Importing clothing into Taiwan (that you will wear)


#1

I plan on going to Taiwan in a couple of months for five years and will undoubtedly, at some point, need to buy some new clothing. Last time I was in Taiwan, I found that clothing of the quality and style found in the U.S. was very expensive and hard to find. So, I’m wondering, if I want to order some clothing from an L.L. Bean or J. Crew catalog and have it shipped to Taiwan, will I be taxed and charged duty by customs. If so, anyone have any idea how much?

Peter


#2

Yes, you will be charged (most likely) but I don’t know how much.


#3

The only time I have not been charged duty is if you have the items shipped USPS (the post office). All other times I have paid around 35% or more for duty.

Sorry, it sucks that is for sure.

Kristy


#4

kristyh_taiwan you beat me to it.

She’s correct, things sent by the post office are rarely, if ever, charged import duty, but if you ship via UPS or any other method the chances are almost 100% you will be nailed with taxes!

One though is depending on the size of the company they may be able to write Samples of no commercial value on the package. Big companies won’t do it, but some smaller more private companies are more willing and they are more understanding.


#5

From what you all are saying, if I order from some of the larger sellers like L.L. Bean or J. Crew or Eddie Bauer, I’ll get charged a steep duty. Since these companies are somewhat large and not boutiques, I’m guessing they won’t write “samples” on the boxes. But, maybe sending the stuff through the USPS isn’t a bad idea. I can insure it, and it may take longer and be a pain in the butt to get, but at least I won’t be paying such a heavy duty.

On another note, I guess you all are keeping up with U.S. news and have heard about the random sniper attacks in Maryland. I actually live about 1-3 miles from where 4 of them took place. All I can say is it’s a bizarre and confirms my belief that we need much stricter gun laws and/or a ban on gun ownership in this country. I know Taiwan has its share of shootings, but nothing like in the U.S. These shootings are just bizarre. So random, so pointless, and done as if the person were committing an assassination. It’s all just nuts and horrible. But, to put it in perspective, the shootings are still far fewer than what big cities in the U.S. experience in an average month. That doesn’t make them any less important, but it’s always a good idea to look at the big picture. Anyway, I hope they catch that guy(s).

Peter


#6

Not necessarily, just that they cannot write “samples” on your packages because they don’t have direct contact with the warehouse that ships them. But with small mom and pop places they are more willing to help you with this. You will not be charge a steep duty just because it is a big company, nothing to do with that. Just seems USPS is your best bet. Someone told me once before there taxes are already built into there prices, I can’t quite understand that, but I have never been charged duty on USPS stuff. Airmail will, in most cases, be cheaper than other services as well. You could also send it by ship, but you won’t get it for two months, well umm right now could be…quite a bit longer!

Also a suggestion, using smaller companies is better in another sense also. Did you know that if your address is in Chinese you get your mail 3 days earlier? I always send my Chinese address, with English address, in Jpeg format in an email after placing the order. I ask them to print it out and paste it on the box for me, makes things much more hassle free and you get your stuff faster.

Peter on a side note please stay on your original topic, or you can create a new thread with the stuff about the Maryland incident. Thanks!

Cheers


#7

Jeff, thanks for the clarification on that. Yeah, with the strike on the western U.S. seaports, surface ship doesn’t seem like a good way to ship for the time being. But, I think down the road in a couple of years the problem will go away. Anyway, sorry about switching topics on you all. You’re right, I should have started a new thread. Just got caught in the moment and threw that in without thinking. Take care all.

Peter


#8

Peter,

No problem, if you have any other questions about shipping, etc just email me. jeff@segue.com.tw.

Cheers


#9

If you’re going to send large quantities of clothing here, you’re going to be taxed. That’s the law for business importers. Otherwise declare them as personal effects and you won’t be taxed. This isn’t rocket science.
:unamused:


#10

Did you know that if your address is in Chinese you get your mail 3 days earlier?

I just got a letter and it was addressed in English and took only 3 days (!) from Germany, so 3 days faster would take … no time!? :?:
Same applied for another letter from another person received last week (also from Germany).

I have provided a print with the Chinese to my parents, but that’s because of their bad handwriting … :laughing: :wink:


#11

Otherwise declare them as personal effects and you won’t be taxed. This isn’t rocket science.

This is not true, personal items are also subjected to tax.
(Some exceptions can apply but not in a case of mail order!)

Furthermore most countries have a limit in terms of value for importing “Gifts”, so even it’s declared as such but the value exceeds the limit you will be taxed, based on the value plus cost of shipping.

Forget about ships, that takes way too long. Airmail (registered) should be safe and cost-effective.

The only way around this problem I see:

  • Keep the quantity & weight low as not to raise any questions
  • Enquire the max. value you are allowed to import taxfree
  • Declare content below that value
  • Declare purpose of shipment as “Gift”
  • Add something like “Declaration for customs purposes only, no commercial value.”

