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South Korea customs regulations

It is important to know about customs regulations before traveling to South Korea to avoid legal issues and potential fines. As you know, customs regulations widely depend on the country. Before traveling to (or from) South Korea make sure to check the allowance and limits for the next things:

  • Alcohol and tobacco
  • Currency
  • Medicines (especially those containing drugs)
  • Animals
  • Cultural artifacts
  • Plants, fruits, vegetables and other agricultural products

Check the information below to be sure that you are complying with South Korea customs regulations.

Import regulations in South Korea

Duty-free allowance

Tobacco limit

Restricted to travellers 19 years and over. One of the following:

  • 200 cigarettes;
  • 50 cigars;
  • or 250 grams of tobacco.

Bringing alcohol

  • 1 litre of alcohol.

Agricultural, forest, fishery, and livestock products (oriental medicine materials)

  • 5 kg of sesame oil, sesame seeds, and honey.
  • 1 kg of pine nuts.
  • 10kg of beef.
  • 300g of ginseng (undried, white, or red), and sanghwang mushroom.
  • 150g of deer antlers.
  • 3kg of other oriental medicine materials.
  • 5kg of other agricultural, forest, fishery, and livestock products.
  • The above goods must be worth less than ₩100,000, and they must pass quarantine inspection.


  • Funds of US$10,000 or more must be declared at Customs.

Other Goods

  • 60 mL of perfume.
  • Duty-free purchases must not exceed US$600.
  • Other personal items worth up to US$400.

Prohibited items

The following are goods which cannot be brought into the country.

  • Narcotics drugs.
  • Weaponry such as guns (including simulated ones), swords, crossbows, bullets, chemicals, and poisonous or radioactive materials.
  • Items which infringe upon intellectual property rights.
  • Counterfeit money.
  • Books, pictures, movies, and other media which may cause harm to the national constitution, public peace, and social customs.

Restricted items

These goods are strictly regulated, and in most cases require a permit to be obtained prior to arrival:

  • Agricultural, forest, livestock, fishery, and plant products.
  • Animal and plant species and their derivative products as outlined by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) will require permissions from CITES. For more information see the Confirmation of Required Conditions for Export and Import page.
  • All pets are subject to importation requirements, and some may be prohibited. For further information, please visit the Animal and Plant Quarantine Agency Export/Import Quarantine & Inspection.

Information has been updated: .