Prescription Medicine/Alcohol/Minor Traffic Offenses/Firearms

How do I bring my prescription medicine into the United States?

Narcotics and dangerous drugs are prohibited entry.  There are severe penalties if imported.

A traveler requiring medicines containing habit-forming drugs or narcotics (e.g. cough medicine, diuretics, heart drugs, tranquilizers, sleeping pills, depressants, stimulants, etc.) should:

  • Have all drugs, medicines, and similar products properly identified
  • Carry only the quantity that might normally be used by an individual having a health problem requiring such drugs or medicine
  • Have either a prescription or written statement from your personal physician that the medicine is being used under a doctor’s direction and is necessary for your physical well-being while traveling

What is the allowance for alcoholic beverages brought into the United States?

Adults may bring in, free of duty and internal revenue tax, not more than one liter of alcoholic beverages – beer, wine, liquor – for personal use. Quantities above the one-liter limitation are subject to duty and internal revenue tax.

Duty and Tax Rates Samples (Approximate):

  • Beer – 16 cents per liter
  • Still Wine – 36 cents per liter
  • 80 Proof Scotch-$2.89 per liter

Be aware, however, that in addition to federal laws, you must meet state alcoholic beverage laws which may be more restrictive than federal liquor laws. This means that if the state in which you arrive permits less liquor (wine, beer) than you have legally brought into the United States, that state’s laws apply to your importation of alcoholic beverages for personal use.

Note: Shipping of alcoholic beverages by mail is prohibited by United States Postal laws.

When I was last in the U.S. I committed a minor traffic offense. Will this affect future travel?

A minor traffic offense will not render you ineligible to travel visa free under the Visa Waiver Program, or ineligible to apply for a visa. However if you have an outstanding fine, or you did not attend the court hearing, it is possible there may be a warrant out for your arrest. If this is the case you may experience problems when applying for admission into the U.S. Therefore you should resolve the issue before travelling by either contacting the police authorities or court where you were to appear.

Can I bring firearms and ammunition into the U.S.?

Firearms and ammunition intended for legitimate hunting or lawful sporting purposes may be brought into the United States provided you take the firearms and any remaining unfired ammunition out of United States when you depart. Also, an approved ATF Form 6-Part I (5330.3A) is required to import all firearms, ammunition, and implements of war into the United States or any possession. The ATF Form 6 should be submitted approximately 60 days prior to the intended importation.

All other firearms and ammunition are subject to restrictions and import permits. Fully automatic weapons and semi-automatic “assault” type weapons are prohibited.

For complete information, write:

Department of the Treasury
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms
Firearms and Explosives Import Branch
Washington, D.C. 20226
001-202-927-8320
http://www.atf.gov/