First post! About shipping, customs, etc

I apologize if this has been asked before, but I haven’t been able to find the exact answer to my questions. If there’s a thread somewhere covering this, please paste a link to it. Thanks!

Ok, to the questions. I’m flying to Kaohsiung soon to teach English and there’s a few things I guess I just can’t live without. I’m planning on having them shipped once I’ve established myself. I’m going to send my dj equipment (mixer, 2 turntables, 2 crates of records), my computer, and possibly some clothing and books. Aside from the high costs of getting them here, what other problems might I run into? I’ve been reading that customs might be a source of pain. My computer is about a year old and was put together by myself (piece by piece) and everything else is far from new. I’m actually considering not bringing the computer. But the dj equipment is definately going.

What might problems might I expect from customs and what other problems would you perceive??

This is my first post to this forum and again, I apologize if this subject has been posted to death. Thanks for your comments!


you might have to pay some duty if they consider your equipment is for resale, but probably not. If you ship the stuff by boat you’ll need to get a customs broker. The shipping company will provide your customs broker with the paperwork, you might even be able to have them introduce you to a custom broker (although it’s cheaper to do it yourself). The customs broker will advise you what the import duty is. Again, If these are persoanl items there will be no import duty. You will pay the custom broker a fee plus the duty if applicable, and they can arrange to deliver it to your door, or you can go to their warehouse and pick it up. The to your door delivery will cost a little extra.

Thanks a lot Mfaass! That’s kind of what I figured, but I didn’t want any surprises. Would be too costly of a mistake otherwise.

Oh, and sending those same things out of the country…any problems there? Would/could I get some kind of documentation when I received them so I can show customs that they were sent here and not bought here?

So you are in Kaohsiung? I’ll be living in Kangshan (between kaohsiung and tainan). Just wondering if you, or anyone else, knew something about this place. Thanks!


Do you need to consider a difference in voltage for your electrical equipment?

I’ve just looked that up and it says that Taiwan is the same as North America. Although it did warn about some kind of 220v AC plug that looked like the 110V socket. So I guess they should work fine. Can anyone confirm this? Thanks.


Most outlets are 110V. Some three hole outlets are wired with two phases of 110V for AC making 220V (and no earth) - I have one such socket in my flat - and some are 220V (Live, Neutral, Earth). These socket outlets are invariably high up on the wall, for wall-mounted a/c. Those around the skirting board are all 110V (mine appear to all be 113V, but close enough). It is, I believe, a copy of the American system, but I am not sure.

Great, seems like I’ll be fine in that respect. I suppose that solves my shipping problem. Now all I have to do is find someone who will ship it for under $500 USD. I know there are some freight forwarders out there that will do it for less. Anyone have experience shipping cheaply and could recommend a company? Phone #'s, websites, email addy’s would be appreciated. Thanks again for your time!


No probs with the voltage if you are from North America.

Bringing in computer or telecommunication equipment (in particular transmitters and/or receivers) is not a good idea, the custom will hassle you. Your DJ equipment shouldn’t be a problem, just make sure you have the original receipts and I think it would be an advantage if the stuff is more than 12 months old / in a used state, so you can proof it’s for private use only, i.e. not for commercial use / any intended sale.

Register all your items with your local customs so you can bring them back in hassle-free when you return.
List down the name, make, serial number and provide a copy of the invoice, perhaps the original is needed for verification purposes (or get the copies certiffied).

This sounds like a sucky pain in the @rse.

If I come to Taiwan, I was trying to decide if I would just bring my entire PC (the tower and MB are getting a touch old, but I think I’ll have enuf set up costs without re-building a PC), or to just take out the important/expensive parts, and bring those.

Would either of these be a particularly bad idea?


My suggestion: Bring your harddisk with all the data and buy the rest here.

Yeah, the more I think about it the more I’m thinking of leaving the computer (less the hard drive)…and the MB is only 3 weeks old! Anyhow, dj equipment is a must.

But yeah, I suppose when it all comes down to it, all you need is your hard drive(s).

Any problems bringing a hard drive with you in your suitcase? Can the x-ray machines screw them up?