buy from USA and get it shipped to UK?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by bob2131, Aug 5, 2008.

  1. bob2131 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 27, 2008
    im thinking of buying a refurbished macbook from usa, via my cousin in america, and then getting it sent to me , in uk.

    cause the products are alot cheaper in america man.
    even with the shipping and the power adaptor i will have to buy etc.
    i would save close to £100 i think if not more.

    are there any drawbacks of doing this? ?

    apple staff told all i would need to buy in uk is an apple UK power adaptor.

  2. techound1 macrumors 68000


    Mar 3, 2006
    Well, let us not forget ye olde import duties. Hello VAT! Add 17% to your cost, even if you call it a gift. Plus, the charge of shipping and insuring it.
  3. bob2131 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jul 27, 2008
    why add VAT? it will be shipped by my cousin, and he even said hell
    mark it as gift, and no import tax will have to be paid when they knock
    on my door with the package...........
  4. magiic macrumors regular


    Jun 17, 2008
    In most countries "gift" only covers up to a certain value and anything over that will be taxed. You also won't be able to underdeclare it without forfeiting insurance. If you under declare but insure for value they will use the higher of the two for taxation purposes.
  5. KingYaba macrumors 68040


    Aug 7, 2005
    Up the irons
  6. kntgsp macrumors 6502a

    Jul 27, 2004
    2 solutions:

    1. Ship it undeclared anyway. If it arrives intact but was shaken enough to break break a solder point or something, take it to the Apple Store. They have a 1 year warranty you know, so it's not like you have to pay them to repair it.


    2. Easy way around this. Insure to the maximum before required declaration (say ~ $500) and ship it. Then buy 3 cheap pieces of delicate blown glass or some other random art piece, insure each for $500 each as art. mail them.

    If you DO have a problem and the laptop arrives broken, you claim your $500 insurance. The 3 boxes containing the blown glass you shake violently until they are sufficiently pulverized.

    Claim your insurance. You say it's not a mass produced item, and is a unique art piece. Produce a fake invoice if you want.

    I'm just tossing these ideas up for the fun of it, not as some foolproof method, so don't take me seriously. I just enjoy screwing the gov't on things it has no rights to screw me on.
  7. magiic macrumors regular


    Jun 17, 2008
    None of that protects you though if they just straight up lose the package lol
  8. CanadaRAM macrumors G5


    Oct 11, 2004
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    Both of them unethical frauds that cheat the shipping company not the government.

    You have a pretty hazy understanding of who 'the man' is who is supposedly screwing you.

    Nice attitude.
  9. Consultant macrumors G5


    Jun 27, 2007
    You don't need to buy a new power adapter, you need to change the small piece that connects to the outlet (perhaps the international travel kit).

    Not only is that fraud, it's not possible.

    Insured value = Value required to pay import duty.
  10. bob2131 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jul 27, 2008
    apple staff told me i would need to buy an apple uk power cord, thats it.
    that would be the only difference between countries.
  11. logana macrumors 65816


    Feb 4, 2006
    The keyboard is different too - no £ or € keys - and some of the other keys are in different places...

    By the time you pay shipping and VAT there won't be the savings you think there will be. There is no import duty on laptops but you will pay 17.5% VAT on the cost of the MacBook and the shipping plus a handling fee to the carrier...I am guessing this may well be more than £100.

    Plus there may well be sales tax in the US on top of the purchase price...
  12. andimaciphone macrumors member


    May 9, 2008
    Laptops are VAT exempt when importing.

    I found this out when I was researching for buying my first MacBook to save some cash.


    Not relevant as you mentioned USA refurb store, but the VAT exemption is correct I will try and find the link.
  13. logana macrumors 65816


    Feb 4, 2006
    There is no Import Duty on Laptops or more correctly the Import Duty is 0%. Laptops are liable for standard rate UK VAT at 17.5%.

    VAT will be calculated by adding up the cost of the laptop plus the carriage. There will also be a handling fee charged by the courier/Post Office.

    The maximum declared value of a gift is double the £18 normal limit for items that can be posted to the UK without paying any VAT. If the item is above £36 then VAT will be due as above - you don't even get the first £36 exempt.

    If the MacBook costs $1100 plus $50 carriage then the VAT is going to be around £100. Royal Mail handling charge is £8 so the £100 saving seems to have vanished.
  14. gnasher729 macrumors P6


    Nov 25, 2005
    Let's see. You mark it as gift with a value of £100. Someone at customs needs a new Mac. Sorry, we lost your package. Here's your hundred quid :D

    Seriously, you are trying to commit tax fraud. And this package _will_ pass customs, so it is an especially risky way of committing tax fraud.
  15. Hates macrumors regular

    Jul 10, 2008
    London, UK
    Not worth the hassle. Just buy it here in the UK and be done :)
  16. Pixellated macrumors 65816

    Apr 1, 2008
    You'll pay shipping taxes and VAT. Unless you declare it, it is tax fraud.
  17. JAWWC macrumors regular

    Jun 1, 2008
    I bought a laptop off eBay from USA and it got "lost" in the post, not insured either. I know that was eBay so it was different but I still wouldn't recommend it. I'm going to USA on holiday in the next few weeks so I'm going to pick up a MacBook refurb and have it in my hand luggage :D

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