The Musical Instrument Certificate (MIC)

MIC (Musi­cal Instru­ment Certificate)

This CITES cer­tifi­cate is specif­i­cal­ly aimed at trav­el­ling with musi­cal instru­ments. It replaces a tra­di­tion­al CITES import and export doc­u­ment and is valid for 3 years (mul­ti­ple uses).

The MIC must be stamped by a CITES-approved author­i­ty at each of the bor­ders you will be cross­ing (reg­u­lar cus­toms offi­cers may not be cre­den­tialed to stamp the certificate).

TEC (Trav­el­ling Exhi­bi­tion Certificate)

This CITES cer­tifi­cate was orig­i­nal­ly cre­at­ed for trav­el­ling exhi­bi­tions. It was lat­er extend­ed to orches­tras by the 16th CITES Con­fer­ence of the Par­ties (2013), to allow the reg­is­tra­tion of all trav­el­ling instru­ments on one sin­gle cer­tifi­cate (instead of one MIC for each instrument).

As the imple­men­ta­tion of the TEC is not homo­ge­neous across the EU Mem­ber States, you must con­tact your CITES author­i­ty to ascer­tain whether TECs are issued in the coun­try of departure.

Please note: The Unit­ed King­dom does not issue TECs for orches­tras or ensem­bles. UK musi­cians trav­el­ling togeth­er as a group must, there­fore, apply indi­vid­u­al­ly for an MIC before departure.

Dif­fer­ences between the MIC and the TEC

The MIC is issued for one sin­gle instru­ment. It lists all the CITES pro­tect­ed species it con­tains that are not sub­ject to an exemp­tion. Appli­ca­tions may be sub­mit­ted by the own­er (or the hold­er) of the instru­ment or by the ensemble/orchestra with which the musi­cian is trav­el­ling. An instru­ment with an MIC may trav­el in the hold or as hand luggage.

The TEC is suit­able for musi­cal ensem­bles and orches­tras. Only one TEC is need­ed for all the instru­ments trav­el­ling with the same ensem­ble. Depend­ing on the coun­try, the issuance of a TEC may there­fore be cheap­er than all the indi­vid­ual MICs com­bined. How­ev­er, using a TEC means that all the instru­ments must trav­el togeth­er in the hold. Tak­ing one or more of these instru­ments as hand lug­gage (or drop­ping out of the group and con­tin­u­ing the trav­el alone) is not allowed.

The MIC and TEC are both mul­ti-use cer­tifi­cates and are valid for a peri­od of 3 years.

MULTIPLE INSTRUMENTS: if you trav­el alone and car­ry more than one instru­ment, you can apply for an indi­vid­ual MIC for each instru­ment or, pro­vid­ed you own all of the instru­ments, for a Trav­el­ling Exhi­bi­tion Cer­tifi­cate (TEC). A TEC may be use­ful if you are trav­el­ling with a large num­ber of instru­ments, all togeth­er. How­ev­er, indi­vid­ual MIC’s should be pre­ferred if all the instru­ments list­ed are not trans­port­ed togeth­er at the same time.