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All about South Korea => Life in Korea => Topic started by: wazure on March 11, 2011, 08:53:07 am

Title: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: wazure on March 11, 2011, 08:53:07 am
What's the duty-free threshold?


The duty-free threshold is 150,000 Korean won (usually around $130 USD) and that includes the shipping fee.

Go here for the current exchange rate employed by Korea Customs:

http://english.customs.go.kr/kcsweb/user.tdf?a=user.exchangerate.ExchangeRateApp&c=1001&mc=ENGLISH_INFORMATION_CUSTOMS

What are the duty and tax rates?

For the most products, 8% customs duties and 10 % value added tax (VAT). However, some goods are liable to special excise taxes and other taxes.

In general, all the household goods (except automobiles, boats, luxury jewelry, second items depending on the situation) are exempt from Customs duties and taxes. In addition, pianos, refrigerators, dryers, ovens or some other household goods are exempt from Customs duties and taxes only once because there's usually only one of those items per household.

However, you need to prove that you are going to live in Korea for more than two years and the goods should be brought into Korea within 6 months of your first arrival. You can't file duty-free applications on brand new products, gifts, professional goods, goods for sale and other goods that aren't household necessities.

Automobiles, airplanes, boats and jewelry (worth more than 1 million won) are charged with regular duties and taxes.


For all the details of Customs duty and tax rates applicable, please refer to the Duties and Taxes in Korea or Simplified Duty Rate at Simplified Clearance on the Korea Customs' web site.

Besides customs duties and taxes, some items require licensing & approval procedures in other government agencies. These include food, alcohol, pets, medicine, and cars.  For details, please read more on importing individual items."


Electronics, books, laptops, clothes/shoes, and bags

Electronics such as cameras, tablets, smartphones, etc. are subject to 20% taxation.

Books are duty free, but audio books (CDs, DVDs, etc.) are subject to 20% taxation.

There is no duty on laptops, but 10% VAT on the CIF value (the price+freight+insurance fee) is charged.

The duty rate on clothes and shoes is 13%, whereas it's 8% on bags.

How are duties calculated?

Let's suppose you ordered clothes (13% duty rate) whose value is $200 USD and the current exchange rate is 1,100 KRW = $1 USD. Let's also suppose the shipping is $10 USD.

Duty fee = (value of products in KRW + shipping in KRW )*duty rate

Duty fee = (200 USD * 1,100 KRW/USD   +  $10 USD*1,100 KRW/USD)*13%  = 30,030

VAT=  (value of products in KRW + shipping in KRW + duty fee)*VAT rate=

VAT = [200 USD*1,100 KRW/USD + $10 USD*1,100 KRW/USD + 30, 030 ]*10% = 26,103

Total fees =  Duty fee + VAT = 30,030 + 26,103 = 56,133 KRW

How do I pay?

Online banking is the probably the easiest and fastest way, but it's also possible to pay by going to your bank or any post office.

How did my  friend order over 200,000 KRW worth of  dietary supplements (or X good) and not get charged a dime?

S/he probably ordered from a Korean company that is aware of customs laws (most, if not all, are). Hence, they probably marked the package as gift and/or deliberately marked the value of the package such that you avoid paying fees.

It's also possible that the goods ordered are exempt from duties and taxes. Or maybe s/he just got lucky!

More Info

http://www.customs.go.kr/kcshome/main/content/ContentView.do?contentId=CONTENT_ID_000001318&layoutMenuNo=21023

Have a specific question?

Ask Korea Customs directly:

http://www.customs.go.kr/kcshome/main/qna/QnaList.do?layoutMenuNo=21035
Title: Re: Send something through customs as a GIFT?
Post by: misskris on March 11, 2011, 08:55:43 am
Just a thought....  Can you get the same camera here?  I find that generally that kind of stuff is around the same price

Other than that, Ive got tons of gifts from home before.  Not electronics, mind you,
but new Ugg boots and wrapped stuff for Xmas and I never got charged tax.  They were sent in a seperate box (not original ) with snacks and other small gifts
Title: Re: Send something through customs as a GIFT?
Post by: Pants on March 11, 2011, 01:21:43 pm
I'm having the same issue at the moment, Wazure, because it looks like it might be cheaper to buy an iPod in the US and have a friend send it to  me, so I've been doing a little research. The most useful thing I've been able to find so far is this:

"If the total value of the goods (including purchase price plus freight and insurance) does not exceed 150,000 won (about US $120), it could be cleared without paying Customs duties and taxes.

If the total value of the goods exceeds 150,000 won, you need to pay Customs duties, VAT (Value Added Taxes) and special excise taxes & etc.

However, for most industrial products, you will probably pay 8% of Customs duties and 10% of VAT. For all the details of Customs duty and tax rates applicable, you can refer to the Duties and Taxes in Korea of this web-site.

Besides Customs duties and taxes, some items require licensing & approval procedures in other government agencies. The most likely items are food, alcohol, pets, medicine and cars. For details, please read more about importing individual items."

Here's the link to the site if you want to read up some more: http://english.customs.go.kr/
Title: Re: Send something through customs as a GIFT?
Post by: ano33 on March 11, 2011, 01:28:47 pm
I bought a lens from America and payed $30 to have it shipped to Korea.  Even with the added shipping cost it was way cheaper than buying it here.  HOWEVER, i am a retard and totally didn't think about customs tax until I got a phone call from the customs people saying my package had just cleared customs and will be delivered the next day and that I would have to pay 70,000 won customs fee.  Talk about shooting yourself in the foot.  If you are saving a ton of money, have your Mom ship it and pray it clears without fees.  If you are only saving a few thousand won, then just buy it here and save yourself and your mom the hassle.
Title: Re: Send something through customs as a GIFT?
Post by: ramackenzie on March 11, 2011, 01:46:33 pm
My mom has sent me numerous "gifts" since I've been here and haven't had to pay any duties or taxes. As long as your mother clearly writes GIFT on the cutoms form you shouldn't have to pay anything even if it is worth more than 150 000 won.
Title: Re: Send something through customs as a GIFT?
Post by: teacher_del on March 11, 2011, 05:11:27 pm
Don't send it in the original packaging.  I recommend shipping it in with a few other personal items, like clothes, for both padding and camouflage.
Title: Re: Send something through customs as a GIFT?
Post by: wazure on March 14, 2011, 09:20:12 am
THANKS SO MUCH!!! between you all, i think i have a plan now. the camera is about $100 cheaper in the US, so worth it to ship. i will remove it from its box, and have my mother mark as "gift".

Thanks again! happy birthday to me! :) :)
Title: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: wazure on April 05, 2011, 02:21:57 pm
Hi,

I want to buy a used laptop (refurbished actually) and don't want the Korea/English keyboard, so must get one from the Apple Store online for US customers. However, if I have my mother mail it to me in Korea, how can I avoid high customs taxes and fees? I usually have people mark "gift" on the customs package, but have never imported anything more valuable than $300 worth of stuff. A bit nervous about importing a laptop. Anyone ever done this? Did you get it past customs?

Thanks a bunch  :)
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: mlcarn on April 05, 2011, 02:44:22 pm
My parents bought and sent me a laptop in October. The Korean customs office held my laptop for over a week until they could call my school a few times and get information about my address, foreigner card number, and everything else. When it was finally delivered I had to pay a $100 import tax in cash only. I'm not sure if there's a way to get it around customs- theyr'e going to see that it's a laptop and swipe it.

You could buy one in Kore and if the Hangeul keyboard characters bother you that much just buy stickers to cover them up.

Or this (just saw it): http://waygook.org/index.php/topic,6692.0.html
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: Koradian on April 05, 2011, 02:48:34 pm
I just purchased a new MBP. I did want the English/Korean keyboard so I went through Apple Korea.

Why do the Korean characters bother you?
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: wazure on April 05, 2011, 02:50:16 pm
Thanks Mlcarn, hmm, $100 isn't terribly bad. What was your laptop valued at? I wonder if it is based on the value of the laptop. It's not only the keyboard in Hangul, it's the operating system. I might have to fiddle with it to switch it to English, so just want to avoid all that since I'm back in the US in 5 months. Unfortunately my current computer is not good enough for my job, so need a laptop soon. Thanks for your help though!
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: Ben-Ja-Meen on April 05, 2011, 02:53:02 pm
I bought a Macbook Pro last year on line from a US store.  My parents shipped it to the school.  No customs issues, no taxes, no import fees or anything else.  :)   Even with shipping costs included  it was much cheaper to buy it in the U.S. and have it shipped to Korea.  Really glad I didn't waste a bunch of money buying any Apple product here.   

*Side note:  It was around Christmas time, so maybe customs was overloaded with care packages and overlooked my laptop.  Good luck! 
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: EPSK on April 05, 2011, 02:54:11 pm
Well having it shipped to your parents then to Korea be careful on the customs declaration form. You WILL have to pay duty if you declare a laptop or something worth over a certain amount.
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: Brit_1 on April 05, 2011, 02:54:20 pm
So are you planning on buying a Mac then? I bought a mac from the Korean apple store and I highly recommend it. Aside from the fact that you get a teacher discount of 100'000 Won, the keyboard is not a big issue. Nothing else is in Korean unless you want it to be, and because it is an Apple product if you take it into an apple shop back home they will change the keyboard for you for hardly anything.
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: Koradian on April 05, 2011, 02:55:11 pm
I bought a Macbook Pro last year on line from a US store.  My parents shipped it to the school.  No customs issues, no taxes, no import fees or anything else.  :)   Even with shipping costs included  it was much cheaper to buy it in the U.S. and have it shipped to Korea.  Really glad I didn't waste a bunch of money buying any Apple product here.   

