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Instant coffee at security AND at Heathrow customs?

Instant coffee at security AND at Heathrow customs?

May 10th, 2012, 10:28 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 8
Instant coffee at security AND at Heathrow customs?

I'm flying to LHR from BOS next week and would like to bring some single-serving instant coffee packets with me for while I'm in Europe. Does anyone know if these are allowed at US airport security, and/or international customs? I'm not sure what the rules are for powders.

mccmr is offline  
May 10th, 2012, 10:44 AM
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 2,158
I dont think there is a problem. I always carry my favorite teabags, sugar packets and have never been questions. Sometimes they are even in my purse, carry-on.
Just wondering if your packages are liquid?
ileen is offline  
May 10th, 2012, 02:20 PM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 2,032
Don't give TSA any ideas!
NoFlyZone is offline  
May 10th, 2012, 02:52 PM
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 11,334
I can tell you that some boxes of Nespresso coffee "PODS" that I purchased in Zurich were opened and scattered all over my check-in bag!! TSA wondered what in the world those little foil pods were, I guess. This was several years ago, before the big rush of this kind of coffee preparation began.
simpsonc510 is offline  
May 11th, 2012, 04:22 AM
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 2,148
I bring instant coffee (the little Starbucks via packs) on every flight. I have also many times brought an entire jar of it. My mom likes it and it is fun to bring her different kinds from different countries. Never had it even looked at.
laurie_ann is offline  
May 11th, 2012, 05:07 AM
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 5,507
The restrictions are on liquids and gels not on powdered substances like instant coffee regardless of the container they are carried in.
RoamsAround is online now  
May 11th, 2012, 08:11 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 8
Thanks everyone! I'm going to bring them. When I get to the non-EU line at Heathrow, would this count as something to "claim" ?
mccmr is offline  
May 12th, 2012, 05:40 AM
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 2,148
Your instant coffee will not need to be "declared". An ordinary tourist would have to declare something only if you are exceeding certain allowances of huge amounts of cash or special items like alcohol and cigarettes.

They don't have a separate agricultural inspection (which might pick up foodstuffs like coffee) like we have in the US. Or if they do I have never seen it.

Usually you just walk through the "green" exit, there is no one there (maybe they are watching with hidden cameras I don't know) and then you are out into the public part of the airport.

Here is a link from the Heathrow Airport website for customs allowances. You just have to scroll down to choose "United Kingdom" as a country.


Here is what is on that website for UK today as to special items:

"Duty Free: When arriving from a non-EU country, travellers can bring the following goods into the UK tax or duty free: 200 cigarettes, 100 cigarillos, 50 cigars or 250g of tobacco, 4 litres of still table wine, 16 litres of beer, 1 litre of spirits or strong liqueurs or 2 litres of fortified wine, sparkling wine or other alcoholic beverages of less than 22 per cent volume, £340 worth of all other goods including perfume and souvenirs. When travelling from another EU country to the UK visitors do not have to pay tax or duty on goods purchased in said EU country provided tax was included in the purchase price, the items are for personal use and have been transported to the UK by the visitor, and do not exceed 3200 cigarettes, 400 cigarillos, 200 cigars, 3 kg of smoking tobacco, 110 litres of beer, 10 litres of spirits, 90 litres of wine and 20 litres of fortified wine. Note that although Gibraltar is part of the EU, it is outside the Community Customs territory and allowances for outside the EU therefore apply. In the case of Cyprus, only goods under the effective control of the Government of the Republic of Cyprus are treated as EU imports."
laurie_ann is offline  
May 12th, 2012, 05:49 AM
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 304
No, you do not have to declare packets of instant coffee. After you pick up your luggage, go through the exit that says "nothing to declare".
johnnyomalley is offline  

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