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Import duty cost of bass from USA to U.K.?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by RealBK, Jan 5, 2006.


  1. RealBK

    RealBK

    Feb 8, 2002
    Hiya, Before i order a bass from the U.S. to the U.K. Scotland please could anyone please tell me how much import duty usually is and is there anyway to saving on the import duty tax? for example marking the bass as used? Please help. Thanks
     
  2. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    That would be illegal!! :meh:
     
  3. purfektstranger

    purfektstranger

    Apr 10, 2003
    Canada
    So is crossing the street on a red light but people will still do it. Personally I wouldn't go the devaluation route. Check UK Customs and Excise website for the rates.

    www.hmce.gov.uk
     
  4. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    That' not the case in the UK - but I think the point is that we shouldn't be promoting or endorsing illegal acts on a public website and I don't think Paul would want this either!! :meh:

    So it's hardly courteous to use somwbody else's website to ask for advice on committing a crime !! :scowl:

    So - would it be good advice - risking going to prison, getting a criminal record, maybe losing your job or any future chances of getting one - just to save a bit of money on a bass...?:meh:
     
  5. purfektstranger

    purfektstranger

    Apr 10, 2003
    Canada
    'That' not the case in the UK - but I think the point is that we shouldn't be promoting or endorsing illegal acts on a public website and I don't think Paul would want this either!! So it's hardly courteous to use somwbody else's website to ask for advice on committing a crime !! So - would it be good advice - risking going to prison, getting a criminal record, maybe losing your job or any future chances of getting one - just to save a bit of money on a bass...?'

    Whoa there fella. Me thinks someone had one too many cups of java this morning. IMHO noone is promoting or endorsing illegal acts here. Nor do I think our fellow TBer needs lessons on courteousy. If he should be reprimanded for asking a question there are mods who do that because it's their responsibility...not ours. Regarding going to prison, if devaluing goods was punishable by a prison offence, then North American prisons would be busting at the seams. There is a whole thread about this very topic
    located here:

    http://www.talkbass.com/forum/showthread.php?t=211486&highlight=declared


    Happy reading and kind regards
     
  6. RealBK

    RealBK

    Feb 8, 2002
    In my ignorance i did not think there was anything unlawful about doing such a thing? aww well being a law abiding citizan i will not be doing that :) No need to worry answers my question does not sound like a good option to order A BASS from the U.S.

    Thanks for keeping me right
     
  7. Even if it is marked as used or a gift, you will still have to pay:

    Import tax on the item and shipping
    VAT on the import tax, item and shipping
    Aswell as having to pay clearance fee's for royal mail

    I have a feeling there is something else in there too

    Import tax is about 5% apparently, i was sure it was closer to 11%, but i got told i was wrong a while back, VAT is good ol 17.% % and im not sure how the clearance fee's work, but it was £4-£5 for £35's worth of valves, so i dont know if its a set price or if it depends on the items cost or size or what . . .

    Hope that helps

    By the time the bass arrives you havent really saved anything, and trust a scot to be trying to fiddle the system ;)
     
  8. MAGUS®

    MAGUS®

    Dec 23, 2004
    UK
    Kick off :

    Customs duty is payable on £7 and over
    VAT @ 17.5% is payable on £18 and over

    So from £18 and upwards, theres duty AND vat ! Booooo

    Some overseas suppliers openly advertise on the internet, or on their web-sites that they will deliberately either misdescribe items or underdeclare their value in order to evade customs charges that are legally due on importation. You should be aware that although the foreign sender may have completed the customs declaration form on the parcel you are regarded (in law) as the importer of the goods and responsible for the information on the declaration, and any customs charges that may be due. This means that if you purchase goods from these suppliers and the declaration is found to be false or misleading you may be liable to financial penalties or criminal prosecution. Furthermore the goods themselves will be liable to forfeiture. It is in your own interests to ensure Customs declarations are completed properly.

    I've bought plenty of gear from the US, and UK Customs and Excise do random checks on parcels. Usually the big ones like guitars / amps / speakers. Sometimes they get through ( i've had some big items come through untouched by C+E , but thats just lucky )

    Remember that C+E guys are far from stupid. They're way higher in the IQ stakes than your average British cop, and they have much more legal power. They know all the tricks, and to give just one recent example i heard from someone ...

    The guy ( in the UK ) bought a piece of gear off Ebay US. The seller says " what do you want marked on the outside "
    Our UK guy says, " Just mark down what i paid "

    Some time later, our UK buyer gets a phone call at home from UK C+E. They want him to show the Ebay auction page of the gear he won, plus proof of the paypal payment. Had he decided to take the US sellers option of under declaring the value, our UK buyer would now be in deep manure. C+E are not known for their sense of humour. This could have been a prison sentence, but luckily he declared full value.

    Not only that, if you under value, then by default you're under insured too, so if any parcel goes into the Bermuda triangle, you wouldnt get the value back.

    Oh yeah - guitars are charged at the rate of 3.2% - 3.7% ( i dont know why its not a fixed price ) and 17.5% VAT. There may well also be a handling charge by the courier.

    And also, - ( it gets worse ! ) the value of the goods according to UK C+E is not just what it cost to buy, but what it cost to ship + what it cost to buy. Hows that for legal robbery ?

    A $400 guitar that costs $150 to ship to the UK will be valued by UK C+E @ $550. So you will first get 3.2% - 3.7% added for duty, only THEN will the VAT be tagged on. Thats why most of the time individuals dont buy too much from the US. It can sometimes work out more expensive.
     
  9. Like i said, it sucks to import big things :p
     
  10. RealBK

    RealBK

    Feb 8, 2002
    Thanks for all the info guys ;-) Just going to stick with getting a bass from the U.K.

    Thanks for all the info :)
     
  11. It could be worse. VAT in Sweden is 25% :crying:
     
  12. MAGUS®

    MAGUS®

    Dec 23, 2004
    UK
    Move to the UK and get ripped off here instead. Petrol = £0.95 per litre or roughly £4 a gallon
     
  13. Aj*

    Aj*

    Jun 14, 2005
    West Yorkshire, UK
    I swear if any politican promises free trade with America the entire musical community of Britain would vote for them. It would also force an end to the obscene over-pricing of goods occuring within the UK currently.
     
  14. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member


    I think petrol is really cheap..... compared to what I've paid for car insurance over the last few years!! ;)
     
  15. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    No - we do have free trade already !!

    Our goods are not over-priced, they are just reflecting the strength of the £ - which has been hovering around being worth twice as much as the $ !!

    This is only a reflection of how well our economy is doing under Gordon Brown - if the £ was worth less , we would be doing very badly as a country - so nobody ought to vote for that!! :meh:

    What you are bemoaning is the fact that we have a higher standard of living than most other countries!! :p