*Side note:  It was around Christmas time, so maybe customs was overloaded with care packages and overlooked my laptop.  Good luck!

Lucky! I purchased mine though Apple Korea which worked out around $300 cheaper than going through Apple Canada^^
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: stewiegrl02 on April 05, 2011, 02:58:09 pm
I was sent a laptop a couple months back, actually i get alot of packages. just have it shipped to your school, Ive never had to pay any tax:)
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: wazure on April 05, 2011, 03:01:01 pm
Thanks Koradian.. haha,  ;) the Hangul keyboard bothers me because I'm anal and hate useless things in my sight. I love Hangul, nothing against it! But i'm gone in 5 months and won't return and don't speak Korean. When investing a lot of money, I want things as perfect as possible. Did they give you the option of an English-only keyboard by chance?

Ben-ja-men: Oh really?! That's great! But I wonder why they didn't ask for fees and stuff. Did your parents mark "gift" on the package? How much was the laptop worth? I've actually seen the laptops in Korea as cheaper, although I'm getting a refurbished one, so hard to compare that. Haha, yeah maybe around Christmas they were in the Santa Claus spirit  :D

Brit 1 - omg, your ideas sound pretty good! WOW and a teacher discount too! I should look into that, thanks so much, a keyboard switch is a great idea  :)

EPSK, thanks.. I will be aware of that then.
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: Koradian on April 05, 2011, 03:06:16 pm
Thanks Koradian.. haha,  ;) the Hangul keyboard bothers me because I'm anal and hate useless things in my sight. I love Hangul, nothing against it! But i'm gone in 5 months and won't return and don't speak Korean. When investing a lot of money, I want things as perfect as possible. Did they give you the option of an English-only keyboard by chance?


The reasons I went through the Korean store are:

1. I did want the Korean keyboard and this was the only way
2. The $100 discount off the computer with another discount on Apple Care
3. I have been stung with paying customs charges in the past having electronics sent from Canada.

To answer your question, if you are to go through Apple Korea, you are not given the option of an English only keyboard.
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: wazure on April 05, 2011, 03:09:04 pm
Thanks Koradian, that's good to know about the discounts. Plus having a laptop shipped from thousands of miles away makes me nervous. I might give the Koran store a shot.
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: kcjohn7 on April 05, 2011, 03:10:15 pm
I know if you are able to get it marked as repair service - or something similar that you don't have to pay taxes or fees on it.  Not sure that you can actually do that when it coming from your parents.  But maybe they could package it separate or something and make it look that way.

Also, just wonder here - but maybe if you have it sent to school it's then thought to be an educational supply and so you'd avoid the fees that way?  My co-teachers always tell me it's better to have everything shipped to the school, but haven't really said why.  Sounds like a lot of people get around fees this way though.
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: derekc on April 05, 2011, 03:14:51 pm
I might be way off but I always thought that if the product isn't new then there are no customs issues.
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: wazure on April 05, 2011, 03:17:14 pm
KcJohn-7 Oh i see. I do get stuff shipped to my school always, but only because I'm not home during the day to receive it. And actually, yes so far I've paid no taxes, but for smaller item things. Hmm, I could consider the repair idea if I go the Apple Store US route, thanks.

Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: sheedi on April 05, 2011, 06:28:54 pm
I'm from the states, and my boyfriend sent me a laptop and I didn't pay any customs fees, taxes, nothing.
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: releasethedogs on April 06, 2011, 10:12:52 am
My folks sent me my macmini and I did not have to pay any tax. i was told this is because i work for a public school and not a hagwon.
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: wazure on April 06, 2011, 10:26:35 am
thanks Release the dogs, that makes more sense now. so far, some paid taxes and some didn't, but couldn't figure out why. i teach at a private school (not a hagwon) but they get some government funding, so not sure which bracket i am in. but so far have never paid tax on any packages, altho they're under $300 in value.
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: cspauld on April 15, 2011, 08:17:05 am
I know I'm a little late to this convo, but I just had to deal with the problem last month.

My Mac died and I needed it to be repaired. I brought it in to the coex "Apple store" and they attempted to fix it. They failed. I contacted Apple and because I was to go home to visit my family for two weeks, they suggested I bring it home and have it repaired in the states. Well Apple didn't get it back to me before I had to return to Korea, so I had my Mother mail it to me, making sure she wrote repaired computer on the customs form. Well it turned out Apple replaced my computer completely so it was brand new. Any brand new computer has to be taxed, even if it is a replacement computer that cost no money.

It seemed wrong for me to pay 300k for a replacement computer that I could have carried on the airplane for free.

So here is what I found out. There is a article in the Korean Customs law that says if you are going to be importing something temporarily (less than a year) you can get a refund of your taxes. So I ended up having to pay the tax, but will get it back when I leave Korea by filling out a customs departure form. The whole process took two week. I have no idea why it took so long, but there you go.
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: wazure on April 15, 2011, 08:59:06 am
wow, thanks cspauld!
i will be buying a refurbished Mac, so not sure if that qualifies for "new" or not. but thanks for the advice, if anything goes wrong i will definitely remember that! so it was the Korean customs that paid you back? any links that give instructions on that?
thanks a bunch!
Title: Re: How do I avoid customs taxes/fees for an imported laptop?
Post by: cspauld on April 15, 2011, 04:03:02 pm
I would contact the customs office before you ship the computer over. They should tell you all the necessary documents you will need. Hopefully you talk to someone who speaks English well. The man I dealt with did not, though he was very kind.

You can find the contact number for your area on their website, though some of the number didn't work for me when I tried.

Good luck.
Title: Re: Shipping stuff to Korea. Any issues?
Post by: pohangmimi on April 21, 2011, 07:25:27 am
 My mom has sent stuff to me from the States with no problems. I just have everything sent to my school and the phone number of the school on the custom forms just in case.
Title: Re: Shipping stuff to Korea. Any issues?
Post by: SpaceRook on April 21, 2011, 07:34:04 am
I'm a little hesitant to ship stuff to Korea, because the shipping labels will be in English, and I don't want stuff getting lost in transit.

Anyone have issues shipping stuff to Korea?

Yes, I've had several packages and mail just never arrive.  My mom used the same address on those shipments as she did for shipments that did arrive.  I'm afraid to send anything very important.  Maybe it's just me. 
Title: Re: Shipping stuff to Korea. Any issues?
Post by: Kurtbob on April 21, 2011, 07:37:38 am
I have received two boxes from the states since arriving in Korea in August. One came through no problem and one was stuck in Customs for over a month. Why such a vast difference? FOOD

If you want your family to send you food (even canned and dried) Korea will not let it go through without a thourough inspection, or two, or three. If its non-food and not taxed in Korea you shouldn't have any problems with the package arriving, even if its post marked in English.
Title: Re: Shipping stuff to Korea. Any issues?
Post by: Nukrain on April 21, 2011, 07:38:41 am
Come on people aren't THAT stupid here.  I've had things and important things
shipped here and it's always arrived here safely and really fast. 

Just because the address is in English doesn't mean that someone doesn't know
how to read it.  The only reason why it wouldn't get to you is if you put the wrong
address on it.  But people here are pretty glued on when it comes to this subject.
Title: Re: Shipping stuff to Korea. Any issues?
Post by: jeromeyc on April 21, 2011, 07:48:32 am
If you're cool with the administration at your school it may be best to have them send it to your school address as someone mentioned before. When you have to give a number, just give the school's main number.

I've had packages sent to me with no issue. I think the post offices have an easier time finding schools.

My family goes to this one Korean shipper back home and I just recently got a new laptop sent to me. It's best when sending any expensive electronics to say that they are "used" even if they are not. I believe if you send a package here with purchased goods that are over a certain amount of money then you will have to pay some taxes. My friend had a package sent to him via I believe FedEX and he was told he had to pay $100 USD in taxes.
Title: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: w4z on May 18, 2011, 12:09:57 pm
My mother sent my wife and I two laptops as a belated wedding gift.  I have all of my packages sent to my school.  This time they sent some customs forms in Hangul.  I have no idea where my laptops are or how to get them.  I assume they want me to pay taxes.  My co-teacher is running around trying to figure it out and I feel bad because I can't personally talk to them.  To be clear... this is a legitimate gift.  Has anyone run into this problem?
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: flips on May 18, 2011, 12:19:19 pm
My mother sent my wife and I two laptops as a belated wedding gift.  I have all of my packages sent to my school.  This time they sent some customs forms in Hangul.  I have no idea where my laptops are or how to get them.  I assume they want me to pay taxes.  My co-teacher is running around trying to figure it out and I feel bad because I can't personally talk to them.  To be clear... this is a legitimate gift.  Has anyone run into this problem?

you are going to have to pay 10% of the value, above 150,000 won, after they convert it from dollars/pounds/etc. to won. they will likely request a receipt of the item to verify it's price, a copy of your ARC, passport, and will ask you whether you will use it for business or personal reasons. then they will add on a fee (for my tablet it was around 33,000 won). i wouldn't worry too much about it. it's a hassle, but it's their customs law.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: w4z on May 18, 2011, 12:26:09 pm
Damn.  So 10% of roughly $1000 is $100.  Plus some random fee?  so like 150ish maybe 200... What an awesome gift!
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: Sticks on May 18, 2011, 12:32:16 pm
Yep. Any single package (or group of packages if they're grouped close together) over 150,000won in value will get tagged and slugged with customs fees, even if they're marked as a gift. Keep that in mind next time. They generally don't care if you're bringing them with luggage though.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: ramackenzie on May 18, 2011, 01:16:42 pm
This happened to me when my mother was sending me my Christmas present from Canada.

