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Issues i faced importing to Europe and how they've been resolved


#1

I wanted to give a quick rundown of events that happened during the shipment of my raptor.
even though nothing of this was onloop’s.fault, he was very helpful in the process.thanks again!

prior to this i have already imported 3 eskates into my country Switzerland. one from the U.S. and two from Germany. each time it went without a hitch. this time though it didn’t go as smooth.

The Raptor
one day after the box was shipped from Australia, i got contacted by local DHL. they wanted to know if the content of the package is an “electric scooter”. i informed them that it’s an electric skateboard. next question was “how fast does it go”. i stated potentially 30kmh. i was then informed that anything faster then 25kmh will need a VIN (vehicle identification number) number. i explained that this is not possible for a skateboard and that in it’s current state it doesn’t even drive anyway (keep in mind the battery get’s shipped separately). eventually the DHL guy said he would check which rules apply in this situation and would get back to me.
two days later on the second call he required me to provide an email that states:

  1. What’s the Product
  2. Brand Name
  3. Type (Name)
  4. Serial Number of the motor

Once i provided this information I haven’t heard back from them. Not even a confirmation though.
So the certainty and big relief came today with the box itself! (yeay)

The Battery
This package was shipped from Austria (not Aust-ra-lia). This time i received a letter from the Post that prompted me to state the value of the shipment. i called them to explain that it’s a part of a bigger shipment, only to learn that this wouldn’t matter. I ended up sending them the price of the S.P.A.C.E battery. They then confirmed that i would receive the battery by the end of week …i didn’t. So i called again, this time they said, due to the fact it’s part of a bigger shipment (oh now it mattered) i would need to provide the hole receipt as well. i did, but was worried because the S.P.A.C.E battery isn’t listed separately on that document. but when i called them today i was guaranteed that the battery was now sent off. i’ll know for sure tomorrow.

maybe what you can learn from my little incident is how to act, what to say or what to do to if you get contacted as well. don’t lie but only tell them what they specifically asked for. this way you might prevent yourself some trouble. then again the hole thing didn’t get as complicated as i feared it would.

cheers


#2

ALSO, i think i need to change my shipping methods.

Specifically regarding how the battery is being shipped sperate.

I will lower the value of the main package (the raptor) by $450, because it doesn’t include a battery inside, this way you can avoid paying duty twice.

I will also change the description of raptor from “skateboard parts” to “sporting goods” maybe this will help to avoid stupid questions about the speed of it.


#3

[quote=“onloop, post:2, topic:1306”]
I will lower the value of the main package (the raptor) by $450, because it doesn’t include a battery inside, this way you can avoid paying duty twice.

I will also change the description of raptor from “skateboard parts” to “sporting goods” maybe this will help to avoid stupid questions about the speed of it.
[/quote]These are very good ideas and should help prevent a lot of potential issues.


Do you think it would be possible to implement a system for providing invoices to your customers via email at the same time as you send them a shipping notification? I know you send shipping notifications now. You also send order confirmations. Both of these have an order number so the information can be cross referenced. That said, if there is no order, such as a warranty replacement, the customer doesn’t currently have specific content or value information for their package. I suppose you already have to do this for your shipper, tying a shipping number (or waybill) to specific contents of a specific value. Giving the same information to your customers at the same time might help them too. I’d imagine a particular benefit, to your customers, if they have multiple shipments of various values shipping in a relatively short time frame.

Perhaps your current systems don’t allow for this to be easily implemented, or the time to implement isn’t worth the benefit. In that case, I suppose, it’s simply something to consider for the future.


#4

@howser, glad to hear it finally turned out OK for you.

I know I’ve said this before but if you’re selling complete boards on the EU market, at one point someone will get smart and you’ll have problems for not having a CE declaration for the assembly.


#5

That’s probably a good point. Though, @howser is in Switzerland, which isn’t part of the EU.


#6

Good morning,

Hi,

I would buy a Raptor dual Motor skateboard but I live in Italy. In Italy we have to pay taxes. How could I do? In the Invoice can put a lower price as a sale of a used skateboard?

Thanks


#7

Just a hint to all of you who think that putting a lower price on the invoice will help in EU: this is not the case at least in most of the European countries!

Customs do have internet access and the frequently use it to validate invoices and might ask for paypal receipts stating the correct numbers and/or additionally bank statements too. If you can’t prove it with realistic numbers they even might send the item back to where it came from on your expense. Better be cautious with that, it’s based on some experience.


#8

To me it looks like you either get lucky and not be checked (especially with parts that look like cheap arduinos or skateboard wheels) or get checked and pay the normal fees. As the receiver of a package you will not be at fault so it can only be in your favor if the value gets declared lower.

–> not get checked: pay nothing - get checked: pay normal fees you would have had to pay anyway if the value was declared correctly

But it has to be said: This is tax evasion!


#9

:frowning: it’s impossible for me to have this board :frowning: