Ordering from the EU instead of the UK to avoid customs hassles and charges

odyssey06

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3,004
Has anyone swapped to amazon.de or amazon.fr for orders? Any tips or tricks?

No free delivery I think is the issue there, and if ordering electrical items you may need converters.

I've read reports of people using Amazon.co.uk prime at the moment, no delivery charge, and then for items under £22 you aren't charged any VAT (some exemption until summer).
 

Zenith63

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755
Has anyone swapped to amazon.de or amazon.fr for orders? Any tips or tricks?
I haven't used them since Brexit, but I have ordered from the German, French and Spanish sites a few times. For any expensive items it's well worth heading along to the likes of https://www.hagglezon.com/ and see which site is cheapest, in some cases the savings can be fairly chunky.
 

rustbucket

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430
Just by way of comparison I ordered stuff from a uk website the other day and safe to say I won’t be doing it again if it can be avoided. I spent two days trying to find the exact thing I needed in Irl but couldn’t.

item cost £15
Shipping £13 (would only send Dpd tracked international even though items small enough to post)

total £28

email this morning from dpd
Customs fee €6
Brokerage fee €5
Vat €1.66

item cost £15
Transport £13
Customs etc €13

madness
 

Leo

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12,162
Just by way of comparison I ordered stuff from a uk website the other day and safe to say I won’t be doing it again if it can be avoided.

It might be worth pulling together details of UK companies who have gotten their act together and can complete the required customs declaration so the consumer isn't hit with charges...

In the meantime, I'd only purchase from companies who confirm they have this sorted.
 

SBarrett

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3,648
A lot of UK based companies have .ie websites for the Irish market. It isn't until you have purchased the item that you realise you are buying from the UK. This wasn't an issue pre Brexit but can be now. Thankfully, I haven't been lumbered with extra charges yet but there is a noticeable delay in getting the packages delivered. Being able to track your package, you can see it being picked up from the seller within a day or 2 and then going nowhere for a week before suddenly going out for delivery.
 

ginslia

Registered User
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26
I attended a webinar on this topic recently and the key takeaways were:
1) check where the seller is located - .ie or .eu web domain is not enough
2) check where the goods are made - if made in Britain then no customs duty should apply (examples given were hotpoint, dr martins, marmite, cadbury, certain cars)
3) check who is liable for these extra charges - some sites are dealing with it on behalf of customers so that product arrives DDP (delivered duty paid), others are not and as the buyer you become the importer for customs declaration purposes

Calculations also make things complicated.
For VAT purposes the value is the (cost plus handling, transport and insurance, plus any customs duty). Its this "value" that needs to be under the €22 limit, not the cost of the goods only. Irish VAT is calculated on the value. (No UK VAT should be charged)
For customs, the value is the cost plus handling, transport and insurance to see if the €150 threshold is met. If value > €150, then customs duty is applied to the cost only.

The real fun starts if you need to return goods to the seller, complete export declarations and try to reclaim the related VAT or customs duty paid!
 

Early Riser

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For VAT purposes the value is the (cost plus handling, transport and insurance, plus any customs duty). Its this "value" that needs to be under the €22 limit, not the cost of the goods only. Irish VAT is calculated on the value. (No UK VAT should be charged)
I ordered something from Amazon UK recently. It came to €25.36 (£21. 91) including Irish VAT but free postage. It arrived fairly promptly with no extra charges.
 

NoRegretsCoyote

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2,209
I've tried both and German Amazon is MUCH better than French Amazon.

Price is in general lower and selection better. You'd be surprised how wide the selection of English books there are on amazon.de.
 

Buddyboy

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663
Same here, using amazon.de now rather than amazon.uk. Even with the cost of delivery it still works out similar or cheaper than the UK.
The English translation is perfect, so no problems so far.
 

elcato

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3,575
I used the de site also. Only problem was it took a while to get here, more so than UK.
 

Thirsty

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2,857
Amazon eu sites have worked out great so far.

Meepman's hagglezon site is brilliant!

Delivery a little more expensive, but have already made savings using the hagglezon; so it balances out.
 
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