Useful Recommendations About Customs

Customs declaration is an important step when shopping on Taobao.com and shipping parcels internationally from China through Taobao FOCUS. In order to avoid unnecessary additional charges, we highly recommend customers to learn about customs clearance in destination countries and the proper ways to declare and arrange your items and parcels.

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What is customs clearance fees/taxes?

Often time when shopping online from abroad, before your parcel is allowed into your destination country, the Customs will evaluate the nature and value of the parcel, and determine accordingly how much duties and taxes should be collected to import the parcel to the country. Every country has their own customs regulations, so the potential amount of duties and taxes vary for different items. Such potential additional costs are not always predictable and are beyond the control of any seller or agent, including Taobao FOCUS. However, there are recommended ways to minimize the chance of paying large amount of customs clearance fees.

Particular parcel types

In general, there are a few parcel types that are more likely to be asked for customs duties and taxes. Hence, they require customers to pay special attention when shopping and before international shipping.

– Parcel of multiple identical items

Parcels containing too many of the same items are more likely to be considered for commercial purposes, and Customs will require you to pay duties and taxes on those parcels.

Therefore, when you are ordering many identical items, it is better to divide them into several orders. Meanwhile, you can also contact our online support and ask to pack items in different parcels.

– Parcel of heavy weight

In some countries, Customs tend to pay more attention to heavy parcels and require recipients to pay customs clearance fees. Be sure to watch the parcel weight, and you can always contact us for advice.

– Parcel containing valuable or specific products

If you are ordering some specific or valuable products, we recommend you to check customs rules and regulations on the official Customs website of destination country.

General declaration

By default, to simplify the Customs clearance procedure, all parcels are declared as gifts, and valued under 50 USD (or under 100 USD depending on parcel weights and item prices). With such declaration, customers will not be required to pay customs duties and taxes under usual circumstances. According to experiences, marking parcels either with very low or very high value will both draw the Customs’ attention.

Please note that you always have the option to customize your parcel declaration by contacting our customer support or write to us on our Facebook page.

Even though it is customer’s responsibility to handle Customs issues at destination country, Taobao FOCUS is always prepared to help you explain the situation and resolve those issues. Our specialists are available through our online support.

We hope you understand that Customs clearance procedures could cause delays beyond our delivery time estimates, and Taobao FOCUS cannot be held responsible. However, such delays only happen on a rare basis, and most customers receive their parcels within the estimated shipping time.

Enjoy shopping with Taobao FOCUS!