Shipping to and from the USA

Posted 17th Apr
Wondering if anyone has experience with something like this. My parents live in the US and can get a new iPad Pro via education discount for much less than UK equivalent price (over £150 less). I would give them my old iPad. I'm wondering, though, if you can send something to the UK as a "gift" and not have to deal with VAT or customs. Similarly I'd send my iPad to them as a gift. Any idea of cheapest way to do this and if it is possible.

I sent a large, heavy box via UPS for a friend who moved to California and it was just under £50 so a small package should be much less, right? Any thoughts appreciated.
Community Updates


" 2.2 Do I have to pay import duties and/or import VAT on goods sent to me? Most goods arriving in the UK, from outside the UK or EU, are liable to any or all of the following taxes:

  • Customs Duty
  • Excise Duty
  • import VAT
and must be paid whether:

  • you purchase the goods or receive them as a gift
  • the goods are new or used (including antiques)
  • the goods are for your private use or for re-sale"…ers
The courier will probably bill you for the charges several weeks after it is delivered. I have had this happen in the past.

I would also be worried about it going missing in the post.
as above it probably wont be worth it, we have had gifts sent from friends to family members here and in the end we have had to tell them not to bother, gifts not being the cost of a Ipad.
Minimum 20% import fee to UK regardless of gift status. You could attempt to understate the value but most peeps would consider that as drifting towards fraud, plus it would cause transit insurance issues.
Thanks that’s all very helpful. I won’t bother.
Cheapest route to obtain such a device with UK-based post-purchase support is likely grey import via any provider that offers the conditional combination of rolling all import fees into the cost price and permits direct payment by credit card and / or PayPal Credit (not standard PayPal account method), where both those payment routes will provide one of the ticks required to qualify for UK-based S75 protection. If you are not familiar with S75 qualification criteria do not go this route.
Two such potential sources may be WC or EGC.
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