I Hate Customs Charges!
I buy many of my headscarves from the US. The company I buy them from sources them from all over the world and they choose ones that can be wrapped in the way needed for headscarves. I can buy patterned scarves easily in the UK, and so a patterned scarf needs to be *very* special in order for me to order it from the US.
The basics though, the solid colour base scarves that are as light as air and can be combined to give stunning effects, and the open weave scarves that go so well with them, and the “underwear” (the bits that stop the scarves falling off, and give shape to the bun at the back) are nowhere to be found here in the UK.
I’ve just collected an order from the Post Office. I thought I had been frugal this time – just two scarves in the order. The international shipping bites every time of course; this time it was something like $12 for a £22 order. But I thought I’d escaped the customs charges.
The VAT threshold on goods coming in has been lowered from £20 to £15. I’m not sure when that happened. I don’t begrudge paying the £3.12 VAT on my scarves (well except that VAT is supposed to be for luxury goods and it goes without saying that my headscarves are essential), but I really really begrudge paying £8 to Royal Mail for their handling fee. EIGHT POUNDS!
And for that payment, I get the privilege of going to the sorting office to collect the parcel. They don’t even deliver it!
Royal Mail, you are a rip off.