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UK customs 
11th-Nov-2012 05:45 pm

What, roughly, is customs and VAT for a new brand dress? Sorry I'm asking such a mundane question but either I can't find the clear, calculatable percentage they used to have or customs hates posting anything useful.

Edit: Thanks guys- think I'm going the shopping service route! Thats quite a hefty fee for one dress!

11th-Nov-2012 06:08 pm (UTC)
Customs fees usually work out to be about 30-40% of the total you paid for the item.
eg new dress ~ 26,000 yen + shipping ~2300 yen = approx £ 225 so VAT is 20% and you'll pay customs duty (between 5-8%) as well as the parcelforce fee of £13.50 so it could end up being a total of about £80 or maybe more.
11th-Nov-2012 07:06 pm (UTC)
What violetnoir said. If you set aside £100, you should be covered.
11th-Nov-2012 07:41 pm (UTC)
It's pretty much been covered above but I'd like to chime in; don't be afraid to challenge customs if you disagree. Most of the time they get it right but there's been a few times I've been hit with a ridiculous custom charge. I was asked for £130 for a £90 package once; when I challenged it, it transpired the customs officer had misread the currency (I think it was in yuan) and I got my fees adjusted.
11th-Nov-2012 10:23 pm (UTC)
I recently purchased a 26,250 yen dress from JetJ. Customs charges were a smidgeon under £90! Customs fees are big amounts!! But there we are!!

I think it may be cheaper sometimes to use a shopping service who will then mark an item down (I am too unorganised to have actually worked out which would be cheaper to be honest, but!)
11th-Nov-2012 11:04 pm (UTC)
Just bought an OP and headbow from AaTP, set me back £118 in customs.
12th-Nov-2012 01:19 am (UTC)
Custom fees are just too much now, I always order through a shopping service and get the parcel marked down, that way I end up just paying an extra 10% on SS fees instead of the 40% odd on customs. Especially as I get charged by customs every single time, it's not a lottery any more like it used to be.
12th-Nov-2012 07:40 pm (UTC)
Customs fees are ridiculous, unfortunately :(

If your package is over £18, you will get charged 20% VAT on both the item AND its shipping. The same applies to gifts, but the amount to go over by is £40.

If your package is over £135 (I think that's right), you have duty added on top. This varies but according to this import duty calculator, it's about 12% for cotton dresses. The duty is calculated on both the item and the shipping, then VAT is added for the item, shipping and the duty you just got charged (they tax the tax :S).

If you buy a brand new dress directly from the brand for roughly £200 + £30 shipping, you're looking at about another £80 on top. And just to rub salt in the wound, Parcelforce will charge you about £14 for a service charge for paying the fee on your behalf until you can pay them back.
12th-Nov-2012 07:44 pm (UTC)
Also, marking the package down might save you a lot of money but bear in mind that if the package gets lost or damaged, you will only be reimbursed for the value declared.

You could also get into a lot of trouble if they open the package and don't believe that the value of the item inside matches the declaration.
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