CustomsLink Team


How can you secure your ATA Carnet against potential customs claims?


Our Customs Specialist, Dan Balshaw, shares how UK Carnet applicants can remain customs compliant and provide the correct ATA Carnet guarantee. 


Take it away, Dan!

ATA Carnet Guarantees 

When applying for an ATA Carnet in the UK, applicants must decide how they want  to secure their Carnet against potential customs claims. This guarantee ensures that any duties and taxes due to foreign customs will be covered should the goods not be re-exported. The two primary options available are payment in full or utilising a Carnet Security Scheme.

Payment in Full

Payment in full, often referred to as a direct, BACs or bank guarantee, involves the applicant providing a cash deposit that covers 100% (and sometimes more, depending on the country of destination) of the potential duties and taxes. This amount is held by the Carnet issuing body or customs authority as a security until the Carnet is discharged, meaning all goods have been confirmed as re-exported, and any conditions have been met.

  • Advantages: 

Direct control over the process and no additional costs 

  • Potential disadvantages: 

Can tie up significant capital, which may affect cash flow, especially for small businesses.

Carnet Security Scheme

The Carnet Security Scheme is a more flexible alternative offered by some Carnet issuing bodies, such as Chambers of Commerce. Under this scheme, the applicant pays a non-refundable premium (a percentage of the total guarantee amount) instead of lodging the full amount. This scheme effectively insures the Carnet against the risk of failing to re-export, providing a cost-effective solution for those who prefer not to tie up capital in a full deposit.

  • Advantages: 

Reduces the financial burden on the applicant by avoiding the need to tie up capital in a full security deposit. It's particularly beneficial for frequent users or those transporting lower-risk or lower-value goods.

  • Potential disadvantages: 

The premium is non-refundable, and additional costs may occur if the Carnet is not properly discharged.

How CustomsLink Can Help

We offer expert guidance for your ATA Carnet needs by providing comprehensive support throughout the Carnet application process, including:

  • Advising on the most cost-effective guarantee option for your needs.
  • Assisting with the application and securing the chosen guarantee.
  • Offering guidance on managing your Carnet effectively to ensure smooth customs clearance.

Choosing the right guarantee option for an ATA Carnet is a critical decision that can impact your financial planning and the ease of your international operations. 


Need an ATA Carnet? Contact us for a price estimate


Whether opting for payment in full or utilising a Carnet Security Scheme, it's essential to consider your business's specific needs and financial situation. With CustomsLink, you can navigate these choices confidently, ensuring your international transport of goods is as smooth and cost-effective as possible.


Need an ATA Carnet? Request a price estimate or get in touch with our experts today.