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Amazon.co.uk to US Customs Prices

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Amazon.co.uk to US Customs Prices

Old 06-24-08, 12:49 PM
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Amazon.co.uk to US Customs Prices

I want to buy a few items from Amazon.co.uk and I live in the U.S. How much will customs and any other fees be? What is you experience with ordering stateside from the UK? Would it be better to order from Amazon.ca?

Also how much is the shipping for each Amazon site?

Couldn't use the search engine to find a similar thread. Sorry if this has been asked.
Old 06-24-08, 12:53 PM
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at each Amazon website at the bottom "Delivery and Returns" has a shipping charges link.

As for Amazon.co.uk the only real hidden price is if your credit card adds fees to international orders - mine does, which I'm not too happy about, but I still buy alot from the UK regardless.
Old 06-24-08, 12:59 PM
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What about where it says:

Remember your delivery may also be subject to customs charges, over which we have no control, and which must be borne by you.

Is that only in rare cases (if your package is opened by customs) or does everyone pay a customs fee? If so, what is it for a package consisting of a single DVD?

As far as I can see it will cost $4.80 US to ship one DVD. (not counting customs in question)
Old 06-24-08, 01:18 PM
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I've ordered thousands of dollars with of stuff from amazon uk in the last 8-10 years, hudnreds of shipments, never had a single one stopped by customs. US Customs doesn't really care unless the value is very high, I think over 1k usually.

Also, the prices usually remove VAT (which is UK sales tax) and that usually ends up being about the same as shipping cost. But that being said I try to bundle all my stuff into as large an order as possible to save on shipping.
Old 06-24-08, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Lastdaysofrain
I've ordered thousands of dollars with of stuff from amazon uk in the last 8-10 years, hudnreds of shipments, never had a single one stopped by customs. US Customs doesn't really care unless the value is very high, I think over 1k usually.

Also, the prices usually remove VAT (which is UK sales tax) and that usually ends up being about the same as shipping cost. But that being said I try to bundle all my stuff into as large an order as possible to save on shipping.
I second that!

Dirk
Old 06-24-08, 08:44 PM
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The official information regarding Customs Import Duty can be found for Internet purchases can be found here:
http://www.customs.ustreas.gov/xp/cg..._purchases.xml
Old 06-24-08, 11:12 PM
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I ordered all the time and haven't been dinged customs, but I did have a package arrive over 4-5 weeks late because it was misrouted by USPS.
Old 06-24-08, 11:13 PM
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Thanks everyone. More than enough info. I'm glad other have had good experiences and it makes me feel better about this and future purchases. Now I can get movies and shows on DVD that aren't available in region 1. Thanks again.
Old 07-06-08, 09:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Lastdaysofrain
I've ordered thousands of dollars with of stuff from amazon uk in the last 8-10 years, hudnreds of shipments, never had a single one stopped by customs. US Customs doesn't really care unless the value is very high, I think over 1k usually.

Also, the prices usually remove VAT (which is UK sales tax) and that usually ends up being about the same as shipping cost. But that being said I try to bundle all my stuff into as large an order as possible to save on shipping.
You guys in the US are lucky. The other way round, if we in the UK order from the US, we get hammered for duty as soon as the customs threshold is exceeded. That is only about 23.00 ($45.00 aprox). Not only that but they use the worst possible exchange rate, charge duty, then a handling fee and then VAT at 17.5% on the total.

UK customs are the biggest bunch of thieves in Europe.
Old 07-06-08, 12:18 PM
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Amberite, our deal in Canada is pretty much as bad as yours when we receive stuff from Amazon.co.uk.
Old 07-06-08, 01:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Lastdaysofrain
I've ordered thousands of dollars with of stuff from amazon uk in the last 8-10 years, hudnreds of shipments, never had a single one stopped by customs. US Customs doesn't really care unless the value is very high, I think over 1k usually.
Approximately 2 years ago I ordered an authentic Achille Castiglioni Arco lamp from www.europebynet.com which offered the best price for it, even after I researched a dozen or more Italian retailers. The value was well over 2000$ and the lamp arrived to Chicago in three parcels shipped from London. (The last piece was the carrera marble base which is well over 100 pounds).

I did not pay any custom charges.

Earlier this year I received a very small package from Canada with a BR screengrabber and I ended up paying close to 100$ in custom charges.

Pro-B
Old 07-06-08, 07:32 PM
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Originally Posted by pro-bassoonist
Earlier this year I received a very small package from Canada with a BR screengrabber and I ended up paying close to 100$ in custom charges.

Pro-B
Gotta love that 'free' trade our countries worked out.
Old 07-06-08, 10:55 PM
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Originally Posted by andicus
Gotta love that 'free' trade our countries worked out.
With the falling US dollar I find it more and more affordable to import from England (not the rest of Europe). Canada has become quite a luxury for me.

Pro-B
Old 08-03-08, 10:10 AM
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There are no duties for items bought by individuals for personal use, with some small narrow exceptions. I spent over $80k on dvds from overseas retailers from 2001-2006. I know because I had to add them all up for the Visa exchange rate fee class action suit. Never been charged any duty EXCEPT from UPS for some packages from HK. I fought them on it and they backed off. Hell, I even had a single order for $5k from CD Japan. Came in three packages had no duty charges. Same goes for electronics.

