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Damn you Brexit!! Astroboot closed to UK temporarily


AstroNebulee
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Such a shame that Astroboot uk arent shipping to the UK right now because of Brexit and EU trading laws, so much great items on there that would help me immensely .  Lets hope that they can be back in UK business soon.

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I may be viewing things through a 'simple' lens, but I can't imagine it being all that difficult to do.  HMRC works for other countries outside of the EU so that much should be a known quantity, the EU trades outside of the EU so that much must also be a known quantity, am I being too simplistic in expecting businesses to put these two pieces of knowledge together in a timely fashion, like sometime over the past four years?

Edited by jonathan
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********B word alert****** 🤣🤣

Let’s just make sure to stay away from any contentious conversations please so the thread can stay open.

Cheers,

Stu

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4 minutes ago, Stu said:

********B word alert****** 🤣🤣

Let’s just make sure to stay away from any contentious conversations please so the thread can stay open.

Cheers,

Stu

Taken on board and noted oops 🤐 😁

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16 minutes ago, jonathan said:

I may be viewing things through a 'simple' lens, but I can't imagine it being all that difficult to do.  HMRC works for other countries outside of the EU so that much should be a known quantity, the EU trades outside of the EU so that much must also be a known quantity, am I being too simplistic in expecting businesses to put these two pieces of knowledge together in a timely fashion, like sometime over the past four years?

Still be nice if they could still ship to the UK, there's so much stuff on there and several bits I could get really cheap. It wasn't until I saw another member suggest something from astro boot for another member and went to look and 😔, hopefully not to long until they open please. No mention of b word @Stu😉

Edited by LeeHore7
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1 hour ago, banjaxed said:

Astroboot have not been dealing for a while if I am not mistaken.

yeah they were closed for stock taking and refurb I think it was and then with the new rulez have temporarily ceased as have several others.

Catch now will be the hit of VAT and duties, then throw on the carrier's cut for "handling" that for you and there will be quite a hike in prices.  Now carriers handling the charges and billing you isn't new of course but will be a shock to many:
Brexit: 'I was asked to pay an extra £82 for my £200 coat' - BBC News

Risk for the EU seller now is that the buyer rejects having to pay the extras and the carrier has to then return it to sender, no idea what happens about costs in that case.

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3 minutes ago, DaveL59 said:

yeah they were closed for stock taking and refurb I think it was and then with the new rulez have temporarily ceased as have several others.

Catch now will be the hit of VAT and duties, then throw on the carrier's cut for "handling" that for you and there will be quite a hike in prices.  Now carriers handling the charges and billing you isn't new of course but will be a shock to many:
Brexit: 'I was asked to pay an extra £82 for my £200 coat' - BBC News

Risk for the EU seller now is that the buyer rejects having to pay the extras and the carrier has to then return it to sender, no idea what happens about costs in that case.

I'd hope that in future there'll be some more options to include the fees upfront - especially as I **think** VAT only kicks in at £39 and so many astroboot items would be fine. 

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1 minute ago, rnobleeddy said:

I'd hope that in future there'll be some more options to include the fees upfront - especially as I **think** VAT only kicks in at £39 and so many astroboot items would be fine. 

Doesn't that include the shipping cost as well and not just the cost of the goods?

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Just now, DaveL59 said:

Doesn't that include the shipping cost as well and not just the cost of the goods?

Good point. I'm not sure. I was under the impression we had tariff free trade with the EU but once again, my definition must be wrong!

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ahh but tariff isn't VAT or excise duty, unfortunately.

Gone are the days I expect of having bought stuff over there and paying local taxes you can freely walk into the UK carrying them and not have to pay again. Wonder if they'll be starting to check serial numbers on anything you're carrying that looks new like back in the old days...

Edited by DaveL59
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For various hobbies I've bought direct from the USA, HMRC has different duty cut-offs for different types of goods, the info is all there for the reading on the HMRC website.  Yes, it's a bit of a pain having to pay import duties and maybe VAT as well, but it's not difficult to do and any trader in the EU who really wants to do business overseas will sort out those so they're already paid as part of the price.  Interestingly, never had to pay import duties on goods from China or Hong Kong, dunno how that works but seems to me EU traders could learn a thing or two from how that's done.  Sounds to me that a lot of the problems seem to be on the EU side.

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I've been stung a couple times buying gear from the far east, so now I split orders to be smaller and further apart if from the same seller/same parts. Been hit from the US before too and on a used part which was annoying. New sure, but used, really?!? The "handling" fees can really sting if the item isn't high value too, £18 in one instance which on top of the duty doubled the price of the item. 

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For B2B import is tax free, but paid at point of sale in the UK. If you are buying from TS in Germany two options I see: 

  1. TS is registered with HMRC and you pay the UK Tax at point of sale.
  2. TS does not charge you local Tax and you pay on import.

Questions, presume its up to UK buyer to pay tax in import is TS not charging local tax on a sale?

Are the teething issues going to be fixed soon? No, every one is focused on Corvid vaccination program so no bandwidth. We voted for this right? 

Rant ->

As far as people saying anyone who wants to trade will just get it done, all the paper works has been moved from the centre so it doesn't exist for a company to having to be repeated by each company themselves. If a large company like M&S cannot get Percy Pigs made in Germany, imported to a warehouse in UK and then re-exported to Ireland sorted out then I doubt that small companies will be able to trade. I don't see companies throwing away equipment like clothing companies are, I just see cross border trade going to be hard selling directly to customers.

