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  #201  
Old 26.01.2020, 07:26
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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Amazon no longer ships everything to Switzerland
That's Amazon US though. Amazon DE/FR/IT/ES/UK still do. However there has always been a large share of the items (perhaps almost half of them) on the European Amazons that have never been available for shipping to CH.
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something about online traders having to comply with Swiss tax rules last year.
Only those whose turnover is above a certain threshold are meant to sign up to the CH government VAT scheme. There are plenty of sellers who will never qualify or sign up and who send stuff to CH with 0% VAT is it should be or charge VAT but then refund it upon request.
I don't see how an overseas seller can be forced to sign up in any case as they are based abroad and surely only have to comply with local laws?
The buyer is usually considered responsable for all local compliance issues concerning customs and tax.
I wonder if Amazon is passing on any VAT at all to Switzerland for parcels sent here, considering the fact that the VAT can be reimbursed to the customer upon the latter's request?!
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Delivered to a German address, paied in Euros. But with a Swiss credit card.
Can only assume that there was a discount on that item when you bought it. Better to have the surprise discount than a surcharge.
When you pre-order yet-to-be-released items, the price may go down before the release and although initially your order was for the higher amount, they then adjust the amount charged to the lower price.
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  #202  
Old 26.01.2020, 10:05
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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That's Amazon US though. Amazon DE/FR/IT/ES/UK still do. However there has always been a large share of the items (perhaps almost half of them) on the European Amazons that have never been available for shipping to CH.
Only those whose turnover is above a certain threshold are meant to sign up to the CH government VAT scheme. There are plenty of sellers who will never qualify or sign up and who send stuff to CH with 0% VAT is it should be or charge VAT but then refund it upon request.
I don't see how an overseas seller can be forced to sign up in any case as they are based abroad and surely only have to comply with local laws?
The buyer is usually considered responsable for all local compliance issues concerning customs and tax.
I wonder if Amazon is passing on any VAT at all to Switzerland for parcels sent here, considering the fact that the VAT can be reimbursed to the customer upon the latter's request?!
Can only assume that there was a discount on that item when you bought it. Better to have the surprise discount than a surcharge.
When you pre-order yet-to-be-released items, the price may go down before the release and although initially your order was for the higher amount, they then adjust the amount charged to the lower price.
Amazon does not reimburse Swiss VAT?
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  #203  
Old 26.01.2020, 10:13
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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Amazon does not reimburse Swiss VAT?
Not automatically. You'd have to email them as it has to be put through manually and only after delivery. UK, FR and IT do. I've yet to do it on DE or ES.

It took them a while to understand on the IT site, but they eventually did it and apologised for the two week delay! It was only a small amount, but I needed it sorted as I was planning to order a more expensive item on there and I wanted to have a precedent set so that I would get a big chunk of VAT off the larger upcoming order. In the end the item was cheaper on the UK site, so a lot of emailing for little in return.
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  #204  
Old 26.01.2020, 10:35
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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Not automatically. You'd have to email them as it has to be put through manually and only after delivery. UK, FR and IT do. I've yet to do it on DE or ES.

It took them a while to understand on the IT site, but they eventually did it and apologised for the two week delay! It was only a small amount, but I needed it sorted as I was planning to order a more expensive item on there and I wanted to have a precedent set so that I would get a big chunk of VAT off the larger upcoming order. In the end the item was cheaper on the UK site, so a lot of emailing for little in return.
I often order from Amazon DE. They automatically deduct German VAT and add Swiss VAT if the amount is over the limit.
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  #205  
Old 26.01.2020, 10:37
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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Not automatically. You'd have to email them as it has to be put through manually and only after delivery. UK, FR and IT do. I've yet to do it on DE or ES.

