I am certainly not a heavy user of Ebay, but of course, that is no excuse for this latest example of my own stupidity costing me dearly.
I couldn't find this item on UK/Europe/Asian sites so for once I whizzed my order over to the good old USA.
On due delivery day it arrived in the form of a postcard inviting me to toddle along the sorting office and hand over £11,25.
To save you doing the math, that almost doubled the outlay that I had expected. So, with a mental reminder to 'never do THAT again' I gritted my teeth and handed over the loot to claim the parcel.
Back home I read the small print. The two items in my parcel were valued at $9.99 each, equivalent to £7.85 or £15.70 in total. According to the label 'Customs charges are applied to imports into the EU over £15 for VAT ...'
The summary said the fee was made up of £3,25 VAT plus £8.00 Royal Mail Handling Fee.
Are they 'aving a larf or what????????????
Here's what really stung:
If I had added carbon miles and bought each item separately they would not have attracted VAT as they would be below the £15 threshold.
Since when has the UK imposed VAT on printed book? [Answer is 'never']
And how dare the Royal Mail, [A government agency] which already appears to be in a state of self-destructing decline charge a massive £8 fee for taking my cash and passing it to HMRC [another government agency]?
Season of Goodwill? Bring it on! Just don't buy anything from the USA,
At this rate it will soon be cheaper to fly to NY and collect the damned things myself ... or start another courier company to hasten Royal Mail's total disappearance.
|Better still - shop local and buy 2nd hand from The Old Bank Book Shop|
operated here in Margate by Pilgrims: Hospice Charity,