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|Diamond Card Talk Member|
I am seriously going to have to consider how much I collect and how I buy cards. The last couple of weeks have highlighted that buying cards from the US is getting ridiculous in terms of post/customs charges. Today I picked up a $25 card from the Post Office with a £11.30 ($16.50)customs/handling charge, on top of a $7.99 postage charge, so the $25 card has cost me $50 This is the 2nd time in 3 weeks customs has screwed me. Obviously UK sellers will benefit but with their higher costs I think I will be cutting down on my annual spend as postage generally is adding too much to the cost of my hobby.
|Bronze Card Talk Member|
Sadly I have to agree with you. I try to swith to UK dealers whenever possible. I don't buy boxes/binders etc. from the US anymore. Postage and custom fees are killing that option.
Hammer, you must have had the same snooping Customs cashier I did...I've just had 3 packages tagged for charges in the past week too. Yet I've had about ten packages with much higher values that got through with no problem.
I don't really object to the 20% VAT, but the £8 Royal Mail charge for 'Handling' is a joke!! I had to pay £14.34 in Customs charges a couple of days ago...£8 of it was Royal Mail charging for someone to sit on their wide backside and move the letter from one bag to another.
The problem is, so many cards are just not available from UK sellers and definitely not at decent prices. I'm having to consider just collecting certain sets and not all the ones I'd like to, in future.
|Diamond Card Talk Member|
I don't mind paying the Custom charge it is the £8 handling charge that is killing me
The top 3 factors killing me with the hobby:
1. Postage costs
2. Customs fees
3. Increase in the cost of the products
Just in recent months I was able to deal with UK dealer and get cards much cheaper than if I was buying them from the US or via Feebay.
Only way around it is too find a friendly US dealer that will mark packages in a friendly manner
Absolutely true, I feel the same way here. I´ve calmed down with card collecting a lot. I also try to get as many cards as possible from the same seller/dealer if I buy some cards and hope the package will avoid the customs.
This last postage hike was murder for card collectors. It affected the type of package we send the most..a couple of cards....ALOT. Pity.
Star Trek cards rule, everything else drools.
Hi, Can I ask what may be a silly question, but if you'd paid the upfront fees used by some US ebay sellers would that be cheaper than if you'd been charged here in the UK?
What do you call a set missing more than 10 cards?
In some cases yes, it would be cheaper, but only some, as sellers who offer that new system use it on ALL listings, which is flawed, because you may want to buy a card under $20, which wouldn't need Customs charges anyway, so you'd be paying charges that would never be asked for.
A couple of years ago when we got a ridiculously good exchange rate with the dollar, something like £1=$2, then it would have been great, but at the current exchange, the higher end cards could still cost way more for the charges up front. The world of international postage is more complicated and expensive than ever before.
|Diamond Card Talk Member|
Some of the quotes using the e-bay system are even more expensive and you do have a chance of them slipping through the system or a seller putting a lower figure on the envelope. If you pay upfront then the $20/30 card becomes too expensive anyway. Lately more of my purchases seem to be being caught and it is making it pricey
Sounds like theft to me, pretty much the same as taxes.
If you trade do you still have customs charges. I usually mark everything I send in trade as gift?
I know the shipping kills me to get mailed to the USA on all the Dr Who stuff. I just cant seem to find the cards in the states.n
Collecting Strickly Ink Dr Who autographs and sets. I have traded with bwilson ,BillyZee,STCardGeek,
|Gold Card Talk Member|
Gifts do not attrct customs duty as far as I am aware.However I bet customs would not classify a trade as a gift so if they opened up the package the person the card is going to would get charged or if they were following the letter of the law possibly confiscate the item as they would claim it's deliberate tax avoidance.
That's worse case scenario and 99 times out of 100 it would just get waved through with no charges but the above posts confirm what I have been seeing which is much stricter interpretations and closer scrutiny of overseas mail.The UK government like a lot of others is deep in debt and using every trick in the tax law book to generate income .
Anything over £80 marked as a gift will still be charged .
|Silver Card Talk Member|
I posted on another link about my friend who pre-paid using the new system but still had to pay VAT when the post office got their hands on it. He tried to claim the money back but gave up trying.
