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  #61  
Old 28.02.2008, 07:32
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Re: Customs (Zoll)

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How would they know the Swiss price?? What exactly is a Swiss price anyway??

They base the 7.6% on the declared cost as supplied by the sender.

Nigel

Recently I had to pay 2.4% tax on books from Amazon for ~220$. But it happens only once every few pakages.
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  #62  
Old 28.02.2008, 09:17
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Re: Customs (Zoll)

The Swiss Federal Customs Administration has a clear policy for private individuals receiving parcels and letters. Their site is also available in English.

It's quite simple: Expect to pay duty on anything shipped from abroad, and consider it a gift when something isn't taxed. The one exception is a CHF 100.- allowance if the parcel is a private gift. Internet auctions (i.e., used items) are taxed.

I've never been taxed on books ordered from Amazon.de, and it's easy to understand why. The rate is 2.4%, which comes to CHF 0.72 on, say, a CHF 30.- order. The administration cost isn't worth it.

Last edited by chrisch; 28.02.2008 at 09:29. Reason: wording
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  #63  
Old 07.09.2008, 14:42
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Re: Zoll [duty] payments

Note that from 1st October the Swiss Post will put up their "import clearance charges" slightly. See here (also available in Fr/It/De).
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  #64  
Old 22.10.2008, 15:27
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Re: Zoll [duty] payments

A few days ago my friend sent me over our christmas gifts. The package cost her 49.00 to send here!

I've just had mr. postman knock on my door asking for 41.95 chf.- to be precise in order for him to leave the parcel with me!

What am I being charged for? I doubt if someone has paid so much to post to me that they did not pay enough for postal costs.

Could it be duty? If so, can I claim it back if I can prove it is a gift?

It would have been cheaper for her to jump on a plane and bring it over personally!

I could not read what was on the package before it was taken away until I can stump up the cash so I really do not know what I am paying for...
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  #65  
Old 22.10.2008, 15:31
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Re: Zoll [duty] payments

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What am I being charged for? I doubt if someone has paid so much to post to me that they did not pay enough for postal costs.
Duty, VAT, and handling charges - any combination of those.

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If so, can I claim it back if I can prove it is a gift?
Depends on the value of the package contents.
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Old 22.10.2008, 15:33
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Re: Zoll [duty] payments

the cost of the package postage has very little to do with the taxes. That depends on what she's put the worth of the goods are, even if it's a gift, you're still liable for tax - above a certain amount (might be CHF60, see links above).

On top of that, there's the admin cost. That can come up to CHF20 at times. I've once had to pay about chf 2-3 francs of taxes and chf20 admin costs.

So it's more than just taxes.
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Old 04.11.2008, 07:34
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Re: Zoll [duty] payments

I just had a similar thing happen to me. A former coworker from the US sent $70 worth of fabric plus a photo album. The U.S. postage was $103 and then Mr. Die Post wanted 92.25 CHF in tarriff to leave it here. I'm new here and still within my allowance time for shipping in my own goods. If I tell them that its not new that she just shipped it to me so that I wouldn't have to put it in my suitcase, do they reverse the tax?
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  #68  
Old 04.11.2008, 08:16
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Re: Zoll [duty] payments

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I just had a similar thing happen to me. A former coworker from the US sent $70 worth of fabric plus a photo album. The U.S. postage was $103 and then Mr. Die Post wanted 92.25 CHF in tarriff to leave it here. I'm new here and still within my allowance time for shipping in my own goods. If I tell them that its not new that she just shipped it to me so that I wouldn't have to put it in my suitcase, do they reverse the tax?
As long as when you completed the original import form you stated that the import would be multipart and included the date and inventory of the part shipments you should be able to get some or all of it back - if part of it was handling charges you can forget that bit.
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Old 04.11.2008, 18:17
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Re: Zoll [duty] payments

Last week I decided to actually declare everything I had bought during a quick business trip to the US. I compiled all the receipts I had, added them up quickly on the plane, and headed to the red zone at customs.
They asked me if I had any alcohol, tobacco, or food. I said no, just clothes, books, and electronics.
He did not check the receipts nor opened the luggage.
He took the $1200 statement, applied the 7.6% VAT and that's all I had to pay.

