Money and duty free for Belgium
Currency and Money
Belgium switched from the Belgian Franc to the Euro (EUR; symbol €) in 2002. Notes are in denominations of €500, 200, 100, 50, 20, 10 and 5. Coins are in denominations of €2, 1 and 50, 20, 10, 5, 2 and 1 cents.
American Express, Diners Club, MasterCard and Visa are widely accepted in the major cities and towns; take cash for smaller villages. Be aware that some petrol stations and local shops only accept a nationwide payment system known as Bancontact or Proton. In these incidences you’ll have to use cash or, alternatively, you can buy pre-loaded Bancontact cards from the post office.
Cashpoints compatible with international banking networks are located in all towns and cities, as well as airports, major train stations and other spots. They usually offer an attractive exchange rate, although be aware that most banks charge a fee for withdrawals made abroad.
Travellers’ cheques are no longer widely accepted; it’s quicker and easier to withdraw cash from an ATM.
Mon-Fri 0900-1600, Sat 0900-1200.
There are no restrictions on the import or export of local or foreign currency. However, amounts exceeding €10,000 or equivalent must be declared if travelling from or to a country outside the European Union.
Currency exchange can be made in most banks and post offices as well as in some train stations, airports and exchange offices near major tourist sites.
Belgium duty free
Belgium is within the European Union. If you are travelling from outside of the EU, you are entitled to buy fragrance, skincare, cosmetics, Champagne, wine, selected spirits, fashion accessories, gifts and souvenirs - all at tax-free equivalent prices.
Belgium's duty-free allowance for travellers from EU countries:
If you are over 17 years old, you are free to buy and take certain goods with you when travelling between EU countries, provided that you have paid tax on these goods, and they are for your own use (not for sale). However, if you bring more than the following, customs officials are likely to question you:
• 800 cigarettes or 400 cigarillos or 200 cigars or 1kg of tobacco.
• 90L of still wine of which a maximum of 60L can be sparkling wine.
• 110L of beer.
• 10L of alcoholic beverages stronger than 22% or 20L of fortified or sparkling wine or other liqueurs up to 22%.
Beware that each EU country has different rules for travellers under 17 years old. Please check before you travel.
Belgium's duty-free allowance for travellers from non-EU countries:
If you are arriving from a non-EU country, the following goods may be imported into Belgium by travellers with a minimum age of 17 years without incurring customs duty:
• 200 cigarettes or 100 cigarillos or 50 cigars or 250g of tobacco.
• 4L of wine and 16L of beer and 1L of spirits over 22% volume or 2L of alcoholic beverages less than 22% volume.
• Other goods up to the value of €430 for air and sea travellers and €300 for other travellers (reduced to €175 for children under 15).
Restricted imports include firearms, narcotics, plants, animals and their products. Endangered species must be accompanied by a CITES permit. The import of counterfeit goods is banned.
You also cannot bring meat, fish or dairy products from outside the EU to Belgium.