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buying something on ebay question

kuba

TRIBE Member
I'm not an experienced ebay buyer. I want to buy a lens from someone in Chicago, for $600. It is made in Japan.

Do I pay taxes/duty on something like this?
 

WestsideWax

TRIBE Promoter
Unless the seller indicates otherwise, buyer pays all duties and taxes. Some independent sellers are willing to declare sent items as gifts, but if it's a straight up retail purchase, count on paying extra at the border.
 

alexd

Administrator
Staff member
Pay extra for insurance on your shipment. If the seller does not declare the full value you paid on the customs form, but reduces the value on the form in order to save you potential Canadian customs duty and GST on the Canadian end - if the lens is lost in transit you will never get the full amount you paid the seller back in an insurance claim.

Canada Customs is really weird sometimes when it comes to applying duty and GST on packages arriving from the USA. I have found, if I used FEDEX or another courier option, I often got charged tax, but if I had the seller ship via USPS (post), I rarely got charged tax on the item when I picked it up at the post office.

Also Kuba, you should pay by Payal for lenses in particular in case there is an issue as it adds an extra layer of buyer protection. Mold in the lens can be a problem if it is an older classic lens, or the drive my be sketchy if it is a newer AF lens, stuff you can't see in the posted ebay photos.
 

rudebwoy

TRIBE Member
or you can use a third party company that will provide you with a PO box in the states and you can go pick it up there. i use Kinek.com. it costs me $5 to have items shipped to a UPS store 3 minutes from the queenston-lewiston bridge. you're able to get better shipping rates, quicker delivery (next day most times, no customs holding packages for undetermined amounts of time) and if you catch the border patrol on a good day (or are willing to risk it and lie that you don't have anything to declare) you'll avoid any duty.

c.
 

ravinjunkie

TRIBE Member
or you can use a third party company that will provide you with a PO box in the states and you can go pick it up there. i use Kinek.com. it costs me $5 to have items shipped to a UPS store 3 minutes from the queenston-lewiston bridge. you're able to get better shipping rates, quicker delivery (next day most times, no customs holding packages for undetermined amounts of time) and if you catch the border patrol on a good day (or are willing to risk it and lie that you don't have anything to declare) you'll avoid any duty.

c.
I use cbi-usa.

ALWAYS DECLARE SOMETHING. It doesn't have to be your lenses, but it's extremely risky to declare nothing and cross.
 
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rudebwoy

TRIBE Member
I use cbi-usa.

ALWAYS DECLARE SOMETHING. It doesn't have to be your lenses, but it's extremely risky to declare nothing and cross.
100%. last time i crossed with a new pair of running shoes the officer and i had a discussion about the trouble finding shoes for people with big feet then let me go w/out having to pay duty on over $300 worth of stuff. they always do a double take when my answer to their question "how long have you been in the US for" is "about 20 minutes"...

c.
 

octo

TRIBE Member
Camera stuff is duty free. Try to get it shipped USPS. Fedex and ups can hit you with brokerage fees.

I would pay for insurance on $600 lens
 

kuba

TRIBE Member
thanks guys.

I wouldn't bother driving down to buffalo for a lens as I'm not a frequent ebayer but thank you for the idea, if I do become one.

Forgot about insurance-good idea.

This seller on kijiji flaked out on me this weekend and I really want to add a wide angle lens, so I found some options on ebay and voila, your advice is helpful (to the people who responded).
 

OwenThomas

TRIBE Promoter
Camera stuff is duty free. Try to get it shipped USPS. Fedex and ups can hit you with brokerage fees.

I would pay for insurance on $600 lens
Not all camera stuff. Camera bodies for sure get dinged with tax. I think lenses are considered "accessories" so there's little or no duty for some reason.

But like others said, you can sneak bodies through if they're declared gifts. That's easier when buying used.

United State Postal Service is the way to go!
 
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