Best shipping method to avoid customs

36
Posted 18th Oct
Hi.

I have ordered from geartbest several times in the past (including a phone and a tablet) and never had any customs.

Now looking to buy the most expensive thing so far - around 350$ worth notebook from AliExpress.

This listing has 2 shipping methods - DHL or AliExpress standard delivery. I'm not sure how the standard one works, but I have seen other people mention to avoid DHL as it will most likely come with customs charges. Should I go for the standard one or it doesn't matter?
Never ordered. from AliExpress before.
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There's a freephone hotline to specifically assist with this type of question: 0800 788 887
36 Comments
In a compartment in the sole of your sandals
I doubt you’ll be able to due to the size and the fact it’ll have a battery. Expect around £100 in charges.
Basically you want to avoid the express courier services like DHL, UPS etc. Standard airmail delivery is usually the best route but there's never a guarantee.
Edited by: "Spark" 18th Oct
There's a freephone hotline to specifically assist with this type of question: 0800 788 887
You could get a plane to the destination, put it up your bum then return home.
Edited by: "choccie32" 18th Oct
3 million items per day with 12 people to look at for snail mail under 2.5kg....There is your answer. Talked about on Brexitcast vat episode last week. Avoid fast mail but it's a lottery if you item is pulled out
Why do you want to avoid Customs?
choccie3218/10/2019 14:50

You could get a plane to the destination, put it up your bum then return …You could get a plane to the destination, put it up your bum then return home.


Good luck trying to fit a Boeing 787 up your jacksie but maybe a small Cessna could be doable.

Edit - Accidentally put "smell" instead of "small" originally.
Edited by: "Haircut_100" 18th Oct
Haircut_10018/10/2019 14:56

Good luck trying to fit a Boeing 787 up your jacksie but maybe a smell …Good luck trying to fit a Boeing 787 up your jacksie but maybe a smell Cessna could be doable.


Smell? Smelly? Yeah ok. If you’re going to make an attempt at being clever at least make sense.

Ps. The OP didn’t mention buying a Boeing on AliExpress, and wanting to commit tax fraud on it.
Edited by: "choccie32" 18th Oct
Avoid DHL for sure, but again it’s all luck. Personally I have ordered stuff up to £120 never had any problem.
IamMT18/10/2019 14:56

Why do you want to avoid Customs?


Why the hell do you think? Because VAT and duty are essentually legalised theft.
choccie3218/10/2019 15:04

Smell? Smelly? Yeah ok. If you’re going to make an attempt at being clever …Smell? Smelly? Yeah ok. If you’re going to make an attempt at being clever at least make sense. Ps. The OP didn’t mention buying a Boeing on AliExpress, and wanting to commit tax fraud on it.


Sorry for the typo, should have been *small* not smell.

Your comment was "You could get a plane to the destination, put it up your bum then return home", to which I replied "Good luck trying to fit a Boeing 787 up your jacksie but a small Cessna could be doable". Looks like the joke went totally over your head.
I use DHL and China Post regularly and do not pay any customs fees. If you tell your supplier to undervalue the cost if they don’t do this automatically anyway then you should not get any customs fees.
Spark18/10/2019 15:05

Why the hell do you think? Because VAT and duty are essentually legalised …Why the hell do you think? Because VAT and duty are essentually legalised theft.



Would you like to elaborate how you have come to this conclusion?
fearona18/10/2019 16:37

Would you like to elaborate how you have come to this conclusion?


Well what exactly are you paying for? The goods were made, processed and shipped from outside the UK. The UK government have had no part in providing them to you so why should they be permitted to take a cut of the cost? Your council tax money will fund its eventual disposal if it breaks or you don't need it anymore at the end of its useful life.

It's often said that history's biggest con was the devil convincing the world that he didn't exist. I disagree. I think history's biggest con was governments convincing parts of their population that sales taxes were justifable.
Spark18/10/2019 17:01

Well what exactly are you paying for? The goods were made, processed and …Well what exactly are you paying for? The goods were made, processed and shipped from outside the UK. The UK government have had no part in providing them to you so why should they be permitted to take a cut of the cost? Your council tax money will fund its eventual disposal if it breaks or you don't need it anymore at the end of its useful life. It's often said that history's biggest con was the devil convincing the world that he didn't exist. I disagree. I think history's biggest con was governments convincing parts of their population that sales taxes were justifable.


