In the United States, e-commerce retail trade sales are worth over 1.1 trillion dollars.

The U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis recently announced that the goods and services deficit for March 2024 stood at a whopping $69.4. Many of these shipments would be subject to import duties if they weren’t for Entry Type 86.

Entry Type 86 is a new customs declaration introduced by the US in 2019 to fasten the import process for eCommerce shipments. It also helps you save import taxes/duties for consignments below $800.

Before September 2019, $200 was the import duties exemption.

Now, packages that qualify for Entry Type 86 don’t require a detailed formal declaration or for you to make payment for any import taxes.

To do that, you need to submit to CBP, Customs and Border Protection Type 86 Cargo Release declaration, and you’ll be good to go.

In this blog, we’ll talk about the nuances of Entry Type 86 and how it helps streamline custom clearance.

What is Entry Type 86?

Entry Type 86, under Section 321, allows US import shipments with a de minimis value of $800 or less to enter without paying duties and taxes.

In the US, informal entry processes for personal goods have been available for some time now. However, it was Type 86, under Section 321, that first extended these benefits to commercial sales. Initially, these procedures were restricted to one entry per day per filer.

Key Benefits of Using Entry Type 86

Entry type 86 doesn’t just save you money—it helps sellers, eCommerce businesses, etc., save time and hassle from tedious paperwork and processes. Let’s look at it’s benefits

1. Skip the cumbersome formal entry requirements

You no longer have to deal with complex formal entry procedures. Just have your importer, shipper, or designated customs broker submit a quick informal Type 86 declaration through the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) broker portal.

2. No more extra costs from import taxes and duties

Keep more money in your pocket by taking advantage of the $800 de minimis value, which exempts you from paying import taxes and duties.

3. Speed Up the Paperwork with an Automated Process

Entry Type 86 plugs into CBP’s Automated Commercial Environment (ACE). This is a brilliant initiative to reduce paperwork and delays for low-value shipments. It enables faster customs clearance and hence lets your goods move faster.

4. Import Faster

With quicker customs clearance, your shipments reach customers faster. This helps you maintain customer satisfaction by ensuring they get their orders promptly and preventing your products from getting stuck at the border.

5. Faster business scaling and growth

Entry Type 86 is ideal for low-value e-commerce shipments. You can upload thousands of files in seconds at a low cost through CBPs Automated Broker Interface (ABI), helping your business grow efficiently.

How Entry Type 86 Streamlines Customs Clearance

Entry Type 86 simplifies the import process, making customs clearance faster and more efficient. Here’s how it works. The seller, buyer, or customs broker must electronically input the following data into CBP’s Automated Commercial Environment (ACE):

  • Bill of Lading or Air Waybill Number: A unique identifier for your shipment
  • House bill or HAWB
  • Consignee Name and Address: The recipient’s details
  • Country of Origin: Where the goods are coming from
  • Entry Number:
  • Fair Retail Value in the Country of Shipment: The retail price from which the goods are shipped
  • Importer of Record (IOR) Number: Required if the shipment is subject to PGA data reporting requirements
  • Planned Port of Entry: Where the goods will enter the US
  • Quantity: The amount of goods
  • Shipper Name, Address, and Country: The sender’s details

You can enter this information any time before the cargo arrives.  Failure to submit the entry before the arrival of the conveyance will force the customs broker to either request a manifest clearance or file a formal (Type 01) or informal entry (Type 11)

Pro Tip: Enter these details as early as possible, as it helps speed up the import process.

Technological Features Supporting Entry Type 86

Entry Type 86 leverages modern technology to streamline the customs clearance process. Here’s how the technological features of Entry Type 86 can benefit your e-commerce business:

1. Automated Commercial Environment (ACE)

Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) is the cornerstone of Entry Type 86. ACE is a single-window system used by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to streamline data collection and processing for imports and exports.

  • Centralized Data Entry: ACE allows importers, shippers, and brokers to enter all necessary information into one platform, reducing the need for multiple submissions and paperwork.
  • Real-Time Processing: The system processes data in real-time, ensuring quick responses and faster clearance times.
  • Integrated Communication: ACE integrates with various government agencies, facilitating seamless communication and coordination for regulatory compliance.

