buying custom config at Apple Store, visitor to U.S

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by the dairy giant, Oct 29, 2012.

  1. the dairy giant, Oct 29, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2012

    the dairy giant macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2004
    #1
    I'm looking to buy a 15" non retina MBP, with the hi-res anti-glare screen option. I can do this here, in New Zealand where I live, but I'm likely visiting the US (LA) in december.

    There may be some cost advantages buying there... I'd have to check that out, plus any downsides I may not be aware of... So if anyone knows of any I'd be glad to receive your wisdom.

    The main question though is.. if I want a custom config, can i get one through an Apple store, and what would be the wait time? I will probably be in LA 5 days to a week. I imagine I couldn't order in advance and pick up when I'm there thru an apple store but maybe if I went through some locally owned store it might be an option. So any recommendations would good too.

    Any advice appreciated! thx

    update, I'd probably save over $550NZ so it looks like it would be worth it if it's workable...
     
  2. Nermal Moderator

    Nermal

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2002
    Location:
    New Zealand
    #2
    I can't answer your actual question but be aware that you'll need to pay GST when returning to NZ, which may offset any cost savings. You'll also need to pay CA sales tax when you buy the system over there (which is not included in the prices listed on Apple's site).
     
  3. the dairy giant thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 6, 2004
    #3
    Hmmm, Sales tax! I thought i might be able to avoid GST just bringing in my own laptop that I'd bought...

    Never thought about US sales tax. We'll be going to Las Vegas for a few nights, I'll have to check out Nevada's laws... :)

    thx for the heads up though...
     
  4. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

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    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #4
    How would NZ know to charge tax on an incoming laptop? Do you have to register you laptop before you leave the country ....otherwise they charge tax?

    If NZ does that, you get a visitor to bring it in for you.
     
  5. Mr MM macrumors 65816

    Mr MM

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    Jun 29, 2011
    #5
    since you are a visitor you can eliminate the tax that will be added to the price at customs. not at the time of purchase but at the airport customs.

    Usually customs of your country dont care if you bought a notebook, you usually have a notebook, cellphone, camera and some other items whitelisted so that you dont need to declare, but yes if you go and say hey officer, could you charge me for my notebook and put a pretty star in my grade card?
     
  6. the dairy giant thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 6, 2004
    #6
    I understand both those viewpoints. Taxes pay for hospitals and schools etc. And if I can get away without paying it sometimes, I'm probably tempted to do so. But I've just realised the point is kinda irrelevant as I'm GST registered for my sad-arsed low-rent graphic design business, so I'd get it back anyway. hehe.

    And thanks for the info that I can claim back US sales tax at the airport.

    So now I'm just wondering how long it would take to get in a special config macbook pro at an apple store... Any answers appreciated!
     
  7. TheRdungeon macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2011
    #7
    I'm from NZ too, tbh I'd take it out of the box and pop it in a laptop bag and just use it like it's your personal laptop you use all the time when rolling back through customs. Then maybe send the box over later or something
     
  8. iScreamSanWitch macrumors member

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    Jul 24, 2012
    #8
    Does Apple offer world wide warranty? Even on devices not sold locally? Maybe something to consider in your savings as well.
     
  9. TheRdungeon macrumors 6502

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    Jul 21, 2011
    #9
    Yep they have a worldwide warranty
     
  10. the dairy giant thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 6, 2004
    #10
    Hmm, well I can go to the online US store, configure my product, select pick up from a store, and it gives me about an 8 day turnaround for that. But I won't be able to take it any further as it will only accept US billing address cards.

    I presume I might be able to order the same thing instore when I'm there, and pay cash, (or I guess international credit cards are accepted in stores, just not online.. hmm), but I won't be there long enough for it to be configured and supplied to the store, most likely. dang.

    ----------

    Apple care is worldwide for laptops, not desktops though as far as I recall.
     
  11. Mr MM macrumors 65816

    Mr MM

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2011
    #11
    its simple, configure one see how long it takes. and do that as close as your travel gets. The estimates are accurate.

    The main problem here is how to pay. Usually they only accept US credit cards. in 2006 I bought a mbp with a international credit card though, dunno if after 6 years that changed
     
  12. the dairy giant thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 6, 2004
    #12
    that's the issue. Reports differ as to whether the online store will take a non-US card, some appear to have success when the shipping address was a US one. But what about if it's a store pickup? I can't really order too far in advance, and don't want to leave it until a few days before I leave to find out it won't work. The physical stores also don't give out their emails. Sounds like Apple being Apple.

