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Import 'Handling Charges' ?


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I have a few separate small orders coming over from the States. All are well under the £18 value each package including shipping costs so should not get charged VAT or Import tax/duty as i believe it.

Does anyone one have experience of 'Handling Charges' ,knowing whether these apply to larger packages only or is there a starting point for the value of the goods?

I except the Vat & Duty when due but it will take the shine off things if i get hit for 'Handling' on each package as they come through, especially when i have already paid the shipping on them to my door.

How long have these 'Handling Charges' been around? Sounds a bit cheeky to me, asking/demanding for another fee on top of the agreed postage/shipping payment!

 

[ 22. August 2005, 06:47 PM: Message edited by: Richard Harvey ]

Use a Lure Instead !! ;)

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There are no 'handling' charges other than those built into the post and pack charges by the supplier. You may be confusing goods handling charges with VAT and Duty handling charges. Those charges are made by Royal Mail, UPS, Fedex etc and cover their costs of taking a VAT and Duty charge from you and passing it on to HM Customs. If your parcel is not subjected to VAT and Duty then no admin/handling charges apply. Where applied, its usually between £7-10 per parcel.

'I've got a mind like a steel wassitsname'

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Afraid you will just have to wait until it arrives before you find out.I buy a lot from cabelas and a few other American outlets sometimes i get hit with duty and sometimes i dont.Lately i have asked for items to be posted as a gift(request when ordering)and touch wood no extras have been added.Good luck.Regards Kevin

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well i bought a tracksuit from america on ebay for £40 + £14 p&p and i got charged £28 by royal mail to let me have it.

 

but a few months later i bought an mp4 player for £400 + £24 postage and i didnt get charged anything to recieve it

 

its just luck i guess

always look on the bright side of life

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It's just your luck, I often buy fishing tackle for my club from BassPro or Cabellas - sometimes (75% of the time) I get hit by customs ... nice surprise when I dont :)

 

If ordering anything from the US for myself I get it delivered to a friend in the US's house, whom ships it as a gift to me to avoid customs charges. I am awaiting a new camera lens from the US just now, this time I timed buying it to when a friend in coming over here for a wedding and they are taking it over for me.

 

Gillies

 

[ 22. August 2005, 10:52 PM: Message edited by: Gillies ]

tha fis agam a bhe iasg nuth dunidh sasain!

 

www.gilliesmackenzie.com

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I've been hit for charges on approximately half my purchases from the US. Interestingly I don't think I've ever been charged on ebay purchases. I'm sure it's a combination of the shipping company, customs site and probably half a dozen more variables.

 

Rob.

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Its the shipping company full stop. UPS and Fedex for example, who deliver from supplier to buyer have a company policy of ALWAYS charging the VAT and Duty, even if its a penny over the limit. Conversely United States Postal Services (USPS) hand parcels over to Royal Mail to deliver at this end via the International hub at Heathrow and at that point it all gets a little amateurish (fortunately) and the decision to charge or not is down to local offices. Busy day...they wont charge....argument with the wife before coming to work ....they might. Very high value parcels......they probably will but not necessarily so. The trick is to find a supplier who uses USPS and if its a high value parcel and you're in no hurry then use seamail..they rarely charge on seamail. Small suppliers are usually more flexible than the large companies like BassPro or Cabelas and will usually try to be helpful, whereas Cabelas for example have a company policy of only using expensive carriers and will not aid or abet you to dodge paying the VAT. For example they won't show a low value on the outside of a parcel and whilst they are happy to label it 'gift' this is no sure way of Duty avoidance. Gifts are also VAT and Duty chargeable. If you get away with it then count yourself fortunate.

The reason why UPS and Fedex are popular with suppliers is that they/you can track parcels via the internet and there's less chance of goods disappearing. What is not generally known is that whilst you cant track USPS parcels in the US, you can track them once they reach the UK. If you ask the supplier for the dispatch number then when the parcel reaches Heathrow it goes onto the Parcel Force tracking system which can be accessed via their website.

 

[ 23. August 2005, 06:23 PM: Message edited by: argyll ]

'I've got a mind like a steel wassitsname'

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argyll:

The reason why UPS and Fedex are popular with suppliers is that they/you can track parcels via the internet and there's less chance of goods disappearing. What is not generally known is that whilst you cant track USPS parcels in the US,

The US Post Office had to make some changes to stay competative. If you pay for delivery confirmation (about $0.45) then you can track a package. Just log on to www.usps.com Here is one we have shipped that is in transit.

 

an-usps1.jpg

" My choices in life were either to be a piano player in a whore house or a politician. And to tell the truth, there's hardly any difference!" - Harry Truman, 33rd US President

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That must be a recent addition to their service. Great stuff and good value too. Global Priority Mail can be a real bargain. I just had a delivery of 5" and 7" tube lures delivered for the same cost to London as it would have cost to California. I hope the larger companies start using them again. Never had a parcel from USPS go astray and never had anything damaged either. Only problem is that their max size limits are less than the private carriers. Long one piece rods are an issue for them.

 

[ 23. August 2005, 05:26 PM: Message edited by: argyll ]

'I've got a mind like a steel wassitsname'

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