Shipping from the US to the UK

maxi-model

maxi-model

UK/US/ROW steam narrow gauge railways 1:1
27 Oct 2009
4,707
234
Bucks/Oxon/Northants area
While I have brought quite a few garden railroad items from the US to the UK - anything from dry print sheets to complete locos and cars in Fn3 - they have been almost exclusively from trade suppliers and have always attracted 20% import tax and handling fees.


Question - If I am importing a large item with a value of c$300 from a genuine private seller will I still be hit with import taxes and possibly the handling fee if USPS ? I have only done one other similar "private sale" on an Ebay purchase, an AMS Fn3 D&RGW boxcar at around $120, but it's a while back and I cannot remember if I got hit with tax on that one. Faded memory says no. Anybody with a definitive answer. My thanks in anticipation. Max
 
dutchelm

dutchelm

Registered
24 Oct 2009
2,641
15
N Somerset
I think everything gets hit with VAT when it comes over & this includes VAT on the postage as well.
 
Rhinochugger

Rhinochugger

Retired Oik (IBT)
27 Oct 2009
26,349
939
North West Norfolk
It might be worth checking, but somewhere in the dark recesses of the mind, the question of whether it is new comes into play :wasntme::wasntme:
 
maxi-model

maxi-model

UK/US/ROW steam narrow gauge railways 1:1
27 Oct 2009
4,707
234
Bucks/Oxon/Northants area
It might be worth checking, but somewhere in the dark recesses of the mind, the question of whether it is new comes into play :wasntme::wasntme:

It is an unfinished conversion of what I assume to be a used item using commercially available parts from a specialist supplier that have been painted and a decal sheet (not applied yet) . Max
 
Rhinochugger

Rhinochugger

Retired Oik (IBT)
27 Oct 2009
26,349
939
North West Norfolk
It is an unfinished conversion of what I assume to be a used item using commercially available parts from a specialist supplier that have been painted and a decal sheet (not applied yet) . Max
So, it's not brand new as in a manufacturer's box.

It's a long time since I looked into this :think:, but I can remember considering the possibility of getting a loco out of its box, running it up and down for a couple of minutes, in order to say that it was not new. (In the end, I didn't import anything as expensive as a loco, and the other wagons came in by different methods.)

Whether the same now applies, I don't know.
 
Rhos Helyg Loco Works

Rhos Helyg Loco Works

Registered
A well-used loco I obtained from the USA was subject to a full VAT payment based on the declared value (needed for insurance purposes).

When travelling from the USA to the UK you may bring in up to £400-worth (IIRC, certainly multiple hundreds) of goods without having to declare them.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: maxi-model
Rhinochugger

Rhinochugger

Retired Oik (IBT)
27 Oct 2009
26,349
939
North West Norfolk
It could be cheaper to fly and get it - b****r the carbon footprint (call in at Davos on the way through) :devil: :devil:
 
LGB-Sid

LGB-Sid

Registered
19 Sep 2016
911
223
61
UK
  • Like
Reactions: maxi-model
PhilP

PhilP

G Scale, 7/8th's, Electronics
5 Jun 2013
24,599
909
Tamworth, Staffs.
That is fairly clear..

BUT
(Not applicable in this case)
I had some 'faulty' RC receveirs sent back to me form the US, and it cost me £60 to get them the final few miles.. :(

I eventually found I could get this back, as I had sold the good's in the first-place, and they had been sent back for repair.
i did not get the (in this case) £15 'handling-fee' back though, :cry::cry:
 
maxi-model

maxi-model

UK/US/ROW steam narrow gauge railways 1:1
27 Oct 2009
4,707
234
Bucks/Oxon/Northants area
Does this help ?
Yes, I think that nails it and is pretty definitive. Looks like if I by it then I am going to get hit with 20% tax as with other similar "new" imports, Thank you. Max
 
beavercreek

beavercreek

Travel, Art, Theatre, Music, Photography, Trains
24 Oct 2009
17,409
95
East Anglia
www.facebook.com
Yes Max and not only the 20% import taxes but also the ParcelFarce charge (if sent by USPS) for 'dealing with it!
 
Rhinochugger

Rhinochugger

Retired Oik (IBT)
27 Oct 2009
26,349
939
North West Norfolk
Yes Max and not only the 20% import taxes but also the ParcelFarce charge (if sent by USPS) for 'dealing with it!
Yep, that's the sting in the tail - If a courier takes something through and then finally delivers, you don't get Parcelfarce interfering, but where the item is just 'sent', Parcelfarce obviously have the contract and hoover things up - as Mike says, the highwayman then gets his bit by charging an extortionate handling fee to collect the VAT.
 
dutchelm

dutchelm

Registered
24 Oct 2009
2,641
15
N Somerset
Yep, that's the sting in the tail - If a courier takes something through and then finally delivers, you don't get Parcelfarce interfering, but where the item is just 'sent', Parcelfarce obviously have the contract and hoover things up - as Mike says, the highwayman then gets his bit by charging an extortionate handling fee to collect the VAT.
I believe all the couriers charge to collect their bit. Some make parcelforce look cheap.
 
Rhinochugger

Rhinochugger

Retired Oik (IBT)
27 Oct 2009
26,349
939
North West Norfolk
I believe all the couriers charge to collect their bit. Some make parcelforce look cheap.
Yeah, I had some paintings (art don't ya know) sent from the US, and it was just dropped off by UPS - well, with the usual idiotic first attempt, then the second attempt will be sometime between 7 am and 7 pm.

Now, whether the sender had covered all the charges, I don't know. Or maybe art doesn't get VAT - Mike (Bevercreak) will know?
 
idlemarvel

idlemarvel

Neither idle nor a marvel
13 Jul 2015
1,920
186
Ascot
Fine art attracts VAT, but there are grey areas. I am a fan of Norman Rockwell paintings. Originals are a bit out of my league but I have a few artist signed prints. Prints are exempt (they are not original pieces of work) but the rules are not clear on signed prints. The first one I received from the US had no VAT, with the second one (same courier, same packaging) I got stung for VAT. I decided life was too short to start a debate with HM Revenue and Customs, and anyway they might have decided to charge me on the first one!
 
muns

muns

Moderator
Staff member
GSC Moderator
I think you must assume that you will get charged for VAT and Customs, then if you don't its a win!
 
Rhinochugger

Rhinochugger

Retired Oik (IBT)
27 Oct 2009
26,349
939
North West Norfolk
I think you must assume that you will get charged for VAT and Customs, then if you don't its a win!
Hmmm - 'VAT / Customs' and 'win' in the same sentence? Someone else on the substance abuse :p:p
 
PhilP

PhilP

G Scale, 7/8th's, Electronics
5 Jun 2013
24,599
909
Tamworth, Staffs.
With the word 'abuse' in there as well, I reckon you will have set-off alarms in most Government Departments automatic monitoring systems? !
:eek::lipssealed::tmi:
 
Rhinochugger

Rhinochugger

Retired Oik (IBT)
27 Oct 2009
26,349
939
North West Norfolk
With the word 'abuse' in there as well, I reckon you will have set-off alarms in most Government Departments automatic monitoring systems? !
:eek::lipssealed::tmi:
:D:D:D

Forgot to substitute a letter or two with an asterisk ;);)
 
TD6239

TD6239

Registered
16 Jan 2020
8
0
24
Chester, Uk
Drats! Thanks for the info guys but that puts the nail in the proverbial coffin for the K27 I found on evilbay :(