How Much Personal Use Pipe Tobacco Can I Bring Into the USA?

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nathaniel

Part of the Furniture Now
Jan 4, 2011
791
508
Hey folks, I used to be an active member here years ago. But now I just lurk occasionally.
I live in Costa Rica and may be moving back to Florida soon. I have a ton of bulk and tinned pipe tobacco that I imported here from the US, but now would like to know how much customs allows me to bring in to the US. I can't find anything related to weight. just quantity of cigars and cigarettes.
 

nathaniel

Part of the Furniture Now
Jan 4, 2011
791
508
This is all CBP says on their site:

"
In accordance with 26 U.S.C. § 5702(c), "tobacco products" means cigars, cigarettes, e-cigarettes, smokeless tobacco (snuff or chewing tobacco), pipe tobacco, and roll-your-own tobacco. For pipe/loose tobacco products, contact the Ports of Entry.

On December 20, 2019, the president signed into law, the Tobacco 21 (T21) legislation that raised the legal age to purchase tobacco products from 18 to 21 years. The new legislation makes it illegal for retailers to sell tobacco products to anyone under the age of 21. The law applies to all retail establishments and persons with no exemptions.

Returning resident travelers, for those over the age of 21, may import tobacco products only in quantities not exceeding the amounts specified in the personal exemptions for which the traveler qualifies (not more than 200 cigarettes and 100 cigars if arriving from other than a beneficiary country and insular possession).

Once every 31 days, a resident returning from travel from American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI), or the Virgin Islands of the United States may import 1,000 cigarettes (5 cartons), not more than 200 of which acquired elsewhere than in such locations, within the returning resident's $1,600 exemption from duty and taxes.

Bidis - essentially flavored cigarettes - are not generally permitted entry. For more information see the Tobacco Control Act.

In addition, cigarettes may be subject to Federal excise tax. The rates may be viewed by visiting The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau.

Note: Federal excise tax rates are for informational purposes only and actual tax or fee may vary according to a person's circumstances.

For more information about duty-exemption or duty rates for other tobacco products, please contact the Ports of Entry directly.

For regulations and questions related to tobacco products from Cuba, see U.S. Department of The Treasury"
 

romaso

Lifer
Dec 29, 2010
1,856
7,117
Pacific NW
Hey folks, I used to be an active member here years ago. But now I just lurk occasionally.
I live in Costa Rica and may be moving back to Florida soon. I have a ton of bulk and tinned pipe tobacco that I imported here from the US, but now would like to know how much customs allows me to bring in to the US. I can't find anything related to weight. just quantity of cigars and cigarettes.
You might be better off selling it there and buying more here, depending on prices where you are. You could always buy some and have it shipped to a friend near where you'll be moving in the US so you'll have some waiting for you. If you fly to the US, the airport you go through customs in is your point of entry (probably the first big international airport, before you transfer, if your final destination is a smaller non-international airport).

I'd also suggest getting any customs reply in writing, rather than calling, so you have documentation of your understanding. Maybe the US Ambassador where you are could help?
 
Last edited:

Ebarber

Can't Leave
Mar 11, 2020
380
1,267
Newark, Ohio
I would ship 5 lbs home in 2 packages a week apart and carry the final 2l bs home with me. I'm guessing you could probably get by with the entire 7 lbs but why risk it?
This! Especially if your tobacco is aged, rare or discontinued tobacco. If it were me this is the route I would go. It sounds too "gray area" for me to trust the word of an agent who doesn't understand the value of my collection or my situation. I for one wouldn't want to show up with my rare or aged tobacco and trust that it wouldn't be confiscated and destroyed. I would be hesitant about bringing it through regardless of the answer I got from someone but that is just me.