I don’t know about you – but I still haven’t mastered the art of buying on-line. It doesn’t matter how the goods are described and look on the internet – I am always disappointed when the parcel arrives from overseas. However, I do know for many of you shopping on-line is a great and essential shopping experience – so here are a few tips that you might not be aware of :
Don’t just assume that you won’t be charged GST, duty or an extra courier fee or ‘import entry transaction fee’ when buying overseas. I bought some pairs of pink Converse shoes from an Australian on-line store recently and the order came to around $452 NZ dollars. I was kindly advised by their Customer Services Department that I would get charged extra taxes given the total cost of my goods, so they suggested that I place two separate orders, to ensure I was under the threshold.
Check the Custom’s Service website so that you can work out in advance, what you are likely to be charged. Better still – click on whatsmyduty.org.nzDon’t forget to include any freight costs, as that also incurs duty.
Of course if you buy something and you don’t like it and/or it isn’t what you thought it would be – unfortunately you can’t get any of the tax or duty back that you may have paid. Best scenario is to on-gift it or sell it on Trade Me. It may fit someone else just perfectly.
Some over-seas websites of course have currency converters, so you can see how much it will cost in NZ dollars. However they don’t supply all the duty and GST information, so you need to check as it can differ depending on which country you are buying from.
Note to self : don’t forget how important it is to support local industry. Perhaps spare a thought for the person that may have made your goods from overseas hoping they got paid a decent wage. Lastly – quality over quantity I say.