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Thread: If you buy fabric from outside your own country...

  1. #1
    Super Member Favorite Fabrics's Avatar
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    ... and have it shipped in to you...

    Do you know whether your country charges duty/taxes/fees, and how much?

    Just curious to know if most people who buy out-of-country already know those financial details. And if they researched the issue first, or learned by doing.

  2. #2
    deema's Avatar
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    Yes, I knew, though I wasn't sure of how much and still don't know the "formula" for it, just that there ARE charges. I try to never buy anything that will be shipped from out of Canada via UPS because the brokerage fees are outrageous. Otherwise, for fabric, I have never paid anything extra on delivery...I'm sure I read something on Connecting Threads (where I buy a lot) that the extra taxes and whatever are added to the order before shipping specifically so that DOESN'T happen. I've never found my shipping costs from them to be overboard, and even with them, I'm still paying way less for fabric from the US than I do in Canada.

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    easy, phone your relevant authorities and ask, and if fabric over the limit ask seller to put lower amount on outside of package, they are usually willing---------I do NOT mind paying the tax BUT strongly object to paying the whopping fee charged by the postal services to collect it!

  4. #4
    Super Member Favorite Fabrics's Avatar
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    Mayday, please don't be offended by my comments but... if you ask the sender to declare a lower value than what the fabric is, you are asking them to falsify official government documents. We've been told (just today, in fact, by our FedEx rep) that the penalty for that is $10,000 per occurrence. So you are in effect asking a stranger to take a risk and break the law on your behalf, so that you can save some money.

    Also... if you want your package to be insured, then you have to declare the full value. Otherwise, it won't be fully insured.

    And packages can and do get lost sometimes. It's a big world out there!

  5. #5
    deema's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Favorite Fabrics
    Mayday, please don't be offended by my comments but... if you ask the sender to declare a lower value than what the fabric is, you are asking them to falsify official government documents. We've been told (just today, in fact, by our FedEx rep) that the penalty for that is $10,000 per occurrence. So you are in effect asking a stranger to take a risk and break the law on your behalf, so that you can save some money.

    Also... if you want your package to be insured, then you have to declare the full value. Otherwise, it won't be fully insured.

    And packages can and do get lost sometimes. It's a big world out there!
    This is true. I've seen many sellers on Ebay specifically state that they WILL NOT declare a lower value on the documents for this very reason.

  6. #6
    Super Member Favorite Fabrics's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by deema
    I read something on Connecting Threads (where I buy a lot) that the extra taxes and whatever are added to the order before shipping.
    I looked that up, and it sounds like they might be using FedEx or UPS to act as the broker, to speed things through Customs by collecting the taxes and fees from the sender (rather than the recipient) and then remitting them to the proper authority in Canada.

  7. #7
    deema's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Favorite Fabrics
    Quote Originally Posted by deema
    I read something on Connecting Threads (where I buy a lot) that the extra taxes and whatever are added to the order before shipping.
    I looked that up, and it sounds like they might be using FedEx or UPS to act as the broker, to speed things through Customs by collecting the taxes and fees from the sender (rather than the recipient) and then remitting them to the proper authority in Canada.
    My packages from them (CT) have always been delivered by Canada Post...anything through UPS usually gets to me with Purolator...Now FedEx, I'm not sure of, so that could be...but would FedEx hand off to Canada Post? I don't know if they would or not? I do know that my shipping and taxes from them have never come close to the brokerage fees of UPS that I have to pay on delivery ($42. and change, every time, which is why I try not to order when I know they'll be the shipper).

  8. #8
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    I learned by doing.

    When I order fabric to be shipped to Canada, sometimes I have to pay a Customs fee of $5.00. I have never been charged duty, but have been charged GST (5% goods and services tax).

    I never know what will happen. Most of the time the parcel comes through with no charges, but every now and again Customs will go the $5 +GST.

    My understanding was because of NAFTA that we don't pay duty on things made in the USA but if they are imported to the US and then shipped to Canada we could pay duty.

    If I can't get it shipped by USPS, then I don't buy because UPS fees to ship to Canada are exorbitant.

    I would never mess with Customs by asking the seller to falsify. That's a serious offence.

  9. #9
    Senior Member bunniequilter's Avatar
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    I ordered from a few different shops online. Some orders I had to pay duty, some I didn't. In my experience it's not a given you will be nailed for duty. Ordering from etsy.com, I have never had to pay duty.

  10. #10
    Super Member Favorite Fabrics's Avatar
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    This is useful info.

    I'm getting the feeling that packages sent via USPS have a chance of going through without taxes, even if the value is high enough that they should be getting caught. Does that sound like what's happening?

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