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HMRC Issue Updated Haulier Communications

Further to the news item that was published by BIFA on Wednesday 19th January, HMRC has issued the latest edition of their Haulier Communications.

Please note: Copies of the Communication below are available HERE on our EU Exit Hub and in the following languages:

  • Bulgarian
  • Czech
  • Dutch
  • French
  • German
  • Hungarian
  • Lithuanian
  • Polish
  • Portuguese
  • Romanian
  • Spanish


We are getting in touch because full customs controls are now in place between the EU (except the island of Ireland) and Great Britain (GB) (England, Scotland and Wales). Current arrangements will continue to apply to goods moving from the island of Ireland to GB, while discussions on the Northern Ireland Protocol are continuing.

As a haulier or carrier who moves goods between the EU and GB, we want to make sure you’re getting the support you need to adapt to the changes. In this communication we will cover:

  1. Moving goods through border locations that use the Goods Vehicle Movement Service (GVMS)
  2. When and where to report for an inspection of the goods you’re moving
  3. Where to get further support

Moving goods through border locations that use the Goods Vehicle Movement Service (GVMS)

GVMS is a UK Government IT platform for moving goods into or out of Northern Ireland (NI) and GB. As of 1 January 2022, anyone moving goods between GB and the EU through border locations that use GVMS for customs control must be registered for the service. 

GVMS enables declaration references to be linked together so that the driver moving the goods has to present just one reference, the Goods Movement Reference (GMR). This single reference helps speed up the clearance of goods through customs. All movements, including empty vehicles and containers, through a GVMS border location must have a valid GMR. Without one, the driver, vehicle and goods will be unable to board the vessel. 

It’s important that the person who creates the GMR, usually the haulier or an intermediary, includes all the correct references. Otherwise, your goods will be delayed at the border. Get a GMR and check which references you will need to create it.  

Some locations that use GVMS alongside other customs models may operate alternative processes. If you’re moving goods through one of these locations, you should check with the carrier you’re intending to travel with about what information you need to clear customs.


When and where to report for an inspection of the goods you’re moving

Some goods moved into GB from the EU through GVMS border locations will require an inspection on arrival before they can be cleared through customs. You will need to check if your goods are held and follow instructions given by HMRC.

How to check for an inspection required notification

The ‘Check if you need to report for an inspection’ service allows anyone in control of moving goods, including drivers, to check if their goods are held, using their GMR. You do not need to be registered for GVMS to use the service.

The GMR contains a link to the ‘Check if you need to report for an inspection’ service. Anyone with the link can access the service using a smartphone or internet-enabled device.

If you created the GMR and need to send it to the driver, please forward the relevant email or a PDF containing the GMR. Do not send screenshots – the driver will be unable to access the links.

Whoever created the GMR and has access to GVMS can also find out if there are any checks required on the GVMS dashboard.

Where to report for an inspection

The ‘Check if you need to report for an inspection’ service has been updated so it will now provide details of the locations you can attend for the required inspections.

If you’re arriving into the Port of Dover, Eurotunnel or Holyhead, you’ll be directed to attend an inland border facility (IBF) for these inspections. For all other GVMS border locations, you will be directed to the inspection facility within or near the port.

Consequences of not reporting for an inspection

The haulier and/or driver may be liable to a penalty of up to £2,500 if they fail to follow HMRC instructions to report for an inspection.

It is the responsibility of the person who created the GMR to ensure that the goods arrive at an IBF if instructed to do so, and that their drivers are made aware or have the means to check if an inspection is needed.


Where to get further support

If you have a specific question about importing or exporting, call HMRC's Customs and International Trade helpline on 0300‌‌ ‌322‌‌ ‌9434. The helpline is open from 8‌‌am to 10‌‌pm Monday‌‌ ‌‌‌to‌‌ ‌Friday and from 8‌‌am to 4‌‌pm at weekends. 

You can also speak to an adviser using the live chat function on the UK Government’s haulier website. The live chat service is available in five languages: English, Romanian, Polish, Bulgarian and Hungarian. 


Please share this article with your colleagues and other hauliers. 

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