Question on customer bill purchasing from ebay seller outside US

  1. I bought an item from a seller in Italy a couple months ago & just received my customs bill from Fedex. I did a little searching here & the bill just seems off..

    The item was a cotton shirt for 140.00 USD - this is what the seller indicated on the documents. The customs bill from Fedex is for $53.10! Almost 35% of the cost! They have a customs charge of 16.5% ($23.10), a random charge of $25.00 which isn't explained anywhere, and a $5.00 advancement fee. Does this seem normal for any of you who order from overseas? Based on what I'd researched, I thought it would either be below the limit for a customs charge, or about 10% of the item price...Any help is appreciated. :shrugs:
     
  2. I'm not sure whether or not the taxes were calculated right, but I do know that some courier services like FedEx, UPS, etc. charge a brokerage fee (I assume that's the random $25 charge) which helps expedite the package through customs.

    I would also think that you received the customs bill before they release the package to you? I'm not sure, maybe someone with FedEx shipping/receiving experience can help you there.
     
  3. I've received customs bills after-the-fact - that is, I received the package with notification that customs would be due, then later an invoice. I would agree that the $25 is probably the brokerage fee, which seems really outrageous. Was the item marked as a gift or as merchandise? My understanding is that there is a $100 limit for gifts and a $200 limit for merchandise - for anything over those limits, customs is due. In some countries, you have the option of refusing delivery of the package if the customs assessment is too high, and then it's returned to the sender. Also, if the item is sent via mail rather than FedEx, there
    should be no brokerage fee. All that said, apparently textiles are among the most highly-taxed imports.
     
  4. Thanks for the feedback - it was not marked gift & it was under $200.00, so I was suprised to have to pay anything. I did receive the package two - three weeks before the bill - at that point I had already used the item :confused1:
     
  5. Here if you get an express package, the fee is CHF 35 or about USD 30. Ouch, bas******! The other thing is the VAT. It sucks. The limit here is USD 65, gift or not. Grr. You are not alone.