India when he/she returns.
NRIs and PIOs can bring any amount of foreign exchange to India. But, a formal declaration is to be made to the customs authorities on arrival. Currency Declaration form is to be filled mentioning the foreign exchange carried by the NRIs and PIOs. It is obligatory to fill a declaration form if the foreign exchange exceeds US$ 10,000 or its equivalent and /or the aggregate value of foreign currency notes is US$ 5,000 or its equivalent.
Places with special permits
Certain places in India, usually border districts are not open to all. These areas are considered special because of security or political reasons and thus, require permits to visit. These places are extremely beautiful and fascinating, their remoteness lending them a special quality, and special permits may be procured from the Ministry of Home Affairs. Permits are usually provided to groups and for a limited number of days.