I know, dumb of me to declare anything as chances are I could have gone through without paying anything. But frankly, given how low the tax is, and given how cheap goods are in the US, it is so so so much more relaxing and stress free to just declare, pay up, and move on. It took no more than 3 mins to do it all.

Just a heads up for those of you sweating customs at airports.

I probably could have split up books vs non books but the book value was less than $79 total. It was the XBOX 360, the PS3, the Blu Ray movies, and the tons of shoes that I was worried about.
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Old 13.10.2009, 17:08
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Re: Zoll [duty] payments

As it seems to be difficult to find out about custom duties in Switzerland, I just wanted to contribute what I have experienced and researched recently:

If and only if you import something through Swiss Post and DHL and with Amazon.co.uk oder Amazon.de the duties will be as follows:
up to CHF 65 (Value + postage) = no duties for CD, Software etc
up to CHF 217 = no duties for Books (2.3% of 5 CHF)
up to 500 CHF --> 7.6%/2.3% duties plus 18 CHF handling fee
from 1000 CHF --> duties plus 35 CHF handling fee
Please caution: Some postal services (e.g. UPS) have much higher handling fees, also depending on how the online shop is declaring the items.
Bonus: Amazon deducts foreign (EU) value added tax when sent to Switzerland
Fact: handling fees are important not the value added tax (aka duty)
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Old 13.10.2009, 18:34
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Re: Zoll [duty] payments

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As it seems to be difficult to find out about custom duties in Switzerland, I just wanted to contribute what I have experienced and researched recently:

If and only if you import something through Swiss Post and DHL and with Amazon.co.uk oder Amazon.de the duties will be as follows:
up to CHF 65 (Value + postage) = no duties for CD, Software etc
up to CHF 217 = no duties for Books (2.3% of 5 CHF)
up to 500 CHF --> 7.6%/2.3% duties plus 18 CHF handling fee
from 1000 CHF --> duties plus 35 CHF handling fee
Please caution: Some postal services (e.g. UPS) have much higher handling fees, also depending on how the online shop is declaring the items.
Bonus: Amazon deducts foreign (EU) value added tax when sent to Switzerland
Fact: handling fees are important not the value added tax (aka duty)
The only rule is there are no rules.

Example - item via Swiss Post from the UK costing GBP 60. 7,6% MwsT. 2.3% Duty. 55 CHF handling fee. I am staring at the invoice now while having a strong drink.

And Amazon deducting EU VAT is not a bonus but a requirement .

I think this time I'll fight them - thieving feckers.
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  #72  
Old 21.10.2009, 12:46
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Re: Zoll [duty] payments

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The only rule is there are no rules.

Example - item via Swiss Post from the UK costing GBP 60. 7,6% MwsT. 2.3% Duty. 55 CHF handling fee. I am staring at the invoice now while having a strong drink.

And Amazon deducting EU VAT is not a bonus but a requirement .

I think this time I'll fight them - thieving feckers.
I think Swisspost must be stuck in the past....this is the only reasonable explanation for the exchange rate they have calculated on a package I ordered recently!

Total value (inc postage) = £44.95. Swisspost declared value to charge MWST = 113CHF.

Eh? If I convert at the exchange rate from today it should be 75CHF. Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but 3 days ago I don't recall hearing that there was a huge fluctuation in the pound:chuff exchange rate - so where on earth have they got that from?