You need to do better than that or we would all be importing goods from the cheapest country ourselves and avoiding tariffs etc whilst doing people out of jobs here. Taxes tariffs etc are there for multiple reasons.
Legalities aside,

In theory it's possible currently while we are in the EU, if the item gets shipped to Europe then despatched to UK,

For example posting item to a freight forwarding company in Germany then sending via DHL from Germany. Some Gearbest sellers use DHL anyway and they occasionally slip through the net If they are sent through Europe first.

Edited by: "CarlosBricktop" 18th Oct
fearona18/10/2019 17:08

You need to do better than that or we would all be importing goods from …You need to do better than that or we would all be importing goods from the cheapest country ourselves and avoiding tariffs etc whilst doing people out of jobs here. Taxes tariffs etc are there for multiple reasons.


They're there because of government greed. Nothing more, nothing less.
CarlosBricktop18/10/2019 17:24

Legalities aside,In theory it's possible currently while we are in the EU, …Legalities aside,In theory it's possible currently while we are in the EU, if the item gets shipped to Europe then despatched to UK,For example posting item to a freight forwarding company in Germany then sending via DHL from Germany. Some Gearbest sellers use DHL anyway and they occasionally slip through the net If they are sent through Europe first.


That does not negate the obligation to pay local tax when the item hits EU, it simply moves the burden of paying it to another entity, likely based on a colourfully lower retail value than the actual purchase price. Similar concept used when an item hits a UK-based forwarder, such as for EGC sales to UK customers.
Spark18/10/2019 17:27

They're there because of government greed. Nothing more, nothing less.


So do you think there should be no VAT/duty on any product that is manufactured outside of the UK that is sold in the UK high street/online (washing machines, clothes, etc)?
Spark18/10/2019 17:27

They're there because of government greed. Nothing more, nothing less.


Ah ok no real reason from you other than you don't like it.
Spark18/10/2019 17:01

Well what exactly are you paying for? The goods were made, processed and …Well what exactly are you paying for? The goods were made, processed and shipped from outside the UK. The UK government have had no part in providing them to you so why should they be permitted to take a cut of the cost? Your council tax money will fund its eventual disposal if it breaks or you don't need it anymore at the end of its useful life. It's often said that history's biggest con was the devil convincing the world that he didn't exist. I disagree. I think history's biggest con was governments convincing parts of their population that sales taxes were justifable.


You are paying to reduce taxation elsewhere, unless you can stop the country from spending £x mill/bill somewhere.
AndyRoyd18/10/2019 21:22

You are paying to reduce taxation elsewhere, unless you can stop the …You are paying to reduce taxation elsewhere, unless you can stop the country from spending £x mill/bill somewhere.


No you are not. Even non-socialist countries like the US use sales tax as a means to rip off the population. It's just a government's easy way of holding the general population to ransom.
fearona18/10/2019 17:48

Ah ok no real reason from you other than you don't like it.



I don't just not like it. I despise it.
OllieSt18/10/2019 17:37

So do you think there should be no VAT/duty on any product that is …So do you think there should be no VAT/duty on any product that is manufactured outside of the UK that is sold in the UK high street/online (washing machines, clothes, etc)?



Correct.
Spark19/10/2019 10:39

Correct.


Bearing in mind VAT alone represents about 13% (£87 Billion 2013-14) of government revenue, what would you suggest should be the government's alternative method to collect this shortfall if your ideas were put in place? Or are you suggesting UK plc can just afford to absorb the costs?
Edited by: "OllieSt" 19th Oct
Spark18/10/2019 17:01

Well what exactly are you paying for? The goods were made, processed and …Well what exactly are you paying for? The goods were made, processed and shipped from outside the UK. The UK government have had no part in providing them to you so why should they be permitted to take a cut of the cost? Your council tax money will fund its eventual disposal if it breaks or you don't need it anymore at the end of its useful life. It's often said that history's biggest con was the devil convincing the world that he didn't exist. I disagree. I think history's biggest con was governments convincing parts of their population that sales taxes were justifable.


Not that straight forward. You do know that some countries prohibit importation of goods to protect their own manufacturing dont you?

