Moving to the Dominican Republic

Country Guide: Dominican Republic

Household Goods and Personal Effects

Documents Required

  • Passport
  • Original Bill of Lading (OBL) / Air Waybill (AWB)
  • Detailed inventory in English or Spanish
  • Resident Visa (if the shipper is requesting a tax exemption)
  • Proof of residence abroad for at least 2 years (returning citizens)
  • Commercial Invoice (if new furniture and household goods are included in the shipment)
  • Diplomatic Franchise (Diplomats)
  • Marriage / Divorce Certificate, if applicable
  • Proof of time abroad (for at least 2 years) (returning citizens)

Specific Information

  • New and used appliances are subject to taxes and duties.
  • The shipper’s presence is only required at Customs clearance upon the shipper’s request or if the shipper has a Dominican residence and is requesting an exemption from taxes and duties on used electrical appliances and furniture.
  • All shipments are subject to demurrage charges; contact the destination agent for additional information and rates.
  • Customs clearance takes approximately 2-3 weeks.
  • Diplomats may import household goods and personal effects shipments duty free by request from the Embassy or Consulate at origin through the Dominican Foreign Relations Office.
  • Returning citizens having lived abroad for at least 2 years with no more than 180 days stay in the Dominican Republic during that time may qualify for a tax exemption.
  • Wood packaging materials must comply with ISPM-15 regulations

Motor Vehicles

Documents Required

  • Original Title / Registration
  • OBL
  • Purchase Invoice

Specific Information

  • Diplomats may import motor vehicles duty free.
  • Returning residents living abroad for more than 2 years with less than 180 days in the Dominican Republic stay during that time may apply for a partial exemption.
  • Vehicles must be less than 5 years old from the date of manufacture.
  • Non-motorized bicycles may be imported free of duties if part of the household effects shipment.
  • Motorized boats must pay approximately 20% of the purchased price.
  • Motorcycles are subject to duties.

Pets

Documents Required

  • Rabies Vaccination Record
  • Veterinary Health Certificate

Specific Information

  • Birds will be quarantined for a minimum of 10 days.
  • Pets may be imported duty free.
  • The Veterinary Health Certificate must be issued at origin within 15 days prior to import and indicate that the animal(s) has been free of disease for the 3 months preceding arrival.
  • Authorization from the Department of Agriculture and the National Zoo is required for importation.

Restricted/Dutiable Items

  • Live plants (a Phytosanitary Certificate from origin prior to arrival and a permit from the Dominican Agriculture after arrival are required; plants should not be sent as part of the household goods shipment or risk confiscation/destruction upon arrival)
  • Alcohol and wine (only small quantities for personal consumption are permitted)
  • Food items (only small quantities for personal consumption are permitted)
  • Medicines, narcotics and drugs (a doctor’s prescription is required and are duty free; otherwise, the shipper may fact criminal prosecution and penalties or deportation)
  • Household goods and new furniture (a Commercial Invoice is required and the items are subject to payment of duties)
  • New electrical appliances (subject to duties)
  • Firearms (a military permit for personal firearms must be obtained in-person after the arrival of the shipper but prior to shipment arrival; the shipper may face criminal prosecution and penalties if unauthorized items are found in the shipment)
  • Appliances, spare parts and machines (are subject to duties)

Prohibited Items

  • Dangerous objects / weapons
  • Explosives
  • Pornographic and subversive materials
  • Illegal drugs

Consignment Instructions

Recommended: Contact the destination agent to ensure all requirements have been met prior to import, especially for differences regarding air / sea shipments.

IAM Note: Customs regulations can change at any time with or without notice. This document is provided as a guide and for information only. While IAM has exercised reasonable care in publishing this document, IAM makes no representation, either expressed or implied, as to its accuracy or applicability.

Helpful Website(s):

http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1103.html

http://www.domrep.org