I'm going to call them now and ask them which period in history they got their exchange rate from - I'll let EF readers know how I get on...although I'm guessing I already know the answer to this...
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  #73  
Old 21.10.2009, 13:51
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Re: Zoll [duty] payments

Would be nice if it was 0% for all books and training material... paying 38chf for a training kit on computer stuff from the US is ridiculous when you're meant to be doing this for the betterement of oneself. *sigh*
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Old 25.10.2009, 12:27
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Re: Beware of customs charges

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I still find you can save heavily vs Swiss prices.

After extensive research on CH prices we have purchased all sorts overseas by internet and package post or delivery; italy: bed; germany: sauna; skis; sky+ box and lnb, usa: laser range finder and still been better off than sourcing it locally even after vat and shipping and handling, as long as the vendor will export ex local VAT.

As mark says you've got to look at the opportunity gain and ignore the opportunity cost. Hey in Germany, Italy they are paying 40%+ tax and 20% odd VAT.

Daniel
That's interesting- We are thinking whether to ship UK items new [washing machine ,dryer etc ] or purchase locally .been a bit shocked at prices for Bosch washing machines in Switzerland --even using toppreise it seems like a 50% uplift over UK prices. Did you do all your purchasing through Germany/Italy via the web? or have you also shipped from shops close to switzerland? And have you any recommendations for good european websites for home and electrical shopping [bearing in mind I have reasonable french but no German!]
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  #75  
Old 23.11.2009, 10:57
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Re: Zoll [duty] payments

UPS versus Parcelforce ....

Just comparing the charges off goods bought from Chain Reaction as follows:

[1] Swisspost bill (via parcelforce) invoice value 120.80 GBP

TVA 18.70
Customs Clearance 33.00
Administration 10.00
Commission 10.00

So that is 53 CHF (less VAT) for Swiss post handling this.


[2] UPS for bike 905 CHF (price of the bike)
Taxation on the weight 8.65
TVA on the total 913 CHF = 69.40

There seems to be no other charges.

So it seems to me that it is better to ship via UPS, okay 30 CHF max but still seems cheaper than via parcelforce/swisspost.

Have I forgotten something?
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  #76  
Old 11.12.2009, 06:30
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Customs Duties on mail order items

Okay. I know that TVA is added - excessively - to all mail orders from the US. I thought that from the EU it was free of duty, my own fault.

So I ordered from the UK a WII game for Christmas; couldn't find here the one I wanted, and I didn't want the wretched french version (nor german).

No problem, deliveded and all. Only that the postman asked an additional 32.45 francs to deliver the parcel!

8.45.- for TVA duty (that I don't mind paying - fine)
18.- for the "easy duty" - if it is easy, why so expensive...
6.- for opening the parcel - that hasn't been opened.

Heck, am I the only one to find it abusive? is there anybody knowing either a way to complain, to avoid the overcharging in the future (maybe one can declare beforehand? thus paying only the 8.45.-?)?

Note that the postman was really sorry he had to charge it, and was totally in agreement that it was over-the-top... nice guy.
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Old 11.12.2009, 06:35
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Re: TVA on mail orders

Found some additional info.

These are the amounts shipped free of TVA:

TVA à 7.6% (Most shipments) => 66.- francs.
TVA à 2.4% (printed materials) => CHF 209.-

http://www.post.ch/en/post-startseit...rintmedien.htm
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  #78  
Old 11.12.2009, 08:36
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Re: TVA on mail orders

http://www.englishforum.ch/tags/import/

Customs fees ..... predictable and discussed many times.

Was the package carrying the correct declaration of value?
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Old 11.12.2009, 08:51
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Re: TVA on mail orders

I had a similar experience recently on a birthday gift sent to my husband. It was clearly marked as a gift, but I had to pay a considerable amount of duty on it. I had always understood that gifts were exempt from duty. Is that now not the case?
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Old 11.12.2009, 12:36
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Re: TVA on mail orders

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... I had always understood that gifts were exempt from duty. Is that now not the case?
Yes, it's not the case. "Gift" is a very misleading expression.
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