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I live in one of the EU countries and went on a trip to Bangkok in Thailand.

Smokes here are incredibly cheap and I smoke quite a lot, so I was thinking of buying some more than allowed, and wondering where to buy them.

I could buy them at the local Tesco express, but then I am worried about being stopped at customs leaving Thailand as all my baggage would be checked at the airport. There are no rules on how much I can take out, only how much I can get into the country, but still. I could also try to buy them at the duty-free at the airport after passing immigration, but I am worried that shops would mark my ticket, as they usually ask when you buy, that I am buying an extensive amount. I am thinking like 10 cartons, it should last me a couple of months.

Where should I buy the cigarettes to have the highest chance of getting them through?

Thank you.

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  • 12
    Reducing (not quiting) the amount that you smoke will of course reduce your cigarette expenses, which you seem to care about. The health benefits are just a bonus.
    – dotancohen
    Oct 29, 2017 at 9:06
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    The actual answer to your question, is that (A) you almost certainly will be caught and (B) yes, the penalty is MUCH MUCH MUCH more than if you had just paid the duty. Obviously if the penalty as only the same as just paying it, it would always be worth trying to sneak through: "they've thought of that one". Just forget the idea.
    – Fattie
    Oct 29, 2017 at 10:45
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    If you want to do things the right way, it's much easier to simply fly to Romania, stock up a full suitcase of cigarettes and fly right back.
    – JonathanReez
    Oct 29, 2017 at 12:25
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    I advice you to stop smoking, stopping will make you die healthy.. Oct 29, 2017 at 16:42
  • Don't forget that duty-free does not mean profit free. We used to go to France from UK and buy our quota from the supermarkets - considerably cheaper than the duty-free shop. Oct 29, 2017 at 18:16

1 Answer 1

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Thailand does not care how much you take out of the country, you've bought them legally and what you do with them is not their business. If you want to know Bangkok airport duty free prices, just call up King Power, who has the monopoly: https://www.kingpower.com/en/

Your problem is going to be Customs on the EU side. You can legally bring in over the duty-free limit if you declare and pay duty... but, of course, this will mean they cost more or less as they do at home.

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  • And, if you don't declare them, and they are discovered at customs ... I don't know the penalty - do you really want to find out?
    – Mawg
    Oct 29, 2017 at 10:09
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    Here's a link to how much duty would be charged by the UK: gov.uk/tax-on-shopping/alcohol-tobacco. I assume other Western European countries would be similar.
    – JonathanReez
    Oct 29, 2017 at 12:24
  • @JonathanReez No, the tobacco duty varies greatly between European, even between Western European countries. Oct 30, 2017 at 14:15

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