I had to fax them a copy of my passport picture page, visa, and ARC, along with a signed letter stating where I live, why I came to Korea, what my job is Korea, who was sending me the package and why. The package was worth over 150 000won and after I did all that I didn't have to pay the 10% tax. Pain in the ass but I haven't had any troubles with customs since and haven't had to pay any taxes!
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: Hooplehead on May 19, 2011, 02:28:12 am
It's 20% tax on electronics...but teacher's get some % off, (either 5 or 10%, i forget), but you need to fax a letter from your school.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: Savre on May 19, 2011, 06:35:04 am
Most informative thread ive read so far. Does anyone think they would hold brand new xbox360/ps3 games if there were over 6 games in the one package?
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: cspauld on May 19, 2011, 07:19:51 am
I had this same problem a couple months ago. I would suggest calling the courier company. They will have someone who can speak English. I ended up speaking with a man at the Customs office, though his English ability was not great.

What ended up happening for me, was I informed him that I was on a one year contract and would be leaving Korea once my contract was up. I ended up having to send him a lot of information and a customs import declaration. After about a week and a half I ended up paying the tax but will get it all back when I leave, as long as I send them my export declaration.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: goulash on May 19, 2011, 07:54:40 am
I'm not trying to stir the pot but I strongly believe people have no right to argue when fees, fines, etc are applied to situations people find themselves in. Therefore I have no sympathy when people complain. Part of our responsibility living abroad is learning the laws and customs of our host countries and abiding by them.

Who's complaining or arguing? Every poster has been informative and at most has said it was a hassle, but no big problem. The OP has shown a reasonable amount of surprise at how much they have to pay, but I wouldn't really call it a complaint.

Yes, we should learn the laws of our host country... but I don't think many of us studied international law, so I doubt if we'll know all the laws about everything until we encounter a situation in which we need to be informed.

To the OP, yes, it does suck a bit when you have to pay for a gift, but as someone has stated, if you keep all your documentation, you should be able to get the tax back when you depart Korea. Just make sure you keep copies of all the forms and paperwork they ask for.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: 배비곳밖 on May 19, 2011, 07:59:37 am
In order to get your package out of customs you need to email this guy minwon9@customs.go.kr
with a list of what is in the box. I had an ipad on the way over and it got stuck in customs I told him it was a gift in the email. I did not specify what was in the box and I was sent an email back with saying, " your ipad will be delivered in 2 days." I had to pay 70,000 won upon delivery. I hope that helps. And the 70k was far less than I expected to pay.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: siamagoo on May 19, 2011, 08:07:53 am
Damn.  So 10% of roughly $1000 is $100.  Plus some random fee?  so like 150ish maybe 200... What an awesome gift!

If you don't want to pay the $150 to get the computers through customs, I'd happily take them off your hands.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: flips on May 19, 2011, 08:22:55 am
I'm not trying to stir the pot but I stronly believe people have no right to argue when fees, fines, etc are applied to situations people find themselves in. Therefore I have no sympathy when people complain. Part of our responsibility living abroad is learning the laws and customs of our host countries and abiding by them.

agreed. however it's also the responsibility of the korean customs office to make information about the rules and regulations readily available for foreigners. the duty and tax calculator for individual items on the website has been broken for more than six months now, and more than a few of the numbers, for different customs offices are either non-existent, out-dated, or simply wrong. in fact, when my co-teacher called the number for the daejeon customs office she ended up speaking to a hospital receptionist.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: heyitslep on May 19, 2011, 08:48:55 am
Yeah their website is poorly designed and rather inaccessible in English. They wouldn't have to necessarily change too much, they could just even insert javascript popups into links with English text so you can understand what you're doing.

I recently got my laptop here from the states as I had talked about in other threads. I ended up paying $170 for it in customs fees, but it's not like I had a choice in the matter. Do I feel those fees suck? You betcha! But it's not like customs fees aren't universal, it's just the first time we're experiencing them as foreigners.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: pyeager on May 19, 2011, 09:39:53 am
agreed. however it's also the responsibility of the korean customs office to make information about the rules and regulations readily available for foreigners. the duty and tax calculator for individual items on the website has been broken for more than six months now, and more than a few of the numbers, for different customs offices are either non-existent, out-dated, or simply wrong. in fact, when my co-teacher called the number for the daejeon customs office she ended up speaking to a hospital receptionist.
I agree that it would be nice if everything were available in English, but I think saying that they have a responsibility to do it goes too far. (I'm not really sure you were saying that rules and regulations should be readily available in English or not, but from your tone that's what I'm guessing.) I'm American, and the US only provides customs info in English and Spanish. Would it be nice if they translated it into more languages? Yes, but I don't think it's really their duty.

Also, the fee calculator seems to working fine, at least for me. Notebooks are 10%.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: danitravels on May 19, 2011, 09:47:58 am
Damn.  So 10% of roughly $1000 is $100.  Plus some random fee?  so like 150ish maybe 200... What an awesome gift!

If you don't want to pay the $150 to get the computers through customs, I'd happily take them off your hands.

Ditto!

Do the customs fees only apply to new items? Or do they apply to used electronics as well?
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: w4z on May 19, 2011, 10:05:37 am
Most informative thread ive read so far. Does anyone think they would hold brand new xbox360/ps3 games if there were over 6 games in the one package?

The only international shipping experience I have is shipping stuff from America to foreign countries.  In order for expensive items to fly under the customs RADAR, you have to lie about the value of the item.  I don't recommend this since it's illegal.  With that said, many people do this.  I sold something on Ebay once and the guy was in the UK.  The item was worth over 500$.  He wanted me to label it as a gift and under 100$.  I didn't do that.  He gave me a negative review and tried to get his money back.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: Ochodnid on May 19, 2011, 10:08:18 am
Yeah, it stinks getting gifts from over seas. If it is anything electronic over $150, just get the cash. It might sound kind of "cheap," but you will save more in the long run. My family just deposit the money into my US account or give it to my Mother to deposit. It works out for me, because I have to transfer money back to the states for student loans. This saves me a step. All of my family got together and sent me some nice packages with small things in it and then deposited money into my bank account.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: w4z on May 19, 2011, 10:09:44 am
So my coteacher helped me fill out some kind of form and she faxed it yesterday.  I had to put my ARC number, the contents of the package, and if it was a gift or not.  I'll keep you guys updated on the process and price.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: cspauld on May 19, 2011, 10:40:57 am
I agree that it would be nice if everything were available in English, but I think saying that they have a responsibility to do it goes too far. (I'm not really sure you were saying that rules and regulations should be readily available in English or not, but from your tone that's what I'm guessing.) I'm American, and the US only provides customs info in English and Spanish. Would it be nice if they translated it into more languages? Yes, but I don't think it's really their duty.



Here's the Korean Customs Law in English.
http://unpan1.un.org/intradoc/groups/public/documents/apcity/unpan011497.pdf

I believe articles 98 & 99 to be the relevant ones.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: greyskymornings on May 19, 2011, 10:51:25 am
Well, I never had electronics shipped over, but I did have a sort of similar situation when I shipped my skateboard over here.

Overall, the deck and parts were around $180 USD so I think that's why it got flagged at customs. Basically what ended up happening was they called me at my school (how they got the number I have no idea) and asked if I ordered the skateboard. I said yes, and then they said that I had to pay 33,000 for the customs. They sent me a text on my phone with the account # to transfer it to.

I did the transfer the next day and my skateboard was delivered to my school a few days later!
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: flips on May 19, 2011, 11:16:24 am

I agree that it would be nice if everything were available in English, but I think saying that they have a responsibility to do it goes too far. (I'm not really sure you were saying that rules and regulations should be readily available in English or not, but from your tone that's what I'm guessing.) I'm American, and the US only provides customs info in English and Spanish. Would it be nice if they translated it into more languages? Yes, but I don't think it's really their duty.

Also, the fee calculator seems to working fine, at least for me. Notebooks are 10%.

http://english.customs.go.kr/kcsweb/user.tdf?a=user.customtariff.CustomTariffApp&c=1001&mc=ENGLISH_INFORMATION_KOREA (http://english.customs.go.kr/kcsweb/user.tdf?a=user.customtariff.CustomTariffApp&c=1001&mc=ENGLISH_INFORMATION_KOREA) this is the link to tariff database. unless i am doing something improperly, it still is not working. the korean customs service has recognized that there is a legitimate need for an english language version of their rules, regulations, fees, etc., otherwise they would not have created an english language korean customs service website in the first place. my issue is that they have done a shoddy job making the information available and accessible in english. my co-teacher and i had to go to the korean language version of the website to get the proper number to call them. in total, it really isn't that big of a deal, but it would be nice if they included simple things like working contact numbers.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: flips on May 19, 2011, 11:21:46 am
So the moral of the story is....lie.

