UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Questions about purchasing bicycles and parts

UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Postby kennyk66 » Thu May 09, 2013 12:30 pm

Hi!

I'm travelling to the UK shortly and thought why not pick up a bike while I'm there...
I've done the normal searching on the forums but I wasn't able to find any information about purchasing a bike while in UK and bringing the bike back as luggage.
The "Online Purchases - good and bad experiences" post has been quite helpful but I couldn't find anyone that has done this

The road bike which I want to purchase is around $2k
I want to claim the VAT back while I'm in UK so I understand I need to purchase at a shop that participates in the VAT free shopping scheme which I fill out the form and present that to customs as I'm leaving the airport. All good!

The next step is coming into Australia...
Customs Declaration Form, I'll need to tick the box about bringing in items over AUD$1000.... This means I pay tax
According to Customs website (for imported items purchased over the internet) closest item I could find..... -

10% GST + 5% customs tax
So for a $2k bike 15% tax on 2k is $300
Any other fees anyone knows about?

If no one is sure about this next step is contacting customs directly, I did think about just saying the bike was under $1k but have a feeling that I might get caught out and checking some of the fines, I wasnt too keen on that....

I've started reading the following documents if anyone is slightly interested or was thinking about doing this.... this might help.

Buying over the net - http://www.customs.gov.au/site/page5549.asp
TARIFF CONCESSION SYSTEM - http://www.customs.gov.au/webdata/resou ... mmer01.pdf
Tariff Consession - http://www.customs.gov.au/webdata/resou ... 030212.pdf
http://www.customs.gov.au/webdata/resou ... _90_00.pdf
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by BNA » Thu May 09, 2013 3:39 pm

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Re: UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Postby kennyk66 » Thu May 09, 2013 3:39 pm

I did find this....

viewtopic.php?f=9&t=51660

But I have also found out that you need to use the bike overseas for a min 12 month period before you can avoid the import taxes...
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Re: UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Postby RonK » Thu May 09, 2013 3:48 pm

When you present the bike at customs, tell them that it is used, i.e. you rode it around in the UK and as a secondhand bike its value has depreciated considerably - enough so that no import costs will be payable anyway.
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Re: UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Postby rangersac » Thu May 09, 2013 3:53 pm

How can customs sting you for tax if you bring the bike back as luggage? Presumably they'd have to prove it was newly purchased, which unless you hand over the receipt I don't see how they can? Otherwise customs would tax every person carrying a laptop!
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Re: UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Postby Summernight » Thu May 09, 2013 4:40 pm

Are you going to ride it before boxing and bringing it back to Australia? That's the quickest and simplest way to have it called 'used'. Because it is used if you've ridden it, even once. That's what Australian Customs said to us about goods we get the GST refund on when we took them out of Australia to use them overseas and then returned a week later after our holiday. How are they to know whether you've used it once or 20 times?

Otherwise I'd say throw some dirt on it in the packaging, although if you're buying it over there I would have thought you'd want to unbox it and check that all the parts are there before taking it to Australia as you'd want to find out while you're in the UK about a part missing than have to deal with it when it has arrived back in Australia.
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Re: UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Postby kennyk66 » Fri May 10, 2013 8:01 am

RonK wrote:When you present the bike at customs, tell them that it is used, i.e. you rode it around in the UK and as a secondhand bike its value has depreciated considerably - enough so that no import costs will be payable anyway.


Hey Ronk,
Yeh agreed, I'm only over in the UK for 3 weeks... so I might only ride it a handful of times...
Last edited by kennyk66 on Fri May 10, 2013 8:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Postby kennyk66 » Fri May 10, 2013 8:08 am

rangersac wrote:How can customs sting you for tax if you bring the bike back as luggage? Presumably they'd have to prove it was newly purchased, which unless you hand over the receipt I don't see how they can? Otherwise customs would tax every person carrying a laptop!


Yeh maybe I watch too much boarder security and people getting fined for trying to bring in prohibited items...

a laptop is slightly easier to put in luggage than a bike (obviously I'm taking a bike bag)

I agree with you tho, I'm leaning towards taking it for a ride around UK over the 3 weeks I've got there and getting some dirt on it etc etc.... who knows maybe I'll even have a crash snap the frame in half and the bike will be worth Showtime anyways and all this research is useless!

ha..... really fingers crossed that doesnt happen. I will post pics if it does.
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Re: UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Postby Ross » Fri May 10, 2013 8:10 am

Summernight wrote:Otherwise I'd say throw some dirt on it in the packaging, although if you're buying it over there I would have thought you'd want to unbox it and check that all the parts are there before taking it to Australia as you'd want to find out while you're in the UK about a part missing than have to deal with it when it has arrived back in Australia.


Don't throw dirt on it or AQIS will charge you ~$300 to clean it!
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Re: UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Postby kennyk66 » Fri May 10, 2013 9:19 am

Ross wrote:
Summernight wrote:Otherwise I'd say throw some dirt on it in the packaging, although if you're buying it over there I would have thought you'd want to unbox it and check that all the parts are there before taking it to Australia as you'd want to find out while you're in the UK about a part missing than have to deal with it when it has arrived back in Australia.


Don't throw dirt on it or AQIS will charge you ~$300 to clean it!


How else do I make a brand new bike look old?
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Re: UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Postby Summernight » Fri May 10, 2013 10:58 am

Ross wrote:
Summernight wrote:Otherwise I'd say throw some dirt on it in the packaging, although if you're buying it over there I would have thought you'd want to unbox it and check that all the parts are there before taking it to Australia as you'd want to find out while you're in the UK about a part missing than have to deal with it when it has arrived back in Australia.