It took them a while to understand on the IT site, but they eventually did it and apologised for the two week delay! It was only a small amount, but I needed it sorted as I was planning to order a more expensive item on there and I wanted to have a precedent set so that I would get a big chunk of VAT off the larger upcoming order. In the end the item was cheaper on the UK site, so a lot of emailing for little in return.
They have no legal basis for refunding Swiss VAT on goods delivered to Switzerland so you may find you get a bill in the future unless the VAT was under CHF 5.00.
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  #206  
Old 26.01.2020, 10:38
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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I often order from Amazon DE. They automatically deduct German VAT and add Swiss VAT if the amount is over the limit.
They add it to all orders now, even under CHF 65. It's been like that I think since 1.1.19.
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  #207  
Old 26.01.2020, 10:42
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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They have no legal basis for refunding Swiss VAT on goods delivered to Switzerland so you may find you get a bill in the future unless the VAT was under CHF 5.00.
On the contrary, from a non-Swiss point of view there is no legal basis to charge it in the first place. The transaction is conducted with a seller in the UK/EU and the order shipped outside of the EU customs union, thus no VAT is due.
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  #208  
Old 26.01.2020, 10:49
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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..............
Can only assume that there was a discount on that item when you bought it. Better to have the surprise discount than a surcharge.
When you pre-order yet-to-be-released items, the price may go down before the release and although initially your order was for the higher amount, they then adjust the amount charged to the lower price.
Which is actually exceptionally accommodating ("kulant") as they could legally charge me the price I accepted (and most Swiss online-companies do so!).

I agree with you that this is probably the case.
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  #209  
Old 26.01.2020, 11:02
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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On the contrary, from a non-Swiss point of view there is no legal basis to charge it in the first place. The transaction is conducted with a seller in the UK/EU and the order shipped outside of the EU customs union, thus no VAT is due.
You are confused!
Correct that an order shipped outside the UK/EU is not liable for UK/EU VAT.
However, if the UK/EU seller is registered for Swiss VAT then the order is liable for Swiss VAT.
Before this rule about UK/EU sellers registering for Swiss VAT the Swiss VAT was charged by Customs at the port of entry and was also not refundable.
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  #210  
Old 26.01.2020, 11:21
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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You are confused!
Correct that an order shipped outside the UK/EU is not liable for UK/EU VAT.
However, if the UK/EU seller is registered for Swiss VAT then the order is liable for Swiss VAT.
Before this rule about UK/EU sellers registering for Swiss VAT the Swiss VAT was charged by Customs at the port of entry and was also not refundable.
Not at all.
It was previously only charged by customs on orders above CHF 65 (or CHF 200 for the lower VAT rate).
This Swiss have introduced the VAT rule unilaterally. No foreign seller can be obliged to sign up to the scheme. And only around 1% of parcels entering CH are checked (if that!). So it is something that is practically not enforceable.

Even if a seller (like Amazon) signs up for the scheme, there is no way for CH customs to check how much VAT is being charged/collected. Which is probably the reason why it is being reimbursed. I can't believe for one moment that it is a good will gesture. Once or twice a year yes. But on every order on 3 (so far) platforms?! I receive 4 or 5 Amazon parcels a week, sometimes more and have been getting these VAT refunds for over a year now.
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  #211  
Old 26.01.2020, 11:23
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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You are confused!
Correct that an order shipped outside the UK/EU is not liable for UK/EU VAT.
However, if the UK/EU seller is registered for Swiss VAT then the order is liable for Swiss VAT.
Before this rule about UK/EU sellers registering for Swiss VAT the Swiss VAT was charged by Customs at the port of entry and was also not refundable.
Yes but this is newish and many people may not know that yet.
Wasn't that the reason some companies stopped delivering to Switzerland due to 'too much hassle' or 'not worth it', considering their few customers here?
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  #212  
Old 26.01.2020, 11:43
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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That's Amazon US though. Amazon DE/FR/IT/ES/UK still do. However there has always been a large share of the items (perhaps almost half of them) on the European Amazons that have never been available for shipping to CH.
If you order something on a Amazon website your seller might be Amazon OR which is as likely if it is not a book, from a third party Amazon Marketplace merchant. Third party companies can exclude Switzerland and other non-EU countries as a possible destinations of delivery.

Only companies with an export volume of CHF 100k per year are subject to the new Swiss VAT regulations where Swiss VAT has to be charged for any shipment.

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I receive 4 or 5 Amazon parcels a week, sometimes more and have been getting these VAT refunds for over a year now.
Pics or it din't happen. I strongly suspect you were reimbursed foreign, non Swiss VAT. Also possible is, that you had to pay a bit more than was actually needed for clearing the import and now you got reimbursed the difference.

