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Thai Customs: Prohibited and Restricted Goods

The Thai Customs Department regulates the importation and exportation of goods coming into and exiting Thailand. Within these regulations there are classes of goods which are heavily scrutinized. On class of products are prohibited from entering Thailand under any circumstances. The second class of products are restricted from entering Thailand without permission.

Prohibited Goods

Under Article 27 of the Customs Act of 1926 and subsequent amendments, the following items the prohibited by law to bring into or out of Thailand.

  • Obscene objects/literature/pictures
  • Obscene literature and pornographic materials
  • Goods with an improper Thai flag design
  • Narcotics*
  • Fake currency, bonds, or coins
  • Fake Royal Seals/official seals
  • IPR infringing goods e.g. musical tape, CD, VDO, computer software, etc.
  • Counterfeit trademark goods

*Any habit forming narcotics such as marijuana, opium, cocaine, morphine, heroin, and other drugs are considered banned even if they have been prescribed by a doctor.

Restricted Goods

Under same article of the Customs Act of 1926, the Ministry of Commerce is allowed to designate certain classes of goods that are subject to import controls. The controls are generally in the form of licensing or government permission.

The following items require permission from specific government departments in order to be allowed customs clearance into Thailand.

  • Office of National Police – Firearms, parts thereof and ammunition
  • Fine Arts Department – Buddha images; Artifacts and antiques
  • Post & Telegraph Department – Radio transceivers and telecommunications equipment
  • Department of Agriculture – Plants and planting materials
  • Department of Live Stock Development – Live animals and animal products
  • Office of Food and Drugs Administration – Medicines and chemical products

Currency Restrictions

There are currently no restrictions on bringing foreign currency into our out of Thailand. The only requirement is that if the total amount of the foreign currency exceeds USD$20,000 or equivalent, it must be declared to the customs officer. And if there is a wire transfer of foreign currency exceeding the value of USD$20,000, a foreign exchange transaction form must be completed.

There are no restrictions bringing in Thai Bahts into Thailand but there are restrictions on taking Bahts outside of Thailand. When carrying Thai currency to a neighboring country, there is a limit of up to 500,000 baht that can be taking out of Thailand without a permit issued by an authorized bank. If the carrier wants to take more than 50,000 baht to another country other than a neighboring country, they will be required to obtain a permit from an authorized bank. The authorization must be shown to a customs officer when leaving the Kingdom of Thailand.

Legal Advisors
Siam Legal is an international law firm composed of experienced lawyers, attorneys, and solicitors both in Thailand law and international laws. The law firm offers comprehensive legal services in Thailand to both local and foreign clients for civil & criminal litigation cases, labor disputes, commercial cases, divorce, adoption, extradition, fraud, and drug-related cases. Other legal expertise of the law firm varied in cases involving corporate law such as company registration and Thailand BOI, family law, property law, and private investigation.

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28 COMMENTS

  1. Can I take with me a hookah with it’s tobacco to Phuket?
    I heard the stopped to sell it at the restaurants there but I don’t know if I can take it for my personal usage?
    Thank u

    • Hi Jack,

      Importing electric cigarette in Thailand was prohibited, so better not to bring it.

      All the best

    • Hello Ken,

      Kindly call the Thai Custom Center at Tel: 1164, for you to know if you still need an export permit for your plant.

      Thank you

  2. Hi I’m a Sri Lankan, I’m planing to buy some lord Buddha staues (not antiques). Does it permitted to take it or do I have to take permission from customs??

  3. Can my wife bring her Apple Mac Computer into the Sandbox? She is doing an online course and wants to bring it with her. So it’s actually lightweight but it’s a desktop computer.

    • Yes, she can bring it with her as long as it will be cleared by the customs. Sandbox is for any entry into Thailand but is still subjected to Customs rules.

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