Watch out for counterfeits when on holiday


Have you planned on shopping cheap luxury goods during this summer vacation abroad? Watch out for counterfeits. In Italy, a counterfeit can cost you up to 10,000 euros in fines.

Rules and laws concerning counterfeits vary within the EU. For example, in Sweden, you will not be fined if you possess a few counterfeited products. But in some countries, it can be expensive. In Italy, for example, the rules for counterfeits are hard and you can get fined if you get caught buying counterfeits.

"If you are you going to Italy you should leave the counterfeit at home. You risk getting fined 10,000 euros if you get caught buying or wearing a counterfeit. This is a penalty that has been developed to protect the Italian market from the invasion of counterfeit products, by fining buyers, importers and distributors of these products", says Jolanda Girzl, Director of ECC Sweden.

How to recognize a counterfeit

  • Look carefully at details such as seams, pockets, buttons and labels. On counterfeits, the seams are often poor and uneven sewn. Make sure the trademark is spelled correctly and that no details on the logo are missing.
  • Check lining and pockets. Counterfeit producers rarely have a good picture of the inside of a bag. The inside should be as properly as the outside with regard to details and pockets. Also read the labels. On counterfeits they are often misspelled.
  • Check that the same brand is on the packaging as on the purchased product. All packaging items like dustbags, tissue paper and cartons should be of high quality and embellished with logos and names. Expensive fashion products are rarely sold with plastic bags.
  • Check out what the price of the item is in a brand store. If the price you're looking for is good to be true, it's most likely a counterfeit.
  • Do not take the seller's word for granted. An assertion that the product is from the same factory as the original is rarely true. Check where the manufacturing place is situated.

Find outlets in the summer

If you are going to travel in Europe this summer, there are several factory outlets offering genuine goods at discounted prices. A search on the web gives you hits at several factory outlets across Europe.

More information

On our pages about counterfeits, you can read more about how to recognize a counterfeit and rules on counterfeits in the EU.