Edit: Most (all?) third party Amazon Marketplace companies list the price including EU-VAT, not with Swiss VAT. For example on amazon.de with the 19% German VAT. It would actually be really good news if an order from a third party merchant, handled, processed and shipped by Amazon profits from Amazon's bulk import handling agreement with Swiss post (no or only minimal import handling charges), and specially reimbursement of the foreign VAT is automatically done and offset with the Swiss VAT due.

Once again I strongly suspect you got foreign VAT - Swiss VAT back.
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Last edited by aSwissInTheUS; 26.01.2020 at 12:08.
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  #213  
Old 26.01.2020, 13:19
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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Yes but this is newish and many people may not know that yet.
Wasn't that the reason some companies stopped delivering to Switzerland due to 'too much hassle' or 'not worth it', considering their few customers here?
Yes, but a company only had to register if their annual Swiss turnover was over a hundred thousand Francs so "few customers" does not sound like a valid excuse.

Overall companies benefit from registering for Swiss VAT because they only have to handle a transaction once and then do not have to bother with the handling of refunds.
The benefit for Swiss customers is usually they do not have to pay the "inspection charge".
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  #214  
Old 26.01.2020, 14:32
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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If you order something on a Amazon website your seller might be Amazon OR which is as likely if it is not a book, from a third party Amazon Marketplace merchant. Third party companies can exclude Switzerland and other non-EU countries as a possible destinations of delivery.
The orders we are talking about are all with Amazon themselves, not third-party sellers. Amazon are refunding the 7.7 or 2.5% VAT on the orders in question. Nearly all of the orders are not books.

As a side not though: some but not all market place sellers have set up something in their billing via Amazon that correctly identifies CH delivery addresses as third country and 0% rate the order for VAT. So here I would agree that there is nothing to refund anyway.
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Old 26.01.2020, 14:36
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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Pics or it din't happen.
Yeah whatever. What do you want a years worth of order screen shots and credit card statements?!
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Also possible is, that you had to pay a bit more than was actually needed for clearing the import and now you got reimbursed the difference.
No, this is not it either because there is no longer such a charge since 1.1.19 - at least there has not been on any of our orders since then.
Previous to that though I agree with you that there was a surcharge which was later, more often than not, corrected downwards.
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  #216  
Old 26.01.2020, 14:47
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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there is no way for CH customs to check how much VAT is being charged/collected.
Why would they even care?

Tom
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  #217  
Old 26.01.2020, 14:48
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

Now that this definitely turned into an amazon thread, tell me, why can't I find the fruit and veg pages on amazon you all seem to buy from?
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  #218  
Old 26.01.2020, 15:35
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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The orders we are talking about are all with Amazon themselves, not third-party sellers. Amazon are refunding the 7.7 or 2.5% VAT on the orders in question. Nearly all of the orders are not books.

As a side not though: some but not all market place sellers have set up something in their billing via Amazon that correctly identifies CH delivery addresses as third country and 0% rate the order for VAT. So here I would agree that there is nothing to refund anyway.
Those some market place sellers 0% rate the order for local VAT not for Swiss VAT, you are still liable for Swiss VAT on your imports
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  #219  
Old 27.01.2020, 06:50
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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Those some market place sellers 0% rate the order for local VAT not for Swiss VAT, you are still liable for Swiss VAT on your imports
NO, our market place seller orders (wherever possible) are ones from those sellers who remove the German VAT before the sale and are under CHF 65. So they are zero-rated and are not liable for Swiss VAT at any point.

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I strongly suspect you were reimbursed foreign, non Swiss VAT
Once again I strongly suspect you got foreign VAT - Swiss VAT back.
This would not even be logical for the foreign VAT on Amazon direct orders is removed at the checkout at the same time the CH VAT is added, just before paying. The VAT we have been reimbursed is the CH VAT and only then because I wrote emails to 3 Amazons (UK, FR, IT) to ask for it back once the stuff had been delivered.
In one odd instance, presumably an oversight, the CH VAT was reimbursed and then we returned the item and the full item cost (including the VAT again) was reimbursed.
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  #220  
Old 29.01.2020, 13:55
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Re: Savings - grocery shopping over the border.

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Pics or it din't happen.
I have now managed to upload some images. One example from each site I mentioned. The CH VAT has been refunded in each case - the amounts of VAT correspond to either the 2.5 or 7.7% rate. Orders were delivered from EU to CH which from an EU VAT area point of view is a third country and thus no VAT is due.
So as you see, it did happen.
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