Additional costs related to the parcel that I purchased online

Additional costs related to the parcel that I purchased online

  • How do I calculate the additional costs related to the parcel that I purchased online (duties and taxes)?

    When goods are purchased outside the EU or you receive gifts from a family member or friend from a non-EU country, depending on the goods, you will have to pay certain duties such as import duties, VAT, excise duties, etc.

    For each type of goods there is a specific commodity code and a tariff of import duties which can be retrieved in the Tarbel application. All existing goods are grouped in different chapters. The duties to be paid are indicated for each good. This search is not easy, but you can request the assistance of a Customs representative.

    ​Overview of the most common online purchases

    Smartphone

    0 %

    21 %

    Laptops and tablets

    0 %

    21 %

    Headsets and microphones

    0 %

    21 %

    Toys

    0 to 4.7 % incl.

    21 %

    Books

    0 %

    6 %

    Party games, videogames

    0 to 2.7 % incl.

    21 %

    Cases and bags

    0 to 9.7 % incl.

    21 %

    Shoes and boots

    3.5 to 17 % incl.

    21 %

    Jewellery

    0 to 4 % incl.

    21 %

    Clothes

    0 to 12 % incl.

    21 %

    Beauty and care products

    0 to 6.5 % incl.

    21 %

    Car and motorcycle parts

    3 to 4.5 % incl.

    21 %

    Wrist watches

    4.5 %

    (with a minimum of € 0.30 and a maximum of € 0.80 per watch)

    21 %

    Perfume and toilet water

    0 %

    21 %

    Example of a calculation of extra costs:

    You buy a fashion jewel at a Chinese webshop for the price of € 160.
    Delivery charges are € 35.
    Insurance costs are € 5.
    You calculate import duties on € 160 + € 35 + € 5 = € 200.
    Import duties are 4 % of € 200 = € 8.
    You calculate VAT on € 160 + € 35 + € 5 + € 8 = € 208.
    VAT is 21 % on € 208 = € 43,68.
    The amount to be paid to customs is: € 8 + € 43,68 = € 51,68.

    Disclaimer

    1. Rates are subject to change.
    2. It is often difficult to establish the type of goods at hand.   The indicated rates are for illustration purposes only. To have certainty about the price to be paid, you should know the commodity code, which can be looked up in Tarbel.
    3. In addition, the sender/declarant can charge a fee for the customs formalities carried out. This fee is sometimes referred to as ‘customs charges’.
    4. The buyer can be charged with other additional costs (such as anti-dumping duties), which can be considerable (possibly 40 % and more).
  • When are there no extra costs charged for the parcel that I purchased online?

    1. Consignments of negligible value

    • Parcels with a value up to and including € 22: no extra charges.
    • Parcels with a value of more than € 22: extra charges. VAT, for example. If the parcel has a value of more than € 150, you will also have to pay import duties.These parcels are also subject to clearance costs. The payments are to be settled with the courier.

    2. Consignments of a non-commercial nature between private individuals

    Goods dispatched up to a value of € 45 and meeting certain  conditions are granted exemption from duties and taxes (import duties and VAT).
    In addition to this value restriction, certain products are also subject to a quantity restriction.

    No exemption shall be granted for alcoholic products, perfume, toilet water, tobacco and tobacco products.

  • What should I do if the costs charged for the parcel I purchased online are more than the legal costs?

    Customs services can only repay amounts that have effectively been paid to customs.  Those are the amounts mentioned on the import declaration. We cannot repay amounts charged by the post office or courier service for the completion of customs formalities. 

    1. You pay the extra costs and receive the parcel. 
    2. You refuse the parcel.  
      Sometimes you still have to pay costs. 
      It is not sure that the seller will refund the amount of your purchase. 
    3. You do not accept the parcel yet and you file an objection with the post office or courier service. 
    4. You accept the parcel, pay the costs and file an objection with the post office or courier service afterwards.
    5. You return the parcel.
    Contact the post office or courier service beforehand.
    There must be a clear link between the parcel received and the parcel returned, otherwise no repayment will be made.   

    For numbers 3, 4 and 5, follow the steps below:

    • File a request, supported by sufficient proof, with the post office or courier service. They act as an intermediary in respect of Customs. 
    • If the post office or courier service have committed an error, they will immediately repay the amounts that have been unduly charged (if they have already been paid).
    • If the overpayment is due to an incorrect entry of the value on the consignment documents, the post office or courier service will charge administrative costs.  Contact the post office or courier service to know the amount of these costs.
    • The post office or courier service will only make the repayment after having received the refund by Customs.

    or

     Take all the necessary steps yourself to obtain repayment. (PDF, 144.13 Ko)