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Aussie customs sucks

leighianson

Member
Messages
1,883
For the last few years I've been under the impression that if I brought gear into our beautiful Aussie shores I'd get charged roughly 15%, made up of 10% GST and 5% Duty. However that just isn't the case.

I currently have an amp held in customs and they charged me $500Au on an amp that was $1700US! Apparently it's not just a flat rate but takes into consideration the weight and size of the item and the country from where it came.

I'm a bit pissed off but I'm sure that once I plug in the Club 40 my frustration will disappear.

Anyway, thanks for letting me vent TGP.
 

DrainBamage

Member
Messages
2,407
Ive only hade US postal service ship me parts from the Europe. No fees for that stuff. Ive thought of buying amps and stuff but this post certainly has me thinking.
 

Crash-VR

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,173
Ive only hade US postal service ship me parts from the Europe. No fees for that stuff. Ive thought of buying amps and stuff but this post certainly has me thinking.
So maybe just have them take the amp apart and ship it as "parts"?!
 

bibir

Member
Messages
919
And here I just thought that I would buy a Louis amp and import it to aussie. That is a 2700$ amp, custom would be like 750aud? Crazy..

One question to the OP tho, are you required to pay it in cash when they deliver it to you? What is the custom clearance process in aussie? I just moved to SA last couple of months ago..
 

aryasridhar

Member
Messages
460
For the last few years I've been under the impression that if I brought gear into our beautiful Aussie shores I'd get charged roughly 15%, made up of 10% GST and 5% Duty. However that just isn't the case.

I currently have an amp held in customs and they charged me $500Au on an amp that was $1700US! Apparently it's not just a flat rate but takes into consideration the weight and size of the item and the country from where it came.

I'm a bit pissed off but I'm sure that once I plug in the Club 40 my frustration will disappear.

Anyway, thanks for letting me vent TGP.
Indian Customs is even worse, 29% duty, they consider the cost, shipping cost, weight, they won't clear in a day (so storage cost) and a lot more....I know people who had to pay over 39% in some cases...there's no transparent fixed duty!!
 

Vai81

Member
Messages
1,054
And here I just thought that I would buy a Louis amp and import it to aussie. That is a 2700$ amp, custom would be like 750aud? Crazy..

One question to the OP tho, are you required to pay it in cash when they deliver it to you? What is the custom clearance process in aussie? I just moved to SA last couple of months ago..
There's 2 ways of doing it, pay a customs broker to pay it for you which then you'll have it quickly released and sent to you or go through the usual Australia Customs process which can take a while to clear. This is if you use USPS to ship the item.

Otherwise, if the amp is being delivered by someone like FedEx, you can pay for it using your credit card before they deliver it.
 

leighianson

Member
Messages
1,883
Yep I just paid with my CC on he phone with the Aussie FedEx in Sydney.

Also something worth noting, I've brought in amps before and they weren't stopped by customs, so it's just kind of the luck of the draw.
 

Vai81

Member
Messages
1,054
For the last few years I've been under the impression that if I brought gear into our beautiful Aussie shores I'd get charged roughly 15%, made up of 10% GST and 5% Duty. However that just isn't the case.

I currently have an amp held in customs and they charged me $500Au on an amp that was $1700US! Apparently it's not just a flat rate but takes into consideration the weight and size of the item and the country from where it came.

I'm a bit pissed off but I'm sure that once I plug in the Club 40 my frustration will disappear.

Anyway, thanks for letting me vent TGP.
That sucks Leigh. Seems the prices have gone up. I remember paying about $300 for my Two Rock when it landed. It was more expensive than your amp too.
 

Bluesful

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
42,085
I currently have an amp held in customs and they charged me $500Au on an amp that was $1700US! Apparently it's not just a flat rate but takes into consideration the weight and size of the item and the country from where it came.
That's crazy.

I imported an amp from the US in September 2014 and I didn't have to deal with that.

It makes importing amps almost not worth it.
 

Bluesful

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
42,085
Just realised something. It may be FedEx.

The amp in my post above was shipped using USPS - no issues.

My Danocaster was shipped via FedEx - big customs issues. Long story, but I got shafted and extra $400ish.

Maybe it's FedEx? With my Danocaster they seemed overly cautious about every little thing and got Customs out to their depot here in Perth to look at it.
 

bibir

Member
Messages
919
I think it's because of fedex. Everytime I send using fedex I always got a high amount to pay afterwards, it's because while our item is held at the custom fedex actually charge us for warehouse fee etc. I don't know if this is your case too or not.

What I am interested is, you mentioned that your other amps was never held by custom, am I wrongly assume that all items above 1000aud WILL be held due to customs that needs to be paid regardless whether it's usps or fedex?

Yep I just paid with my CC on he phone with the Aussie FedEx in Sydney.

Also something worth noting, I've brought in amps before and they weren't stopped by customs, so it's just kind of the luck of the draw.
 

dumbell78

Member
Messages
4,963
Sucks big time, most likely due to FedEx. Sometimes you get lucky and it slides under their radar. Hopefully the tone makes up for it!!
 

leighianson

Member
Messages
1,883
The amp was shipped using USPS Global express Guarenteed which is apparently a joint venture between USPS and FedEx, with the latter being on the Aussie end.

I'll remember to avoid anything FedEx in the future...

At least it got here quick. It only left Milwaukee last Wednesday!
 

Bluesful

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
42,085
I'll remember to avoid anything FedEx in the future...
Yep...........I'll do the same I think based on your experience, and my experience in the past.

At least it got here quick. It only left Milwaukee last Wednesday!
That is quick. You guys on the east coast are lucky that way. Shipments take a week longer to get over here in Perth (unless it is routed through South East Asia).

Enjoy the amp mate. I'm jealous of that one!
 

suparsonic

Member
Messages
3,442
Should be 10% GST being the only extra charge if the amp was made in the U.S. Due to the Free Trade agreement. Otherwise you need to do your homework.
 

BADHAK

Member
Messages
9,670
$500 to get a US $2500 Landry out of Customs and $200 to get a US $900 74 Superlead.

The Aussie dollar and the exorbitant shipping is enough to make you think twice about getting amps from OS, but getting sodomised by your own beurocracy spelt the end of my amp shipping days.
 
Messages
1,497
That seems reasonably consistent with what we would pay when we import.

Duty and Tax is charged on the combined cost of the item AND shipping after exchange.
Then add in FedEx fees and Govt charges and it adds up quick.

I'm not aware of weight/size being a factor for something even as big (or small if you look at it the other way) as an amp. Definitely going to ask my DHL rep about that.
I'd be curious to see a break down of your charges.

Anyone importing that sort of thing into Australia from the US needs to learn their harmonization codes. If you can show that what you're importing is an accessory to electric guitar and use the right HS code you should avoid the 5% duty. GST will still apply.

It's a pot luck with USPS. They hand over to AusPost for clearance and delivery and I assume AusPost check at random due to the sheer volume they deal with. Every now and then a delivery will sneak through unscathed.

FedEx, DHL and UPS seem to never miss, though it did happen once with FedEx - like winning the lottery!
 

effectsman

Member
Messages
3,635
I think Goodwood has it right. I don't know why you think the size of the item or weight impacts what you pay, unless the legislation has changed recently.

I've imported two amps from the US. Both times it has been 5% duty on the cost of the item after converting to AUS dollars, plus 10% on the cost of the goods + shipping cost combined, plus anoth $50 or so for customs processing fee.
 






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