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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am normally a supporter of the "buy from your local model shop" brigade and I do practice what I preach.

Unfortunately my very excellent local shop is not big on DCC at the moment so I took the advice of someone on one of the forums and used "Tonys Trains" in USA(usual disclaimer)

How brilliant are they, I ordered 7 decoders (Lenz/TCS) on 26th June and they arrived today 4th July.

The cheapest cost in UK from one supplier inc P&P was £152 my credit card bill shows £98 from Tonys Trains.

Can't get better than that.
 

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QUOTE (Bilbo @ 4 Jul 2006, 18:00) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>The cheapest cost in UK from one supplier inc P&P was £152 my credit card bill shows £98 from Tonys Trains.

Can't get better than that.

The £152 would equate to around £130 without VAT - the problem with VAT free US imports is when Customs & Excise do their bit & slap import duty on, then 17.5% VAT & then the Post Oddice apply a surcharge for collecting it !

Just a point to bear in mind.
 

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QUOTE (dbclass50 @ 5 Jul 2006, 05:44) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>The £152 would equate to around £130 without VAT - the problem with VAT free US imports is when Customs & Excise do their bit & slap import duty on, then 17.5% VAT & then the Post Oddice apply a surcharge for collecting it !

Just a point to bear in mind.
In my experience, and I do almost everything by mail order, I only get hit with tax if my stuff is sent by UPS which is prefered by a lot of American suppliers. If you can avoid it don't use UPS as your stuff will get impounded by customes and you will not get it till you pay the VAT. I avoid dealers who use them. For some reason UPS seem to give everything to customs. I have never had these problems with anything sent by any other postal service.
 

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I always get things sent normal airmail or air parcel post. Having things sent by UPS airmail is a waste of money as gets here, to Australia, no faster, seems to attract more attention from customs. Often with just using airmail my parcels just seem to go through customs and never get opened. Tony's Trains is definetly one of the best to deal with both for product, service and price.

Ozzie21
 

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QUOTE (neil_s_wood @ 4 Jul 2006, 23:24) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>For some reason UPS seem to give everything to customs.

UPS insist on correct descriptions of the goods i.e. model ****** rather than toy ******, thats why customs get involved.
UPS, being the size company it is tend to do everything by the book.
Retailers (& possibly customers) who apply incorrect descriptions may be on dodgy ground.
 

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QUOTE (dbclass50 @ 5 Jul 2006, 15:16) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>UPS insist on correct descriptions of the goods i.e. model ****** rather than toy ******, thats why customs get involved.
UPS, being the size company it is tend to do everything by the book.
Retailers (& possibly customers) who apply incorrect descriptions may be on dodgy ground.
I reckon they get a comission from customs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thats interesting because Tonys Trains used UPS and it wasn't a problem. Was I lucky ?
 

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QUOTE (Bilbo @ 5 Jul 2006, 17:44) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Thats interesting because Tonys Trains used UPS and it wasn't a problem. Was I lucky ?
Yes you were. They have cost me 100's of pounds over the years. f:censored:g
s

Quite honestly every single package I have had delivered from them has involved surcharges of up to 100% of the value of the goods. Regardless of whether I had it delivered to The UK or to Australia.
 

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UPS present as much as possible to Customs as UPS get a rake-off on the duty paid to Customs.........a similar rip-off to the fee added by Royal Mail.......

Avoid UPS at all cost - I had to return a loco to the US for repair and the the manufacturer (Overland Models) insisted on using UPS to return the model and charging me for the priviledge.

UPS called me when the item arrived back in the UK. I explained the the situation to UPS and faxed them the documentation showing that item had been sent from the UK. Ok they said, no duty to pay.

Couple of days later UPS man arrived and demanded £120.00 duty etc. Based on above-mentioned discussions with UPS refused to accept the shipment. It then took 2 weeks of further discussions with UPS for UPS/Customs to agree that no duty was due.....

For me it's US Postal Service/Royal Mail every time..........
 

