Declaration of cash

If you enter or leave the European Union and you are carrying 10,000 euros or more in cash, you have to declare it.

A cash declaration must be submitted if you are carrying at least 10,000 euros or an equivalent in another currency or bearer-negotiable instrument when travelling to or from the EU.

The following is considered as cash:

  • banknotes and coins in any currency, including currencies not in circulation;
  • bearer-negotiable instruments such as travellers’ cheques, promissory notes, money orders without name;
  • coins with a gold content of not less than 90%;
  • gold in nuggets or clumps with a gold content of not less than 99,5%.

 Useful link

Exchange rate query

The cash declaration information system uses the exchange rates in the Estonian Master Tariff System.

Under the new regulation, customs authorities have the right to carry out checks if the amount is less than 10,000 euros, but there is information that the cash is related to criminal activity.

Electronic declaration

  • The simplest way is to declare cash in the e-services environment of the Estonian Tax and Customs Board e-MTA.

To submit a cash declaration:

  1. log into the e-MTA
  2. from the menu, select Customs – Simplified declarations – Cash declaration
  3. on the customer desktop that opens, press the green button New declaration

You can submit an electronic declaration up to three days before crossing the border. Once you have submitted the declaration, choose the red lane to pass through the customs office at the border and inform the customs official of lodging the declaration.

Legislation

The cash declaration database

The cash declaration database is a sub-register of the register of taxable persons. The data in the register of taxable persons is subject to tax secrecy, disclosure of the data to third parties is permitted only on the bases provided for in sections 28–30 of the Taxation Act. We keep the data for 5 years.

You can at any time request information about the processing of your personal data by e-mail to emta@emta.ee or via the e-services environment e-MTA.

State and administrative supervision over the processing of personal data is carried out by the Data Protection Inspectorate, info@aki.ee.

Cash movements between Member States

In some Member States, intra-Community cash movements are subject to separate control and declaration provisions, which apply in addition to EU rules.

Further information and references to the websites of national customs authorities can be found on the website of the European Commission.

Ukrainian citizens who have fled Ukraine because of the war and who arrive in Estonia are allowed to use simplified procedures for declaring cash

To submit a simplified cash declaration, fill in the "Simplified cash declaration form for Ukrainian war refugees".

Simplified cash declarations can be lodged at all inland customs offices and at external border crossing points where refugees arrive directly from Ukraine.

Refugees arriving through the temporary Ikla border crossing point must lodge a simplified cash declaration at the nearest customs office.

Export of banknotes denominated in euro or in other official currencies of Member States to Russia and Belarus is prohibited

Pursuant to Council Regulation 2022/345 (amendment 2022/576), it is prohibited to export banknotes denominated in any official currency of a Member State to Russia, or to any natural or legal person, entity or body in Russia, including the government and the Central Bank of Russia.

Pursuant to Council Regulation 2022/398 (amendment 2022/577), it is prohibited to export banknotes denominated in any official currency of a Member State to Belarus, or to any natural or legal person, entity or body in Belarus, including the government and the Central Bank of Belarus.

Export of the following banknotes to Russia and Belarus is prohibited:

  • euro (EUR)
  • Croatian kuna (HRK)
  • Romanian leu (RON)
  • Bulgarian lev (BGN)
  • Hungarian forint (HUF)
  • Czech koruna (CZK)
  • Polish zloty (PLN)
  • Swedish krona (SEK)
  • Danish krona (DKK)

Export of the banknotes listed above is permitted only:

  1. for the personal use of natural persons travelling to Russia or Belarus or members of their immediate families travelling with them, or
  2. for the official purposes of diplomatic missions, consular posts or international organisations in Russia or Belarus enjoying immunities in accordance with international law.

Amount for personal use is deemed to be an amount which covers the need of the traveller and the family travelling with him or her during the journey until arrival to destination. The restriction covers border residents as well, who are also allowed to bring with them only the amount necessary for them to reach their destination. The export of banknotes to other recipients, such as friends, acquaintances, parents, is not considered personal use.

In accordance with Annex XVIII to Council Regulation (EU) 2022/428, it is prohibited to take coins (other than gold coins) and banknotes which are not officially in circulation and the value of which exceeds 300 euros to Russia.

For other currencies, a cash declaration must be submitted when travelling to or from Russia or Belarus if the traveller carries more than 10,000 euros worth of cash. The import of gold, gold coins, gold jewellery, articles of goldsmiths’ wares from Russia is prohibited.

1. On what basis does the Estonian Tax and Customs Board (ETCB) restrict the rights laid down in Article 5i of Council Regulation (EU) 2022/345?
With regard to the restriction on the export of euro banknotes, the ETCB proceeds on the basis of Regulation (EU) No 833/2014 and on the interpretation given by the European Commission (Commission) with the aim of uniform implementation of the restriction in the Member States. There is no further restriction by the ETCB to the exceptions set out in that regulation. As the competent authority, the ETCB must verify that there is no circumvention of the general restriction – it is prohibited to sell, supply, transfer or export banknotes denominated in any official currency of a Member State to Russia or to any natural or legal person, entity or body in Russia, or for use in Russia – within the framework of the derogations laid down in the Regulation.

2. If the amount of money to reach the destination is limited, how or with what means must a person return to Estonia?
The concept of personal use is not defined in more detail in the Regulation, but in view of the nature of the derogations, the text of the legislation must be interpreted as narrowly as possible. Please note that the guidelines provided by both the Commission and the ETCB on its website refer to personal use during the journey, which is further specified by the principle of arrival at the destination. Travellers must explain at the border crossing point what their destination is. We would also like to draw your attention to the recommendation of the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, according to which, due to Russian military action, it is recommended not to travel to Russia without urgent need. As the euro is not the official means of payment in Russia, it is not vital for travellers to bring cash to Russia in euro banknotes. As a precaution, travellers can bring a currency on which restrictions have not been imposed, including Russian rubles.

3. If a person stays in Russia for several weeks, with what means does the person have to cover the cost of housing and food?
We would like to draw your attention to the recommendation of the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, according to which, due to Russian military action, it is recommended not to travel to Russia without urgent need. As the euro is not the official means of payment in Russia, it is not vital for travellers to bring cash to Russia in euro banknotes. As a precaution, travellers can bring a currency on which restrictions have not been imposed, including Russian rubles. 

Last updated: 18.08.2022

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