El Salvador



Firearms, pornography material of any kind, liquor (*certain restrictions apply, see below)
The following documents are required for shipment’s importation:


  • Original AWB, B/L or Cargo Manifest
  • Original TIN (Tax Identification Number, to be obtained by consignee in El Salvador)
  • Original Packing List
  • List of items with reasonable values in US Dollars, following the correlative order “item by item” shown in the packing list. This has to be provided by the client (consignee) and should be in Spanish
  • Certification of Migratory Movement (only for returning Salvadorian citizens). This document will be obtained by consignee in El Salvador.
  • Diplomatic Franchise (only for diplomats)


  • Original AWB, B/L or Cargo Manifest
  • Original TIN of Importer (to be obtained by consignee)
  • Original commercial invoice
  • Original title of ownership, showing consignee as legal owner

Upon arrival, client (consignee) should provide the following documents for Customs clearance:


  • Original passport
  • Original TIN
  • Sworn statement letter in Spanish
  • A letter authorizing OUR AGENT Member to carry out Customs clearance


  • Original passport
  • Original TIN of Importer
  • Sworn statement letter in Spanish. This letter must be authenticated by a Lawyer in El Salvador
  • Diplomatic Franchise (Only for Diplomats)


IMPORTANT – Please send original documentation to our agent by courier A.S.A.P.


  • If you declare Household Goods and an automobile in the same B.L or Cargo Manifest, it’s very important that you provide 2 original B/L since Customs clearance for HHGDS and automobiles are made separately.
  • We do not recommend that you send shipments LCL (consolidated) as Customs clearance is taking up to 1 month to be processed, because Customs is demanding the documentation of all the shipments consolidated in the container in order to start Customs clearance.
  • It is very important that you declare the Inland and sea shipments only as “HouseHold Goods”, if you declare them as “Household Goods and Personal Effects” Customs will apply a fine which will be billed to you.
  • The air shipment must be declared only as “Personal Effects” (This applies only if there is not furniture in the shipment) If you declare it as “Household Goods and personal Effects” Customs will apply a fine which will be billed to you.
  • B/L must show: Value of ocean freight, exact net weight, volume (Cbm) and also the real number of pieces shown in the packing list.
  • AWB must show: Value of air freight, gross and chargeable weight, and also the exact number of lift-vans showing the real number of pieces that each lift-van contains, coinciding with the number of pieces shown in the packing list.
  • If there are any additional items not shown on the AWB, B/L, Cargo Manifest and packing list, Customs will confiscate such items and the client / consignee will be subject to pay a fine of 300% over the duties value
  • Please note that the original B/L (“Express Release” will NOT be accepted) and packing list are necessary in order to make Customs clearance.
  • Note: If the steamship that you are using is Maersk Sea-land, you will have to provide 4 (four) original B/L to make Customs clearance, otherwise it will be impossible to clear shipment from Customs. If another steamship line is being used, 3 (three) original B/L will have to be provided.
  • Cargo manifest must show: value of Inland freight and also information of the truck and driver, i.e. Number of plate, driving license number and driver’s name etc. For Inland shipments coming from Central America and Mexico, shipments must not be dispatched until Our agent has provided the Number of Merchandise Declaration assigned by Customs. This number will have to be shown at the border by the truck’s driver.
  • Automobiles can be imported only if they have not more than 8 years of manufacturing, it doesn’t matter if client has diplomatic status.
  • The importation of automobiles will be subject to the payment of duties (approx. 25-30% over CIF Value)
  • Foreign citizens (non-Diplomatic) will have to pay Customs duties over their Household Goods and personal effects new or used. Customs duties rates vary with type of item imported and it is figured on the CIF Value.
  • A returning Salvadorian citizen, after being more than three years out of El Salvador, and if they didn’t stay during this period of time in visits to El Salvador for more than 30 days (calendar year), can import duty free new or used HHGDS and personal effects coming from the country where client has been living, up to a maximum of US$15,000.00 of the CIF Value. Customs will evaluate and tax any excess over this value.
  • If client complies with the above mentioned requirement, they will have to provide a Certification of Migratory Movement obtained at the Salvadorian Migration Direction in El Salvador before shipment arrives into El Salvador. Consignee is the only one who can obtain this document and it’s ostentation takes between 1 – 2 weeks.

** According to Customs regulations, it is permitted to import only 1 or 2 liters of liquor. If client brings more than 2 liters it will be necessary to obtain an extra Customs Clearance which is difficult and takes more time. Please confirm to our agent if client brings more than 2 liters of liquor so a cost for extra Customs Clearance and also the required documents can be provided.

Important:This information is intended for general guidance. Forward Van Lines Internationalcannot take responsibility for any errors or oversights or for any loss or damage that may occur from its use. It is advisable to contact theEl Salvador Embassy at http://www.elsalvador.org/for most updated information prior to yourshipping.

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