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QUOTE (dbclass50 @ 5 Jul 2006, 06:16) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>UPS insist on correct descriptions of the goods i.e. model ****** rather than toy ******, thats why customs get involved.
UPS, being the size company it is tend to do everything by the book.
Retailers (& possibly customers) who apply incorrect descriptions may be on dodgy ground.

It is an offence for the sender to misdescribe the nature or value of the goods. The declared value must also include the shipping costs so you will be charged duty and VAT, as applicable, on those as well as the actual goods.

It does seem to be a lottery, regardless of the delivery route, as to whether you get charged or even charged correctly (I've had Duty when there should only be VAT, incorrect exchange rates used, VAT calculated at some random rate other than 17.5%, etc., etc.).

Andrew
 

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QUOTE Quite honestly every single package I have had delivered from them has involved surcharges of up to 100% of the value of the goods. Regardless of whether I had it delivered to The UK or to Australia.
This surely isn't correct? Duty payable on imported goods isn't 100%, its a maximum in the UK of 4.5% (Toys) plus VAT. UPS can't charge more than the government state surely??
In fact according the HMRC web site the duty on Toys is variable between 0% and a max of 4.5% plus VAT at 17.5% No postal group can charge a handling fee for VAT otherwise every shop in the land would be making thier customers pay. Its just one of those things that VAT is collected on behalf of the govenment free of charge!
Customs Duty Then download the 'Common Internet Goods' PDF file.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Holds his hands up in horror!!!
On closer inspection of package what I though was UPS was in fact USPS US postal Service.
Sorry for misleading you but nevertheless the discussion has been enlightening as some of us now know who to avoid and some of the pitfalls.
Of interest is the fact that on Tonys website , in the notes on shipping overseas, they state they may send items in a number of small packages, perhaps this keeps the weight and size below a level of interest to customs ?
 

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QUOTE (Bilbo @ 5 Jul 2006, 18:16) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Of interest is the fact that on Tonys website , in the notes on shipping overseas, they state they may send items in a number of small packages, perhaps this keeps the weight and size below a level of interest to customs ?

One of the reasons for this is to keep the shipping charges down - it is often cheaper to send say 4 x 1kg packages than 1 x 4kg !

Good point about the size level/interest to customs though.

Pity for the UK retailer it's not a level playing field though.
 

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QUOTE (Brian @ 6 Jul 2006, 02:06) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>This surely isn't correct? Duty payable on imported goods isn't 100%, its a maximum in the UK of 4.5% (Toys) plus VAT. UPS can't charge more than the government state surely??
In fact according the HMRC web site the duty on Toys is variable between 0% and a max of 4.5% plus VAT at 17.5% No postal group can charge a handling fee for VAT otherwise every shop in the land would be making thier customers pay. Its just one of those things that VAT is collected on behalf of the govenment free of charge!
Customs Duty Then download the 'Common Internet Goods' PDF file.
Yes it is and they do. I bought a carpet in India. I paid the equivalent of forty quid for it and had it shipped to Scotland where I lived at that time. When UPS delivered it they demanded 40 quid before they would release it. They door stepped my mum who was actually at work at the time (neighbours told UPS where she worked) and she had no idea of the value of the item so she just paid it. When I appealed they stated that this was the value of the item in the UK, or what they thought it was. Where there is no easily defined value of the goods, they just guess. In this case it was 100% of the value of the item.

In Australia I have had two shipments overtaxed because of UPS. The tax rate here is 10% yet I was charged 15% in one instance and 20 in another. I have just paid it as you have to go through a lengthy appeal process and do not get your item till it is resolved months later

Brian, Please have a good think to yourself in future before you start accusing people of lying. What would anyone possibly have to gain.
 

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QUOTE Of interest is the fact that on Tonys website , in the notes on shipping overseas, they state they may send items in a number of small packages, perhaps this keeps the weight and size below a level of interest to customs ?

I have also been advised this by Royal Mail, Australia Post and the German dealer I buy from. Size is also a variable which increases cost of postage as well as weight. Customs tend to go for the bigger items as they cannot check them all.
 
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