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What Kinds of Customs Are You Paying in Europe?

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What Kinds of Customs Are You Paying in Europe?

Old 10-12-08, 04:23 PM
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What Kinds of Customs Are You Paying in Europe?

What kinds of prices are you paying for deliveries from outside the EU? Is there anyway to get around them?
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Old 10-12-08, 04:49 PM
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Well, in the UK it's not very good for the consumer: anything over GBP18 in value is liable for duty (3.5%) and then VAT (17.5% of the article value plus the duty combined). So for an item valued at, say, 30 it would work out at about 36.50 to pay, but there's also an admin charge from the company that delivers the item to you - Royal Mail, the most common, charge 8 at present, so that 30 purchase soon clocks in at just under 45. It's pretty sickening, and has happened to me once or twice on boxsets from the US.
Any way round it? Not legally. Amazon, for example, always do things properly so the customs declaration always accurately reflects the contents' value (did I mention that the taxes apply to shipping costs if the article is over 18, but are not in the 18 value itself, so a 17 DVD that cost 2 to ship won't be liable, but an 18.50 one that cost 0.50 to send is liable for duty/VAT on the full 19). The allowance is doubled to 36 for personal gifts, but these are directly from one individual to another, and don't include goods sent from a company (so someone in the UK buys a gift from Amazon US and has it sent to their friend in the UK - it will still only have the 18 threshold, even if marked 'gift'.)

Dazza

Last edited by Dazza; 10-12-08 at 04:51 PM.
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Old 10-13-08, 01:57 AM
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it depends on what you're buying, and from where. you could use ebay, or a retailer that clearly doesn't stick the correct value on the item, or one which openly declares it's prices are inclusive of any such charges due to them finding loopholes. or you can stick to buying stuff under 18... most DVDs from america, for example, seem to average 8 each.
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Old 10-13-08, 02:57 PM
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does the price inlcude the cost of the item and the shipping? I thought a girl in Slovenia had told me that they combine the cost of the shipping and the item. I think their limit is 27 Euros.

What happens if I bought someone a couple blu rays and then sent them to the UK without a receipt, and on the customs form, I put a value of $20 USD.

Also, I went down to my local Best Buy today to see if they can print out receipts with lower values, but of course they couldn't.
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Old 10-13-08, 03:13 PM
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customs are looking for a declared value of 18 or higher. if they spot it, they calculate the duty and VAT percentage from the total declared value and shown postal cost. you could put a false value, yes, but things obviously of
much higher value than declared can be stopped, seized, and proof of true value requested so dutyand VAT can then be charged. not all USA retailers will put the true value on a parcel; deepdiscount don't seem to... besides, the cost of a USA BR is below 18 anyway, most of the time. see dvdpacific ; i've used them for years and they've the reputation of being very cheap, but they used true values on customs declarations.
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Old 10-13-08, 03:44 PM
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hey logboy, can you give me an idea of what some of your recent purchases have been like and what you've been paying? cost of product, shipping etc?

I want to see if i can get a little something going by getting stuff from the US and shipping it overseas but only if I'm actually saving people money. In England, do they actually open your packages and check them?
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Old 10-13-08, 04:08 PM
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average DVD cost somewhere around 7 - 8. shipping, well I tend to buy in pairs to reduce shipping costs as additional items are less than each item coming individually. BRs seem to be about 14 or so; I've not bought many. an individuals got no chance against major operations unless you can cheaply source items normally sold over 18 such as anime sets, and sold them via eBay or amazon marketplace... and even then you'll need to be sure you're making it viable for you and others, which isn't always going to be the case, because peoples criteria varies.

customs are legally allowed to open parcels, yes. if you sent a huge box that weighed a lot and put $5 as a value, it would be suspicious and likely stopped.
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Old 10-13-08, 04:11 PM
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Originally Posted by civiclx View Post
does the price inlcude the cost of the item and the shipping? I thought a girl in Slovenia had told me that they combine the cost of the shipping and the item. I think their limit is 27 Euros.
I thought I'd answered this in my post above ... the shipping itself doesn't count towards the value in terms of pushing it over the limit, but if an item is over the limit then VAT/duty calculations are based on the item amount + shipping amount.

So... a 17 DVD that costs 50 to ship isn't liable, but a 19 DVD that costs 1 to ship will be liable for VAT/Duty on the 20 total... rates as per my first post.
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Old 10-14-08, 03:28 AM
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It also depends on your local Post Office sorting office. I have received at least 4 parcels that I should have paid customs on. They have this red sticker that says that the VAT charge must be paid before delivery so I kinda got lucky there. The last time it happened was when I order the Daywatch/Nightwatch boxset from CDJapan. The postman turned up with the box with the customs sticker attached and asked do I normally receive a postcard first asking to pay the amount. I said yeah, normally and he said If someone asks you didn't get it from me and gave it to me anyways!
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