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DFDS Update - UK Customs FAQs

With less than a month to go until full customs controls apply to all goods vehicles moving between the European Union (EU) and Great Britain (GB), now is the time to ensure that you have done everything you need to ship with DFDS. Please see below answers to the questions we have been asked.

What is GVMS?

GVMS is the Good Vehicle Movement Service, which is a UK Customs system that carriers/hauliers must register with, to declare the movement of all goods vehicles travelling UK to EU and EU to UK.

When is a GMR required?

All accompanied and unaccompanied units shipping EU to UK or UK to EU will require a GMR.

A GMR is also required for vehicles that are empty or loaded with empty pallets. An EXS (Exit Summary Declaration) is required as part of the GMR request. For information about any exemptions please visit the gov.uk website.

Who must complete the GMR request?

It will be the responsibility of the haulier, or the owner of the main mode of transport, to request the GMR, for both accompanied and unaccompanied shipments.

DFDS cannot request GMR’s on behalf of our customers.

Does DFDS need to know the GMR?

Yes, DFDS needs to be advised of the GMR, which must be provided prior to or during the vehicle being checked in.

Will I still need an MRN/MRN’s or a Logistics Envelope?

Yes, you will still need an MRN/MRN’s, or a Logistics Envelope, for imports to and exports from France. This is required by French Customs. The requirements for French Customs will remain unchanged.

How do customers communicate the GMR to DFDS?

Our operations staff will scan the GMR from the driver’s paperwork at check-in.

Will the GMR be part of the booking?

The GMR will be added to the booking and will be displayed in the same area where MRN's are currently shown.

How will DFDS deal with the GMR for autolist customers?

The GMR can be scanned at check-in, allowing autolisted vehicles to turn up without the GMR being pre-entered.

What process is undertaken to validate the GMR?


When a vehicle is checked-in, our system checks that the GMR number is valid.

If the GMR is not valid, the vehicle will be refused until a valid GMR number can be provided. If the GMR is valid, we will check-in and ship the vehicle as normal.

We will not be able to check the clearance status of a GMR or if an inspection is required.

Drivers will need to check their clearance status via the gov.uk website (tax.service.gov.uk/driver-inspection-notification/start).

Newhaven<>Dieppe / Sheerness<>Calais:

When a vehicle is checked-in, our system sends the GMR data to GVMS.

The GVMS system will then send back a message stating either ‘Permission to Proceed’ or ‘No Permission to Proceed’.

If no permission is granted, we will not be able to ship the vehicle until the GMR has the correct permission. If permission is granted, the vehicle will be checked in as normal.

Will drivers/hauliers be able to check their MRN/GMR clearance status on board or via the app?

Drivers/hauliers will be able to check their GMR clearance status via the gov.uk website (tax.service.gov.uk/driver-inspection-notification/start).

Will the Port of Dover exclusively use GVMS with pre-lodged declarations or will it also be possible to clear through Inventory Linked Entry?

We have not been advised of any plans by the Port of Dover to use an inventory linked system. This is unlikely to change due to the speed and frequency with which traffic ships across the Channel.


15 December 2021

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