What Is a Carnet?

Importers and exporters have special business needs. A Carnet is a business document that makes importing and exporting easier. To further define Carnet, it is designed to simplify customs clearance when bringing goods temporarily into a foreign country. Also known as a merchandise passport, a Carnet excuses you from paying duties and taxes, including value-added taxes, to foreign customs for short-term imports. A Carnet (pronounced car-nay) promotes international trade and business, as it is accepted in more than 90 nations and territories around the world.

Numerous businesses and institutions use Carnets, as do individuals who carry professional equipment by hand into foreign countries. Universities and hospitals use them, as do art galleries, rock bands, orchestras, circuses, jewelers, television networks and most manufacturers. The Carnets, issued by business experts based in the United States, are billed in U.S. currency with pre-determined fees. They can be used multiple times within one year and make re-entry into the United States easier as well as entry into foreign nations. To thoroughly define Carnet, it is important to know what is covered under the Carnet. Merchandise covered under Carnets must fall into these three specific categories: Professional Equipment; Commercial Samples and Exhibitions and Fairs. Carnets also can be issued for aircraft, boats and private or commercial road vehicles. A Carnet expedites the customs process, making it good business for individuals and companies worldwide.

Benefits of a Carnet Shipment

If you’re new to the shipping business, you may not completely understand the term “Carnet.” Pronounced car-nay, from the French, a Carnet is often considered a merchandise passport that lets your goods go through a foreign country. It essentially simplifies the customs process when your goods are being temporarily stored or transported through another port. A Carnet shipment offer many benefits, but you have to understand which goods and processes are accepted to get the best terms.

Benefits of the Carnet:

  • Fees and premiums are billed in U.S. currency, and you know the cost ahead of time.
  • It frees up your cash flow by eliminating the duties and taxes when going through a foreign port.
  • The Carnet can be used multiple times in a 12-month time frame.
  • It saves time when entering the U.S. and going through customs. The Carnet is a certificate of registration.
  • You won’t need a temporary import bond.

Your Carnet shipment can be used for commercial samples, professional equipment, and exhibitions. It’s not just for shipping on an ocean liner, but also aircrafts and pleasure boats, private and commercial. However, it is only for items that will be exported. Work with a business who can help you put together your Carnet documents to save you money and time when you’re shipping goods overseas. Know the restrictions on your Carnet while you’re getting the best deal for your products.