Always underestimate the value of the packages that are sent here.

Take off the tags and packaging so they look used.

Add a lil dirt to stuff so it doesn't look so new.

I've had tons of stuff sent to me and have brought a bunch of new stuff from home. I haven't had any problems.

lol, this is your best option if you like to roll the dice and not pay money. i do this for everything except electronics and other irreplaceable valuables. korean customs seems to actually randomly inspect very few packages, and seem to "take your word for it" that a giant and heavy box holds a collection of items, valued at less than $50. however if you wish to have your package insured, which you should if it is something of value and/or importance to you, then you can't circumvent the customs fee.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: climber on May 19, 2011, 11:33:17 am
I had to fax my arc, passport photo page, and visa page to them. I had a 700,000 won laptop shipped here from the states. I told them it was a present that my parents gave me. Don't say it is brand new, but you can say it is a month old computer your parents are sending you. That is what I said and they did not make me pay taxes.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: Savre on May 19, 2011, 12:24:04 pm
In order to get your package out of customs you need to email this guy minwon9@customs.go.kr
with a list of what is in the box. I had an ipad on the way over and it got stuck in customs I told him it was a gift in the email. I did not specify what was in the box and I was sent an email back with saying, " your ipad will be delivered in 2 days." I had to pay 70,000 won upon delivery. I hope that helps. And the 70k was far less than I expected to pay.

Does this person speak English? A package I have been expecting hasn't arrived. Today is the 16th day since it was sent. I'm still hoping it will come but I'm starting to worry now. I haven't received any mail to tell me that customs has it and short of it being stolen/lost this is the only other option I can think of. I just want to investigate to see if customs does indeed have my parcel.

Also would video games be considered electronics?
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: Savre on May 20, 2011, 03:23:38 pm
Bump  :blank:
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: heyitslep on May 20, 2011, 09:19:55 pm
In order to get your package out of customs you need to email this guy minwon9@customs.go.kr
with a list of what is in the box. I had an ipad on the way over and it got stuck in customs I told him it was a gift in the email. I did not specify what was in the box and I was sent an email back with saying, " your ipad will be delivered in 2 days." I had to pay 70,000 won upon delivery. I hope that helps. And the 70k was far less than I expected to pay.

Does this person speak English? A package I have been expecting hasn't arrived. Today is the 16th day since it was sent. I'm still hoping it will come but I'm starting to worry now. I haven't received any mail to tell me that customs has it and short of it being stolen/lost this is the only other option I can think of. I just want to investigate to see if customs does indeed have my parcel.

Also would video games be considered electronics?

Check your shipping tracking number. Where is it? USPS, FedEx, and DHL all have tracking numbers.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: firebreaker on May 20, 2011, 10:17:50 pm
Find some way to prove they were "used" and you won't have to pay anything. If they were sent in the original boxes, unopened.. well.. ur stuck. You'll have to pay the taxes. 

Just friendly advice to anyone buying something from back home.. have it removed from the original box and placed in a different box. As soon as the item is touched outside the original box.. It's used. No taxes apply.
Title: Re: 2 Laptops stuck in customs.
Post by: Gokseongwaygook on May 21, 2011, 08:39:41 am
Hey OP,
I totally feel your pain about the tax and customs problem. My wife and I both shop online a lot and have a lot of things coming into Korea from other counrties. My wife bought me a collectable comic statue figure that was about a foot tall. She had to pay the tax. AND they held it FOREVER hoping she would lose interest and they could keep it. Just keep up the paperwork and your co teacher is helping at least which is great. You will eventually get them. It just takes time and patience.
As for sending anything else over by mail, make sure for next time to tell the people who's sending it to unpack the items and repack in a used box. We get spices and cooking items sent over with vitamins all the time, no customs problems at all. It's all repacked.
Good luck! :D
Title: Customs tax question on a new laptop?
Post by: globetrotter.2011 on June 14, 2011, 07:26:18 am
Hi,

Does anyone know what the customs tax is on new laptop being imported into Korea?

I want to order a laptop from DELL. The laptop sells for $1000 in the US and sells for 1400000 won in Korea. There is an extra 2GB ram with the model in the US.

This all accounts to '400000 won price difference + extra 2GB ram' but I haven't taken customs tax or shipping into account yet, so i'm just wondering.

Regards.
Title: Re: Customs tax question on a new laptop?
Post by: Koreak on June 14, 2011, 07:37:36 am
Back in 2008 I ordered a computer from Dell Korea, and there was no customs tax.  I just requested English OS.
Title: Re: Customs tax question on a new laptop?
Post by: Jozigirl on June 14, 2011, 07:48:38 am
I had 30kg of personal items shipped here in November and the customs tax was only around US$100.  It might be different for new things and a computer but hopefully it gives you some type of an idea.
Title: Re: Customs tax question on a new laptop?
Post by: wong812 on June 14, 2011, 07:51:26 am
Anything over 300 dollars will get import duty lumped on it so, the thing to do is have whoever is posting it to you to price it at less than 300 dollars and label it as personal items.
Title: Re: Customs tax question on a new laptop?
Post by: Davox on June 14, 2011, 08:03:41 am
Anything over 300 dollars will get import duty lumped on it so, the thing to do is have whoever is posting it to you to price it at less than 300 dollars and label it as personal items.
I just recently had to pay an import tax on a shipment of items totaling about $150.  So the limit is at least as low as that.
And I wouldn't be sure that labeling it "personal items" will get you through 100% of the time.  They seemed pretty diligent to me.  And happy to open packages to search them.
Title: Re: Customs tax question on a new laptop?
Post by: globetrotter.2011 on June 14, 2011, 09:26:04 am
Thanks for the advise, I don't think DELL are going to price my package as lower than $300 though.

Does anyone know if the customs tax is based on a percentage of the overall cost or is there a flat rate? I want to try to work out the overall myself to see if there is a saving to be had.

Regards
Title: Re: Customs tax question on a new laptop?
Post by: Davox on June 14, 2011, 11:05:40 am
Thanks for the advise, I don't think DELL are going to price my package as lower than $300 though.

Does anyone know if the customs tax is based on a percentage of the overall cost or is there a flat rate? I want to try to work out the overall myself to see if there is a saving to be had.

Regards

Based on my understanding and experience, it's a percentage, plus other fixed-ish fees.  However, the percentage changes depending on what kind of item it is.  Some are just a base percentage, others (like alcohol) get as high as like 70%.  Their website doesn't list anything specifically for laptops, but all that means is that it could be anything.  Also note that along with the base item cost, they also take shipping + insurance costs into account when applying the percentage to calculate the total cost of import.  So if you ship express, you pay more at customs.  Also, there's no real dispute mechanism if you believe the price they quote is incorrectly calculated.  You pay whatever they ask or you don't get your item.
My advice is to think carefully about all of your options before you decide one way or another.
Title: Re: Customs tax question on a new laptop?
Post by: globetrotter.2011 on June 14, 2011, 11:32:07 am
Thanks Davox, that's the most informative post I have had and the information I was looking for.

I quess it's best to order from DELL Korea then.

I have looked at their website already but it is all in Korean. I don't feel 100% comfortable ordering with my someone else, (my credit card details and all that).

Did anyone ever order over the phone or is there an english sales service to order through?

Regards
Title: Re: Customs tax question on a new laptop?
Post by: laso12 on June 17, 2011, 02:25:01 pm
You have to convert the US dollar to Korean won for a fair comparison. The customs & duty tax is based on the value they list on the customs slip. Also, anything over 150,000 won will be taxed if its mailed.

Title: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: Wretchard on June 21, 2011, 05:29:41 pm
So I just got a package from Canada... Well.. I got an envelope from customs saying I gotta pay 20% to get my package...

Package is worth about $1000...

Harsh!

Anyone have any experience with anything like this? Any loopholes or ways around it?
Title: Re: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: Happyhan on June 21, 2011, 07:20:57 pm
Hi there,

I used to work for an international courier company so can offer you some advise- anything valued over $100 will be subject to taxes and duties, even if it's personal effects.
Are you able to give me an idea of what the goods are so I can see if you can do anything?
Title: Re: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: Freeto on June 21, 2011, 07:42:06 pm
I regularly get packages shipped here and Korean Customs will send you a bill if the contents + shipping cost over 150,000 won. Usually they send you the bill with bank info on how to pay and they will release it for delivery after receiving payment.
Title: Re: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: Freeto on June 21, 2011, 07:47:18 pm
Some things I've learned dealing with Korean customs:

- Marking packages as "gift" does zilch as it will get inspected anyways.

- Take items out of their retail packaging.

- Never include items indicating the value of the items inside like a receipt or tags. Leaving them in there will invite greater scrutiny.

- You may get asked to provide prescriptions even for over-the-counter stuff.
Title: Re: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: bullzai on June 21, 2011, 08:23:59 pm
I've had things sent to me from my parents, such as a nintendo 3ds, that was marked "game" and gift and I never had to pay a tax. Also, I never had to pay a tax when they sent my laptop to me. The only time I had to pay was when I ordered something from Play-asia.com.

