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Amazon.com questions ?

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Squirrel God

Guest
Customs - probably, but maybe not. More chance of being caught out by customs with Amazon than other retailers as they're so well known and use such huge parcels. Who knows in the end though, it's pot luck.

No, you won't have to sign for it.
 

Garrett

Moderator
I was looking at some stuff on the Amazon.com and they quote the total price including the P&P surly you do not have to pay duty on P&P and do they included it in the total price or separate?
 
S

Squirrel God

Guest
Originally posted by Garrett
I was looking at some stuff on the Amazon.com and they quote the total price including the P&P surly you do not have to pay duty on P&P and do they included it in the total price or separate?
Garrett,

Yes, those lovely people in UK customs legally calculate the duty including the P&P as well.

Yes, Amazon put the full price including the P&P on the parcel.

Don't expect any favours from Amazon - they play it all by the book :(
 

narabdela

Member
It's a lottery. I must have bought about 20 DVDs from Amazon.com over the past few years and about five of them have been intercepted for duty surcharge.
 
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infomatique

Guest
Originally posted by narabdela
It's a lottery. I must have bought about 20 DVDs from Amazon.com over the past few years and about five of them have been intercepted for duty surcharge.
You have been very unlucky I purchase a few CDs/DVDs every week from Amazon in the US and I have never had to pay duty or VAT. I do live in Dublin but this should not make a difference ... also many of the orders are actually delivered from within the EU so VAT/Duty should not be a problem.
 
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infomatique

Guest
Originally posted by Garrett
I was looking at some stuff on the Amazon.com and they quote the total price including the P&P surly you do not have to pay duty on P&P and do they included it in the total price or separate?
VAT stands for Value Added Tax ... charging postage/carriage adds value so by definition you are charged VAT on the cost of carriage. The same is true for duty

It works like this ... Customs calculate the value of the goods as the actual cost of the goods plus carriage they then add duty (if the goods are subject to duty) and they charge VAT based on the total value including duty (not very fair).
 
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potato

Guest
In my case, received 2 DVDs from amazon.com sometime last month, German custom first charged a 3.5% EU tax (don't know what is this) on the total amount including P&P, then add up the value and tax another 16% German Mwst. (=VAT), so I pay tax on top of another tax (3.5% + 16% on total value).

Had already wrote a letter to custom asking for explanation because I don't know is this calculation correct or not, but still no reply yet, it might never be one, just hope that I won't be black listed so that all parcels will be inspected in the future :(
 
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infomatique

Guest
Originally posted by potato
In my case, received 2 DVDs from amazon.com sometime last month, German custom first charged a 3.5% EU tax (don't know what is this) on the total amount including P&P, then add up the value and tax another 16% German Mwst. (=VAT), so I pay tax on top of another tax (3.5% + 16% on total value).

Had already wrote a letter to custom asking for explanation because I don't know is this calculation correct or not, but still no reply yet, it might never be one, just hope that I won't be black listed so that all parcels will be inspected in the future :(
That sounds about right ... what they did is standard practice , the 3.5% would be what we know as "DUTY" which is an import tax and this would be the same throughout the EU.

About ten years ago when I imported LPs on a regular basis one package was caught and then everything for about six months was caught and I must admit that I was convinced that I was on a blacklist but since then I have not had any problems.

Don't do what a friend of mine did ... he wrote to Customs complaining that he had imported lots of packages without any problems so he could not understand why he was charged VAT and Duty on a recent delivery ... his life became a lot more complicated.
 
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potato

Guest
Don't do what a friend of mine did ... he wrote to Customs complaining that he had imported lots of packages without any problems so he could not understand why he was charged VAT and Duty on a recent delivery ... his life became a lot more complicated.
/
oh no ........ The letter was sent last week :( but I didn't complain, just asking for 1. why there was tax on top of another tax and 2. should P&P be included for VAT. Hope that this won't make them angry .......

humm..... this might be the reason why my R1 superbit The Fifth Element from Play (I think it came from Belgium) tooks one week and AoM (Microsoft game) from amazon.co.uk tooks more than two weeks to arrive, but no tax was added I think due to within EU, so I might have to remove amazon.com from list to avoid problem.

BTW, another odd things in here, sometime parcels from overseas will be picked up by a private company, they delivered the parcel to customs, collected it and forward to me, then charged me with an amount few times higher than the original postage. I once refussed to pay because I think that the P&P should include the delivery to customs and supposed to be door to door service, they didn't accept this and said they have to pick it up otherwise it'll stay in Frankfurt forever, I exchanged several phone calls with them and checked with HKG (the origin) but still ended up paying the fees, do anyone knows this?
 
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infomatique

Guest


humm..... this might be the reason why my R1 superbit The Fifth Element from Play (I think it came from Belgium) tooks one week and AoM (Microsoft game) from amazon.co.uk tooks more than two weeks to arrive, but no tax was added I think due to within EU, so I might have to remove amazon.com from list to avoid problem.

BTW, another odd things in here, sometime parcels from overseas will be picked up by a private company, they delivered the parcel to customs, collected it and forward to me, then charged me with an amount few times higher than the original postage. I once refussed to pay because I think that the P&P should include the delivery to customs and supposed to be door to door service, they didn't accept this and said they have to pick it up otherwise it'll stay in Frankfurt forever, I exchanged several phone calls with them and checked with HKG (the origin) but still ended up paying the fees, do anyone knows this? [/B]



Yes you have described another problem ... unlike the Postal Services private courier services are obliged to clear goods through customs if they are being delivered from outside the EU and they charge for this service (I actually worked as a Custom Clearance Agent when I was young and the company made a fortune from this activity) the charge is usually fixed so you pay the same if the package is worth Euro 10 or Euro 100,000 ... this is a real pain if you are charged Euro 25 for goods worth Euro 10. Believe me, there is no way that you can recover this charge.

In the case of the postal services the approach is different in that Customs will have staff based in the international sorting offices and they will select parcels at random for examination and as the amount of packages passing through a given location is very large they can only check a very small percentage so the chances of being caught are very low. Unfortunately if those who select the packages begin to notice a pattern they will cherry pick rather than picking at random and as a result they may end up picking specific types of packages.

So if you buy from outside the EU make sure that the goods are shipped by post and not by courier. Please note, asking the supplier to make a false declaration regarding price is not a good idea. If a series of deliveries from a given supplier are caught stop using them for about six months.

Up until recently Amazon in the US packed CDs and DVDs in such a way that they looked likes books but for some reason they are now using oversized packaging which may be attracting attention.

Also be aware that certain tax free zones such as Jersey are considered to be outside the EU for VAT purposes so if you purchase from operations such as SPLASHDVD you might be charged VAT by Customs (this has never happened to me). UK based members may be able to provide a bit more information about this.

I could be wrong but it would appear that some Canadian suppliers actually ship from within the EU so there are no problems with VAT ... others here may have more knowledge of this.
 

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