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  3. Commercial Samples

Traveling with Samples

As a business traveler, you have several options available for facilitating the movement of commercial samples into and out of the United States:


Payment of Duty

You may elect to pay any applicable duty and/or taxes upon arrival. This releases the samples to the authorized importer, enabling them to move freely within the United States to be either sold or exported at the importers convenience.

If the imported merchandise is exported in the same condition as declared upon the original payment of duty, it may be eligible for drawback.


Temporary Importation Under Bond (TIB)

Samples used solely for taking orders for merchandise may be eligible for admittance into the United States without the payment of duty under a Temporary Importation Under Bond (TIB). The condition is that the samples not be sold and that they are exported within one year from their date of importation.

An extension of the bond period can be granted for a total of three years, after which time the importer becomes liable for liquidated damages in the amount of the bond.


ATA Carnet

The "Admission Temporaire - Temporary Admission", or the ATA Carnet, is an international customs document which may be used for the temporary duty free importation of merchandise. This is in-lieu-of the usual customs documents required for entry. The carnet serves as a guarantee against the payment of duties which may become due if the merchandise is not re-exported.

A carnet is valid for one year, however, you may make as many trips as desired during the period the carnet is valid. It can also be used for moving goods within the United States as prescribed in the regulations under 19 C.F.R. Part 114.

Local associations issue carnets to their residents. In the United States, the U.S. Council for International Business, located at 1212 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY, has been designated by the CBP as the issuing and guaranteeing organization for the United States. A fee is charged for this service.

Last Modified: Oct 13, 2016