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Shipping basses from the US

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by OneAri, Jan 14, 2013.


  1. OneAri

    OneAri

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2013
    Location:
    Brighton, UK
    Hi, I was recently looking over 2nd hand basses on US Ebay and Craigslist and I was impressed by the number and value of higher quality basses on US sites.

    I was wondering what the price would be to typically ship a bass from the US to the UK? And has anyone out there done the same? (US to UK or visa versa)

    Any insight is much appreciated :)
     
  2. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2004
    Location:
    Fort Collins, Colorado
    I'm not sure on cost, but don't forget the taxes you'll pay on importing. I'm sure someone here can help give you an idea what they run.
     
  3. TolerancEJ

    TolerancEJ

    Joined:
    May 27, 2010
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    Importing items: If UK's regulations are similar to Canada, then you should expect to incur your local sales taxes, duty, & a brokerage fee on the part of the delivery service. These charges, you wouldn't even know until your item arrives.
     
  4. OneAri

    OneAri

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2013
    Location:
    Brighton, UK
    That's what I was most worried about, I appreciate there's no definite answer so I'll run it up with air mail services, customs etc. :meh:
    Thanks for the advice
     
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  6. SoVeryTired

    SoVeryTired Endorsing nothing, recommending much Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2011
    Location:
    Milton Keynes, UK
    The import duty is 3.7% (which is possibly applied to the cost of goods and the freight cost). Then you've got VAT at 20% on top of the cost plus freight plus duty.

    I've done the sums a few times and it only seems to work out well if you've got a crazy bargain or it's something that you just can't get hold of here. That's the one big benefit to buying an instrument made in your own country - you know that none of the cost is import duty and that very little of it is shipping, and you're much more paying for parts and labour.
     
  7. OneAri

    OneAri

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2013
    Location:
    Brighton, UK
    that would make sense, it's a shame really as some of the US stuff is gorgeous
    thanks very much for the advice though
     
  8. Bisounourse

    Bisounourse

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2012
    Location:
    Gent, Belgium
    I just received a bass from Canada (long story short: it was the backup bass from the other bassist of a group I played in, she has no more need for it, and wanted it to get a good home and someone who'll play it). I had to pay around 110 € import tax (Mind you, this is Belgium). (Don't know about shipping since this was a gift, but I think it is somewhere around 100 $).
     
  9. SoVeryTired

    SoVeryTired Endorsing nothing, recommending much Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2011
    Location:
    Milton Keynes, UK
    We don't do too badly in the UK for high-end instruments. Check out the ACG Graft range for some more affordable handbuilt basses (his full custom basses are stunning as well). I've just got one and I'd take it over a higher priced US Fender any day.
     
  10. loopee

    loopee Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2009
    Location:
    Surrey, B.C. Canada
    I just bought a bass on ebay a few days ago...I thought it would be shipped USPS since there was nothing mentioning UPS on the thread.....just received notice of shipment and found out the seller used UPS.....I'm afraid to find out how much they want when it shows up at my door.....I might have to send it back if it's too much...I could have bought one here and paid less $$.....
     
  11. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2005
    Location:
    Nashville, TN
    Was there something mentioning USPS, or did you just assume? Are you really going to stick the seller with hundreds in shipping costs because of your mistake?
     
  12. SoVeryTired

    SoVeryTired Endorsing nothing, recommending much Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2011
    Location:
    Milton Keynes, UK
    Hang on, you didn't agree the shipping cost in advance? :meh:
     
  13. cnltb

    cnltb

    Joined:
    May 28, 2005
    Would sending it 'as a gift' not make a difference?
     
  14. TolerancEJ

    TolerancEJ

    Joined:
    May 27, 2010
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    Regardless of whether or not it was a gift, the sender must declare a value of the instrument. You would still need to pay the tax on that value as it passes through the border.
     
  15. SoVeryTired

    SoVeryTired Endorsing nothing, recommending much Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2011
    Location:
    Milton Keynes, UK
    All you can do is underdeclare the value of the goods, which is fraud - and I wouldn't want to mess with Customs, they have greater powers than the police. And it's going to be difficult to claim on insurance if anything gets broken and your $1000 bass is labelled as worth $100!
     
  16. cnltb

    cnltb

    Joined:
    May 28, 2005
    Ah ok.
    But it's still potentially cheaper, no?
     
  17. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2005
    Location:
    Nashville, TN
    Only if you're willing to commit fraud.
     
  18. FrenchBassQC

    FrenchBassQC Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2011
    Location:
    Gatineau QC CA
    Except if you are from Canada, you can use this site to have an idea about the total cost of your purchase from the US. As long as you select all the appropriate parameters based on the arrangements with the seller of course.

    http://thefinalcost.com/

    :smug:
     
  19. loopee

    loopee Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2009
    Location:
    Surrey, B.C. Canada
    I didn't say I was going to send it back.......I was just thinking aloud because I was worried about how much they'll be wanting from me......I wouldn't do that to the seller but he should have had the information in the shipping but there was no mention of UPS and whenever I buy from the US, be it ebay or TB, I always specify to use USPS only because there is no brokerage fee......I bought a Ibanez Mikro 5 string with bag for $200 plus shipping but don't really want to have to pay another $100 for the duty and brokerage fee.....had I known he was using UPS I would have bought one here for much less...so it's not really a deal anymore but I guess I'll just have to accept I made a mistake by not asking the seller first (I usually do but I completely forgot this time though I did check it on the ebay ad) and absorb the cost and try to remember the next time

    Still, he should have mentioned how he was going to ship it on the ebay advert instead of surprising me when he emailed me that the bass was shipped......
     
  20. loopee

    loopee Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2009
    Location:
    Surrey, B.C. Canada
    underdeclaring the value of the goods is fraud but it only affects the taxes
    not the brokerage fee which UPS charges......USPS does not charge a brokerage fee, all you pay is the duty (tax) which is rated on the declared value of the item.....
     

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