Personal Import Guide

Personal Import Guide

This guide provides an overview for consumers who wish to import goods to Israel for their personal use.

Here you can find explanations about relevant terms, information about the import procedure (generally and product-specific), breakdown of costs and FAQ.
 

What is importing?

Bringing goods into the country is called importing.
All goods imported to Israel are inspected by the Israel Customs Directorate in the Israel Tax Authority. The Israel Customs Directorate is responsible for enforcing the legality of the import and transferring any product for testing, as necessary.
In addition, all goods entering the country must be cleared from customs and Value Added Tax (VAT) and taxes prescribed by law paid.

What is a personal import?

The law defines personal import as the import to Israel of goods by an individual and not through a dealer, provided that the goods are not intended for supply, manufacture or services, and are imported in reasonable quantity for the importer’s personal or family’s use.
The term “goods” means item, including personal effects, animals and commercial products.

Who may import?

Any person in Israel may import goods by parcel post or courier company subject to the following terms: 
•    The goods are not prohibited for import to Israel.
•    Presenting of a license or certificate from a competent authority, as necessary.

List of authorities certified to approve the import of products to Israel

The following authorities issue certificates and licenses, if they need to be presented during the clearance of the imported products from customs.

 
WebsiteFaxPhone    Address    Examples of products under the Authority’s responsibility
Competent Authority
Ministry website03-519810303-5198282
03-5198113
Migdal Shalom, 9th Floor, 9 Ahad Ha’am St., Tel AvivCommunications products and wireless equipmentMinistry of Communications
Ministry website03-968159903-9681587Derech HaMaccabim, Beit Dagan.Plants and seedsMinistry of Agriculture, Plant Protection Services
Ministry website03-561826003-56571175 Bank of Israel Street, Jerusalem.Motor vehicles, car partsMinistry of Transport
Ministry website02-565597208-624101012 Ha’arba’a Street, Tel Aviv.Food products and dietary supplementsMinistry of Health – the Food Service
 03-6465164The Standards Institution of Israel, 42 Chaim Levanon Street, Tel Aviv.Products that require compliance with the standardCertified laboratories for standards testing, such as the Standards Institution of Israel

Personal Import Order


Regulation pertaining to personal imports is enshrined in the ‘Personal Import Order’, which incorporates all the legality of import issues applicable to a personal import.

How many products (items) can I import in the framework of a personal import?
A Personal Import Order defines an import quantity as that reasonable for personal or family use in the following instances:

  • In a shipment with a total value of up to US$ 1,000: up to 3 units of the same type of product.
  • In a shipment with a total value exceeding US$ 1,000 – up to 5 units of the same type of product.

How do I go about a personal import?

A personal import may be in the form of a direct purchase made by a citizen while abroad, or through an online order over the Internet.
The shipment may be arrive by sea or by air.

Who determines whether it is a personal import?

Pursuant to a Personal Import Order, the Israel Customs Directorate’s employees who appraise the goods exercise their discretion in determining whether they constitute a personal import; certain goods require that a certificate from a competent authority be presented during clearance of the goods from customs inspection. For example: in the event of the import of vehicle spare parts, communications products, etc.

Can I import from anywhere in the world?

There are countries that Israel does not have diplomatic ties with, from which imports of goods to Israel is prohibited or restricted.
Director-General Directive 2.4 defines those countries and the conditions required for imports from those countries. In many cases, a special license will be required for imports from those countries.

 

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