Go Back   English Forum Switzerland > Living in Switzerland > Daily life  
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 30.09.2015, 11:20
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Bern, Switzerland
Posts: 74
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 37 Times in 21 Posts
heypete has no particular reputation at present
Minimizing postal customs fees

Hi all,

I recently ordered an item from an EU country (Lithuania) and had it shipped to me here in Switzerland. It's a small (wallet-sized), inexpensive (about CHF 60), and non-exotic thing (made from aluminum). It's custom-made by the seller and is not available in Switzerland, hence the need to import it. The seller included free shipping.

Swiss Post is charging me an additional fee of CHF 24.95 (which includes tax, processing fees, etc.). The actual 8% tax is only about CHF 4.80, the rest is processing fees.

I have no problems paying any taxes due on imported items, but the handling/processing fees are outrageously expensive.

Is there any way to minimize such fees? For example, is it possible for me, the recipient, to pre-pay the tax and any duty (if applicable) so that a parcel wouldn't be held up and subject to the additional postal processing fees?

Alternatively, is it possible for the seller to pay the taxes on the sending side? (Naturally, the seller would charge me the cost for doing so, which is fine. I just don't know if it's possible to do that with the regular post.)

Thanks!
-Pete
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 30.09.2015, 11:25
st2lemans's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Lugano
Posts: 29,136
Groaned at 2,037 Times in 1,526 Posts
Thanked 34,693 Times in 16,479 Posts
st2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

If the tax is less than CHF 5 (value including postage less than CHF 62), you shouldn't have to pay anything.

I would complain.

Tom
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 30.09.2015, 11:36
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Bern, Switzerland
Posts: 74
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 37 Times in 21 Posts
heypete has no particular reputation at present
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

Quote:
View Post
If the tax is less than CHF 5 (value including postage less than CHF 62), you shouldn't have to pay anything.

I would complain.
Sure, I plan to, but what if the total value including postage were slightly more than the limit -- say CHF 75? The processing fees would be only slightly less outrageous.

I've got no problem paying the tax itself on imports, but isn't there any way to minimize the processing fees?
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 30.09.2015, 11:46
JagWaugh's Avatar
RIP
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Eglisau
Posts: 7,273
Groaned at 47 Times in 46 Posts
Thanked 14,131 Times in 5,506 Posts
JagWaugh has a reputation beyond reputeJagWaugh has a reputation beyond reputeJagWaugh has a reputation beyond reputeJagWaugh has a reputation beyond reputeJagWaugh has a reputation beyond reputeJagWaugh has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

Quote:
View Post
Sure, I plan to, but what if the total value including postage were slightly more than the limit -- say CHF 75? The processing fees would be only slightly less outrageous.

I've got no problem paying the tax itself on imports, but isn't there any way to minimize the processing fees?


In a word... "Nope".
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank JagWaugh for this useful post:
  #5  
Old 30.09.2015, 11:48
fatmanfilms's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Verbier
Posts: 19,051
Groaned at 392 Times in 297 Posts
Thanked 18,885 Times in 10,171 Posts
fatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

Quote:
View Post
Sure, I plan to, but what if the total value including postage were slightly more than the limit -- say CHF 75? The processing fees would be only slightly less outrageous.

I've got no problem paying the tax itself on imports, but isn't there any way to minimize the processing fees?
You have to pay... it's over 62 CHF.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank fatmanfilms for this useful post:
  #6  
Old 30.09.2015, 11:57
grumpygrapefruit's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Zuriwest
Posts: 6,296
Groaned at 38 Times in 37 Posts
Thanked 16,764 Times in 4,378 Posts
grumpygrapefruit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygrapefruit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygrapefruit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygrapefruit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygrapefruit has a reputation beyond reputegrumpygrapefruit has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

Quote:
View Post
Sure, I plan to, but what if the total value including postage were slightly more than the limit -- say CHF 75? The processing fees would be only slightly less outrageous.

I've got no problem paying the tax itself on imports, but isn't there any way to minimize the processing fees?
I think Amazon.de do now offer to pay import duty and MwsT up front for you to avoid the handling charge. Otherwise think about using a company across the border to accept the parcel for you. If you're importing physically yourself the daily limit is 300.00. I started this thread on the subject a few years ago.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 30.09.2015, 12:02
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Bern, Switzerland
Posts: 74
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 37 Times in 21 Posts
heypete has no particular reputation at present
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

Quote:
View Post
You have to pay... it's over 62 CHF.
Right.

I ask because when I order items from Amazon US they allow me to pre-pay the tax and import fees at the time of purchase (which typically costs about CHF 12 or so for a CHF 150 order) and the package zips through Swiss customs with no issues. Admittedly, they're usually using DHL or some other non-Post shipping service.

However, few other vendors offer that as an option and I get slapped with the Post's CHF 20+ processing fee when I slightly exceed the CHF 62 limit.