I dunno if I was lucky, or if it was just how my parents worded their packages...
Title: Re: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: Wretchard on June 22, 2011, 06:28:56 am
Hi there,

I used to work for an international courier company so can offer you some advise- anything valued over $100 will be subject to taxes and duties, even if it's personal effects.
Are you able to give me an idea of what the goods are so I can see if you can do anything?

It's a guitar.
Title: Re: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: laso12 on June 22, 2011, 07:58:13 am
I've had things sent to me from my parents, such as a nintendo 3ds, that was marked "game" and gift and I never had to pay a tax. Also, I never had to pay a tax when they sent my laptop to me. The only time I had to pay was when I ordered something from Play-asia.com.

I dunno if I was lucky, or if it was just how my parents worded their packages...

Your parents probably didn't write anything in the value portion of the customs slip. That's the only way you won't be taxed.
Title: Re: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: Wretchard on June 22, 2011, 08:45:28 am
Your parents probably didn't write anything in the value portion of the customs slip. That's the only way you won't be taxed.

Hmm what do you mean? If they wrote the value I may not be taxed? Or, if the value was before the tax threshold and it was stated on the package or something?

And wasn't my parents who sent it. It was my brother. I've never been taxed on anything sent from my parents. Maybe they did something 'better' than whatever my bro did.
Title: Re: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: bullzai on June 22, 2011, 09:23:59 am
Your parents probably didn't write anything in the value portion of the customs slip. That's the only way you won't be taxed.

Hmm what do you mean? If they wrote the value I may not be taxed? Or, if the value was before the tax threshold and it was stated on the package or something?

And wasn't my parents who sent it. It was my brother. I've never been taxed on anything sent from my parents. Maybe they did something 'better' than whatever my bro did.

Actually, my parents always wrote a value that was higher than $150, usually like $300, but I dunno how it got through. Oh well, lucky me I guess.
Title: Re: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: Wretchard on June 22, 2011, 09:37:09 am
Your parents probably didn't write anything in the value portion of the customs slip. That's the only way you won't be taxed.

Hmm what do you mean? If they wrote the value I may not be taxed? Or, if the value was before the tax threshold and it was stated on the package or something?

And wasn't my parents who sent it. It was my brother. I've never been taxed on anything sent from my parents. Maybe they did something 'better' than whatever my bro did.

Actually, my parents always wrote a value that was higher than $150, usually like $300, but I dunno how it got through. Oh well, lucky me I guess.

Just got a Korean to look at the documents they sent me. From what they understand, any gift over 500,000 Won is subject to a customs tax, or whatever you wanna call it.

35% for perfume is the highest. She said my guitar should fall under the 'other' category which means is 20%.

So, this guitar is a guitar I had in Canada and I just got it sent to me. And I gotta pay a tax on something I've owned in Canada. If it is not a new guitar out of the shop, still gotta pay 20% to get my own personal item sent here. Very lame if that is the case.
Title: Re: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: Freeto on June 22, 2011, 01:15:00 pm
The customs form should've been marked "used" and "personal items." If you can provide proof of prior ownership such as a receipt or maybe indicate scratches or wear on the item then Customs may be convinced not to tax you, but good luck.
Title: Re: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: Wretchard on June 22, 2011, 02:24:54 pm
How can they know what something is worth?

If the guitar is worth $1000, but I say it is worth $500, will they just take my word for it?

First time dealing with this so I'm unsure if I should lie or not.
Title: Re: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: Wretchard on June 22, 2011, 04:14:31 pm
Anyone know if the people at customs will open the box and inspect it, or just xray it?

If I say the guitar is worth less than it actually is, can they find out?

What you people think?
Title: Re: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: Wretchard on June 23, 2011, 07:53:09 am
So my package is insured for $1000. Anyone know if this info gets passed to Korean customs from Canada Post? Be much better if it didn't haha.
Title: Re: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: porcelinewhite on June 23, 2011, 08:05:25 am
I had to pay $45 dollars last time...
I bought a swimsuit that costed 30 dollars...
The customs fee was more than the cost of the swimsuit~~sucks
Title: Re: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: christmas on June 23, 2011, 08:16:13 am
  u won't pay any customs or duty fees if the package is saying used stuff and the value is under 100 dollars..
Title: Re: Paying Korean customs/duty fees on package from home...
Post by: Wretchard on June 23, 2011, 11:32:48 am
I had to pay $45 dollars last time...
I bought a swimsuit that costed 30 dollars...
The customs fee was more than the cost of the swimsuit~~sucks

Ouch that is rough. How did that happen? Anything under 150,000 Won should not be charged... So the custom's website says...
Title: Shipping question
Post by: kwhawk on June 23, 2011, 11:55:05 am
I just ordered some clothes from the UK and it's valued at over W160,000, so I had to pay taxes on it.  Bummer.  My question is, does this happen with every package?  It seems like they only catch them some times or when the sender declares the content a certain way.

I'm asking because I was planning on having a wedding dress sent to me to have a fitting and then sending it back home.  I reeeeeeeally don't want to pay a 25% tax on the package, which will be worth significantly more than W160,000 .  I might just have to skip the fitting to avoid the tax.

Any advice?
Title: Re: Shipping question
Post by: Wretchard on June 23, 2011, 02:27:33 pm
I just ordered some clothes from the UK and it's valued at over W160,000, so I had to pay taxes on it.  Bummer.  My question is, does this happen with every package?  It seems like they only catch them some times or when the sender declares the content a certain way.

I'm asking because I was planning on having a wedding dress sent to me to have a fitting and then sending it back home.  I reeeeeeeally don't want to pay a 25% tax on the package, which will be worth significantly more than W160,000 .  I might just have to skip the fitting to avoid the tax.

Any advice?

Read that if you import something, and then 'export' it within a year, you can get the money you paid back, but the process is time consuming. That's all I know about it.
Title: Re: Customs/duty fees
Post by: Wretchard on June 24, 2011, 11:44:24 am
If my brother insured a package for $1000 using Canada Post, will Korean Customs have access to that information? Anyone have any experience with um, undervaluing a package?
Title: Re: Customs/duty fees
Post by: fontaine_cheng on September 28, 2011, 08:14:22 pm
Should have done my homework...bought clothing worth £165 online but never imagined the import duty would cost so much...Also these items will return home within a year for sure so does anyone know how to go about claiming the tax paid back at all???
Title: Re: Customs/duty fees
Post by: Davey on September 29, 2011, 12:49:45 pm
Should have done my homework...bought clothing worth £165 online but never imagined the import duty would cost so much...Also these items will return home within a year for sure so does anyone know how to go about claiming the tax paid back at all???

Trying posting your question on their web site. They usually take three business days to answer.

http://english.customs.go.kr/kcsweb/user.tdf?a=user.board.BoardApp&c=2001&board_id=GPB_EN_QNA&mc=ENGLISH_INFORMATION_QNA
Title: Re: Shipping stuff to Korea. Any issues?
Post by: MasanMan on November 23, 2011, 12:26:20 pm
I have had more than 10 boxes shipped from home and never had a problem. You might have a problem if you don't spell things right in English. So many cities are spelled similarly in Korea. Gangnam, Gyeongnam, Gangwon, etc.
Title: Re: Shipping stuff to Korea. Any issues?
Post by: bella4041 on November 23, 2011, 12:53:34 pm


Yes, I've had several packages and mail just never arrive.  My mom used the same address on those shipments as she did for shipments that did arrive.  I'm afraid to send anything very important.  Maybe it's just me. 

[/quote]

Did you ever find out what happened to them? No return to sender or anything? I have 2 right now that have been en route for going on 3 months. Both are filled with tea and music. Two things that I desperately need for the cold months.
Title: Re: Shipping stuff to Korea. Any issues?
Post by: Davey on November 23, 2011, 01:18:04 pm


Yes, I've had several packages and mail just never arrive.  My mom used the same address on those shipments as she did for shipments that did arrive.  I'm afraid to send anything very important.  Maybe it's just me. 


Did you ever find out what happened to them? No return to sender or anything? I have 2 right now that have been en route for going on 3 months. Both are filled with tea and music. Two things that I desperately need for the cold months.
[/quote]

You might want to contact the carrier (FedEx, UPS, etc.) to see what's up. That's what I did (Canada Post) and then the package arrived the next day.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: jorgill on January 06, 2012, 03:43:30 pm
I've found it helpful to put in a photocopy of my Alien card when having things mailed from abroad. 
First time a parcel got stuck at customs they requested it and it took ages.  Second time they just called me and asked what was in it and I didn't have to send anything to them.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: sivadakire on January 22, 2012, 03:04:49 pm
Has anyone had troubles bringing asthma inhalers into Korea? I take them very rarely and I've been living in places where you do not need a prescription for Ventolin, so I don't have one. I was going to bring a couple with me in case I needed them (I hear the yellow dust can be pretty bad) but if it's going to cause me trouble then I might just wait until I get there and then see a doctor to get a prescription. I didn't disclose my infrequent asthma on my teaching application, either, so I'm hoping it won't cause me trouble. Does anyone have experience with this? Or mailing asthma inhalers? Thanks a lot.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: Jeff619 on February 16, 2012, 08:09:49 am
I've only been charged a duty once.  However, I was just looking at some clothes on the Nordstrom website and they calculated my duty at 50%.  Didn't the FTA take effect in January? 
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: Davey on February 16, 2012, 08:46:21 am
I've only been charged a duty once.  However, I was just looking at some clothes on the Nordstrom website and they calculated my duty at 50%.  Didn't the FTA take effect in January?

