I did come across a few threads of shopping online and having items delivered in TW. From reading the posts, it seems that, for example, 1 to 2 DVDs alone shipped over may not create any major customs, etc. delay, if one uses the postal services (USPS). However, if one uses FedEx/DHL, etc., there is a greater likelihood of taxes being imposed - is this the general understanding (especially from those who have actaully ordered online and had stuff delivered).
Anyone had any experience of customs refusing to allow goods to be imported (e.g., books of a political nature, etc.)?
Some good movies out there…and much cheaper than if were to buy the same stuff at Eslite or elsewhere…
I used to order some DVDs from overseas, as airmail. Only one or two at the time and no problems with customs, seemed they do not care about the content of the package, though it was nothing that could be deemed offensive.
Importing transmitting or receiving equipment (like scanners etc.) will get you into trouble though.
I use online ‘shopping’ quite often. Almost every week in fact.
Delivery is done by UPS or Fed-X or DHL (my particular favorite speed-wise) and also Taiwan Post Office if its intra-island.
I have not as yet had a customs problem with material coming onto the island. Some packages have been opened and re-sealed - but there was no added expense.
Clothing, vitamins, books, some DVD’s/CD’s.
I have also had some electronical items purchased for me and sent by friends in the USA. Used the UPS or Fed-X or DHL carriers and ran into no problems.
Expecting a rather large vitamin shipment as I type!
Definitely, if the items plus postage are worth over about $100US. This has happened to me numerous times. Add to this the higher postage charges from these private services, and they SUCK. But they sign exclusive contracts with big sellers, who then ship only via that service. In the end, it’s the consumer who gets triply screwed – no choice, forced to pay higher shipping, and customs duty to boot!
Here’s my message to them:
If it’s under $100, then there’s no real difference, so one or two CD’s, a few DVD’s etc. should come through just fine.
Thanks for the info… :bravo:
It’s more for CDs and DVDs - so, I’ll try and keep it under around $100… and hope there’s no call to pop down to the friendly neighbourhood bonded warehouse/customs office…
No, if you ship via UPS etc., you don’t have to go to the warehouse. They do all that for you, but that slows things down. They may call and ask you to provide something like a faxed copy of your ID though, and then there may be an extra delay of a day or two as a result (e.g., if you get the call at home, but have to wait to go to the office the next day to use the copier and fax to send those). It’s a bit of a hassle compared to USPS and other government services.
Either way, the package delivery personnel collect the duties from you upon delivery.
Hm, must be different in each country. I sent a package (gifts/souvenirs) via courier services to my parents in Germany and there wasn’t any charge. So I thought that’s great and sent another one shortly after, again no charge. Until a few months later that was when the courier service invoiced my parents for import duty they paid on their behalf to customs. Since then they get only postcards or letters by airmail.
It varies. Sometimes it arrives with nothing to pay, sometimes they call you before it goes through customs to check you want it and you will pay the tax, sometimes they want a copy of your passport and ARC, then customs say it’s not good enough and want another copy, and hold you up for a week. I’ve had all 3 happen, depends on the curiour and how much it costs (but that seems to be more random) Keep an eye on the package on their website and call them if it gets stuck in customs.
Thanks to the WTO, most items don’t have import duty, just VAT at 5%.
Amazon has an interesting policy - from their website, seems they estimate an import tax (other than for books/DVDs, etc.) when shipping overseas. Then, if the actual tax is lower, you get reimbursed, and if it is higher, you do not pay any extra…seems like a pretty good deal…
“”…What if the actual Import Fees are less than the Import Fees Deposit I was charged?
If the actual Import Fees (paid by carrier on behalf of the recipient to the customs and tax jurisdiction of the destination country) are less than the Import Fees Deposit Amazon Export Sales estimated, we will automatically refund the difference to the payment method you used for the order. We will send you a notification e-mail to confirm the amount of the refund.
What if the actual Import Fees are more than the Import Fees Deposit I was charged?
You will not be charged any additional fees if the actual Import Fees exceed the Import Fees Deposit we estimated…""
Amazon US only calculates import fees for a small number of countries, and Taiwan isn’t one of them. I’ve ordered through Amazon lots of times and never had an import fee assessed either by Amazon or Taiwan Customs. That’s with the ‘standard’ shipping which is usually DHL GlobalMail.
The equipment imported for my restaurant required all sorts of documentation and fees to get through customs, but the only other time I’ve been charged import fees was for some computer software shipped via FedEx. The charge was only 5% VAT though, and FedEx handled the payment by COD. There doesn’t seem to be a set pattern though as I’ve had other items worth more than this not be taxed.
Business owners can save the import tax certificate for tax credit against your sales.