Adsense Code

Monday, 13 February 2012

UK Customs Import Value lowered to £15 / 15 GBP

It has recently been pointed out to me by a few followers on Twitter that on the 1st November 2011 HM Revenue & Customs lowered the import value from £18 (around $25.50) to £15 (around $23).

Basically what this means is that if you were to purchase something from America (or from outside the EU) that is over £15 then you are subject to Customs Tax

So if you are going to buy something from Amazon USA that is over £15 and you do not pay the Custom Tax despoit then you will likely be charged by Customs when the item arrives through the mail. Some website such as Planet Axel post the item directly into Royal Mail (or your countries postal method) so you will not be charged.

Additionally if the item was purchased privately, such as on eBay, you can request the seller to send it as a GIFT, which then allows a Customs value of up to £40 - yet again if the item is marked higher than £40 on the box then you will be subject to customs charge.


  1. A useful tip to try to avoid those pesky £8 Royal Mail "handling charges" is to go via amazon USA, choose "expedited" shipping - it should then add an estimate of the taxes to your order, and then use that to pay your tax as the item comes into the country.

  2. Quick question, I recently purchased Darker than black season 2 on blu-ray from and I got hit with one of these "handling charges" totalling in £12.27! I am not willing to pay this, on the piece of paper that royal mail put through the door it says, they will hold the item for 3 weeks before returning it to the sender.
    So my question is, will refund my order once it has been returned to them from royal mail?

    1. I'd say NO, because when you return something it has to be authorised by them first (i.e. you can't send it back without them knowing) - you could always highlight "return item" on amazon, but they usually give you a number that has to be placed on the box.

      I've encountered custom charges before but i've always paid up since i wanted the product.