The national Spanish language newspaper La Nacion advised its readers to take care in figuring their on line savings by buying on the Internet and not from local stores. The disappointment comes at customs where duties and transportation costs may send the price sky high.
Remember, say the writers in weekend edition, sticker price is not the only consideration — much depends on such factors as weight of the purchased item that drives up shipping fees, taxes as well as sticker price.
The paper used as an example what appeared nearly a steal on Amazon.com — a pair of boots that had been offered at US$100 but were half that. The shopper pressed “purchase” and thought no more of it until they picked up their package at the import window. The extra charges brought the footwear to US$156, said the paper.
First comes the transportation cost. Next, The come taxes on the item in the country of origin. Then there are the charges of your courier company, for international shipping but also handling in customs. Once in the country, customs sets an additional charge.
Customs can charge four taxes: The import duty (0-15%), selective consumer tax (between 5% and 20%), the Emergency Law takes a 1% cut and the sales tax which went into effect this year on Internet trade (13%). Customs duties are hard to calculate: they can run from only 1% on books to 55.71% on a videogame console.
Red tape can create a snarl, as well. If you order such items as cosmetics, medicines or food, you’ll have to get a special import permit. Not only does this take time but can be costly as well,. “In cases of restricted articles like these, processing permits may cost $10 to $12,” cautions manager Carlos Herrera of Aerocasillas.
Herrera suggests that to avoid those headaches and nasty surprises when you pick up your package, consult before hand with the importing courier company for their input. They’ll give you the real price you will pay when all is said and done.
Article by iNews.co.cr