Moving to France from the United States

Moving to France is a big step. You’ll have plenty of arrangements to make, and getting your household goods from the United States to France is one of them. After reading the information below, you should feel more confident about shipping your household goods overseas for your move to France.


Customs Regulations

Customs regulations differ greatly from country to country. In France, all shipments are subject to inspection, but you are not required to be present during the inspection. Customs regulations require that you have resided in the United States for at least one year prior to moving to France, and you must have intentions of living in France for more than one year. Household goods that are used are duty free if you owned them outside of France for at least six months.

Documents Needed

  • Passport
  • Visa
  • 2 Original Copies of your Declaration of Duty Exemption/Entry of Personal Effects
  • Residence Card
  • Work Permit
  • Certificate of Change of Residence
  • Proof of Residence in France
  • Letter of Transfer
  • Bill of Lading
  • Comprehensive inventory
    • 3 copies in French, valued in euros
    • Dated & signed by customer
    • Inventory must detail the contents of each box or container
    • Electrical items should be listed separately with brand name & serial number
    • Purchase invoices required
    • Proof of employment from a registered company
    • Delivery Address in France with access information, floor, entry code if any

Restricted Items

  • Firearms
  • Medication
  • Alcoholic beverages
    • Must be inventoried separately with brand name, type, number of bottles and value.
    • Tobacco
    • Allowed but subject to duty and tax
    • Furniture & new items less than six months old
    • Works of Art

Prohibited Items

  • Narcotics and illegal drugs
  • Explosives, ammunitions and weapons without permits
  • Paints, polishes and cleaning solvents


If you have any pets that will be accompanying you on your move, there are a few procedures you must follow. First, you will have to be in attendance during your pet’s customs clearance process. Also be aware that endangered pets, exotic pets, and dogs on the dangerous breeds list are prohibited. Make sure to bring all of the documents below to ensure that your pet is cleared by customs.

  • Certificate of Vaccination
    • Dated less than 10 days prior to arrival
    • Health Certificate
    • Dated less than 10 days prior to arrival
    • Endorsed by a Veterinary Service

We hope you now feel more confident about your move to France. You can find more useful tips on how to successfully plan your international move in our overseas moving shipping guide. iContainers USA ships from the United States to countries all over the world. Search rates for your move to France now to browse the most updated rates and book a shipment.

Information above courtesy of

Importing From Asia In 2022

Discover how to import or export from/to China, India or Vietnam and avoid delays on your cargo. Includes Incoterms and documents.

asia eBook
Klaus Lydsal

"Customs duties play an important role in your international shipment. How they're determined and calculated varies from country to country"

Klaus Lydsal, vice president of operations at iContainers