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How will Brexit affect my tobacco allowance?

How will Brexit affect my tobacco allowance?

A guide

With Brexit now in place, we all need to familiarise ourselves with the new rules and regulations that change in its wake. For tobacco and nicotine users, this means knowing what the new allowances are during travel, and whether our favourite products are even permitted within the UK.

How much tobacco can I bring into the UK after Brexit?

The new travel allowances are very clearly stated on the UK government’s website, and this is a great site to consult when you are unsure. Post-Brexit allowances for tobacco currently state that you can bring only one of the following:

  • - 200 cigarettes
  • - 100 cigarillos
  • - 50 cigars
  • - 250 g tobacco
  • - 200 tobacco sticks for electronic devices


This means that you can only bring, for example, 200 cigarettes and not 200 cigarettes and 100 cigarillos. If you wish to bring both cigarettes and cigarillos, you need to halve both amounts to stick within your allowance – which means bringing 100 cigarettes and 50 cigarillos.

Unfortunately, if you exceed the limit, by for example bringing 200 cigarettes and 75 cigarillos, you will end up paying the tax and duty on your entire quantity of tobacco and not just on the extra 75 cigarillos. So make sure you stick to your allowance completely!

If you are under the age of 17, there is no allowance. You can bring in tobacco for your own use, provided that you have paid the tax and duty for them in the country of purchase.

The rules on snus sales in the UK have not changed after Brexit and snus is still not permitted. This could perhaps change in the future, although no mention of this has been made. However, nicotine pouches are still available on the UK market, and can be brought to the UK when traveling.

Will all my brands be available in the UK?

Now that the UK is no longer part of the EU, they have decided to change the packaging on tobacco products. The EU’s warning images will not be used, and manufacturers will have to use the new UK image library instead. However, Northern Ireland will continue to use the EU picture warnings, which has caused some issues among manufacturers. JTI and Imperial Tobacco have decided to remove their less popular products from the Northern Irish market to save costs on packaging. It could also see some pack sizes disappear off the market, as companies try to minimise their costs for Northern Ireland-specific packaging. Overall however, this should not have too much impact on consumers, and you should still be able to find your preferred products within the UK.

In general, the changes to tobacco consumption are minor, and you should not feel any impact on your tobacco use post-Brexit.

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