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 Post subject: Amazon Example
PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2022 9:30 pm 
PHD From Del Rey University!
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Just an example for resident expats or those comptemplating it.

While I was awaiting residency, I would visit the US every few months to renew my tourist visa. I would use the opportunity to purchase things that were expensive or unavailable in CR. Now that I have residency, those trips are few and far between. As a result, I found myself running out of CPAP supplies with no trip planned this year. So, I tried ordering from Amazon and having items shipped here.

Shipping charges and import taxes vary greatly depending on bulk, weight, and tax category of the products ordered. I needed Resmed Aircurve P10 short tubes, headgear, and nasal pillows. Just 3 of each of these meant $55 in international shipping. I experimented a bit adding and removing other items and seeing how they impacted the totals. I ended up ordering an additional 7 shirts (SPF 50 rash guards, size 4XL) and 200 V60 coffee filters. The merchandise total was $297. The shipping stayed $55 and import duties of $86 (24%). Similar rash guards here at Multiplaza are $60 each and the largest size available I saw was 2XL. They would have had a 13% VAT.

I placed the Amazon order online on August 22. Shipping was via DHL. I was able to track the items all the way. They arrived in CR at 2:30am today and cleared customs 2 hours later. DHL delivered them to the reception desk of my condo at 3:00pm. The Amazon tape was intact and the order was just fine. I did not have to deal with customs or any 3rd party shippers. Total additional expense was around $150 and even in the US there would have been sales tax. Buy button to my kitchen table in 9 days.

I will still load up on stuff during my yearly trip to the US, but a quick online order between trips is easier and less expensive than I expected.

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 Post subject: Re: Amazon Example
PostPosted: Thu Sep 01, 2022 10:57 pm 
Not a Newbie I just don't post much!
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Joined: Fri Dec 20, 2019 2:52 pm
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Location: Soul Kitchen
Good info for us CPAP ers and others,thanks


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 Post subject: Re: Amazon Example
PostPosted: Fri Sep 02, 2022 1:08 pm 
Masters Degree in Mongering!
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Joined: Thu Feb 24, 2005 12:36 pm
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I'm spoiled as I get mask, pillows, tube and filters free every few months with Medicare. I wonder if I could have them shipped to a friend and forwarded. Shipping would probably be a lot more.


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 Post subject: Re: Amazon Example
PostPosted: Fri Sep 02, 2022 4:02 pm 
PHD From Del Rey University!
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Harddrive43228 wrote:
I'm spoiled as I get mask, pillows, tube and filters free every few months with Medicare. I wonder if I could have them shipped to a friend and forwarded. Shipping would probably be a lot more.

I have tried those routes and while they worked, the costs were higher, shipping was longer, and clearing customs was sometimes much longer. The more people involved raise the costs and complexity. Buddies can recieve and send for you, but that can involve your buddy, US Customs, International Shipper, CR Customs, and a local deliverer. Third party shippers can help by ordering any legal product for you, consolidating the shipping, clearing various customs at both end, selecting an interntional shipper and finally facilitating local delivery.

In my example, all of the costs were known up front and a general delivery date was given at the time I ordered. Clearing customs was seamless. Here in CR my items reached SJO at 2:30am . They cleared customs and were on a DHL delivery truck my 9:30am. I had them that afternoon. My thought is that by ordering and paying on the Amazon site the entire transaction was coordinated. Everything was known to be legal, appropriate customs duties were known and collected in advance, everything shipped via DHL on their own planes, so transit was effecient and secure. No boxes needed to be opened, nothing needed to be inspected, no cash needed to change hands.

I will point out that not everything on the Amazon site is eligible for International Shipping, or at least not from every Amazon vendor. For the nasal pillows, only one source on Amazon could ship internationally and they only had 3 units. I checked a specific cosmetic item for my hovia and her $18 eye cream would have cost $120 shipping. Needless to say, she isn't getting it.

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