The joys of ordering small things from different vendors. Oh well...
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 30.09.2015, 12:09
fatmanfilms's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Verbier
Posts: 19,051
Groaned at 392 Times in 297 Posts
Thanked 18,885 Times in 10,171 Posts
fatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

Quote:
View Post
Right.

I ask because when I order items from Amazon US they allow me to pre-pay the tax and import fees at the time of purchase (which typically costs about CHF 12 or so for a CHF 150 order) and the package zips through Swiss customs with no issues. Admittedly, they're usually using DHL or some other non-Post shipping service.

However, few other vendors offer that as an option and I get slapped with the Post's CHF 20+ processing fee when I slightly exceed the CHF 62 limit.

The joys of ordering small things from different vendors. Oh well...
Why do you think salaries are so high in CH?
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 30.09.2015, 12:11
Belgianmum's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Neuchâtel
Posts: 11,757
Groaned at 194 Times in 171 Posts
Thanked 18,537 Times in 7,775 Posts
Belgianmum has a reputation beyond reputeBelgianmum has a reputation beyond reputeBelgianmum has a reputation beyond reputeBelgianmum has a reputation beyond reputeBelgianmum has a reputation beyond reputeBelgianmum has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

Quote:
View Post
I think Amazon.de do now offer to pay import duty and MwsT up front for you to avoid the handling charge. Otherwise think about using a company across the border to accept the parcel for you. If you're importing physically yourself the daily limit is 300.00. I started this thread on the subject a few years ago.
It's called Amazon global and you can use it with any of their sites when ordering directly from Amazon.
It's a really good option.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank Belgianmum for this useful post:
  #10  
Old 30.09.2015, 12:12
adrianlondon's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Basel
Posts: 9,169
Groaned at 171 Times in 154 Posts
Thanked 25,643 Times in 6,892 Posts
adrianlondon has a reputation beyond reputeadrianlondon has a reputation beyond reputeadrianlondon has a reputation beyond reputeadrianlondon has a reputation beyond reputeadrianlondon has a reputation beyond reputeadrianlondon has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

Quote:
View Post
I've got no problem paying the tax itself on imports, but isn't there any way to minimize the processing fees?
Yes (i.e. ignore the "nope" answer you got).

You need to find a company, and they're becoming more frequent, who will process all the taxes for you.

Amazon (DE, not sure about UK) does it, as do many others.

For example, I order bike parts from rose.de and they will take off the 19% German tax, add on 8% Swiss tax and charge me an additional 1% to cover their admin costs.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank adrianlondon for this useful post:
  #11  
Old 30.09.2015, 12:40
JagWaugh's Avatar
RIP
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Eglisau
Posts: 7,273
Groaned at 47 Times in 46 Posts
Thanked 14,131 Times in 5,506 Posts
JagWaugh has a reputation beyond reputeJagWaugh has a reputation beyond reputeJagWaugh has a reputation beyond reputeJagWaugh has a reputation beyond reputeJagWaugh has a reputation beyond reputeJagWaugh has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

If the seller doesn't offer this service, then the answer is still "Nope". I buy a lot of stuff for my classic car, ebay as well as parts suppliers in the UK, places like this don't do enough business for it to be worth their bother. Whenever I am ordering stuff I keep an eye on the price and if I am over the limit then I add stuff to the order to make the processing fee worth paying. I estimate that well over 30% of my parts cost on the whole project is shipping, import tax and processing fees.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank JagWaugh for this useful post:
  #12  
Old 30.09.2015, 12:50
Don Molina's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Zurich
Posts: 875
Groaned at 38 Times in 23 Posts
Thanked 1,249 Times in 536 Posts
Don Molina has a reputation beyond reputeDon Molina has a reputation beyond reputeDon Molina has a reputation beyond reputeDon Molina has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

I've seen ebay having a customs fees calculator sometimes, especially the US site, but I don't know for sure if you can prepay the relevant taxes at checkout.

So far, DHL and other courier services have been extremely fast and reasonably priced for items outside CH, and with Post I've had a delivery of something from the UK worth about 90 CHF a month ago and I'm still waiting the bill for processing + tax...
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 30.09.2015, 13:48
Belgianmum's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Neuchâtel
Posts: 11,757
Groaned at 194 Times in 171 Posts
Thanked 18,537 Times in 7,775 Posts
Belgianmum has a reputation beyond reputeBelgianmum has a reputation beyond reputeBelgianmum has a reputation beyond reputeBelgianmum has a reputation beyond reputeBelgianmum has a reputation beyond reputeBelgianmum has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

Quote:
View Post
I've seen ebay having a customs fees calculator sometimes, especially the US site, but I don't know for sure if you can prepay the relevant taxes at checkout.

