Buying goods abroad

If you bought something while you were abroad and you have a problem with it now, there are several things you can do. Most countries have their own system of consumer protection, but if you bought something in another EU country you have consumer rights under EU law.

Top tip
Remember if you buy something online from another country this is different to buying an item when you go abroad. Get information on shopping online.

If you have already returned home, you can contact the European Consumer Centre Ireland (ECC Ireland) through its contact form, if you bought the product from a business based in a different European Union country, Norway, Iceland, or the United Kingdom. The ECC will explain your rights and your next steps if you have exhausted the trader’s complaints process first.

Remember, if you buy goods outside the EU, including online, you may have to pay import charges such as customs or excise duties, and Value Added Tax (VAT) on what you bought.

If you bought from an EU country, you don’t have to pay additional VAT on goods. However excise duty is payable on alcohol and tobacco products if you import more than the amounts set by Revenue from another country in the EU. Get more information from Revenue.


Last updated on 26 May 2021