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Thread: International GAS

  1. #1
    Member tacomadriver's Avatar
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    International GAS

    I've recently sold a number of effects pedals via another forum. Over half of the guys that contacted me where outside the US. I sold to a fellow in Norway and a couple to a guy in the UK. I also had interests from Canada. I know this is an international forum too. I lead a sheltered life here in Eugene, Oregon (no sales tax yet) and don't travel outside the country much. I was shocked and amazed at how much tax and duty items can have. The fellow in Norway said that for some reason gear in Norway and Australia is very expensive.

    I'd be interested to hear what other members experience buying and selling has been.
    George

    AMPS: Red Iron Amps Mil-Spec -> Cave Valley 2x12 cab, Swart STR-Tweed
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  2. #2
    Plank Spanker justmund's Avatar
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    I can vouch for the fact that gear is expensive in Australia, part of this is we attract tax of 10% when the value of the imported item is over $1000.

    PRSes from a dealer attract even more of a premium, I assume this is because of the overhead associated with maintaining a warranty. I've never actually bought a PRS from a dealer, and it's always been private. There's obviously a risk associated with this, but I think it's mitigated with the (very) high quality of PRS instruments.

    What's crazy is even though the 2nd hand market stinks in Aus (for sellers), people are still trying to sell 2nd hand guitars relative to what they originally paid for them. 5 or more years ago when sites such as eBay weren't as "safe" as they are now (I have no problem now buying something off eBay from the US, and having it shipped here), there weren't any options for PRSes, except for Australian delivered models. This attracted a hefty premium, especially considering historically the AUD was a lot weaker than the USD. When I was a kid, 1 AUD bought you 0.75 USD...

    Now you can grab one from the US very easily, and typically around 1/2 to 2/3s of the price from a Aus dealer, especially now the AUD buys about 1.05 USD!

  3. #3
    Senior Member aduayer's Avatar
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    I am from BRazil and import taxes here are insane. IF you ship by mail you can sum the value of the good to the shipping expense and double it. for example, if you are shipping a guitar with the price of US$ 1.000,00 + shipping, let's say US$ 300,00, you are going to pay around US$ 1.100,00 of taxes. Final price around US$2.400,00.
    If you are carrying the good with you, from a trip to US for example, then is more complicated, but it's also simple. you can bring US$500,00 of goods with you, so what exceeds that you got a 50% tax. so for the same guitar, assuming you are only bringing the guitar, nothing else it would be US$1.100,00 - US$ 500,00 = US$ 600,00 then 50% of it = US$ 300,00. So the same guitar would cost US$ 1.300,00.
    But if you have a store, things are even worst and much more complicated. Fact is, most of imported goods here cost 2 or 3 times from a price in US and that's why most of us when buying high end stuff, travel abroad to pick it up.

  4. #4
    Member tacomadriver's Avatar
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    Wow! Just wow! Those are truly insane fees. I'm guessing these practices are to keep goods from outside your countries from competing with internal goods. Are there comparable high end boutique builders making gear in your countries?

    Does anyone know if there are similar fees buying international and shipping the the US?
    George

    AMPS: Red Iron Amps Mil-Spec -> Cave Valley 2x12 cab, Swart STR-Tweed
    GUITARS: Suhr Pro C2, PRS NF3, PRS SE Singlecut, Gibson LP Standard, Squier CV50

  5. #5
    Senior Member aduayer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tacomadriver View Post
    Wow! Just wow! Those are truly insane fees. I'm guessing these practices are to keep goods from outside your countries from competing with internal goods. Are there comparable high end boutique builders making gear in your countries?
    Does anyone know if there are similar fees buying international and shipping the the US?
    you are right, those fees are supposed to incentive the industry. anyway, we always find a way when we need something.
    What happens is that some major car, food cosmetics, etc brands install factories here. So they have brazilian made goods at a competitive price.
    we do have some very good builders here, guys like Di Castelli and Zaganin comes to my mind when I think about Brazilian high end guitars custom builders.

  6. #6
    Still a Junior Member Albrecht Smuten's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aduayer View Post
    I am from BRazil and import taxes here are insane. IF you ship by mail you can sum the value of the good to the shipping expense and double it. for example, if you are shipping a guitar with the price of US$ 1.000,00 + shipping, let's say US$ 300,00, you are going to pay around US$ 1.100,00 of taxes. Final price around US$2.400,00.
    If you are carrying the good with you, from a trip to US for example, then is more complicated, but it's also simple. you can bring US$500,00 of goods with you, so what exceeds that you got a 50% tax. so for the same guitar, assuming you are only bringing the guitar, nothing else it would be US$1.100,00 - US$ 500,00 = US$ 600,00 then 50% of it = US$ 300,00. So the same guitar would cost US$ 1.300,00.
    But if you have a store, things are even worst and much more complicated. Fact is, most of imported goods here cost 2 or 3 times from a price in US and that's why most of us when buying high end stuff, travel abroad to pick it up.
    That's unbelievable

    And I was whining about +50% of the original value when bought here...
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  7. #7
    Senior Member garrett's Avatar
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    I can say, having grown up in the US, when I lived in Australia my GAS was definitely quelled. LOL When I was there in 2008-2010, you could count on guitars costing at least twice what they did in the US. Accessories, too. When I went back to the US for a visit, I stocked up on a year's worth of guitar strings so I wouldn't have to buy any in Oz.

    The exceptions were the Aussie made acoustics. Maton and Cole Clark are both great and priced competitively in that market. I don't see a reason to own any other acoustic Down Under.

    One thing Australia has against it is the distance. To get a guitar from Stevensville to Sydney is a loooong way. And it's considerably farther to get one to Perth (Like going from Stevensville to Los Angeles). The market is also pretty small in Australia. The land size is only slightly smaller than the 48 mainland US states, but the population is only a little bigger than Florida or New York state.
    --Garrett--

  8. #8
    Plank Spanker justmund's Avatar
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    Australia did have a decent electric guitar maker once, Belman. You could say they used PRS as a benchmark (check out the Hornet) and they made some very fine instruments. They went bust, apparently they were great instrument makes but really poor business men! I'd still like a Albatross Grand Blackwood one day...



    The Matons and Cole Clarks mentioned above are great axes, I've got a Cole Clark Fat Lady 2AC, spruce top, rosewood back and sides, ebony bridge and board. I have considered selling it and getting a SE Angelus Custom tho (then I would be "All In")

  9. #9
    Cream Crackered Mikegarveyblues's Avatar
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    I've thought about ordering guitars from the US before but once I add on shipping, tax and anything else it becomes too expensive.

    That said i've ordered a fair few 'parts' from the US if I can't get them over here. Tends to be about the same price in the end so the only down side is having to wait longer on shipping.
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