World Cup visitors and traders planning to ship items to Russia must be prepared to tackle the strong defence that is Russian Customs, warns a new guide.
Football fans and small traders planning to ship items such as sports kits and flags into Russia must avoid being caught offside by strict regulations surrounding shipping items into Russia and delivering them into stadiums, warns the international shipping expert ParcelHero.
ParcelHero has compiled a new Guide, Kicking off Shipping into Russia, to help individuals and organisations delivering World Cup related items into Russia, whether for personal use or for sale.
ParcelHero’s Head of Consumer Research, David Jinks MILT, says the Guide reveals some unexpected items have been banned from World Cup stadia this year – while it’s also easy to get red-carded by Russian customs if you don’t follow Russia’s strict duties regulations.
Says David: ‘Whether you are shipping merchandise, organising a supporters’ team visit, or just sending a few items ahead with an international courier, shippers need to know clearing Russian Customs isn’t a walk in Gorky Park.’
Explains David: ‘The good news is that parcels that are worth less than €200 do not have to pay customs duties and fees when clearing customs. But be aware that Russian individuals are restricted to €1000 of purchased items up to 31 kg per person per month. While shipping items to business addresses is relatively easy, customs checks on goods shipped to Russian private addresses mean many items are significantly delayed. Many couriers, for this reason, won’t deliver to private addresses in the Russian Federation.’
David advises: ‘British visitors to the World Cup must sign up for a FAN ID: a personalised identification card, which gives visa-free entry to Russia during the tournament. But that’s only half the battle: visitors, even those holding a FAN ID, must be aware that there’s a long list of items not allowed into stadiums. These include:
- sporting gear or equipment,
- flags or banners larger than 2m x 1.5m;
- bicycles, skateboards and scooters; unless used for the transportation of people with impaired mobility such as those using mobility scooters.
- food or beverages of any kind, including alcoholic beverages;
- thermos bottles or any kinds of flasks;
- work tools of any kind;
- All animals, except for registered guide dogs.
- promotional materials of any kind;
- unwieldy objects or bags, if they exceed 158cm
- umbrellas longer than 25cm when folded.
Adds David: ‘Also be aware if you are travelling with a young family, that baby strollers are permitted; but they must be stored in a dedicated left luggage area.’
In addition to these items, ParcelHero’s Guide reveals many more obvious items are also banned at stadiums, including weapons (including replica weapons), crackers, sharp implements, aerosols, dyes, powdered substances and liquids in containers larger than 100ml.
Warns David: ‘Delivering items into World Cup stadiums is likely to be a slow procedure, for obvious security reasons. Match day deliveries are being organised by local logistics organising committees (LOCs).
These will provide freight forwarding and logistics services for all organisations working directly with FIFA. Other organisations can choose a logistics operator of their own, or work with the official service provider, Kuehne+Nagel.’
The Guide reveals other stadium delivery restrictions. For example, vans and trucks visiting stadiums on match days must have their cargo bay separated from the driver’s cab with a physical partition. Importantly, passenger vehicles carrying light cargo can access stadiums, but only if they have a permit. Don’t forget, the driver and any accompanying passengers must be accredited.
Adds David: ‘As international couriers will not have access to football stadiums during Security Regime periods (e.g. match days), the LOCs will organise the delivery of parcels and correspondence to the final receiver at a stadium. Courier deliveries to world cup stadiums must meet the following criteria:
- Cargo dimensions must be no more than 60cm x 70cm x 150cm;
- Cargo weight must not exceed 31 kg;
- No private or confidential deliveries.
Concludes David: ‘Finally, if you are thinking of bringing some back with you – you can’t export from Russia sturgeon caviar over 250g!