And if you live in NI, treated as EU now from April for trading products now:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-55768788

Edited by Deadlake
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3 hours ago, DaveL59 said:

hmmm, seems there's potentially big costs to the suppliers if good are rejected back to them when the end-client doesn't want to pay the extra charges

Brexit: Retailers warn they could burn goods stuck in EU - BBC News

Rules of origin come into play too, just to make it even more fun.

This is a good question, e.g.

LZOS made in Russia imported into Germany and then resold, how that works under rules of origin I don't know.

Take FLO, buy from Baader in Germany, warehouse in UK, sell abroad. Will this be Percy Pig scenario?

 

 

Edited by Deadlake
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9 minutes ago, LukeSkywatcher said:

Excuse my ignorance, but if Astroboot UK are based in the UK, why are they not shipping to UK addresses?.

Their front page says

"AstroBoot UK is currently closed.

AstroBoot orders ship from the EU. The procedures set out in the trade agreement between the UK and the EU for supplying goods to the UK are, in their initial form, excessively burdensome and complex for small businesses such as AstroBoot. As such, we are disinclined to comply with these procedures until things settle down and become less punitive (on the European side) and less driven by restrictive convenience for HMRC (on the UK side). We are confident that with time, the practical implementation of the agreement will become more favourable to both customers and exporters. Until then, we are unable to supply customers in the UK.

You are welcome to browse AstroBoot UK, but the site is not accepting orders.

We apologise for any inconvenience. Stay safe."

So UK business, EU warehouse. Can't be the only such small company sufering  'inconveience' !

Heather

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5 hours ago, Deadlake said:

As far as people saying anyone who wants to trade will just get it done, all the paper works has been moved from the centre so it doesn't exist for a company to having to be repeated by each company themselves. If a large company like M&S cannot get Percy Pigs made in Germany, imported to a warehouse in UK and then re-exported to Ireland sorted out then I doubt that small companies will be able to trade. I don't see companies throwing away equipment like clothing companies are, I just see cross border trade going to be hard selling directly to customers.

There is a central tax/VAT clearance infrastructure for the EU (VIES, MOSS) and so for almost all EU-EU trade including EU-NI you just get registered in there and it's pretty trivial. UK govt opted not to stay in VIES/MOSS etc and make this easy - so now every EU company who wants to sell to consumers in the UK has to register with HMRC and then report all their VAT into HMRC rather than VIES. That sounds simple, but in reality the HMRC registration and VAT pathway is really, really complex - and on top of that there's nearly no automation or tools for it in systems etc. though that will come with time.

The other option companies have is to force it onto consumers - which means you get hit with a big VAT payment at the border or on receipt (see all the stories in the press about surprise £100 bills for £200 goods, etc). But this also has costs for the sender and receiver in shipping/handling fees and slows down the shipments and annoys all your customers (understandably!) and shipping companies have to do more work. I've got one parcel coming from Thomann in Germany which is now 17 days "late" from order date (was previously a next-day affair) and is stuck with UPS at the moment in a warehouse in Essex. Expect this sort of thing to be normal for 6mo at least I think - Covid isn't helping either.

And on top of that there's all the "usual" EU-to-anywhere-else export paperwork that now has to be done for B2B and stock transfers.

I don't think we'll see many small operators continuing UK sales - for many the reward of UK sales isn't worth the headache given they have the EU market still. Bigger companies will deal with it probably by letting consumers deal with VAT on arrival but sorting the export paperwork, especially if they export outside the EU in enough volume already to already have staff/procedures for doing that sort of work. If HMRC and friends get their systems sorted then there's a sporting chance that it'll settle down a little but given current state of key systems for exports, not likely this year, and not likely to return to "normal" either way. Nothing is likely to change politically, I think, for the next 4 years.

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Be nice to understand what this means for scope sales as there are a number of German companies I’ve bought from. If there is a risk of paying “VAT” twice plus tariff plus handling fee then I’ll be spending my money on beer instead!

Peter

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I sent an important parcel 48hr on the 11th to an EU country with the required paperwork in quadruple as requested via a normally fast and reliable courier.

It's still in the UK distribution hub. 

Businesses are apparently being told by HMRC reps over the phone if they don't like it, they can relocate to an EU country. 

Between shipping and charges, this effectively halts purchases of astronomy equipment from the EU unless you are happy to pay a third more or it's under £39.

Without saying more, I'll let people decide if this is a good thing for the UK, especially with our economy in its current state.

 

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2 hours ago, PeterW said:

Be nice to understand what this means for scope sales as there are a number of German companies I’ve bought from. If there is a risk of paying “VAT” twice plus tariff plus handling fee then I’ll be spending my money on beer instead!

Peter

Right now retailers will probably sell to you ex VAT and declare the value of goods for you to pay at the border, and let the shipping company handle it. There are, broadly, no customs tariffs - but there are undoubtedly going to be handling fees paid by you as an importer.

As an example, I bought a keyboard stand and some other bits from a German retailer on the 3rd. One half of the shipment should arrive next week but the other half only had 3 copies of the paperwork attached, not 4, so now the seller is having to send more (physical!) paperwork to the UK to marry up with the shipment before it can be released. I am expecting to be asked to pay ITRO £100 based on £66 in VAT to pay and handling fees, at minimum. Previously this would've been next-day or thereabouts, with VAT paid at 20% at the retailer and no import/handling fees.

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