Charging duties and vat on a shipment to bring the price to a similar level is a lot of time a way of making you think twice and protecting manufacturing locally.
Spark19/10/2019 10:39

Correct.


You're username does you no justice, you need to add 3 words before it.
Spark19/10/2019 10:36

No you are not. Even non-socialist countries like the US use sales tax as …No you are not. Even non-socialist countries like the US use sales tax as a means to rip off the population. It's just a government's easy way of holding the general population to ransom.


It is not a political statement; it is fiscal reality. A country will still spend whatever the country needs to spend to function, if the funding for that spend is removed from one route it will need to be replaced by another route, or not spent = public services cut / economies. I am not suggesting what is the best taxation route to obtain the cash to run a country as that would be political; I am simply stating an a-political fiscal reality. If revenue from import tax was ceased and not replaced from increasing other taxation, the deficit would be obtained by spending on borrowing, which is still a future cost requiring future revenue.
AndyRoyd19/10/2019 10:48

It is not a political statement; it is fiscal reality. A country will …It is not a political statement; it is fiscal reality. A country will still spend whatever the country needs to spend to function, if the funding for that spend is removed from one route it will need to be replaced by another route, or not spent = public services cut / economies. I am not suggesting what is the best taxation route to obtain the cash to run a country as that would be political; I am simply stating an a-political fiscal reality. If revenue from import tax was ceased and not replaced from increasing other taxation, the deficit would be obtained by spending on borrowing, which is still a future cost requiring future revenue.



Then would you like to tell me why many parts of the world including parts of the US and Canada manage to survive and even thrive perfectly well without sales tax?

The last time I checked Alberta wasn't a total post-apocalyptic wasteland.
Spark19/10/2019 11:05

Then would you like to tell me why many parts of the world including parts …Then would you like to tell me why many parts of the world including parts of the US and Canada manage to survive and even thrive perfectly well without sales tax?The last time I checked Alberta wasn't a total post-apocalyptic wasteland.


Cos those areas have sufficient revenue for public services from other income streams, simples.
AndyRoyd19/10/2019 11:40

Cos those areas have sufficient revenue for public services from other …Cos those areas have sufficient revenue for public services from other income streams, simples.


Not true. Alberta's economy depends mostly on oil and gas, the service sector and technology, similar to many parts of the UK, especially Scotland. Like the UK they also have a generous welfare system and free universal healthcare for Canadian citizens, permanent residents and long term legal foreign workers. Legal immigration rates are also higher than the UK levels.

There are some societal differences which I won't go into right now for risk of derailing this thread but hopefully you see my point.
Spark19/10/2019 12:10

Not true. Alberta's economy depends mostly on oil and gas, the service …Not true. Alberta's economy depends mostly on oil and gas, the service sector and technology, similar to many parts of the UK, especially Scotland. Like the UK they also have a generous welfare system and free universal healthcare for Canadian citizens, permanent residents and long term legal foreign workers. Legal immigration rates are also higher than the UK levels. There are some societal differences which I won't go into right now for risk of derailing this thread but hopefully you see my point.


You asked the Q: Well what exactly are you paying for?
You were told the A: You are paying to reduce taxation elsewhere.
You don't agree with this tax and clearly other taxes. Your opinion is respected, but your opinion does change the reality of the answer.
AndyRoyd19/10/2019 12:29

You asked the Q: Well what exactly are you paying for?You were told the A: …You asked the Q: Well what exactly are you paying for?You were told the A: You are paying to reduce taxation elsewhere.You don't agree with this tax and clearly other taxes. Your opinion is respected, but your opinion does change the reality of the answer.



No I don't agree with your opinion at all, sorry. I consider all forms of taxation to be legalised theft but sales tax is least justifiable method of all.
Spark19/10/2019 15:59

No I don't agree with your opinion at all, sorry. I consider all forms of …No I don't agree with your opinion at all, sorry. I consider all forms of taxation to be legalised theft but sales tax is least justifiable method of all.


The answer is fact not opinion. Your opinion is still respected.
AndyRoyd19/10/2019 16:17

The answer is fact not opinion. Your opinion is still respected.


I don't accept your answer as an entirely accurate and impartial fact however we've probably derailed the thread a bit too much at this point.
Edited by: "Spark" 19th Oct
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