So far, DHL and other courier services have been extremely fast and reasonably priced for items outside CH, and with Post I've had a delivery of something from the UK worth about 90 CHF a month ago and I'm still waiting the bill for processing + tax...
If it comes via the normal post if you don't have a bill to pay when they deliver the item ( or you collect it from the post office) then you won't have anything to pay, they don't send a bill later only the couriers do that.

Count yourself lucky that you got one of the packages that they didn't check ( they don't actually check all of them).
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 30.09.2015, 13:57
fatmanfilms's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Verbier
Posts: 19,051
Groaned at 392 Times in 297 Posts
Thanked 18,885 Times in 10,171 Posts
fatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

Quote:
View Post
If it comes via the normal post if you don't have a bill to pay when they deliver the item ( or you collect it from the post office) then you won't have anything to pay, they don't send a bill later only the couriers do that.

Count yourself lucky that you got one of the packages that they didn't check ( they don't actually check all of them).
Not always the case, in ZH you had to sign for the packet & about 6 weeks later a bill would arrive.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 30.09.2015, 14:02
Belgianmum's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Neuchâtel
Posts: 11,757
Groaned at 194 Times in 171 Posts
Thanked 18,537 Times in 7,775 Posts
Belgianmum has a reputation beyond reputeBelgianmum has a reputation beyond reputeBelgianmum has a reputation beyond reputeBelgianmum has a reputation beyond reputeBelgianmum has a reputation beyond reputeBelgianmum has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

Quote:
View Post
Not always the case, in ZH you had to sign for the packet & about 6 weeks later a bill would arrive.
That's never ever happened here, always had to sign and pay on the spot.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 30.09.2015, 14:27
Don Molina's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Zurich
Posts: 875
Groaned at 38 Times in 23 Posts
Thanked 1,249 Times in 536 Posts
Don Molina has a reputation beyond reputeDon Molina has a reputation beyond reputeDon Molina has a reputation beyond reputeDon Molina has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

Quote:
View Post
Not always the case, in ZH you had to sign for the packet & about 6 weeks later a bill would arrive.
This, they told me a bill would come later...
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 18.04.2016, 16:09
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

If I buy granny underwear worth CHF160 from Germany what is the most custom/postal charge I could get hit with?
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 18.04.2016, 16:20
aSwissInTheUS's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Zurich area
Posts: 12,260
Groaned at 93 Times in 84 Posts
Thanked 18,727 Times in 8,306 Posts
aSwissInTheUS has a reputation beyond reputeaSwissInTheUS has a reputation beyond reputeaSwissInTheUS has a reputation beyond reputeaSwissInTheUS has a reputation beyond reputeaSwissInTheUS has a reputation beyond reputeaSwissInTheUS has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

Honest answer:
CHF 12.80 + Handling + Customs (if above CHF 5)

Silk petticoats and slips (Tariff No. 6108.1910) are up to CHF 6.88/kg (gross weight including shiping package)
Most shippers charge extra if more than X tariff numbers are part of one shippment.

Custom is calculated by weight and country of origin (where it was made, not shipped from).
look at Tares http://xtares.admin.ch/tares/login/loginFormFiller.do
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank aSwissInTheUS for this useful post:
  #19  
Old 22.09.2017, 16:56
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Zurich
Posts: 12,501
Groaned at 978 Times in 687 Posts
Thanked 17,498 Times in 6,856 Posts
Chuff has a reputation beyond reputeChuff has a reputation beyond reputeChuff has a reputation beyond reputeChuff has a reputation beyond reputeChuff has a reputation beyond reputeChuff has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

Swiss Post to abolish customs inspection fees in 2018 https://www.post.ch/en/customer-cent...on-fee-in-2018
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank Chuff for this useful post:
  #20  
Old 22.09.2017, 18:18
aSwissInTheUS's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Zurich area
Posts: 12,260
Groaned at 93 Times in 84 Posts
Thanked 18,727 Times in 8,306 Posts
aSwissInTheUS has a reputation beyond reputeaSwissInTheUS has a reputation beyond reputeaSwissInTheUS has a reputation beyond reputeaSwissInTheUS has a reputation beyond reputeaSwissInTheUS has a reputation beyond reputeaSwissInTheUS has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Minimizing postal customs fees

Here a link that works.
https://www.post.ch/en/about-us/comp...on-fee-in-2018

Btw> there is a thread for that.
Reply With Quote
Reply




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Ordering eBay from abroad - customs fees? Horst Finance/banking/taxation 48 01.02.2020 12:24
Buying an item from the EU - duty/customs fees? justiliang Daily life 3 05.07.2015 15:07
Postal delivery in customs clerance for ages antongiu Other/general 2 14.05.2013 16:04
Customs clearance for postal deliveries byte Finance/banking/taxation 14 17.10.2012 17:50
Mailboxes Etc address in US and then shipping to CH. Customs? VAT? Import Fees? foliorose Other/general 11 19.07.2010 15:05


All times are GMT +2. The time now is 07:08.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
LinkBacks Enabled by vBSEO 3.1.0