I used to enjoy Hunting down missing cards on the Net but have just about given up and go for Master Set direct purchase now to save on loads of high Postal charges. But like Hammer, I've been thinking a while about greatly reducing my buying habits.
I've sent a few parcels to USA recently and they cost £1.88 ($3.00) and that's with decent protection for the card although I tend to avoid padded envelopes if I can. At no point do I need to declare a value of any sort. Coming the other way its cost more than twice that and every parcel I get has one of those green labels with the declared value on it. Already the postage coming this way is double and if the seller puts more that $20 on it there is a good chance customs will hammer it too.
I recently bought two sketch cards from the same E Bay seller at the same time using 'buy it now'. E Bay forced me to pay for each card separately so I had to pay a whopping $7.50 postage on each. The seller then very kindly sent both cards separately, put the full card cost on each envelope and both got caught by customs. I paid the insanely high 'admin fee' twice (!), import duty and $15 postage for two cards which could have easily been shipped together and i'd be about $50 better off. The two cards cost $75 in total before all these charges. The seller got nothing out of the deal whatsoever. Trouble is if you want the cards you have to take the risk but this one was utterly ridiculous.
|Silver Card Talk Member|
Zero, on the Checkout page you can "request total from seller". They then issue an invoice themselves (instead of eBay bots) with the correct postage. So you wouldn't have had to pay 2x $7.50.
Also, if the seller had set it up correctly their end (say $7.50 per item + $2 each additional item) that would have shown on the invoice and again you wouldn't have had to pay 2x $7.50.
When ever I encounter double shipping being charged I always request the total from seller and they sort it out their end.
Never had any problems.
Is beginning to realize that collecting cards is like an itch that never goes away......
Thanks for your reply. I know what you are saying but I couldn't buy the first card and not pay for it immediately if that makes sense. I recently tied my ebay account directly to my paypal account, something you may have been offered too, and I wondered if this was the problem. I couldn't just hit 'buy it now' then buy something else and pay for both later. I've done that lots of times before. I've since un-linked my paypal account and we'll have to see if it happens again.
|Gold Card Talk Member|
Ouch, I am sorry to hear about that expensive experience!
Up until this year, we could mail a card from the US to a different country for about $4, but that recently went up to $7 (for 0-2 ounces, each additional ounce adds a couple more dollars).
That in and of itself wouldn't have changed things so much except for charging the non US buyer a couple of extra dollars for shipping.
The problem is that if we don't have some kind of tracking number, and the card is reported as not arrived (whether it actually did or didn't does not matter to Ebay at all) we are on the hook for not only the value of the card, but also the shipping, which having just nearly doubled, makes it even worse.
Unfortunately, the cheapest online method of tracking we can get in the US for international packages is Registered mail which adds $13 on to the $7 postage for a total of $20 shipping to send just one card without leaving ourselves, as sellers, completely exposed.
It has already had a chilling effect on sellings previously willing to not only ship internationally, but also inexpensively. It is essentially impossible to do so now without exposing yourself to heavy losses on every single item setn internationally without a tracking number.
For that reason, I can basically only send items sold through Ebay worth at least $40 (on the low end) to international address, when I used to send scores of cards around the world for $3-$4 on most transactions.
We had it good for a LONG time, but, like all things, that time has passed, and those days are gone.
Everywhere around this burg they're running out of verbs, adverbs, and adjectives. Everywhere around this town, they're running out of nouns.
Zero, it sounds like you bought an item which the seller used the "Immediate Payment Required" function. Some sellers use this for Buy-It-Now listings to avoid people 'buying' the card and then not paying up, or having to wait days for the payment. So until the buyer pays, the item could be sold to someone else who paid first.
In that case, it doesn't matter about your account being linked up to ebay properly or not, it's just an option that some sellers choose for their Buy-It-now listings. It's annoying, but I don't know a way around it, unless after you've paid for both items you email the seller to ask if they can send the items together and combine the postage. BUT some sellers won't give postage refunds under any circumstances.
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