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Amazon and Customs: Do I have to be Careful or not?

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Amazon and Customs: Do I have to be Careful or not?

Old 08-14-00, 02:43 PM
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exm
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Hi folks,
As a regular DVD Talker, Echo listener and Amazon orderer I would like some feedback! Lately I'm stacking up Echo GC's for combined Amazon orders (3-5 DVD's). Since I only used to order a maximum of 2 DVD's on one order I would like to know if someone has experience with 3-5 DVD's shipped from Amazon to Europe (or, more specific The Netherlands).

Thanks for the feedback and keep this forum alive!
Mark
Old 08-14-00, 03:03 PM
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You shouldn't have any problems at all. I for one have never had problems, and I have never heard of anyone in Europe being caught by customs when ordering from Amazon.com.

Old 08-14-00, 03:52 PM
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Well, Essexboy, let me tell you that customs in Sweden have caught on to Amazon within the last 6 month or so.

It used to be quite safe to buy from Amazon, but not anymore. Not in Sweden.

Not sure if this applies to all vendors that ship by DHL WorldMail, but it sure applies to Amazon. You can still get lucky, but more often than not, you get to pay VAT, customs and various handling charges. And in Sweden VAT is 25% (ouch! )

It may still be safe in the UK and in the Netherlands, I don't know, but don't be too sure...

[This message has been edited by GSyren (edited August 14, 2000).]
Old 08-14-00, 04:05 PM
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Bummer. Best order from the places that either ship separately or don't label the goods, i.e. www.dvdboxoffice.com
Old 08-14-00, 04:10 PM
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hmmm... seems that it is different from country to country... So far The Netherlands and the UK are 'safe' while Sweden and Germany (previous threads) aren't. Isn't that weird?
Old 08-14-00, 06:20 PM
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Got caught by the Dutch customs with my Amazon shipment of the second James Bond box in may 2000 and a shipment of 3 dvd's in december 1999. With shipments of more than 2 dvd's from Amazon it is a bit like a lottery with Dutch customs! I would say play the game! Your chances of not getting caught are 75%!
Old 08-15-00, 05:40 AM
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In case anyone cares, New Zealand allows NZ$399 before charging customs. This figure includes shipping so thats about 7 DVD's from Amazon
Old 08-15-00, 05:53 AM
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With us, the red alert goes on when the shipment value is $100 or more.

------------------
My DVDs
Old 08-15-00, 07:07 AM
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Here in Switzerland more than 3 dvd it will charge you for custom duties. Try giftwrapping it....good luck!!
Old 08-15-00, 10:46 AM
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So paying an additional $6 can save me some cash... Guess the break-even point is around $35 (if the taxes are 17,5%). I have some pre-orders with a combined value of $45 (I can take the risk with those) but also one with a value around $100 (better split that one up).

Thanks for the feedback!
Old 08-15-00, 03:01 PM
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AFAIK, in EU customs should charge duty for everything, however, each country may define the minimum amount they are going to charge (i.e. when it makes sense to charge something, office cost & work etc.), Finland has limit of 50 FIM. Now, since duty is 3.5% plus VAT 22% (shipping included), even 2 DVDs may be caught, has happened to me - from Amazon.

PS. 1 USD = 6.5676 FIM
Old 08-16-00, 01:04 PM
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I also noticed the following. I pre-ordered some titles in one order which release dates where far apart. I specified that I wanted no additional costs so the shipment should be complete.... Then the first title arrived at Amazon; the other titles were scheduled for three weeks later. Amazon shipped the first title with a note like: "service" and "no additional costs" for shipping. It happened to me twice now. I'm not sure if this is policy or if they needed money/less stock at that moment So maybe you can order a DVD which is scheduled for December and combine orders which come available earlier. Just a thought. What are the experiences of others with 'shipment complete' orders??? If this works you can
create multiple 'open' orders and make sure that Amazon ships 1 or 2 DVD's each time... So no problems with customs (I found out that 2 DVD's is MAX for the Netherlands before you have to pay).

[This message has been edited by tslh (edited August 16, 2000).]
Old 08-16-00, 11:30 PM
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Curious, has anyone in Australia ever been hit by customs? Where did you order from and how much was it? So far I've occasionally had stuff opened but never been hit.

Chris
Old 08-17-00, 01:09 AM
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So here go the fellows who suffer by custom officers. : )

As a korean, I had the same problem, though I'm in America as an international student, now.
Usually, Korean custom office caught DVD packages that value over $60. well.. the problem is that the $60 limit includes shipping charges. And the standard air-mail shipping charge from US (Amazon) to Korea is over $15-$25 usually, if you buy two or three DVDs.

In order to avoid tax, you should buy only one DVD at one time. No box versions. No criterions.
What a stupid!

So, what's the solution?

I usually request DVD shops to write "gift" and "their personal name" on the package instead of shop names. I know this sounds stupid, but it has worked by now, fellows.
This was the reason I preferred small shops when I was in Korea.

How about you, DVD Talkers?


gandhika

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