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ATA Carnets: The Merchandise Passport for Boomerang Freight®

Friday, May 6, 2022

The Boomerang Benefit is designed to help.

Boomerang carnets®  presented a webinar as part of U.S. Commercial Service Export Week on    3 May. The participants represented a wide spectrum of sectors: Logistics, Service Providers (attorneys, compliance consultants, freight forwarders, economic development organizations), Transportation, Aerospace, Defense, Manufacturing, Information & Communication Technology, Healthcare, Energy, Food & Agriculture and Mining.  The full scope and use of ATA Carnets was covered including Duplicate and Replacement carnets, as well as Best Practices.  Boomerang’s Kiel Ursin, an experienced ATA Carnet Specialist, led the presentation.  He is an expert in client training and coaches on how ATA Carnets can help businesses expand into new markets and grow while saving substantial costs on their temporary exports.  The benefits of ATA Carnet use always draws a crowd eager to learn and put those benefits to work.  Kiel addressed specific situations and concerns brought up in the Q&A. 

The ATA Carnet is an internationally accepted customs document for temporarily exported merchandise or goods.  It allows cross border movement of those goods import-duty and -tax free into 87+ carnet countries and territories for up to a year.  The ATA Carnet is known as the Merchandise Passport for boomerang freight® and ideal for professional equipment, goods, or commercial samples moving in and out of countries.  The ATA Carnet is an invaluable trade tool for growing your business internationally.


Some of the questions that came up in the Q&A were:

Q:  What do you do if Customs is closed?

A:  Always…always call Customs in advance to find out when they are open.  They will sometimes allow you to come the day before your departure.  With things being the way they are now, it’s vital to call ahead to make the proper arrangements.  It’s important to remember that it is Customs Office specific, meaning each Customs Office location will have specific days/hours of operation. Know this in advance.

Q:  Can you use carnets for international trade shows, and can you sell an item/sample on the carnet?

A: Yes.  Trade show use can cover booth displays, technology, screens, company signage—that sort of thing.  Samples displayed at trade shows are commonly put on carnet.  The jewelry industry uses carnets to save on duty, taxes, and fees for international jewelry shows.  You must make sure the carnet General List is itemized very carefully—that way it is easy to track what you have sold and what is returning with you.  Whatever is not sold and returns with you, will be exempt from the duty and taxes upon return.

Q:  If goods are imported and exported and visibly changed, can it be carnet-ed?

A:  No. Whatever goes into a country must come out the same. Enhancing value, like working on a car under the hood for major repairs, for instance, changes the value of the car and in turn it would change the bond.  What goes into the country on your General List must come out the same. 

Q:  Do you need an agent for an ATA Carnet?

A:  No. You can use one, but it is not necessary.  We will guide you through the process, how to get the carnet validated by Customs, and whatever else is needed.


If you are interested in growing your business with an ATA Carnet, call us.  Boomerang’s Carnet Specialists offer expert customer service and are here to assist you 24/7.  Just call the Carnet HelpLine® 0808.189.3400 or email us.  Also, if you want to ship by cargo, Boomerang has freight forwarder partners who can deliver your carnet to you, as well as handle your freight.  For ATA Carnet news and updates subscribe to our eNewsletter: Exportise.