2. Pre-Arrival Data Submission

One significant technological feature of Entry Type 86 is the ability to submit data before the cargo arrives in the U.S.

  • Early Data Entry: You can enter shipment details any time before the cargo arrives, which expedites the import process.
  • Flexibility: The system allows data entry upon arrival or up to 15 days after, providing flexibility in managing shipments.

3. Automated Broker Interface (ABI)

The Automated Broker Interface (ABI) is a critical component for customs brokers handling Entry Type 86 shipments.

  • Batch Processing: ABI allows for the batch processing of thousands of entries, saving time and reducing manual workload.
  • Error Reduction: The interface includes validation checks to ensure accuracy and compliance, reducing the risk of errors that can delay shipments.
  • Cost Efficiency: By automating the submission process, ABI helps reduce operational costs for brokers and importers.

4. Harmonized System (HS) Code Integration

HTS codes are required for low-value imports under Entry Type 86. 

Global Standardization: HTS codes provide a standardized method for classifying goods, ensuring consistency in international trade.

  • Customs Compliance: Proper classification using HTS codes helps avoid delays and potential fines due to incorrect or missing information.
5. Enhanced Tracking and Visibility

Technological advancements supporting Entry Type 86 provide enhanced tracking and visibility throughout the import process.

  • Real-Time Tracking: Importers can track the status of their shipments in real-time, providing transparency and peace of mind.
  • Automated Notifications: The system can send automated notifications and updates regarding shipment status, clearance progress, and required actions.
The Future of eCommerce and Customs Clearance

The future of eCommerce and customs clearance is about embracing automation, AI, and predictive analytics to handle complex international supply chains more efficiently. Here’s a look at some exciting breakthroughs we might see in the coming years:

1. Predictive Risk Assessment

Imagine having advanced models that can predict and address compliance issues before they happen. This kind of predictive risk assessment will help you stay ahead of potential problems and keep your shipments moving smoothly.

2. Seamless PGA Integration

Improved integration with partner government agencies (PGAs) will make getting clearance for regulated commodities easier. This means more streamlined cross-border coordination and less waiting time.

3. Blockchain-Based Data Security

Blockchain technology is set to revolutionize data security in international transactions. By using blockchain, you’ll ensure your shipment data is secure and tamper-proof, enhancing trust and reducing the risk of fraud.

As customs authorities expand their data analytics capabilities, compliance will become a more dynamic and real-time process. You’ll gain better visibility into your supply chain, helping you mitigate risks and control costs more effectively.

Conclusion: The Role of Technology in Enhancing Customs Efficiency

The landscape of eCommerce is rapidly evolving, with technology playing a pivotal role in streamlining overall processes. Entry Type 86 stands as a testament to this evolution. By simplifying the import process, reducing paperwork, and eliminating unnecessary costs, Entry Type 86 empowers you to focus on growing your business.

How can Customs City Help?

Customs City is here to help importers and customs brokers navigate the complexities of customs compliance. We combine expertise and modern technology to streamline the import process. Here’s how we can assist you:

  • Comprehensive Solution: Our comprehensive eCommerce Customs Compliance Solution covers everything: ACE Ocean, ACE Truck, ACE Air, Type 86, Section 321 Data Pilot, ISF, FSN, SNP, and ACAS. With us, all your customs needs are covered through a single platform.
  • Cost Savings: We offer the most competitive transactional fees, specifically tailored for large-scale eCommerce shipments. This helps you reduce costs without compromising service quality.
  • Performance: Our eManifest submission process is quick and easy, allowing you to focus on growing your eCommerce business while we handle customs compliance efficiently.
  • Security: We use military-grade encryption to ensure the utmost security and confidentiality of your information, keeping all data transmitted through our platform safe.
  • 24/7 Support: Our dedicated customer support team is available round-the-clock via live chat, email, phone, or through our customer care portal, ensuring you receive timely assistance whenever needed.

With our team’s extensive knowledge of customs and trade regulations, you can leverage our expertise to navigate the complexities of customs clearance seamlessly, ensuring a hassle-free border-crossing experience. Schedule a demo to unlock the full potential of your customs operations.

Book a Free Consultation Today

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