Revenue’s advice to minimise customs delays in Irish Sea

Revenue has outlined important customs advice to hauliers and truck drivers to minimise delays as customs checks take place in the Irish Sea for goods moving between British and Irish ports.

It urged hauliers to follow the advice to ensure vehicles carrying goods to and from Britain will be able to board their scheduled ferry without difficulties and, secondly, so drivers can, if required, present goods for customs controls on arrival with the minimum of delay.

Those responsible for transporting goods to or from Britain by ferry are required to create a pre-boarding notification (PBN) on the Customs RoRo Service before the goods start their journey, and in advance of vehicles moving to the departure port.

A detailed step by step guide on how to create and correctly populate a PBN will be published on Revenue’s website on Tuesday. Revenue has also set up a dedicated email support service to deal with all PBN related queries at

Additionally, Revenue put a temporary arrangement in place that allowed for the creation of a PBN for goods movements that began before the end of the transition period and ended after that date.

As the overlap period for such goods movements has now passed, Revenue confirmed this temporary arrangement will no longer be available for all sailings departing Britain on or after 6pm on Tuesday.

Dublin Port head of customs Tom Talbot, said: “We had put a short-term arrangement in place to help trade in the initial days post January 1st to avoid movements getting caught between 2020 and 2021 requirements.

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“However, this was of necessity a time limited arrangement which will come to an end later today.

“As such, it is important to note that in order to create a correct PBN, and ensure the efficient movement of the goods, it will be essential that the movement reference number for each customs declaration for all consignments in a vehicle are included when creating the PBN. Ensuring this will avoid an unnecessary call to customs.”

Separately, drivers travelling on ferries from Britain to Ireland are reminded to check their customs channel on the Customs RoRo Service 30 minutes out from arriving into Dublin or Rosslare ports.

The customs channel will not be available before that as Revenue’s risk analysis process will be running while the ship is travelling between Britain and Ireland.

The channel look-up service enables truck drivers to check if their vehicle can “exit the port” or is required to “call to customs” on arrival.

“While a ferry is sailing to Ireland, Revenue systems complete the necessary risk analysis of the particular goods on board,” said Mr Talbot.

“A customs channel of ‘exit the port’ means the truck driver can immediately leave the port on arrival. If a driver gets a ‘call to customs’ channel this will be accompanied by details of which customs terminal to go to in the port.

“This means the driver can engage speedily with customs to resolve any outstanding matters and get the goods cleared as quickly as possible. This will be of huge benefit to the haulier or truck driver and will also assist the flow of traffic for all those using the port.”

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