    BUT!!! MacMall will do it, I can do the custom configuration, after I supply some documentation they'll take my order, and I can pick up in one of their 3 stores in LA. And they have web chat so I could ask questions and find all this out easily. So, as long as all goes to plan my problem's solved.

    I don't know if they have a good reputation, but so far I'm recommending them over Apple store for non-US citizens.
     
  13. Mr MM macrumors 65816

    Mr MM

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2011
    #13
    interesting I found the experience to be quite the opposite. But good for you that it worked out.
     
  14. Mrbobb macrumors 601

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    Aug 27, 2012
    #14
    Nevada sales tax around 7.5%. L.A. 8.75%. They should take your VISA/AMEX whatever.

    There maybe a couple of different keycap differences for NZ? Power plug different? but relatively cheap to buy adapter.

    Coming back into the U.S., I believe anything more than $500 they tax u. Going back into NZ I dunno.
     
  15. cocacolakid macrumors 65816

    cocacolakid

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    Chicago
    #15
    MacMall has a good reputation here in the U.S.
     
  16. rworne macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    #16
    Not only that, but they have some custom configs (non-Apple store versions) in stock. The Los Angeles store on Wilshire Blvd. has 16GB configurations for each of the three HD sizes in stock for walk in and pick up.

    (No, I don't work for them, I was looking for 16GB models last week).
     
  17. CASLondon macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2011
    #17

    I'm an American living in the UK, I do this all the time (well, every couple of years).

    LA is full of specialists serving the post-production community, so I'm sure you can find a reseller who has what you want if its not stocked in the Apple Stores themselves. Some will take foreign credit cards, some might not, but I'm sure you can pull cash or bank transfer or something. Applecare is cheaper there so you might want to do that as well. At the moment I think this is cheapest but its in NY

    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/582543-REG/Apple_MC247LL_A_3_Year_AppleCare_for_15.html


    Oh look, cheap applecare in LA......

    http://www.lacomputercompany.com/cgi-bin/rpcart/featured.cgi?group=appcare


    Applecare is worldwide.

    Then set it up while you are there and carry it back on the flight.
     
  18. rikscha macrumors 6502a

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    Mar 8, 2010
    Location:
    London
    #18
    This is tax fraud. Your Macbook might end of being 2-5x more expensive than buying in NZ directly.

    ----------

    absolutely not true, I don't know from which strange country you are from, but i.e. in Germany they will take this very serious and will check your notebook and other stuff, especially when coming from countries such as the US.
     
  19. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

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    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #19
    Check them against what? Unless the country's immigration department has a list of everything the resident took out of the country....how will they know the resident is bringing in something that he did not leave with?

    I know friends in South Africa have to declare stuff before leaving. So that is why I shop at B&H for them. Visitors are never asked to prove they are taking out of the country everything they brought into the country.
     
  20. Wong Jowo macrumors newbie

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    Oct 29, 2012
    Location:
    Worcester, MA & Yogyakarta, Indonesia
    #20
    Went to Sydney Australia few months ago, brought 15" rMBP and Canon EOS 5D MKIII for a friend. Not sure how much cheaper they are in AUS, I bought all items in New Hampshire, no sales tax. Custom officer at SYD didn't ask anything other than where I was coming from and how long I was going to stay, so I didn't declare them.
     
  21. Mr MM macrumors 65816

    Mr MM

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    Jun 29, 2011
    #21
    I never had any problems, I have quite a few countries under my belt already. And yes the customs think people are normal, thus they are going to carry their notebooks, cameras, cellphones, mp3 players, watches, perfumes, jewelry... there are a lot of items that are deemed common and thus they dont really care.
     
  22. rikscha macrumors 6502a

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    Mar 8, 2010
    Location:
    London
    #22
    You are committing tax fraud and seem to play the whole issue down. You are a thief simply as that.

    ----------

    They will just ask for the original proof of purchase. It is not very difficult and common practice.
     
  23. Mr MM macrumors 65816

    Mr MM

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2011
    #23


    me? no. i pay the 50% tax over the personally imported items. Believe or not its still cheaper that way.
     
  24. the dairy giant thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 6, 2004
    #24
    can of worms, anyone?

    thanks for everyone's input though.
     

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