200% Custom’s Tax Part 2

Sorry, I wasn’t able to follow up on the previous post. I honestly forgot and got busy.

We went all the way to the DHL office in Pasay. We were so exhausted in the ride. We were greeted courteously and we made our inquiries politely (my dad suggested we do it this way, he use to be high up in DTI). We might not be able to get our package if we tried to scream at them and choke their necks with a sleeper hold. So we waited patiently for a representative from DHL to assist us. The following conversation took place:

“Kayo po si …,ung package galing hongkong?” (Are you …[my friend’s name], the one with the package from Hongkong?)

“Yup, inquire lng nmin bkit ang mahal nung value na bngay ng customs e may resibo kami na 100 dollars lng yan” (Yup, we were just inquiring why customs overvalued the product when we had a receipt?)

“Mam, kasi po, madaming 18 karat gold” (Mam, you have a lot of  items with 18 karat gold)

Oh we were laughing! We bought spinoffs and cheap fashion jewelry! And get this, the appraising was done by a well-experienced customs official! Oh that was so funny. All our anger vanished, customs officials actually admitted that they were “well experienced” and that they valued spinoffs as 18 karat gold. The DHL official gave us no names as to who appraised it and how.

My friend insisted for a custom’s official. I wasn’t there at the room but she told me something I’ve seen hundreds of times at a government office and even in government hospitals. It’s what I call a TELENOVELA scene. A superior comes up to the erring party and consoles the complainant. She reprimanded the erring official (no names, they are very strict with names!) and starts to offer the complainant a deal. My friend, convinced that that was all there was to it and consoled by the superior, immediately accepts the deal. No legal matters were discussed, no complaints filed, its a lot of BS going on there! It sucked that I wasn’t in the room. The deal was 100 dollars off the damn overvalued price. I asked why my friend accepted such a deal? Para matapos na ( So I can get on with it). We were waiting for hours. The customs entertained us at about 6 pm. She was glad to have the items but overpaid for them. She got duped into the telenovela scene.

We were able to gather our losses when all the items were sold. However, BOC still got 200 dollars of our money. Oh we got a receipt. And we weren’t the only ones who had experienced it this way. Apparently from what I gather the BOC stations themselves on large shipping carriers and waits for packages that are labeled purchases. If you declare them as gifts or personal effects, they wouldn’t care. Purchases are another matter to them. I don’t know how they re-value the items but their ‘experienced’ appraisers are doubtful at best.

We had 2 other complainants there at the DHL office in Pasay. They had the same problem with the BOC!

And just to prove all the statements I have placed here: We made two more international purchases and we told our suppliers the problem. They both shipped the items as gifts/personal effects and sent them without using the major carriers FedEx or DHL. They used DepEx (a singapore company) and LBC. The more unknown to the BOC, the better. Also they used euros and yen as values to hide the US dollar conversion.

Guess what? The two other shipments were BASICALLY IGNORED! And this time we shipped to the tune of 200 dollars per package. NO TAX was imposed! “Only in the Philippines,” this was the statement from both suppliers.

6 thoughts on “200% Custom’s Tax Part 2

  1. they really are shit. my package of 3 boxes from uk was on hold in customs and they want me to pay the sum of 10,000 pesos just to send it in local……in a rush way , they told me or else they will send it back…. what do you think???

  2. Hi ZeroMD!

    Thanks for these tips. I’m planning to buy some clothes online and DPEX shipping is one of the couriers. However, in your other blog,you’ve mentioned that DPEX is among the monitored companies of BoC,yet in this article you have not been taxed with your shipment through DPEX. ask ko lang po sana if the DPEX package was delivered right at your doorstep without any delay and kung gaano po ba kalaki yung shipment nnyo? also, if yung tinutukoy po ba nnyo na euro and yen values ay yung invoice nnyo? and if ever hindi nmn po nka label yun as gift/personal effects, the same po rin ba kaya ang nangyari na hindi kayo na charge ng BoC? thanks po!

  3. Marking the package as “gift” won’t escape you from paying customs tax. I tried it once for a 25pcs supplements and 3 pcs cream from thailand. I told the manufacturer to declare it as gift, but it was more shocking when the BOC priced it as $300 for the 3 pcs creams. I was shocked! The whole item worth $150, imagine, if only it we’re declared properly. Then i asked the officer who did the assessment, he said that there was no invoice in the box.

  4. so labeling it with “gifts” or “personal effects” does the trick? my girlfriend in the US will send me some stuff worth maybe above 150$. they are really gifts and not in bulk quantity. im really scared because BOC might tax me to ridiculous amounts. do you think they will? or labeling it with “gifts” will do the trick again? thanks

  5. would it really work if the sender sent it through another service? I mean, you’re last shipments were ignored! That was awesome! I wonder how it’ll work if the package is from UK though? There’s this service called Parcel to go and it looks promising. I wonder if the BOC will still tax me through it. hahaha

  6. FedEx and DHL must be some corrupt companies that is doomed to end in December 21, 2012!!! together with BOC of course

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