Don't throw dirt on it or AQIS will charge you ~$300 to clean it!


:lol: Well, if that's cheaper than being hit with the GST.... Tehehe... Nah, not good to be hit with a cleaning bill... Um... What else can we do? Scratch a bit of the paint work? No, that'd upset Kennyk.

Oh, I know, throw grease/lube on it in artful splashes!!! :shock:

But seriously, ride it and its used. It doesn't have to look old, just used. Problem (hopefully) solved. Just don't ride on British dirt.
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Re: UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Postby mick243 » Fri May 10, 2013 1:27 pm

get some bald tyres fitted to it as you leave...., some old rusted up gear/brake cables, an old well worn saddle and so on.....
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Re: UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Postby kennyk66 » Tue May 14, 2013 6:44 am

Thanks for all the input!

I think worn saddle, bald tires, a bit of grease should do the trick, its a road bike I'm purchasing so wont be riding it on dirt.

Anyone heard of or had any dealing with ribble cycles?
I've heard both good and bad reviews, the bikes look so nice and such good value for money.

Or can anyone recommend any other bike shops like ribble?
I've obviously looked at Evans/Cyclesurgery/Condor etc
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Re: UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Postby Crawf » Tue May 14, 2013 9:55 am

Definitely have a ride before bringing it back and get some grime on it, not too much to warrant Quarantine issues but enough to notice its been used. I'd even turn the box inside out so its not a give away as to whats inside.
Where are you flying in to?
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Re: UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Postby GH » Tue May 14, 2013 11:04 am

kennyk66 wrote:
The road bike which I want to purchase is around $2k
I want to claim the VAT back while I'm in UK so I understand I need to purchase at a shop that participates in the VAT free shopping scheme which I fill out the form and present that to customs as I'm leaving the airport. All good!

The next step is coming into Australia...
Customs Declaration Form, I'll need to tick the box about bringing in items over AUD$1000.... This means I pay tax
According to Customs website (for imported items purchased over the internet) closest item I could find..... -

10% GST + 5% customs tax
So for a $2k bike 15% tax on 2k is $300
Any other fees anyone knows about?

If no one is sure about this next step is contacting customs directly, I did think about just saying the bike was under $1k but have a feeling that I might get caught out and checking some of the fines, I wasnt too keen on that....

I've started reading the following documents if anyone is slightly interested or was thinking about doing this.... this might help.


I have traveled frequently to the US in the past 10 years or so and always bring back car parts etc. I always declare what I have with fair market prices etc. Customs have said to me on more than one occasion that if not in original packing they tend to consider it used.

Where you will most likely come undone with your plan is that having claimed VAT refund exiting UK and the value is over $900 (or maybe $1000 now as per your post) (your tax free threshold when returning to Aus), you have to declare destination at that time, it is very likely Australian Customs will be aware of your UK declaration/claim. Of course maybe not, but I think its a big risk to take, you have declared on official documents in the UK, Customs are pretty well linked worldwide, that the goods are new and how much you paid. If that same info is sitting here in Aus when they look you up any false declaration would be immediately evident.

I will also be in the UK later this year and buying parts for one of my race cars, will be applying to refund VAT leaving the UK and just accepting that I will get hit for up to 15% of the total value when I bring them in through Customs, still about half the local price with GST so I feel its still a good deal. I have found too that when you make a declaration up front, the process is quite smooth and painless and they go out of their way to assist in every way possible to get you on your way quickly. I should point out I suppose that my business is importing commercial goods from the US for sale in Aus, so the last thing I need is dramas with Customs.
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Re: UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Postby kennyk66 » Tue May 14, 2013 11:44 am

Crawf wrote:Definitely have a ride before bringing it back and get some grime on it, not too much to warrant Quarantine issues but enough to notice its been used. I'd even turn the box inside out so its not a give away as to whats inside.
Where are you flying in to?


Heading to UK... I'll bring it back in a used bike bag with all the necessary padding etc...
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Re: UK Bike Purchase (not online)

Postby kennyk66 » Tue May 14, 2013 11:56 am

GH wrote:
I have traveled frequently to the US in the past 10 years or so and always bring back car parts etc. I always declare what I have with fair market prices etc. Customs have said to me on more than one occasion that if not in original packing they tend to consider it used.

Where you will most likely come undone with your plan is that having claimed VAT refund exiting UK and the value is over $900 (or maybe $1000 now as per your post) (your tax free threshold when returning to Aus), you have to declare destination at that time, it is very likely Australian Customs will be aware of your UK declaration/claim. Of course maybe not, but I think its a big risk to take, you have declared on official documents in the UK, Customs are pretty well linked worldwide, that the goods are new and how much you paid. If that same info is sitting here in Aus when they look you up any false declaration would be immediately evident.

I will also be in the UK later this year and buying parts for one of my race cars, will be applying to refund VAT leaving the UK and just accepting that I will get hit for up to 15% of the total value when I bring them in through Customs, still about half the local price with GST so I feel its still a good deal. I have found too that when you make a declaration up front, the process is quite smooth and painless and they go out of their way to assist in every way possible to get you on your way quickly. I should point out I suppose that my business is importing commercial goods from the US for sale in Aus, so the last thing I need is dramas with Customs.


Yeh understand what your saying here... there is both pros and cons of both ways, if I was a business I'd be paying import tax for sure!
Cheers GH
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