ATA Carnet Application Services

Temporary import and export of goods

About the ATA Carnet Program for Temporary Imports and Exports

An ATA Carnet is like a "passport for goods" that simplifies temporary import and export of goods across borders. Similar to a personal passport enabling free travel, an ATA Carnet is a valuable document that allows goods to move smoothly through customs without excessive paperwork or duty payments. 

An ATA Carnet can be used for multiple shipments over a period of up to one year, making it a convenient option for those regularly shipping goods internationally to trade shows or for client demo purposes. The ATA Carnet helps ensure that all necessary documentation is in order, thus simplifying the customs process and reducing the risk of delays or penalties. 

Please keep in mind that ATA Carnet shipments are only temporary, and any goods brought into a country must be returned or disposed of before the carnet expires. To avoid paying duties, the company must present the ATA carnet again to U.S. Customs upon return of the product to the United States.

The ATA Carnet system was established in 1961 by the World Customs Organization (WCO) to simplify and streamline the process of temporarily importing and exporting goods across international borders. Currently, over 80 countries and territories located in Europe, North America, South America, Asia, Africa and Oceania participate in the ATA Carnet program. View a complete list of participating countries (source: uscib.org). 

Authorized Service Providers

In the U.S., United States Council for International Business (USCIB) as well as two other carnet service providers, Boomerang Carnets and Roanoke Trade Services, are authorized to issue ATA Carnets. 

Using an ATA Carnet Offers Numerous Benefits

  1. Simplified customs procedures: With an ATA Carnet, you can clear customs quickly and easily, as the document acts as a guarantee for customs duties and taxes. 
  2. Financial savings: You avoid paying duties and taxes on temporary imports and exports, which can lead to significant cost savings. 
  3. Validity in multiple countries: An ATA Carnet is valid in all participating countries, allowing you to use a single document for multiple trips. 
  4. Predictable costs: The fees for obtaining an ATA Carnet are fixed and known in advance, making budgeting for your trip easier. The fee for a ATA Carnet depends on the shipment's value. 

Types of Goods Covered by ATA Carnets

ATA Carnets cover three main categories of goods:

  1. Professional equipment: Tools, machinery, and equipment used by professionals for their work, such as cameras, sound equipment, or medical devices. 
  2. Commercial samples: Goods used to demonstrate or promote products to potential buyers, such as clothing samples or prototype electronics. 
  3. Exhibition and fair goods: Items displayed or used at trade shows, conferences, and exhibitions, including promotional materials, booths, and artwork.

Note that certain goods are not eligible for ATA Carnets, such as perishable items, consumable goods, or items intended for sale.

Arrange Your Carnet in Advance to Ensure Smooth Customs Clearance

While it may seem like extra effort, ATA Carnet shipments can ultimately save time and money in the long run. To get started, you should be prepared to provide us with the following: 

  • Purpose for the temporary import
  • Taxpayer identification number (TIN) or employer identification number (EIN)
  • Names of the Authorized Representatives who will show your ATA Carnet to customs officials
  • Complete list of destination countries
  • List of any countries the goods will be passing through on their way to the destination
  • List modes of transportation (to and from)
  • List of merchandise, including serial numbers
  • Value, quantity, weight and dimensions
  • Country of origin
  • Desired delivery date of the merchandise

Processing times for an ATA carnet is about two business days.

Our ATA Carnet Application Services

Our expert team provides guidance and assistance with preparing the ATA carnet for you. Experience hassle-free customs clearance and timely deliveries. Contact us today, we'll respond in minutes.

Source: trade.gov/ata-carnet

ATA Carnet Application Services


Pro Tip

Not all countries accept ATA Carnets, so it's essential for you to verify your destination country's participation before planning your shipment.


Looking To Sell Goods off an ATA Carnet?

To sell goods off an ATA Carnet, it is important for you to first get in touch with the local foreign customs office to ascertain the suitable procedure and documentation required for the carnet country. Failure to adhere to the prescribed customs procedures of that country could lead to extra expenses and penalties for your company.


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