All EOS blogs All Spain blogs  Start your own blog Start your own blog 

Spanish Shilling

Some stories and experiences after a lifetime spent in Spain

Spanish Customs, Explained
Sunday, October 30, 2022 @ 10:23 AM

I'm away for a month - here's a story that's very up-to-date (from four years ago): I've toned down the f bombs.


I got a letter from the Aduana today: the dreaded Spanish customs. Years ago, a fellow from Chile had sent me a sample of half a kilo of cod in a freeze-pack to see if it was worth starting a business importing Chilean fish to Spain. Anyhow, the customs got hold of it and - well, that was over twenty years ago now. I wonder if they've noticed the smell yet.

Today's letter as seen here, addressed to Lenox Naier (why can't they get our names right in Spain? F*ck me, it's not as if I'm called Rachanivarakonkul), and  dated " Mi�rcoles " (Curse those nineteen eighty computers!) is to tell me of a massive package of dubious merchandise waiting for my attention in Madrid.

The first thing I thought was 'it's a trap - they've found the fish!', but then, I saw that it had come from my daughter, who lives in foreign parts.

The package in question: a pair of sneakers for my birthday.

So, as you can see, I filled out the form, then read the back of the page to see that I need to contact our officious friends by email, sending them a scan of my silly police letter together with another of my passport (it would be a TIE these days), only their formulario doesn't allow foreigners' NIE numbers and my password -F*ckyou1- evidently wasn't long enough.

So now, I must put copies of all this in the post, being sure that they receive it before Mi�rcoles otherwise it will be 'Returned to Sender' (or more likely, destroyed in a controlled explosion or, of course more likely still, stolen).

But now I'm thinking: 'Customs, eh?' Aren't they the people who like to look through other people's stuff, rifle through steamer trunks and search diligently under the dashboard? Perhaps my box is full of Peruvian marching powder, or a rhinoceros' horn, or perhaps a pistola. So, why don't they open the f*cking thing instead of asking me for my maiden name? On the box it says 'shoes' but they may want to question this - that's why they get paid - to make the world a safer place. But why the f*ck ask me what's in the box. I'm going to say 'shoes' and they are going to say 'Ah hah! Got him!'.

In the improbable event the shoes make it though all the hoops, I will apparently be asked to pay ransom (or 'duty' as they prefer to call it) on them.

Sometimes, between all the pleasures, one forgets what a silly place we have chosen to live. 

Like 3


klaussailing said:
Sunday, October 30, 2022 @ 1:42 PM

Ah well ... after all, you should be lucky to live in Europe.
- If you do not look for trouble with customs you should NEVER travel or stay in ASIA. THAT is where the customs are the ones who want you to end your life.

Stinkey said:
Saturday, November 5, 2022 @ 8:23 AM

Ah yes the wonderous joys of receiving a parcel from England here in Spain? Hit or miss if it actually arrives? I'm still hoping someone can explain where all the things I've purchased through the Internet are actually sat waiting? I've been told it's part of a mountain of boxes and parcels somewhere in Madrid?

karic said:
Saturday, November 5, 2022 @ 9:40 AM

It reminds me many, many years ago my Parents had retired to Menorca when the peseta was still around! Communication was dreadful with one telephone box in Son Bou, one flight per day from Gatwick and one a week in the winter months. The post was intermittent and totally unreliable and items went missing .With Menorca being "the" place for good and relatively cheap by English standard shoes, my Parents decided to send me two pairs for Christmas. The ploy was that if they wrapped them separately one package containing the left shoes and the other the right no one would take a fancy to them. Around mid March great excitement package turned up............with.........two left shoes!!1

rob_j1 said:
Saturday, November 5, 2022 @ 10:21 AM

I've given up buying things from the UK. If it's something I "really" wan, then I'll do a trip over and see some friends once in awhile, buy what I need, stuff it in my suitcase, and fly back with it. If it's really big, time to use the car. But really, the EU is such a huge market, there's nothing I haven't been able to buy locally (by locally, I mean from within the EU), unless it's a specialty UK item.

Dave11 said:
Saturday, November 5, 2022 @ 10:07 PM

Yeah, it's not easy sometimes (I had a similar issue when my son sent me a present from Australia), but I guess it's worth these little issues to be able to live and enjoy this lovely country.
PS - has anyone tried to receive an item from the EU into the UK since Brexit, it's not easy.. Thanks Brexit..

Only registered users can comment on this blog post. Please Sign In or Register now.


This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse you are agreeing to our use of cookies. More information here. x