What is a Harmonized Tariff Code and why do I need it?

Harmonized Codes are internationally recognized codes to classify an item for tax purposes. Harmonized Codes (also referred to as Tariff Codes, TARIC, Customs Tariffs, Harmonized Tariff Codes, and Harmonized System Codes) expedite the shipping process for international orders. Once an order reaches an international border, a country's customs office uses these codes to identify and to assess taxes, duties, and fees for what you are shipping.

Most destination countries use the Harmonized Code system while a few countries require the description instead. It is best practice to include both the Harmonized Code and a detailed description when shipping internationally. While it is not required, using Harmonized Codes for your international shipments will:

  • Help your packages move through customs more quickly

  • Help to ensure correct taxation on your exported products

  • Help to minimize the chances of loss of your products

New Harmonized Code Requirement for the EU

As of March 1, 2023, all shipments to and passing through most countries in the EU will require HS (Harmonized System) codes included on customs forms along with a more detailed description of the package contents.

This means that descriptions such as "Clothes" will not be accepted. Instead, a more detailed description such as "Men's Cotton Shirt" or "Women's Leather Shoes" will be required.

Learn more about the new HS code requirements from the following resources:

Look up HS codes for your products using the following resources:

Locate Your Harmonized Codes

For a full list of Harmonization Codes, go to the Trade Tariff Service page from Gov.UK.