How much cash should you always carry with you?

Taking cash with you

There is a notification requirement for travelers with 10,000 euros or more in cash if the border crossing into the EU or from the EU. This serves to combat the illegal movement of money in the fight against money laundering and the financing of terrorism.

On July 12, 2005, the EU Council of Ministers passed a regulation on the control of cash movements in and out of the EU. It has been in force in all Member States since June 15, 2007.

According to this, travelers entering or leaving the community must and Cash of 10,000 euros or more (or the equivalent in other currencies or other easily convertible values ​​such as checks made out to third parties), declare this amount to the customs authorities. According to the regulation, the customs authorities are empowered to check natural persons, their luggage and their means of transport and to withhold cash that has not been declared.

The The cash is registered at the customs office when entering or leaving the country using registration form ZA 292, which is in the collection of forms on the website of the Federal Ministry of Finance in both German and English or is available in the customs offices.

The customs administration recommends filling out the registration form ZA 292 and returning it to the customs office in order to ensure rapid processing. If anything is unclear, the responsible customs officers will be happy to answer any questions you may have and help you fill out the form.

This notification requirement is intended to prevent illegal movements of money as a preventive measure against illegal activities such as money laundering and the financing of terrorism.

Cash to be declared

In the Cash Control Regulation (see Article 2 of Regulation (EC) No 1889/2005) and national rules, the term "cash" is defined as follows:

  • transferable bearer papers including payment instruments with a bearer clause such as travelers checks,
  • Transferable papers (including checks, promissory notes and money orders), either with a proprietor clause, endorsed without restriction, made out to a fictitious payee or in some other form that brings about the transfer of the legal claim on delivery,
  • Incomplete papers (including checks, promissory notes and money orders) that are signed but do not contain the name of the payee,
  • Cash, ie. Banknotes and coins that are in circulation as a means of payment.
  • Gold and other precious metals (national regulation)

Check information

Article 2 of Regulation (EC) No 1889/2005 refers to cash and payment instruments the value of which can be transferred from one person to another. This includes all financial and payment instruments whose origin and destination are anonymous or which can be endorsed or transferred by several recipients one after the other, including checks.

Checks made out to third parties, ie. Checks presented for payment to an account of someone other than the named payee or for payment to that person must be registered. Checks to be paid to the owner of the bank account from which the amount is withdrawn can be traced and therefore do not need to be registered.

Information on cash (banknotes and coins)

Banknotes and coins that are in circulation as a means of payment - regardless of the material they are made of - fall under the definition of "cash".

Currencies that are no longer valid as a means of payment are not considered to be cash.

Old coins (collector coins) and precious metal coins do not fall under this term either.

Banknotes and coins that are not freely convertible, such as the Moroccan dirham, fall under the term "cash".

Casino Token Information

Casino tokens (also called chips), which are used as currency in casinos, are valid Not as cash.

Reportable persons

Every natural person who enters or leaves the EU and has cash of 10,000 euros or more with them must submit this amount to the competent authorities of the Member State through which they are entering or leaving the EU, Sign in.

  • Natural persons include all travelers and crew members who enter or leave the EU territory by air, land, rail or sea.
  • If this person has cash on them for a legal entity (for example, the company they work for), that person must provide the name of the company when filing for cash.
  • If people travel in a group, the maximum limit of 10,000 euros applies to each individual member of the group.
  • Minors, people with intellectual disabilities and legally incapable adults are also required to declare cash. Registration takes place through the parents or the legal guardian or legal representative.

Information in your language

In a multilingual brochure you can read about the rules for cash controls. It is available in several EU languages ​​as well as in Arabic, Chinese, Farsi, Hindi, Japanese, Russian, Serbia, Turkish and Vietnamese.

Further information can be found on the website of the European Commission.