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Alembic Club » Miscellaneous » Archive: 2005 » Archive through August 24, 2005 » Looking for info on international shipping - HELP! « Previous Next »

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Senior Member
Username: lbpesq

Post Number: 606
Registered: 7-2004
Posted on Monday, August 22, 2005 - 2:49 pm:   Edit Post

Hey everyone. I'm considering buying a guitar in Australia. I'm in California and have never had to deal with international shipping, etc., before. Any info on recommended methods, companies, and costs would be greatly appreciated. Also, would I have to pay some sort of import duty or tax? Anyone know about how much this might run? I have to get a ballpark idea of what this would cost in total to figure if it's worth it to buy this particular guitar. Thanks for any help.

Bill, tgo
Username: davehouck

Post Number: 2273
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Monday, August 22, 2005 - 3:27 pm:   Edit Post

I'm not a lawyer ..
But from what I understand, if the guitar was originally made in the US, and you are buying it used and shipping it to the US, then there is no import duty. There are definitely others around here who know a lot more about this than I do!
Advanced Member
Username: gare

Post Number: 239
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Tuesday, August 23, 2005 - 6:35 am:   Edit Post

Hi Bill
I work for Federal Express, this is what I'd reccomend.
Your best bet is to contact several carriers, they will walk you thru what will be needed and costs. I'd try UPS,Fedex,DHL.
Restrictions, duties, taxes, etc, vary from country to country, commodity to commodity. And these can change often depending on the political situation existing between the orgin/destination countries at the time.
It should only cost you some time to get a definative answer since all the biggies have 800 type numbers.
Shipping cost will depend on size/volume..as an example, a packaged guitar may go 20 pounds, but due to size it may be assessed as high as 40 pounds.
I'd say a good ballpark figure would be about $2 per pound.
(disclaimer, this is not an advertisment, I dont use us because of cost ;-) )

Senior Member
Username: dnburgess

Post Number: 437
Registered: 1-2003
Posted on Tuesday, August 23, 2005 - 2:15 pm:   Edit Post

UPS, Fedex and DHL have operations in Australia. UPS is usually the cheapest - and they have a good quote generator on their site.

If you are buying from a retail outlet, you will not have to pay Australian GST (10%), as the goods are being exported. Some retailers can deduct it at the point of sale - with others you have to claim it back from the govt. after the sale.

Let me know if you want help checking out the bona fides of the vendor.

David B.
Advanced Member
Username: gare

Post Number: 243
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Wednesday, August 24, 2005 - 6:06 am:   Edit Post

I'll have to go along with David, UPS is generally the least expensive.
There are also a few piddly technicalites such as country of origin for the product,reason why it's being transported, sale/repair/gift/etc.
But, last I heard we weren't at war or anything with Australia, so there should be no major problems.
Oh, and be sure to insure for the replacement value, if you claim a high figure, that could trigger a delay or inspection at customs.


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