Getting One of my HG's and I'm worried!

Mar 7, 2007
920
1
Ohio
Hi Ladies,

I am in a bit of a quandry! I am buying a bag that I have been searching for for quite sometime. It is an older bag, but it is gorgeous and brand new with tags and I am paying way over retail for her because 1.) I just know I will never find another in brand new condition, and 2.) I am soooo weak and once I saw the pics any and all rational thinking flew right out the window.

Here is the quandry part: I am in the U.S. and the bag is coming from another country. The seller will use EMS (?) which is fully trackable and underdeclare the bag and mark as a gift for me. Obviously, since I am already paying a lot for this bag, no customs fees would be great. But, my husband thinks that maybe it is too risky and it might be better to just declare the full value and pay the customs fees in case the bag gets lost or something, since it is what I would consider "irreplaceable". I have never bought from another country so any thoughts would be welcome! Thanks.
 

jburgh

BV ~ Ferragamo ~ TODs
Moderator
Authenticator
O.G.
Aug 17, 2007
15,193
636
In the Forest
Hi Ladies,

I am in a bit of a quandry! I am buying a bag that I have been searching for for quite sometime. It is an older bag, but it is gorgeous and brand new with tags and I am paying way over retail for her because 1.) I just know I will never find another in brand new condition, and 2.) I am soooo weak and once I saw the pics any and all rational thinking flew right out the window.

Here is the quandry part: I am in the U.S. and the bag is coming from another country. The seller will use EMS (?) which is fully trackable and underdeclare the bag and mark as a gift for me. Obviously, since I am already paying a lot for this bag, no customs fees would be great. But, my husband thinks that maybe it is too risky and it might be better to just declare the full value and pay the customs fees in case the bag gets lost or something, since it is what I would consider "irreplaceable". I have never bought from another country so any thoughts would be welcome! Thanks.
To underdeclare the value is actually illegal. Like tax evasion.
 

pluiee

O.G.
Mar 3, 2007
3,550
8
i actually think it's better to declare full value and be hit with the charges and be sure you have something in the end. i know it sucks to pay customs and there are ways of getting around it but if you're paying over retail, you definitely want to be sure you'll get it. i mean if you're already paying over retail, maybe you should get her to fedex it? i know it'll be more expensive but it might be worth it to be sure you'll get it.
 

fiatflux

O.G.
Jun 16, 2006
4,324
2
EMS is actually EXTREMELY reliable. It's preferable to Fedex for international shipments, in my opinion. Also, I know people have taken that underdeclaration risk many a time w/EMS and never had a problem...but it's up to you whether or not you want to take the chance. I think maybe you shouldn't, since it is your HG & there is always some risk of loss or damage.
 

Hanalei

O.G.
Dec 20, 2006
156
0
Kauai
I had a bag sent EMS from Australia and it came very quickly(to Hawaii). They put the value at $500 which was far less than I paid and put it as a gift and I still paid $124 in customs. Did you use a credit card to pay? Maybe they will cover it if it does not show up.
 

sunny07

O.G.
Sep 13, 2007
1,927
127
I agree with the posters above- it sucks to have to pay customs BUT this is your holy grail and you're already paying a lot for it. Better safe than sorry- post pics when you get your bag!! :smile:
 

Shasta

Ms. GoLightly
O.G.
Aug 16, 2006
3,656
0
It's really illegal???? I am a filthy, dirty, lying illegal girl than!!!! I have undeclared the value a kajillion times for buyers, thinking I was just doing them a "favor". How horrible, guess I know now not to do that.

What are you getting???? I am so thrilled for you!
 

Bella

Earth to Bella
O.G.
Mar 22, 2006
4,826
2
I am worried about this customs stuff too....

The only thing I can add is I have bought from a seller in Hong Kong and she ships EMS declares value at $100. It is risky on her part, but the several times I bought from her my items arrived in 2 days at my door, no problems.
She ships this way to all her US buyers. I shipped back to her once the same way and no problems. However, that is the only time I have shipped internationally.
 

LouiseyPeasey

naff
O.G.
Mar 29, 2006
1,648
31
There's a useful document on the US Customs website - on this page: http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/toolbox/publications/travel/ the document called "International Mail Imports". It's primarily meant for travellers mailing stuff home, but it has some other useful information and it's written really clearly (unlike many other customs documents...).

For one thing, they state that mailing via the PO (i.e. EMS) will clear customs more easily and at lower cost than shipping via a commercial courier like UPS or FedEx.

And this little tidbit: "Mail‑order goods from overseas—those ordered from a catalogue or over the Internet, for example—will also pass duty‑free if they are worth less than $200."

So the waiver limit for merchandise is actually higher than the limit for gifts. Which means there's absolutely no benefit to labelling a package as a gift when it's not. And if you're going to undervalue, $200 is better than $100, no? Not that I'm advocating breaking the law or anything.

ETA: BTW, I've had very good luck with receiving merchandise from overseas declared at its actual value - well over $200 - with no customs charges.
 

rollergirl

O.G.
Feb 1, 2006
3,597
12
It is illegal, and I'm not sure if it is always possible to try to understate value for Customs purposes and still have valid insurance for the real value. Of course, the problems arise if it gets lost and you try to file a claim. If you ask a seller to do this for you to avoid paying duties, are you willing to live with it and bear the loss if the uninsured or underinsured package gets lost? As in no claim against the seller, no bag, no insurance?
 

hmwe46

why bother
O.G.
Jun 27, 2006
10,774
27
hey G&G, I am going to move this to eBay and I know there are a ton of threads of this nature that you can check out too.

Good luck :flowers:
 
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