UK buying from US

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by mac2thefuture, Aug 11, 2007.

  1. mac2thefuture macrumors 65816

    May 15, 2007
    Lancashire, North West, UK
    It's far more cost effective for a UK resident to buy from our friends in the US.
    Now I've looked at the Apple re-furb store in America and there seem to be a number a attractive deals.
    Would a purchase work with no issues in the UK (other than the power cable)?
    Roughly speaking - if any UK residents have purchased from the US - how long does it take from payment to goods received take?
  2. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Jul 4, 2004
    Got to remember: UK prices include VAT @ 17.5%. Local US prices don't include sales tax.

    After you've paid VAT and import duty, you'll be left with very little difference. I doubt the Apple refurb store in the US will ship to the UK anyway. There's always the UK refurb store...
  3. CrackedButter macrumors 68040


    Jan 15, 2003
    51st State of America
    A lot of people make a thread about this and over the years I've never heard of anybody actually doing it. Even myself tried this and its not worth the hassle of it all, you've not got to the stage yet where you're thinking about the warranty either have you? Because that's fun as well.
  4. mac2thefuture thread starter macrumors 65816

    May 15, 2007
    Lancashire, North West, UK
    Interesting and valid points - what's the tax % in the US?
    However - i imagine it's illegal not to sell to someone due to their residency
  5. gnasher729 macrumors P6


    Nov 25, 2005
    Many years ago I ordered memory from the USA; saved a few hundred dollars. That was at a time when eight megabyte of memory was really expensive! Memory is about the smallest thing you can buy, so you don't pay much for postage, it was still a bit of a hassle because I had to pick it up at customs myself.

    I think you could buy an iPod or a MacBook in the USA if you are on holiday there; the MacBook has the problem that you'd need a new charger. I think an adapter say from UK to US power connectors would be hard to find, because most US equipment built for 110 Volt would explode if you plug it into UK 230 Volt. An iMac wouldn't have that problem; all you need is a different cable, but then try getting that on an air-plane and then try getting it through customs!

    And you don't safe much. You'll have to pay US sales tax, which would be hard to get back, and you only save money if you illegally avoid paying the 17.5% VAT.
  6. gnasher729 macrumors P6


    Nov 25, 2005
    It may be illegal not to sell to someone due to their residency. It is perfectly legal not to ship into foreign countries.
  7. BBC B 32k macrumors 6502

    Aug 5, 2005
    The power adaptors are universal and work in most countries. I have used a MacBook, iBook and iPod chargers all over the world with no hassle. The chargers even have a little detachable plug part which is the only bit you need to change. Apple sell a world travel kit which is simply a box of these plugs to suit most countries.

    Apple laptop warranties are worldwide. Not sure about the iMacs though.

    Only thing I buy abroad are iPods and that is in duty-free on the way out so I save 17.5 % - NICE :D Off to Canada in two weeks and may get me a :apple:TV
  8. rdowns macrumors Penryn


    Jul 11, 2003
    It varies by city and state (some have none) but 8% would be a good average number.
  9. G4DP macrumors 65816

    Mar 28, 2007
    Called Apple a while ago.

    A few years ago I called Apple about this. They said that. They won't do it. If it was bought through a third party e.g. Amazon, then the manufacturers warranty becomes invalid.

    So if you want to take the risk good luck.

    Actually thinking about it, I think Amazon no longer let you do it either.
  10. mac2thefuture thread starter macrumors 65816

    May 15, 2007
    Lancashire, North West, UK
    Umm, done a fews calcs and at best it's about £50 cheaper in the US for a like-for-like MBP( assuming 10% tax) then of course there's the shipping and poss cables etc - in the end - no point as most of you've stated - ah well.
  11. mkgm1 macrumors regular

    Jun 2, 2007
    If you can get the notebook with a Higher Education discount from here (or know someone who could get one for you), then there's absolutely no difference.

    Initially I was really excited because after tracking down some cheap flights (£200 return), I figured that I could fly to NYC, buy a MBP, have a holiday and then bring it back, and it'd be the same price as a MBP from over here. Of course once you add stuff like sales tax over there, and VAT over here (which tbh I wasn't planning to pay anyway), then it's no longer such a good deal. Factor in the HE discount, and there's no point whatsoever.
  12. teflon macrumors 6502a


    May 28, 2007
    Depending on the province, you're most likely to get 13+% sales tax :(. Dunno how much cheaper it is after that :eek:. However, go to Alberta and you won't have to pay the provincial sales tax (PST) which brings it down to 6% :D. Do :apple:TV have worldwide warranty though?

    To the OP, if you're just happening to be on a trip to the U.S., try to get to a tax free state and it'll be worth it. They usually have refreshed or open box items that might be around the same price as the refurbs. You'd have to "sneak" it into the UK to avoid paying the VAT though. But the U.S. Apple online store doesn't ship to the UK or anywhere else other than the US for that matter.
  13. Ad Pro macrumors member

    Jul 4, 2007
    I have been looking at the Apple Cinema Displays in the US referb store as there hasn't been any in the UK refurb store for ages. The 30-inch ACD's have 55% off which would be a great saving.

    However Apple says this on there website:

    "Shopping outside the U.S.
    There are more than 20 Apple Online Stores in countries around the globe. The online Apple Store U.S. currently ships only within the 50 United States. We do not ship to freight forwarders. If you would like to purchase Apple products from outside the U.S., please see our International Store Directory to find out if an online Apple Store serves your country."

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