FTA doesn't mean consumers avoid duties. For example, if you're a Canadian, there's still a limit on the value of goods you can bring to Canada after shopping in the US.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: kstavrides on February 25, 2012, 09:03:26 pm
Quick question for anyone who has items shipped from home.  I've heard that the USPS has a bad habit of losing packages headed for overseas destinations. 

What carriers seem to work the best?  Has anyone had a negative experience with the USPS? 
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: Davey on February 26, 2012, 05:42:38 pm
Quick question for anyone who has items shipped from home.  I've heard that the USPS has a bad habit of losing packages headed for overseas destinations. 

What carriers seem to work the best?  Has anyone had a negative experience with the USPS?

I've ordered stuff online where they were the carrier and have had no problems.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: Rothy on March 02, 2012, 11:18:57 am
A friend of mine had her mum send over a suitcase of her clothes from home, and customs withheld it until she'd pay tax on it! They were her used personal items... Can't work that one out.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: Chicagohotdog on March 04, 2012, 01:27:41 pm
Would it be a good idea to have the address written in both Korean and English?  I was thinking of typing out my address in Korean and emailing that to my folks so that they could print that out and tape it to the box along with the English romanization of it.  Would that be a good idea or would it confuse matters even more?

Title: new iPad through customs
Post by: bmcass on March 24, 2012, 06:56:17 pm
Good evening fellow waygookers,

I recently purchased the new iPad, and had it shipped to my parents house in the United States.  Before I have them ship it to me in Korea, I'm trying to determine the best way to have them send it so that it doesn't get held up in customs.  Should I declare it as a gift, or as personal belongings?  I read a post on Daves ESL that the new iPad would be held up in customs until Korea began selling it.  Any veracity to this claim?  What if I had my mom wrap the box in wrapping paper?  Please advise.
Title: Re: new iPad through customs
Post by: Mountain Crocodile on March 24, 2012, 08:39:43 pm
you'll need to pay a 20% import duty. 

I had to pay it when I flew to LA to get the 1st generation iPad.  Was a pain, but what the hell.

MC
Title: Re: new iPad through customs
Post by: Freeto on March 24, 2012, 09:26:40 pm
Good evening fellow waygookers,

I recently purchased the new iPad, and had it shipped to my parents house in the United States.  Before I have them ship it to me in Korea, I'm trying to determine the best way to have them send it so that it doesn't get held up in customs.  Should I declare it as a gift, or as personal belongings?  I read a post on Daves ESL that the new iPad would be held up in customs until Korea began selling it.  Any veracity to this claim?  What if I had my mom wrap the box in wrapping paper?  Please advise.

Definitely send it without the original box.
Title: Re: new iPad through customs
Post by: Aventine on March 27, 2012, 06:05:08 pm
Good evening fellow waygookers,

I recently purchased the new iPad, and had it shipped to my parents house in the United States.  Before I have them ship it to me in Korea, I'm trying to determine the best way to have them send it so that it doesn't get held up in customs.  Should I declare it as a gift, or as personal belongings?  I read a post on Daves ESL that the new iPad would be held up in customs until Korea began selling it.  Any veracity to this claim?  What if I had my mom wrap the box in wrapping paper?  Please advise.

Definitely have her put it in a case (the one you want) and label it as used, personal item worth 50 bucks.  Shipping it along with other items you want would help.  Untangle the cords and such to make it look worn.       
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: ignatmc on September 04, 2012, 10:35:29 am
wait what?  you get a 100,000 won discount at apple if you're a teacher? after school english teacher included? :D
thanks~
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: huynhln1 on September 06, 2012, 03:38:38 pm
For those who've paid a customs duty fee before, is it possible to do this online without an online banking license? It seems like the link cardrotax.or.kr requires an alien registration number and an online banking license.

I know you can pay at the post office or a bank, but paying online would be much easier than taking time off of work to visit these places. Please advise if you have experience!
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: Freeto on September 07, 2012, 09:35:47 am
For those who've paid a customs duty fee before, is it possible to do this online without an online banking license? It seems like the link cardrotax.or.kr requires an alien registration number and an online banking license.

I know you can pay at the post office or a bank, but paying online would be much easier than taking time off of work to visit these places. Please advise if you have experience!

I've paid the delivery guy. Make sure you have the exact amount in cash.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: huynhln1 on September 07, 2012, 12:12:29 pm
Interesting. The delivery man from UPS said he had no idea about the fee and refused to take the money.

I guess it's off to the post office then!
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: Freeto on September 07, 2012, 02:01:14 pm
When I dealt with Fedex I've also transferred money to a Korean bank account.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: cherylblossom on September 11, 2012, 03:18:52 pm
For those who've paid a customs duty fee before, is it possible to do this online without an online banking license? It seems like the link cardrotax.or.kr requires an alien registration number and an online banking license.

I know you can pay at the post office or a bank, but paying online would be much easier than taking time off of work to visit these places. Please advise if you have experience!

I've paid online before; someone from the customs office phoned me and then sent me an email with their banking details. Pretty simple stuff.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: via20c on October 11, 2012, 02:15:42 pm
Korea Customs

First, Kimchi is culture all around country.
Second, People shoud take Shoes off
Last, if you make friends, drink Soju.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: taeyang on October 11, 2012, 02:20:57 pm
Korea Customs

First, Kimchi is culture all around country.
Second, People shoud take Shoes off
Last, if you make friends, drink Soju.

excellent advice! but in this case, customs refers to the customs agency, i.e. the agency that is in charge of import tariffs and duties, and not cultural customs.

:)
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: pumpkinstuffing on November 21, 2012, 05:22:55 pm
Has anyone ever had

-boxed mac and cheese
-seasoned salt (http://mojosavings.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/170.jpg)

sent to them? Someone told me that you couldn't mail salt but I wasn't able to find any concrete info about this anywhere.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: Chicagohotdog on November 22, 2012, 07:15:58 am
I've had boxed mac and cheese sent, no one stopped it.

I've also had spices sent to me from home, not seasoned salt, but I would think that it would be similar.  Just have the person sending it write it on the customs declaration and I can't see why they would stop it.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: pumpkinstuffing on November 22, 2012, 07:48:09 am
Sweet, thanks. Been craving mac and cheese like crazy!
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: sokapo2 on March 31, 2013, 08:25:50 am
Quick question for anyone who has items shipped from home.  I've heard that the USPS has a bad habit of losing packages headed for overseas destinations. 

What carriers seem to work the best?  Has anyone had a negative experience with the USPS?

I've ordered stuff online where they were the carrier and have had no problems.

Never had problems with USPS!
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO... e cigarette refills?
Post by: daisygook on June 25, 2013, 12:22:43 pm
What's the deal with e-cigarettes these days? I've stopped smoking but rely on these things I bought in the UK. They look like normal cigarettes and you just suck and you get the nicotine. I remeber last tim I was here in 2012, you used to see them in the 7-Eleven and now it seems that the government is hell-bent on preventing them from being used, making it basically cheaper to smoke the real thing? This seems ludicrous to me. After much trawling, it seems like there's loads online but no actual shops to go and check the product out before purchase. And the ones I've seen online look more like bongs than cigarettes!!!

So to get to the point, where can I go to get e-cigs? Is there an actual shop anywhere and is it ridiculously expensive? Can I get them imported? From what I've read, the answer is no, you'll be slapped with an import fee.

Thanks for your input folks!
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: robvandan on November 08, 2013, 12:27:42 pm
Hi all. As i'll be here for a while, i'm having some of my old video game collection mailed to me, some old NES and SNES cartridges. These are games that I own and some of them are extremely valuable.

However they are used, not new, and belong to me.

How can I make sure Korean Customs knows this before I get it sent to me from the UK?

Obviously I will put down the true value of the items (a lot), but will this just invite customs to slap a 20% import tax on me?

Thanks in advance.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: alexc2000 on December 25, 2014, 08:41:58 pm
Hi all. As i'll be here for a while, i'm having some of my old video game collection mailed to me, some old NES and SNES cartridges. These are games that I own and some of them are extremely valuable.

However they are used, not new, and belong to me.

How can I make sure Korean Customs knows this before I get it sent to me from the UK?

Obviously I will put down the true value of the items (a lot), but will this just invite customs to slap a 20% import tax on me?

Thanks in advance.

For something that old and valuable, I would probably go back home during vacation, pick it up with my own hands, and put it in my carry-on baggage.

Even if import taxes were not a problem at all, I would be worried about people throwing the package around and potentially damaging the games.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: megeek23 on January 07, 2015, 11:09:55 am
Hey does anyone have an English telephone number for customs. I searched their website, but it is so confusing and their poorly made Q&A section has yielded zero success; they never answered my questions. I have several packages that are either stuck or lost at the airport (they've been over a month in Korea).

