Glennstewart From Australia, joined Jun 2003, 1124 posts, RR: 54 Posted (10 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 4290 times:
The Australia Dollar is currently the second strongest currency against the greenback. There's never been a better time to purchase from the US.
I am heading to the US in June/July, but with the AUS so strong, now would be a great time to dive in for the 70-200 f2.8 LIS lens.
Can anyone tell me their experiences with purchasing from b&h?
Has anyone from overseas purchased before?
How did your own customs go with the purchase?
Did the items get there in one piece?
Do you know if there is insurance for lost or broken items?
Given that the lens if VERY expensive, would you trust sending via a courier?
Any opinions on this would be appreciated.
Respected users.... If my replies are useful, then by all means...
Boieng747-400 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (10 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 4200 times:
I purchased a 100-400 last week, from B&H. All orders int'l orders have to be done by phone actually. Anyway the people were very nice and helpful and provided the service that you'd expect. For international orders you then need to fax or send them an email of your credit card (rear and front), I chose the first option not trusting email.
I ordered on Tuesday around 5PM GMT and the lens arrived in a perfect state on Friday Morning at 10AM GMT. They protected it really well and no dents or stratches were visible. If anything were to happen you are insured for the ammount which is being shipped.
All in all I recommend you purchase your lens with them and UPS Express (which happens to be the cheapest shipping method) really impressed me, I'll be sure to go back to them for any other photographic stuff I need to get.
2912n From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 2013 posts, RR: 8
Reply 2, posted (10 years 5 months 1 week 6 days ago) and read 4186 times:
While not international...I hae ordered all manner of things from them, lenses, camera, scanner...they are professional, don't jack you around with things you don't need and actually charge you the price they quote.
If in New York the store is a must visit for any photographer. Talk about a candy store!!!
Glennstewart From Australia, joined Jun 2003, 1124 posts, RR: 54
Reply 3, posted (10 years 5 months 1 week 6 days ago) and read 4179 times:
So the prices on the website are inc. tax then?
I am used to seeing that on Australian websites (because all taxes must be included by law)... but I have heard that US prices are generally without tax.
Are the prices an internet special price?
Anymore experiences? Any Australian purchased?
Respected users.... If my replies are useful, then by all means...
Airbus Lover From Malaysia, joined Apr 2000, 3248 posts, RR: 9
Reply 10, posted (10 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 4080 times:
Bought a lens and a CF card from the in December, during the Xmas rush.
Although international i emailed them a copy of my credit card etc. Not the best service if you email them and even if you call them maybe it was just me I encountered not very courteous service.
Anyhow, it arrived as promised within a week to Malaysia. They sent both items out separately. Malaysia is tax free on electronics/cameras/lenses/watches/computers (many more ) so I had nothing to worry about they charged my credit card for the price + shipping only. I remember there was no NY state tax etc.
They have a packing slip and invoice for customs clearance so you can't do anything to "avoid" or reduce tax. It would actually cost me more to have it sent to Canada, pay 7% import duty and some service charge to the courier. Especially if you use UPS/Fedex... Shipping to Malaysia on Global Express wasn't that much more.
Overall they are reliable but just not very informative on the processing of order and during my phone calls to them they weren't the most friendly but I did get to know what I want to know so I guess it is ok. Next time I will try Adorama, they have UPS worldwide at very reasonable charge to Malaysia. I won't wanna pay that 7% import duty to get it shipped here (Vancouver) as the savings of shipping does not cover it.
Jwenting From Netherlands, joined Apr 2001, 10213 posts, RR: 19
Reply 11, posted (10 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 4069 times:
trying to avoid paying tax would be fraud. No reputable business will assist you in that.
If caught you stand to have the shipment confiscated and pay a hefty fine on top.
For the EU (not sure about other places) the import charges are leveraged over the total of product price AND shipping combined, and VAT (salestax) is leveraged over the total.
So an item of $1600 with $60 shipping would have (say, depends on country) 5% charged over $1650. That's $82.50.
Over the total of that ($1732.50) there would then be 19% VAT or $329.18 for a total price to be paid of $2061.68 or approximately €1623.37.
Quite possibly UPS or FedEx would leverage an additional charge of their own on top of that for the paperwork, but that would be no more than $10-$15 so hardly worth mention compared to the complete ripoff in taxes.
Qantas077 From Australia, joined Jan 2004, 5850 posts, RR: 40
Reply 12, posted (10 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 4056 times:
what usually happens with overseas imports is that a customs broker will pay the tax on your behalf, you must pay the 10% tax that the customs broker in Australia has paid for you before the item is released to you. the item will have the RRP on a reciept, the broker will be aware of the RRP and add the appropriate GST.
hope that helps
a true friend is someone who sees the pain in your eyes, while everyone else believes the smile on your face.
L-188 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 29790 posts, RR: 58
Reply 14, posted (10 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 4023 times:
Just to add something about BH photos customer service.
I ordered a two bodies on the weekend, The day after I ordered it I got a call from them that said that one of the cameras was damaged worse then what was described in the add and asked if I wanted to cancel the order on that body.
I did and got refunded no problems.
A lot of places wouldn't have said squat.
OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
Ebos From Belgium, joined Jul 2001, 520 posts, RR: 49
Reply 16, posted (10 years 5 months 1 week 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 3918 times:
I've ordered 4 lenses from B&H and have to say their service is excellent. Lenses were shipped the same day of the order (you get a mail with a code to track your parcel) and they all got here very fast and in one piece They were well protected for shipment. Prices on their site are excl. VAT. VAT (Belgian VAT in this case) and import duty fees were paid on delivery (possible to pay cash or with a credit card). Price with VAT, import duty tax and shipment incl. was still 35-40% cheaper than buying them here. Definitely not the last time i order from B&H.
An-225 stalker: 1 x LUX, 1 x EIN, 1 x DXB, 2 x SHJ, 3 x CGN
Skymonster From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (10 years 5 months 1 week 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 3879 times:
Lets be straight about one thing. Leaving aside the fraudulent or otherwise declaration of a false value, the likes of UPS and FedEx will only insure an item up to the declared value. So sure, go ahead and have someone declare that $1600 lens as being worth $200, and then if it goes missing all you get back is $200. Its up to you!