The lowdown on sending parcels to Greece
Despite being separated by more than 1,600 miles of European land and sea, the UK and Greece have plenty of strong ties. Having been military allies on a number of occasions over the years, the two countries enjoy fantastic bilateral relations today and are both members of the European Union (EU), United Nations (UN) and the Council of Europe.
Politics aside, Greece is known to many as a perfect holiday haven, with its heritage, sun and cultural delights attracting around two million visits from Brits every year. Plus, more than 18,000 British nationals live in the country permanently, so there's every chance you'll want to send a parcel there every now and then.
Before you do, you might want to consider the following.
No customs documentation needed
As mentioned already, both the UK and Greece are members of the European Union, which means you're not required to send any special customs documentation with your item. Time saved!
Prohibitions and restrictions
Be aware, however, that there are a few things you're not allowed to send over from the UK. Many of the items found on Greece's 'prohibited' are wholly unsurprising. You can't, for example, send:
- Live animals
- Explosives (including pyrotechnics and fireworks)
- Radioactive materials
- Weaponry and ammunition
- Pharmaceutical products
Along with the familiar items, Greece's customs officials promise to destroy or confiscate matches, playing cards, coins, banknotes, precious or semi-precious stones/metals and salt.
There are also items which can be sent conditionally. All plants and plant products, for example, should be accompanied by a municipality-issued certificate of origin. Similar restrictions apply to wool and untreated animal skins, to help the Greek government prevent the spread of certain diseases.
Some food and drink items can be sent only if they are equipped with usage instructions in Greek. This includes certain types of condensed milk.
Every care is taken to ensure your items make the trip to Greece in perfect condition, but you must do your bit by packaging your items carefully and properly. Start by finding a box that gives its contents a little bit of room, and then fill the gaps with something light and soft; bubble wrap, sponge and tissue paper are all suitable choices.
Close the box and secure all openings with strong parcel tape. If the box has been used a couple of times before, it might be worth reinforcing the edges and corners too. Finish up by writing the address clearly on the front, with
'GREECE' as the last line.
Once this has all been done, you're good to go!
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Sending parcels to Greece