Frequently asked questions
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What HS code?
If you’re wondering what HS code to use for your shipment then you’re not alone. HS codes are now required for the majority of international shipments and many of our customers find it hard to choose which one to use.
The good news is, Parcel Monkey is here to help! This page will explain everything you need to know about HS codes, including:
What is an HS code?
HS codes, also known as commodity codes or tariff codes, are used to identify the item you’re sending so the customs authority in the receiving country can charge the correct customs fees and taxes.
HS stands for Harmonized System. Harmonized System Codes were developed by the World Customs Organisation and are an internationally standardised system of names and numbers to classify products. That means if you use the correct HS code, your item can be easily identified worldwide.
HS codes can be 6, 8 or even 12 digits long, depending on the country you’re shipping to.
Why do I need an HS code?
HS codes are mandatory for shipping items into the EU from a non-EU country and more and more countries outside of Europe are requesting them as part of the customs process.
If you don’t provide a valid HS code for every item in your package, you could receive incorrect customs charges, your package may be delayed in customs or stopped entirely.
HS code examples
If you’re looking for HS code examples or simply wondering, what is the HS code for shipping clothing? Then the next section of this page will help.
Firstly, HS codes are specific to individual items. For example, there is no generic HS code for clothing. There are multiple HS codes for clothing, which vary depending on the item of clothing you're sending, who it’s for, what it’s made of and what it’s used for.
We can’t tell you which HS code to use for your shipment, however, the table below highlights some of the most common tariff codes that are used when shipping overseas from the US.
HS codes for clothing
HS Code Description
Articles of apparel and clothing accessories (including gloves, mittens and mitts) 6309.00 Worn clothing and other worn articles 6103.22 Men's or boys' ensembles made of cotton, knitted or crocheted 6111.20 Babies garments and clothing accessories made of cotton 6109.10 Cotton t-shirts 6505 Hats and other headgear, knitted or crocheted, or made up from lace, felt or other textile fabric, in the piece (but not in strips), whether or not lined or trimmed; hair-nets of any material, whether or not lined or trimmed 4203.10 Articles of apparel made of leather or composition leather 6104.22 Women’s clothing: Ensemble made of cotton 6110.11 Sweaters, pullovers, sweatshirts, waistcoats (vests) and similar articles made of wool or fine animal hair 6204.49 Women’s dresses of other textile material (not knitted or crocheted) 6404.11 Sports footwear; tennis shoes, basketball shoes, gym shoes, training shoes and the like
HS codes for food and drink
HS code Description 1905 Bread, pastry, cakes, biscuits and other bakers' wares, whether or not containing cocoa; communion wafers, empty capsules of a kind suitable for pharmaceutical use, sealing wafers, rice paper and similar products 1704 Sugar confectionery (including white chocolate), not containing cocoa 2202.10 Waters; including mineral and aerated, containing added sugar or other sweetening matter or flavoured 2103 Sauces and preparations therefore; mixed condiments and mixed seasonings; mustard flour and meal and prepared mustard
HS codes for household items
HS code Description 3924.10 Tableware and kitchenware 6912 Ceramic tableware, kitchenware, other household articles and toilet articles, other than of porcelain or china: 4911.91 Pictures, designs and photographs 9701.10 Paintings, drawings and pastels, executed entirely by hand
Candles, tapers and the like 4820.10 Registers, account books, notebooks, order books, receipt books, letter pads, memorandum pads, diaries and similar articles 9505.10 Articles for Christmas festivities and parts and accessories thereof
Other common HS codes
HS code Description 8523.49 Optical media; recorded, excluding products of Chapter 37 8714.10 Parts and accessories of motorcycles (including mopeds) 9503.00 Tricycles, scooters, pedal cars and similar wheeled toys; dollsʼ carriages; dolls, other toys; reduced-scale (“scaleˮ) models and similar recreational models, working or not; puzzles of all kinds; parts and accessories thereof
Printed books, brochures, leaflets and similar printed matter, whether or not in single sheets
How to find HS codes
When you send a parcel through Parcel Monkey we’ll direct you to an HS code lookup tool during the booking process so you can find the correct codes for your items.
The first 4 digits refer to the category then the digits that follow provide further detail on what the item is and what it’s made of.
Here's an example:
6204.49 Women’s dresses of other textile material (not knitted or crocheted)
6204 = Women's or girls' suits, ensembles, suit-type jackets, blazers, dresses, skirts, divided skirts, trousers, bib and brace overalls, breeches and shorts (other than swimwear)
49 tells customs what material it’s made from.