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View Full Version : going to america with empty suitcases, need to know some stuff about customs



TCUTTER
01-12-2007, 17:14
so yeah, the situation is im going over like next week and coming back 2 days before xmas. being a wargammer, im plotting to get as much stuff from over there as possible, so this is asking anyone whos done like wise or just wants to give their knowledge.

i want to buy alot of reaper stuff, how will that effect me on the way back, since it can be viewed as a lethal weapon i guess, they are sharp around the sword/ spear area.

how much do you reckon i can fit in a suitcase within the weight restrictions? im also buying a few fantasy flight boxes and a bit of manga too, plus theres clothes to fit in i guess:rolleyes: im willing to pay at least a little to fit everything in, in terms of tax

any feedback/ advice is much appreciated

ps, my mums agreed i can commandeer some of her suitcase for manga if that helps

max the dog
01-12-2007, 17:36
I wish I could tell ya more but considering the value of the Pound compared to the Dollar I'd say find your bargains and buy away.

TCUTTER
01-12-2007, 17:41
oh believe me, thats phase one, all my xmas moneys getting converted this week, along with 200 of my own money, so im gonna be spending like mad

heretics bane
01-12-2007, 17:46
Are they models?9im taking yes) just pop them in your suit case, the one that goes to the hold and your fine, hand luggage no. my parents got refused on a plane becuase of a tiny metal hammer(about 5 inchs big, if even) was seen as a deadly weapon even though it was for smashing up toffee.......

Agrip. Varenus Denter
01-12-2007, 17:53
lol... your Reaper stuff won't count as weapons. :)

A lot depends on who you are using as an airline. In the most US-based airlines have a 60 pound (27 kilo) suitcase limit, with high fines for exceeding the weight limit. Many non-US based airlines restrict you to 45 pounds (20 kilos) per suitcase. Carry-on luggage is also restricted now by weight. On average, most airlines restrict carry-on sizes to 22x14x9 inches (55x35x22 cm) and 40 pounds (18 kilos).

...and if nothing else... mail stuff back to your house from the states. Just mark it "gift" and keep the monetary value at like $15 or something small, and make sure you don't keep any receipts or price tags on anything.

And have a good trip!

Zink
01-12-2007, 17:53
My wife is from Russia and every year we travel there to see her family. I tend to go over with a minimum of clothing and a lot of gifts. While there we give away the gifts and reload the suitcases with gifts for my family here and all kinds of cheap stuff from there for ourselves. You need to check the airline for what your weight limits will be. I've had to redistribute and repack suitcases in the airport at check in because our home scale was off. The way security restrictions are now you won't be able to take the models in your carry on. But checked luggage is fine.

Fantasy flight games are heavy and bulky and will take up a lot of space and weight. I think if you do a quick look at their website you'll see the dimensions and weights for shipping purposes. For metal minis I have a good recent example. I bought a dark age/medieval Rus army from Gripping Beast/Old Glory in the US. 100 infantry and 15 cavalry weighed in at 5 lbs 4 ozs. Because the minis were in baggies the box was only about 12"x6"x3" in size. Books weigh a lot too so just take a quick look at some that you have around home to get an idea.

Import duties and taxes I don't have a clue. I marked my stuff as gifts and never had to pay anything. Canadian customs rarely looks into your suitcases if you travel by air. I hope some of this helps you out and happy buying!

TCUTTER
01-12-2007, 18:15
yeah, i was thinking of mailing some back, my dad lives over there so it wouldnt be a stretch for him to send it after Christmas. thanks for the feedback, i kinda figured about reaper being a no no in hand luggage but i didnt know whether id get into trouble packing it in the stuff that gos in the hold. mangas not actually that heavy, must be the paper the use.:D

Karhedron
02-12-2007, 19:03
The legal limit on what you can bring into the UK from outside the EU is 145. Any more than that and you have to pay tax on it.

Please note that I would never advocate buying more than 145 worth of stuff and then going through the green aisle. I am sure it happens but I would not advise doing it.

Sgt John Keel
02-12-2007, 21:26
The legal limit on what you can bring into the UK from outside the EU is 145. Any more than that and you have to pay tax on it.

Please note that I would never advocate buying more than 145 worth of stuff and then going through the green aisle. I am sure it happens but I would not advise doing it.

I believe the general practice is to unpack everything expensive, like electronics, and mail the boxes and manuals back. Also, bear in mind that anything labelled as gift will only be insured to the value you put on it, so if the customs or the postal services lose it, you're screwed.

/Adrian

Captain Fun
02-12-2007, 21:31
Just do me one favour please.

When you go through customs, say "I have nothing to declare except my genius".

The pestilent 1
02-12-2007, 22:30
Just do me one favour please.

When you go through customs, say "I have nothing to declare except my genius".

How does that not get abused?
"Do you have anything to declare?"
"Yes, I have a massive.."

Or do they just Taser anyone that says stupid stuff?:confused:

thearchiver
03-12-2007, 00:22
Yep saying stupid stuff to customs officers will mean that you will be put into the "random" search line, and the 3 hour long passport check. Security work is a thankless and boring job; making life hell for a smartarse is one of the little pleasures of the job.

pwrgmrguard
03-12-2007, 01:32
Depends who you fly. I find American air to be crap, but British Airways is very helpful, and pretty efficient. Flying back to new york from Zurich i had a replica flintlock in my bag which my parents forgot to inform me was tyhe one i was carrying on (i use a back pack for all my personal stuff) and british airways solved the problem in a bout thirty seconds. Same deal happened on American, took three hours and a different plane.

I'd say head to a post office and ask if they could weight your stuff, as i think the scales there and at an airport will be calibrated the same.

Lostanddamned
03-12-2007, 19:06
Ok, in terms of customs; Have the least suspicious looking person in your party carry your brand new stuff in a bag, he is less likely to be stopped and get asked "how much is this worth" a million times, and then have every item's value verified. I have some metal in my sinuses (loooooooooooooong story) and always get a full stop and search.

Hand luggage - if you can look nonchalant and carry it (in one hand etc) it doesn't matter about weight.

I do not advocate smuggling anything over the value of the local customs limits, or that is illegal, but sometimes it pays to follow some guidelines, just for a easier trip. Also remember that sale prices are not taken into account, so those $250 jeans you paid $25 for are worth 125.

pwrgmrguard
03-12-2007, 19:09
I guess i never spend enough money to have to bother with all this. I stick it in my suitcase, and let it go through the machines, and pick it up and drive home and then go on living life. Or i never declare anything.