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shipping from UK to US

shipping from UK to US

Old Feb 5th 2009, 4:25 pm
  #1  
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Default shipping from UK to US

Hello,
My husband is a Brit now living in the US. He managed to bring over most of his belonging with him when he moved in October 2008, however he still has his computer that he desperately wants over here. Yes he has gotten all the extensions and connections to make it work here, No he will not sell it.

My question is, he has it boxed and ready to go. He checked before he left to see what it would cost to ship it over and it was about $300 USD. But the Royal Mail told him that he will have to pay customs fees in the US to get it, and may have to pay the cost of the computer through customs. This upset him since he paid $2,300 GBP for it and its now 4 years old.

Does anyone know anything or have any links that might help us figure out what its going to cost to get through customs? He doesn't want to have his family mail it over just to find out we can pick it up because customs wants $4,000 for a 4 year old computer.

We have called the USPS and the Royal Mail and neither one seems to know anything.

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks!

~Kate
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Old Feb 5th 2009, 10:24 pm
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Default Re: shipping from UK to US

check out the US customs site? Though for something that old I don't think there'll be any customs due.
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Old Feb 5th 2009, 11:07 pm
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Default Re: shipping from UK to US

Why doesn't he have them ship over the hard drive(s) with all his data on and get a new one here. Much cheaper, he gets and up to date spec and all he has to do is copy his data back over.

Not much work for a new computer and if the customs charges are what you've been told probably less money.
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Old Feb 6th 2009, 12:02 am
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Default Re: shipping from UK to US

As already said shipping a computer seems a bit daft, but if you can prove it's that old it's essentially worthless so shouldn't have duty. Surface mail would be cheaper, too, but the hard drive ought to be hand carried if possible (and certainly backed up).

P.S. Should probably keep post in one forum.
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Old Feb 13th 2009, 5:44 pm
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Default Re: shipping from UK to US

Originally Posted by wtkp0u View Post
As already said shipping a computer seems a bit daft, but if you can prove it's that old it's essentially worthless so shouldn't have duty. Surface mail would be cheaper, too, but the hard drive ought to be hand carried if possible (and certainly backed up).
I dunno, we've been looking into mailing one PC in advance, to tide us over until the rest arrive. Turns out Royal Mail are not the cheapest. We happened to have kept the boxes that it came in, so had size, weight etc and ParcelForce International Economy, which takes 28 to 30 days turned out to be nearly twice as expensive as 5 day FedEx (via Parcel2Go).

Even so, it's still about £110, which makes me wonder about just buying a new one when we get there and taking the drive, as others have suggested.

Might look at excess baggage charges though...
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Old Feb 13th 2009, 10:16 pm
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Default Re: shipping from UK to US

i'd ship it via excess baggage or someone like that. They will be more aware of the customs situation than royal mail. If he is immigrating it should be free of customs duties (I think) but given the break between Oct and now I'm not so sure.

I'm pretty sure the customs form I filled in had a bunch of questions about what was coming. They wanted a copy of my visa as well. Would be worth checking that out.

Goat.
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Old Feb 13th 2009, 11:59 pm
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Default Re: shipping from UK to US

Originally Posted by chartreuse View Post

Might look at excess baggage charges though...
bloomin' well more pricey...
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Old Feb 14th 2009, 4:22 am
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Default Re: shipping from UK to US

The phrase you want is "Used Personal Effects"

When you're shipping stuff into the US, the shipping company gets you to fill out CBP Form 3299. What I'm not sure of, and can't find any reference on the web, is whether for a mailed package, you can just write "Used Personal Effects" on it, or you need to attach Form 3299, or something more (details of visa etc.). Shipping is kind of different to mailing. Might be worth contacting CBP...

EDIT: Digging around further, it seems that Form 3299 is just for shipping companies. Sending by postal service is simpler. You attach the little green (CN 22) / big white (CN 23) declaration as appropriate (all post offices have these). When the parcel arrives at the port, a customs official does the formal "entry" on your behalf based on whats on the declaration (as opposed to shipping companies which have to have customs agents to do that). If there's a problem, they contact the addressee, who then has to complete the formal paperwork. So a customs declaration with "Used Personal Effects" should do the trick. I think!

Last edited by rew1000; Feb 14th 2009 at 4:54 am.
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Old Feb 14th 2009, 7:01 am
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Default Re: shipping from UK to US

Originally Posted by Bob View Post
bloomin' well more pricey...
Yup, you're right - especially as we're flying DL TATL then switching to a separate res with AA for the domestic legs. Excess baggage charges have really shot up since I last looked at them.

Which brings me to the next option - cut down on the clothes I bring, wrap the PC in bubble wrap and stick it in a suitcase...
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Old Feb 14th 2009, 7:25 am
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Default Re: shipping from UK to US

i meant the shipping company not excess baggage with an airline... check them out. I used them to send some small stuff we forgot we had after the movers had been.
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