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UPS "Cash on Delivery"

Iccz

Distinguished Member
Never heard of this one before, any time I've ever ordered anything from abroad and had it delivered by courier they have often posted me a bill for import taxes that they had to pay and which I had to pay them...

Today a UPS driver turned up at my parents house with a parcel for me from Play-Asia, and neither of them had the £20something to pay for it on them and I'm at work and don't have the cash on me either nor the time to head to a cash point. Since when did UPS start doing a Cash on Delivery for this? :confused:

Now means I have to wait until tomorrow to get this, when I went for courier because they always get it to me quicker than sending it untracked which can take well over a week... seems pointless me paying a fair amount of money for them to not even release the item because of taxes they want cash for which I've never had before... disappointed :(
 

RottenFox

Distinguished Member
they have always done that..
i think UPS call it Collect on Delivery, and if they cant get payment 3 or 4 times, from you, the item goes back.

sometimes you may get an invoice, but its usually the driver i've paid before.
they took a cheque once from me, but the other times i've paid cash...driver signed the invoice, for the amount,etc, and that was that.
 

eric pisch

Distinguished Member
I have had this a couple of times for import duty over the last 10 years

how they seam to apply it is very odd

had collectables and jewlery come over worth many £1000s and not had to pay a thing

then i get a collectable worth £50 and get a bill for nearly its value.

I probably have imported 100+ items over the last 10 years from all over the world and maybe I have payed duty 4 times.

I just don't know how UPS work it out, there must be some rule book they use and items X Y and Z don't incur tax and Items A and B do, I cant see UPS doing anything illegal especially as they earn a fee for charging you duty and i suspect get a huge fine if they get it wrong.

There still my fav international courier, had very few breakages with them.
 

Iccz

Distinguished Member
I have had this a couple of times for import duty over the last 10 years

how they seam to apply it is very odd

had collectables and jewlery come over worth many £1000s and not had to pay a thing

then i get a collectable worth £50 and get a bill for nearly its value.

I probably have imported 100+ items over the last 10 years from all over the world and maybe I have payed duty 4 times.

I just don't know how UPS work it out, there must be some rule book they use and items X Y and Z don't incur tax and Items A and B do, I cant see UPS doing anything illegal especially as they earn a fee for charging you duty and i suspect get a huge fine if they get it wrong.

There still my fav international courier, had very few breakages with them.

Yeah I've used them a number of times but I'm sure they posted me an invoice for taxes the last time, perhaps the driver didn't take the paperwork or something :confused:

Also aren't they just passing on the charges they had to pay customs?
 

eric pisch

Distinguished Member
Yeah I've used them a number of times but I'm sure they posted me an invoice for taxes the last time, perhaps the driver didn't take the paperwork or something :confused:

Also aren't they just passing on the charges they had to pay customs?

im not sure how the system works, but there must be a system and i can not see them (or customs) getting it wrong very often, not when money is involved, i just envisage this 1000 page tome with an import duty oracle who they consult :D
 

FZR400RRSP

Banned
UPS are as bad as any other courier company.
We get their drivers turning up on a daily basis, looking for COD payment of duty/VAT.
If their import departments ever bothered to call us, we would tell them that the goods involved are not liable to Duty/VAT (special procedure for supply boat spares).
So the drivers just sigh and go away.....again....
 

ste v p

Established Member
Never heard of this one before, any time I've ever ordered anything from abroad and had it delivered by courier they have often posted me a bill for import taxes that they had to pay and which I had to pay them...

Today a UPS driver turned up at my parents house with a parcel for me from Play-Asia, and neither of them had the £20something to pay for it on them and I'm at work and don't have the cash on me either nor the time to head to a cash point. Since when did UPS start doing a Cash on Delivery for this? :confused:

Now means I have to wait until tomorrow to get this, when I went for courier because they always get it to me quicker than sending it untracked which can take well over a week... seems pointless me paying a fair amount of money for them to not even release the item because of taxes they want cash for which I've never had before... disappointed :(

The whole thing sounds like a system that is waiting to be abused by -ahem- less scrupulous delivery drivers. I personally would feel very uncomfortable handing over cash for a transaction like this and would prefer to revieve an invoice. Surely if it was a government enforcable tax then your debt to them could be dealt with in a more official way?
 