 
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: Jgrat on January 07, 2015, 01:36:37 pm
http://www.waygook.org/index.php/topic,49038.msg433789.html#msg433789

Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: K04 on January 20, 2015, 09:19:40 am
Hi,

   I ordered an item from Amazon.com and they require a PIN (personal identification number) for Korean customs in order to ship the item. Of course, the site they sent me to register for one is all in Korean and even my Korean friend hasn't been able to figure the site out. Does anyone have any experience with this?

http://portal.customs.go.kr/kcsipt/portal_link.jsp?portalGoToLink=inform_5&iFrameGoToLink=/StaPt/StaInfoOfferAction_3.do?method=viewImpCargoProgInfoEach
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: jinteh on January 20, 2015, 10:32:52 am
Hi,

   I ordered an item from Amazon.com and they require a PIN (personal identification number) for Korean customs in order to ship the item. Of course, the site they sent me to register for one is all in Korean and even my Korean friend hasn't been able to figure the site out. Does anyone have any experience with this?

http://portal.customs.go.kr/kcsipt/portal_link.jsp?portalGoToLink=inform_5&iFrameGoToLink=/StaPt/StaInfoOfferAction_3.do?method=viewImpCargoProgInfoEach

Reply #10, English PDF instructions sheet...

http://www.waygook.org/index.php/topic,80258.msg499446.html#msg499446
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: Lachkesis on June 03, 2015, 07:30:37 pm
Foolish question, but I recently purchased a game package that is just below the 150,000 Won custom fee threshold (it's exactly 149,900 won with shipping), do you think my package would get held back by customs?
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: matador on June 11, 2015, 05:09:57 pm
I ordered a supplement to the value of 150 000 won online.I don't think it has reached customs as yet.

I would like to place another order, via Iherb.com.Would I incur custom fees when both my packages get caught up at customs?
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: jinteh on June 13, 2015, 06:17:39 am
I ordered a supplement to the value of 150 000 won online.I don't think it has reached customs as yet.

I would like to place another order, via Iherb.com.Would I incur custom fees when both my packages get caught up at customs?

According to Iherb, it's only if both packages enter customs clearance on the same day. Assuming your orders are a day apart, it's unlikely they'll arrive at the same time. Otherwise you could just wait until the first one clears customs before placing another order.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: matador on June 13, 2015, 10:46:56 am
I ordered a supplement to the value of 150 000 won online.I don't think it has reached customs as yet.

I would like to place another order, via Iherb.com.Would I incur custom fees when both my packages get caught up at customs?

According to Iherb, it's only if both packages enter customs clearance on the same day. Assuming your orders are a day apart, it's unlikely they'll arrive at the same time. Otherwise you could just wait until the first one clears customs before placing another order.

Oh really,that's good to hear.However,the package that is in customs is not from I herb.The package I wish to order now is.What should the maximum value of the new package be?
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: leaponover on December 11, 2015, 07:10:14 pm
Do they actually x-ray at customs? 

I'll be buying an engagement ring and I would much rather buy from a company online that i'm familiar with and used before rather than try to speak with my limited Korean and either get ripped off or have it be overpriced anyway.

I'm thinking my folks can just mail it wrapped and marked gift.  Do you think they x-ray?  I've done that with electronics before, but nothing this costly.  I'm also a little concerned as writing the real price would raise huge red flags so it's going to limit my insurance options.  Anybody have experience before and know a little bit more about package inspection?
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: solveit on December 11, 2015, 10:01:52 pm
Yes, customs do x-ray, and will open parcels if they are unsure of the contents. If you are having a high value piece of jewellery posted to you, it might be worth just taking the hit on import tax to make sure it is properly insured in the event of loss or theft. Otherwise get them to ship it in a parcel with a few other odds and ends wrapped and marked as gifts and declare it at a lower value, but definitely use a fully trackable service, for your own peace of mind if nothing else.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: leaponover on December 15, 2015, 12:30:56 pm
Do you know what the actual rule is on "gifts".  I mean, it actually is a gift, ya know.  If it's marked gift and they x-ray it and see that it's a ring, will they even care?  What is the actual rule on something being a gift and exempt from import fees?

If I have to pay the import fees i'll probably just get the ring here, will end up the same price then...
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: tanishatempest on July 27, 2016, 01:31:20 pm
Hi, I'm looking into buying a new laptop back in the states and having my father send it to me. Is it possible to have my father, take it out the box, slap it into a package and send it to me without being slap in the face with heavy fees? Has anyone done this lately? I feel like they would just scan the package and know its a laptop.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: The Arm on July 27, 2016, 01:45:30 pm
Hi, I'm looking into buying a new laptop back in the states and having my father send it to me. Is it possible to have my father, take it out the box, slap it into a package and send it to me without being slap in the face with heavy fees? Has anyone done this lately? I feel like they would just scan the package and know its a laptop.

Yea I do this all the time.  Have your dad mark it as "used electronics" and the value as $50 or something.  As long as the item + shipping is less than 150,000 you won't have to pay any customs fees.

http://www.customs.go.kr/kcshome/main/content/ContentView.do?contentId=CONTENT_ID_000001317&layoutMenuNo=21022
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: antmar on October 24, 2016, 07:28:24 am
Has anyone had experience with DHL saying "Uncontrollable Clearance Delay" once it hits customs in at Incheon?
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: MayorHaggar on November 17, 2016, 03:24:35 pm
Can anyone tell me what the current procedure is, now that Korea Customs uses PCC numbers or whatever? I kinda feel like we need some updated info.

I've just ordered a laptop from the US and I'm going to get my mom to send it by USPS.

I will have my mom write my passport # and ARC # on the package, plus my Korean phone number and email address.

Then what happens when it arrives in Korea, do they just send you a letter telling you how to pay the customs tax? Email? Text message? A call from someone haranguing you in Korean?
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: MayorHaggar on November 17, 2016, 06:09:11 pm
Cool thanks. And does providing ARC or Passport # still get past the PIN# nonsense?
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: bennymcl on August 23, 2017, 11:19:41 am
Hi all

I will be shipping over my monitor and most of my computer components without the heaviest parts.

I realise this will be expensive to even ship from Canada, but the monitor is $2000 and buying it new here would just be too expensive and I will not be moving home any time soon so it will just sit there.

My main question about this stuff is... how much duty taxes will I have to pay? Nothing is new, The computer parts themselves are around another $2000-$2500. Since this stuff it previously owned, do I need to pay taxes on them if I get them sent to me? What should I be putting on the custom form when I ship them?

Any kind of advice or help would be greatly appreciated.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: haomi11 on April 18, 2018, 07:04:37 pm
What's the duty-free threshold?


The duty-free threshold is 150,000 Korean won (usually around $130 USD) and that includes the shipping fee.

Go here for the current exchange rate employed by Korea Customs:

http://english.customs.go.kr/kcsweb/user.tdf?a=user.exchangerate.ExchangeRateApp&c=1001&mc=ENGLISH_INFORMATION_CUSTOMS

What are the duty and tax rates?

For the most products, 8% customs duties and 10 % value added tax (VAT). However, some goods are liable to special excise taxes and other taxes.

In general, all the household goods (except automobiles, boats, luxury jewelry, second items depending on the situation) are exempt from Customs duties and taxes. In addition, pianos, refrigerators, dryers, ovens or some other household goods are exempt from Customs duties and taxes only once because there's usually only one of those items per household.

However, you need to prove that you are going to live in Korea for more than two years and the goods should be brought into Korea within 6 months of your first arrival. You can't file duty-free applications on brand new products, gifts, professional goods, goods for sale and other goods that aren't household necessities.

Automobiles, airplanes, boats and jewelry (worth more than 1 million won) are charged with regular duties and taxes.


For all the details of Customs duty and tax rates applicable, please refer to the Duties and Taxes in Korea or Simplified Duty Rate at Simplified Clearance on the Korea Customs' web site.

Besides customs duties and taxes, some items require licensing & approval procedures in other government agencies. These include food, alcohol, pets, medicine, and cars.  For details, please read more on importing individual items."


Electronics, books, laptops, clothes/shoes, and bags

Electronics such as cameras, tablets, smartphones, etc. are subject to 20% taxation.

Books are duty free, but audio books (CDs, DVDs, etc.) are subject to 20% taxation.

There is no duty on laptops, but 10% VAT on the CIF value (the price+freight+insurance fee) is charged.

The duty rate on clothes and shoes is 13%, whereas it's 8% on bags.

How are duties calculated?

Let's suppose you ordered clothes (13% duty rate) whose value is $200 USD and the current exchange rate is 1,100 KRW = $1 USD. Let's also suppose the shipping is $10 USD.

Duty fee = (value of products in KRW + shipping in KRW )*duty rate

Duty fee = (200 USD * 1,100 KRW/USD   +  $10 USD*1,100 KRW/USD)*13%  = 30,030

VAT=  (value of products in KRW + shipping in KRW + duty fee)*VAT rate=

VAT = [200 USD*1,100 KRW/USD + $10 USD*1,100 KRW/USD + 30, 030 ]*10% = 26,103

Total fees =  Duty fee + VAT = 30,030 + 26,103 = 56,133 KRW

How do I pay?

Online banking is the probably the easiest and fastest way, but it's also possible to pay by going to your bank or any post office.

How did my  friend order over 200,000 KRW worth of  dietary supplements (or X good) and not get charged a dime?

S/he probably ordered from a Korean company that is aware of customs laws (most, if not all, are). Hence, they probably marked the package as gift and/or deliberately marked the value of the package such that you avoid paying fees.

It's also possible that the goods ordered are exempt from duties and taxes. Or maybe s/he just got lucky!

More Info

http://www.customs.go.kr/kcshome/main/content/ContentView.do?contentId=CONTENT_ID_000001318&layoutMenuNo=21023

Have a specific question?