Here's a trick for you Europeans. I had a friend who had a video store and sold a lot of DVDs overseas. He always marked the packages as 'Software' or 'Software Media'. Apparently many countries have no duties on software.
Old 08-05-08, 03:16 AM
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You can avoid additional forex fees by choosing to pay with a card that doesn't charge it, or is minimal. There is such a list on flyertalk.
A card not charging extra fees is, surprisingly, Capital One. Specifically for Amazon, I am using Citi's MTVU 5% rewards card which more than makes up for the 3% fee. With Amazon Visa from Chase you break even (3% rewards). Another alternative: PenFed Cash Rewards, 1.25% rewards, 1% fee.
Old 08-20-10, 03:24 AM
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Re: Amazon.co.uk to US Customs Prices

I ordered just over $100 worth of DVDs from Amazon UK (unfortunately shipped DHL) and they seem to have stopped in LA with a "Customs Clearance delay". Anyone know what that means? Should I be worried?
Old 08-20-10, 09:34 AM
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Re: Amazon.co.uk to US Customs Prices

It means they're enjoying your DVD's.

I've never had that happen but then again I've never ordered that much at one time.
Old 08-20-10, 09:55 AM
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Re: Amazon.co.uk to US Customs Prices

I have ordered over $100 from the UK, Germany and Japan, smaller orders from HK, Australia and the Netherlands and I never had to pay any custom fees (knocking on wood right now).

Dirk
Old 08-20-10, 02:10 PM
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Re: Amazon.co.uk to US Customs Prices

It's just a random spot check to make sure you aren't smuggling in contraband, and should only delay your order by a week or so at most. I think that may have happened to me once with an order from DDDHouse, and I know I got a slip of paper in another order stating that the package had been openned and inspected by customs.
Old 08-20-10, 08:46 PM
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Re: Amazon.co.uk to US Customs Prices

Originally Posted by porieux View Post
I ordered just over $100 worth of DVDs from Amazon UK (unfortunately shipped DHL) and they seem to have stopped in LA with a "Customs Clearance delay". Anyone know what that means? Should I be worried?
Unless it's a new thing, I have had a number of over-$100 orders from Amazon.UK -- none of them ever got shipped via package couriers -- yet they all arrived in NJ faster than many domestic orders.
Old 08-20-10, 08:51 PM
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Re: Amazon.co.uk to US Customs Prices

FWIW -- here is the US CBP's official guide re: Internet purchases from foreign sources:
http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/trade/bas..._purchases.xml
Old 08-23-10, 05:45 PM
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Re: Amazon.co.uk to US Customs Prices

Try not to use UPS to bring stuff into the US. They used to ding me $20 per shipment for DVDs and citing some reg that didn't even apply to DVDs. You cannot get them to remove it either, they just won't do it.
Old 08-23-10, 07:47 PM
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Re: Amazon.co.uk to US Customs Prices

Thanks for the replies. The package is apparently still sitting at US Customs. Amazon UK says 'as soon as the package has cleared customs it will be delivered to you' but with no timeframe or reason given.

As far as DHL, personally i have had nothing but problems with them in the past, so that is a little worrying. I wasn't informed by Amazon they were going to use DHL or I probably wouldn't have even placed the order.

Guess all I can do is wait. If things go wrong, hopefully Amazon UK has as good service as Amazon US so I can at least get my money back.
Old 08-25-10, 07:42 PM
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Re: Amazon.co.uk to US Customs Prices

Originally Posted by porieux View Post
Thanks for the replies. The package is apparently still sitting at US Customs. Amazon UK says 'as soon as the package has cleared customs it will be delivered to you' but with no timeframe or reason given.

As far as DHL, personally i have had nothing but problems with them in the past, so that is a little worrying. I wasn't informed by Amazon they were going to use DHL or I probably wouldn't have even placed the order.

Guess all I can do is wait. If things go wrong, hopefully Amazon UK has as good service as Amazon US so I can at least get my money back.
I have a package waiting at customs in Los Angeles as well. Based on the Amazon UK tracking available, it's been there since the 17th of this month. Pretty annoying since the package only ran me 23.00 GBP and I've imported countless other orders for more with no trouble like this. Not that I can't wait for the two movies, I have more I can watch, but I would like to see them someday. Submitted an email to Amazon UK customer service, but don't expect to hear much useful there and also called DHL who informed my the DHLGA is a separate entity from DHL Express. Once out of customs packages shipped DHLGA are delivered through the USPS, but not given a valid tracking code until that happens. I figure if it's still sitting there tomorrow, I'll give the customs office a call to see what the deal is. Irritates me enough, though, to almost not want to import anymore. I have a separate package mailed Monday, though, so we'll see how long that takes to get through.
Old 08-25-10, 08:53 PM
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Re: Amazon.co.uk to US Customs Prices

US Customs on stuff like this is pretty random. I'm pretty sure cost doesn't factor in too much. I've had a single DVD held for 2 weeks before (Faster Pussycat, Kill, Kill!), but I've placed dozens of other import orders and never had a problem.

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