FZR400RRSP

Banned
The whole thing sounds like a system that is waiting to be abused by -ahem- less scrupulous delivery drivers. I personally would feel very uncomfortable handing over cash for a transaction like this and would prefer to revieve an invoice.

The driver always has a UPS invoice with him.

Surely if it was a government enforcable tax then your debt to them could be dealt with in a more official way?

The way it works, UPS have what's called a 'customs deferment number' (DAN for short).
That is an 'account' with customs for Duty/VAT.
They pay it on your behalf, they bill you.
Easier for them, easier for you.
Paying customs by another method is a proper pain in the ass these days.
You can't pay at your local office now, like you used to be able to do.
Everything's been centralised etc.:rolleyes:
 

ste v p

Established Member
Can you tell I don't recieve many things from abroad by post?:facepalm:

Would it be possible for delivery drivers carry around mobile card readers for the transaction? Might subvert the "no cash on me" issue.
 

FZR400RRSP

Banned
We sometimes resign ourselves to pay the UPS driver the duty/VAT, if it's an urgent piece.
Sometimes better than having UPS take the piece away again, despite it being wrong and their error.
In that case, they usually accept a company cheque.
If they'll literally only accept cash for personal deliveries, that's just stupidly inflexible.:facepalm:
 

andrew markwort

Established Member
This one drives me nuts - I've more than once had a fight with several firms of couriers over items that cost under the import duty threshold or which don't carry duty at all. And the blanket charges imposed (including of course, the ubiquitous 'handling fee') are totally excessive. My solution is not to use any firm that delivers using these couriers, or persuade the firm to use another courier.
 

Iccz

Distinguished Member
Turns out they want VAT and £11 as a brokerage surcharge... the site doesn't really explain the brokerage surcharge, anyone know what it really is?
 

FZR400RRSP

Banned
Turns out they want VAT and £11 as a brokerage surcharge... the site doesn't really explain the brokerage surcharge, anyone know what it really is?

Their fee for advancing the money to customs on your behalf via their DAN (see below).
Again, perfectly fair considering how much it would cost you to pay customs direct and the hassle involved.
 

eric pisch

Distinguished Member
Money for nothing then? :thumbsdow

there is a cost to them for doing this, especially if there paying up front

and before this you would have to drive miles to one of a handful of customs centres to pay the tax before you could pick it up, was a right pita
 

FZR400RRSP

Banned
and before this you would have to drive miles to one of a handful of customs centres to pay the tax before you could pick it up, was a right pita

It's centralised in Salford now.
Not even sure you can make physical payments either any more.
It's all electronic.
Plus you need certain info from the customs declaration before they will process the payment, which only UPS could give you.....:rolleyes:

Bit of a catch22 situation.
But £11 is fair, I can assure you.
We'd charge more.:D
 

Iccz

Distinguished Member
I'll stick to standard cheapo delivery via Royal mail in future, usually what I do never had any charges on that and have had multiple figures delivered that way, was hoping to get this one quicker so thought I'd pay the little extra, wasn't expecting to pay £30 extra for it though :rotfl:

I know that you can still get charges on that and it's probably coincidence that the first time I use UPS for this it happens, that combined with the fact it's a Monday :D

Maybe I can remove stress by infracting folk :p:D
 

grantsteve

Prominent Member
What gets my goat with this is that there is no option other than to pay the brokerage charge to the courier (whoever it may be) for paying the customs charge on your behalf.

I ordered some stuff from the US recently. £4 customs charge on it and £8 from the Royal Mail for paying the £4 upfront on my behalf :facepalm:

Surely there should be a system for paying the charges up front at point of purchase or before HMRC release to delivery agents to avoid paying their hefty charges, especially when the delivery agent charges are disproportionate to the charge from HMRC. :mad:
 

Iccz

Distinguished Member
Apparently you can phone up your courier beforehand to alert them and you can somehow avoid these charges, or so I'm led to believe, but i've not found anything out about that yet.
 

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