Ask Korea Customs directly:

http://www.customs.go.kr/kcshome/main/qna/QnaList.do?layoutMenuNo=21035

Interesting
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: JNM on April 30, 2018, 04:32:45 pm
What's the duty-free threshold?


The duty-free threshold is 150,000 Korean won (usually around $130 USD) and that includes the shipping fee.

Go here for the current exchange rate employed by Korea Customs:

http://english.customs.go.kr/kcsweb/user.tdf?a=user.exchangerate.ExchangeRateApp&c=1001&mc=ENGLISH_INFORMATION_CUSTOMS

What are the duty and tax rates?

For the most products, 8% customs duties and 10 % value added tax (VAT). However, some goods are liable to special excise taxes and other taxes.

In general, all the household goods (except automobiles, boats, luxury jewelry, second items depending on the situation) are exempt from Customs duties and taxes. In addition, pianos, refrigerators, dryers, ovens or some other household goods are exempt from Customs duties and taxes only once because there's usually only one of those items per household.

However, you need to prove that you are going to live in Korea for more than two years and the goods should be brought into Korea within 6 months of your first arrival. You can't file duty-free applications on brand new products, gifts, professional goods, goods for sale and other goods that aren't household necessities.

Automobiles, airplanes, boats and jewelry (worth more than 1 million won) are charged with regular duties and taxes.


For all the details of Customs duty and tax rates applicable, please refer to the Duties and Taxes in Korea or Simplified Duty Rate at Simplified Clearance on the Korea Customs' web site.

Besides customs duties and taxes, some items require licensing & approval procedures in other government agencies. These include food, alcohol, pets, medicine, and cars.  For details, please read more on importing individual items."


Electronics, books, laptops, clothes/shoes, and bags

Electronics such as cameras, tablets, smartphones, etc. are subject to 20% taxation.

Books are duty free, but audio books (CDs, DVDs, etc.) are subject to 20% taxation.

There is no duty on laptops, but 10% VAT on the CIF value (the price+freight+insurance fee) is charged.

The duty rate on clothes and shoes is 13%, whereas it's 8% on bags.

How are duties calculated?

Let's suppose you ordered clothes (13% duty rate) whose value is $200 USD and the current exchange rate is 1,100 KRW = $1 USD. Let's also suppose the shipping is $10 USD.

Duty fee = (value of products in KRW + shipping in KRW )*duty rate

Duty fee = (200 USD * 1,100 KRW/USD   +  $10 USD*1,100 KRW/USD)*13%  = 30,030

VAT=  (value of products in KRW + shipping in KRW + duty fee)*VAT rate=

VAT = [200 USD*1,100 KRW/USD + $10 USD*1,100 KRW/USD + 30, 030 ]*10% = 26,103

Total fees =  Duty fee + VAT = 30,030 + 26,103 = 56,133 KRW

How do I pay?

Online banking is the probably the easiest and fastest way, but it's also possible to pay by going to your bank or any post office.

How did my  friend order over 200,000 KRW worth of  dietary supplements (or X good) and not get charged a dime?

S/he probably ordered from a Korean company that is aware of customs laws (most, if not all, are). Hence, they probably marked the package as gift and/or deliberately marked the value of the package such that you avoid paying fees.

It's also possible that the goods ordered are exempt from duties and taxes. Or maybe s/he just got lucky!

More Info

http://www.customs.go.kr/kcshome/main/content/ContentView.do?contentId=CONTENT_ID_000001318&layoutMenuNo=21023

Have a specific question?

Ask Korea Customs directly:

http://www.customs.go.kr/kcshome/main/qna/QnaList.do?layoutMenuNo=21035

Interesting

Note: thatís an old post.  The rates have likely changed, and FTAs make most goods from select nations duty free.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: ESLTurtle on May 01, 2018, 01:43:43 pm
iherb.com bro, that's all u need for the GAINZ. Remember Zyzz, bruh.  :P
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: sh9wntm on May 30, 2018, 07:57:16 am
Just got an email my package with Korea Post is held up at customs. It's from Iherb and under 150000 won. Has anyone else had issues with them? I've always done CJ Express and have never encountered issues.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: Savant on May 30, 2018, 08:15:21 am
Just got an email my package with Korea Post is held up at customs. It's from Iherb and under 150000 won. Has anyone else had issues with them? I've always done CJ Express and have never encountered issues.

It might be the contents.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: JNM on May 30, 2018, 09:32:14 am
Just got an email my package with Korea Post is held up at customs. It's from Iherb and under 150000 won. Has anyone else had issues with them? I've always done CJ Express and have never encountered issues.

It might be the contents.

This is likely it.
Sometimes it isn't the product itself, but the label. For example, I have heard that "gelatin" needs to include the species it was derived from (pig, cow, horse), even of it is an ingredient in something else.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: sh9wntm on May 30, 2018, 02:33:38 pm
Just got an email my package with Korea Post is held up at customs. It's from Iherb and under 150000 won. Has anyone else had issues with them? I've always done CJ Express and have never encountered issues.

It might be the contents.

This is likely it.
Sometimes it isn't the product itself, but the label. For example, I have heard that "gelatin" needs to include the species it was derived from (pig, cow, horse), even of it is an ingredient in something else.

I've had a few things that were low value be held up at customs just because I didn't put in the right import code, but if you either call or enter it online then the shipment gets moving right quick.

They ended up wanting my passport number, which I already gave on my order but maybe they were double checking. Anyways no big deal. Overall delivery service in Korea has been impeccable.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: frannyesl on August 27, 2018, 08:50:39 am
They ended up wanting my passport number, which I already gave on my order but maybe they were double checking. Anyways no big deal. Overall delivery service in Korea has been impeccable.

This happened to me and bf the first few times we ordered from iherb in either of our names. Every time we had to call up a number that was texted to us and give our passport number and then the order came through.
Since then, everything sails through no worries.
Our theory is that customs were trying to discourage us from importing foreign produce the first few times something flagged up in our name, and after a certain threshold accepted that we weren't going to stop. Didn't count the number of times, but it was very similar in both names - maybe 3 or 4 times, and then no issues at all since then.
iherb is a lifesaver. Being vegan and living in a rural area, the only things I buy from the local supermarket are (fricking expensive) vegetables, tofu, olive oil and soy milk and EVERYTHING else I consume is imported. I give thanks every day for iherb  :azn:

Be super careful if you're ever ordering more than 150,000 dollars' worth and choose to split it into multiple deliveries that you leave a day at least between the orders. The first time we'd done research and placed our second order the day after the first (in the same name), and got stung since in California it was still the same day due to the time difference...and both parcels still arrived at customs on the same day.
I now monitor the tracking, and as soon as a parcel has cleared customs, that's my green light to place another order. Shipping is amazing - I can order and receive 2 parcels in a week  ;D Compared to Amazon.com, who take over a week to even make a move on dispatching an order...
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: destawil on November 20, 2018, 05:01:16 pm
Does anyone know how to pay the custom tax online? I went to my bank with the paper but it wasn't any help. I've looked online everywhere and there is no guide on how to pay them online.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: dpier015 on December 06, 2018, 10:37:11 am
Be super careful if you're ever ordering more than 150,000 dollars' worth and choose to split it into multiple deliveries that you leave a day at least between the orders. The first time we'd done research and placed our second order the day after the first (in the same name), and got stung since in California it was still the same day due to the time difference...and both parcels still arrived at customs on the same day.

This is currently happening to me... Ordered max ($150) from iHerb, and at the same time ordered something via Gmarket. The Gmarket order is being held in customs. The fee (75K won) is greater than the item (50K won), so I'm just not accepting it... Strange situation imo. Seller said it's impossible to pay return shipping and get a refund on the order. I won't pay it ofc, but I'm curious what will happen to the item (i.e. when it will be sent back; if customs officers will get to keep it; if they sell the item for profit, etc. etc.). Anyone know?

Edited for formatting :D
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: Ailsa123 on June 13, 2019, 02:12:28 pm
This may be a stupid question, but if I'm buying something worth 200'000 won, do I get taxed on all 200'000 or only the 50'000 above threshold? Been trying to figure it out.
Title: Re: KOREA CUSTOMS INFO
Post by: scottykiddo on September 01, 2020, 10:20:47 am
Just an update, please note the customs free limit is USD 150, that is not the same as KRW 150,000. Also, here are updated links since all of the above do not work.

"Goods priced at no more than a certain value (USD 150 in goods priced) value, including the value of goods and freight), such as goods donated to people residing in Korea by their relatives in foreign countries, are exempted from customs duties and tax.
When a postal item is exempts from taxes by customs officer on the spot, it is transferred to the post office in the jurisdiction over the area of addressee. For dutiable postal items, the addressee should pay the duties to have them cleared, and some goods can be cleared only when import requirements (e.g. certificate of quarantine) are met."

https://www.customs.go.kr/english/cm/cntnts/cntntsView.do?mi=8058&cntntsId=2734

"The following postal items are duty-free, and you must pay duties for any goods which exceed the duty-free allowance.

Goods with a total value of not more than US$150 which are received by a domestic resident and recognized to be intended for personal use"

https://www.customs.go.kr/english/cm/cntnts/cntntsView.do?mi=8035&cntntsId=2723

Here's the tax rate if you are ordering over USD150

https://www.customs.go.kr/upload/popCntntsId2723.html