Trust me, I have done this many times to and from different countries (after initially learning it the “hard way”) … :unamused:


#12

Rascal,

Well, anyway thats what the post office told me… So much for that theory… :unamused: :?:


#13

I just got two 20kg boxes shipped with the German post to here, all books and fotos and personal stuff. Obviously, customs opened at least one of them, but then sent them on to my office address. No taxes, just one week (labelled with the address in Chinese), sent off as “cheap” surface mail (but probably transported by air). I guess it makes a difference whether the stuff is clearly used or mail order. But then, my company once sent me software by UPS, 15 CDs and 5 dongles plus manuals, nobody asked for tax on that either. Maybe I was just lucky?

Iris


#14

My wife and I used to order items from online retailers all the time and cannot recall ever being charged anything beyond shipping. It we were it was negligible. The only time I can recall being charged a great deal was when I purchased a new processor for a computer. The part wasn’t available at a retail store here but I was still nailed.

I’ve never really enjoyed buying clothes – it’s difficult to size, view, and return items. I’ve found that unless your clothes have to have JCrew or the Gap logo on them generally everything should be available here. Though sometimes larger sizes can be problem. But thats me.


#15

I’ve ordered loads of books online and have never paid tax when they’re shipped here…
As for ordering clothes, I read in the NY Times recently that Land’s Endis doing a booming business selling custom-made men’s and women’s trousers and jeans. I believe they’ll only ship within the US and Canada, so I reckon they could be sent to someone who could then forward them to you in Taiwan, and taxes could be avoided.


#16

I’ve ordered loads of books online and have never paid tax when they’re shipped here…

Like I said it depends on the value or amount. That’s why I only order one or two DVDs at a time - but you order 10pcs then you are “asking for trouble” …


#17

There’s a couple of places in TienMu - along ZhongShan Nth Rd Sec 6, & along TienMu Rd - that sell “imported” clothes at good prices. Much of their stuff is of brand names such as “CK”, “DKNY”, “JCrew” and “Structure”. Apparently these clothes are made by OEM manufacturers throughout Asia and then sold back to companies in the US. However, some of the stuff isn’t of the same quality, so you have to check what you buy. Some other clothes are “samples” that were made but not released for major distribution. In terms of quality, what I’ve bought has generally been comparable with the stuff I’ve seen in the department stores.

Cheers,

Babou


#18

About shipping: I was looking into shipping some stuff over earlier this year, and UPS told me that they WOULD NOT ship personal effects, period. They claimed there was some legal prohibition against their doing so. Perhaps if the boxes were labeled “gifts” it would be OK, I don’t know. But their suggestion was also to use the good ol’ USPS.


#19

[quote=“Peter Schwartz”]On another note, I guess you all are keeping up with U.S. news and have heard about the random sniper attacks in Maryland. I actually live about 1-3 miles from where 4 of them took place. All I can say is it’s a bizarre and confirms my belief that we need much stricter gun laws and/or a ban on gun ownership in this country.

Anyway, I hope they catch that guy(s).
Peter[/quote]

I hope they catch the bastard(s) too. Peter, do you think that the perpetrator(s) of this crime would not commit if there was a ban on gun ownership?

“Ooooh, but it would be harder for them to obtain a gun.”

Keep dreaming. And no, I am not a member of the NRA and I have never fired a weapon in my life. I do, however, believe in reading the constitution and its amendments, and until the Second Amendment is revised/superceded by another amendment, the citizens have the right to bear arms.

Sick people kill people, and it has nothing to do with the gun control laws. Call a spade a spade, OK?


#20

I agree gun control in and of itself won’t stop murders. It may decrease them by some small percentage, though. And, about the Constitution, I’m one who believes that, first, it ain’t perfect. Second, it can be revised to reflect modern times. And, third, save me from Charleton Heston, I truly believe guns should be illegal to purchase. Yeah, the majority of gun owners are law-abiding citizens who use them for sport. But, as a society, we have proven ourselves incapable of handling the responsibility of owning these weapons. And, they are weapons, no buts about that. People out there will complain that they no longer have a sport to play. They’ll survive. And, yes, murder will still occur and some people will find a way still to get a gun. But, the number of murders, in my opinion, will still decrease. In order to kill someone, now, you would have to physically confront them instead of killing from a distance. If one life could be saved from gun prohibition, that to me is worth it. And, if many could be saved, that’s even better.

Anyway, I know that this is one of those hot debates like abortion and the death penalty that won’t get solved overnight. And, I know people have different views and some strongly stand by their views. I’m just adding my personal feeling on the subject. I respect others’ views. Everyone has a right to their own opinions. It’s just awfully hard listening to the news everyday finding out that someone got shot, and then defending our right to have guns because there are still people who want them for sport.

I’ve also volunteered as a paramedic, and seen upfront and personal what a gun shot can do to a person and their family. Spend a day in an ambulance and watch the people die or know they are going to need extensive surgery to save their lives.

Lastly, this is totally off the subject of bringing in clothing into Taiwan. So, please start a new thread on this if necessary.