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Customs at Brussels Airport

Customs at Brussels Airport

Old Jul 21, 15, 12:06 am
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Post Customs at Brussels Airport

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Old Jul 25, 15, 3:03 pm
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The times I've arrived internationally and been through Zaventem / BRU I've merely walked out, nothing to declare, and have had no interaction with Belgium customs personnel.

My only troubles have been building my resistance when I'm departing and walking by Belgian chocolates on offer.

Thank you for asking.

P.S. I may be one of the very few who have 1) experienced a terror bombing (the secondary bomb, designed to take out responders, was identified and disabled before it detonated, or I'd probably not be writing), and 2) been on an aircraft where smart security identified a bag / passenger mismatch and a probable explosive device was identified when we had to retrieve our baggage and re-check it prior to the (Pan Am) flight being released.

Though I resent bullying and arrogance when it occasionally rears its head - either way, passenger on agent or vice versa - (Dayton, Ohio a few years ago for me), I do understand why certain security procedures exist.
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Old Jul 25, 15, 9:38 pm
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Old Jul 26, 15, 10:15 am
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As this is Brussels airport specific

The thread will be moved to the Europe forum. Please follow it there.
thanks

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Co Mod TS/S
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Old Jul 29, 15, 12:55 pm
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Just one question: have you opened the "Green Channel" again?
Up to a few months ago, BRU (the capital of the EU!) was the only airport in the EU where travellers from within the EU had to go through the same bottleneck as international travellers. On Monday morning arrivals getting through customs was more like trying to get front stage on a rock festival... Hope that has been solved now...
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Old Jul 30, 15, 9:14 am
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Old Jul 31, 15, 7:27 am
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Originally Posted by FedGuard View Post
I personally believe the 90% of people that have absolutely no items that might interest us should pass customs with as little loss of time as possible.
That's been my experience in general. As I usually have nothing to declare, I've had only one interaction with customs on this continent, and that was at ZRH, which is part of a different customs union.

What's the weirdest thing that you've found as a customs officer?
What's the most interesting story that you can tell us?
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Old Aug 5, 15, 5:44 am
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Old Aug 7, 15, 11:43 am
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Keep 'em coming! I especially loved your humourous answers!
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Old Aug 7, 15, 3:42 pm
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Hi FedGuard, thanks for posting here, really appreciated.
I have one thing I need to get of my chest: I'm always a bit ashamed having to call BRU my base airport when I go through customs. I never had anything to do with customs but the general appearance of the officers shows such a bad image: wearing half a uniform, unshaven, half standing, half hanging, chatting to each other. Imagine what this does with a first time visitor whose first impression can't be erased. What a contrast with other airports! I've heard you are state functionaries that cannot be fired (or you have to pee on the prime ministers desk), do you think that has something to do with it?
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Old Aug 7, 15, 4:25 pm
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I came through Brussels airport about 45 minutes ago, off a BA flight, bags at belt 8. Immigration was fun, as they apparently weren't expecting a BA flight, and kept asking me if I'd come from Moscow and couldn't understand why I kept saying I'd come from London... Eventually with enough of us saying "British Airways, London, England, United Kingdom", they ignored their monitors saying no BA flight, looked at passports and let us in!

Then over to belt 8, wait for bags, get bags, head towards customs. EU green channel closed, so everyone going through one. 15 second wait to get into customs area. Problem here was all the people walking slowly / randomly stopping / not really paying any attention. Few customs staff in uniform stood in the area, a couple of people being pulled over. Otherwise just lots of inept people in the customs area, and then people stepping out of the customs area and stopping dead when faced with a choice of going left or right! Not sure there's much customs can do about that, other than perhaps someone stood near the door saying "if we didn't ask you to stop, please please keep walking!"
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Old Aug 8, 15, 11:18 am
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Old Aug 8, 15, 2:53 pm
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Originally Posted by FedGuard View Post
@Ghentleman:
From Ghent by any chance? me too!
How did you guess?
Thank you for your very complete and detailed answer.
Regarding the "chatting": I sometimes have the impression that the conversations they are having do distract them from doing their job. Maybe just an impression.
Another thing: I often see passengers baggage getting searched in public (on the tables on the left side when exiting). I think it's awkward to say the least. Even if I had done nothing wrong, I wouldn't feel at ease if it happened to me. I don't see this at other airports, maybe the lack of space at BRU is also responsible for this procedure?
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Old Aug 8, 15, 3:17 pm
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Old Aug 8, 15, 8:26 pm
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