Do you know the limits for bringing alcohol and tobacco into France?

The Local France
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Do you know the limits for bringing alcohol and tobacco into France?
Photo: AFP

Although France is of course a member of the EU and the Schengen area, there are still limits on what you can and cannot bring into France from other European countries.


It might seem that moving across borders within the EU is a total free-for-all with no restrictions, but in fact that is not the case.

Ahead of the summer holidays, the French government has reminded holidaymakers planning a trip to Europe that there are limits to what they can bring back in to France.

READ ALSO 'We're British': The rush to Calais to make the most of booze cruises before Brexit


Despite France itself being the famed home of the 'booze cruise' for Brits stocking up with wine, there are strict limits on how much alcohol can be brought in to France.

Tobacco is also rationed, and any cash over the amount of €10,000 must be declared.

Anyone coming in to France from an EU country can bring with them 10 litres of spirits, 20 litres of fortified wine such as Port or Madeira, 90 litres of wine and 100 litres of beer (otherwise known as The Local's weekly shop).

If you're a smoker, there are also limits on tobacco - you can bring back 800 cigarettes, 400 cigarillos, 200 cigars and 1kg of rolling tobacco.

If you are coming in from Andorra, however, it is a very different story. Andorra, which shares a border with France, has no sales tax meaning that certain goods - including alcohol and tobacco - are significantly cheaper than in France.


In order to prevent wholesale importing of alcohol and tobacco into France, the government has introduced strict limits for people travelling from Andorra.

You can bring back five litres of wine or 1.5 litres of spirits stronger than 80 percent proof or three litres of spirits.

Smokers can bring back 300 cigarettes or 150 cigarillos or 75 cigars or 400g of rolling tobacco.

French customs officers have also reminded holidaymakers coming back in to France that some goods - including medicines, foodstuffs, weapons and works of art - are subject to restrictions while others - drugs, counterfeit goods, animals and plants threatened with extinction - are strictly prohibited.

For more information, click here.


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