Did Brexit kill AlieExpress?

Associate
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How is buying from Aliexpress these days now the brexit dust has somewhat settled ?
I had no issues with an iPad screen recently. Took a week to arrive with a listing advertised as 10 day delivery. As stated in the thread, vat and customs stuff is paid in advance so you pay a chunk on top of listed prices.
 
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I bought some replacement laptop fans and thermal pads last month and they charged the VAT directly and I received all items in less than two weeks via Ali Standard Shipping > Royal Mail with no further charges.
 
Caporegime
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How is buying from Aliexpress these days now the brexit dust has somewhat settled ?

I've started buying using a middle man. It's a bit of a minefield. I have to find someone who buys the type of stuff I want. They then buy it for you and get it shipped to their address in china. They test it for you and take pics making sure you are happy with the product.

They then either ship it directly to you or ship it to a friend or family local to where you are in bulk including all the other purchases for other people.

That person then splits it up and posts it to you. It's called triangle shipping.

It's better for stuff which could be terrible quality as you get sent 12 high Res pics of the product from every angle and they can test it for you. If there is any issues they can return it to the seller for a full refund which is easier because it's local.

I'm also buying off other sites doing this not AliExpress as it's far cheaper using the proper Chinese sites aimed at the Chinese market. Weidian, taobao, etc. It's all in Chinese so a middle man is a must and people do that for a living for a small fee.
 
Soldato
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I had no issues with an iPad screen recently. Took a week to arrive with a listing advertised as 10 day delivery. As stated in the thread, vat and customs stuff is paid in advance so you pay a chunk on top of listed prices.

I was a little worried there'd be hidden charges but with everything paid up front and it going through customs fine is good to hear

It's better for stuff which could be terrible quality as you get sent 12 high Res pics of the product from every angle and they can test it for you. If there is any issues they can return it to the seller for a full refund which is easier because it's local.

Seems a bit long winded, I'd rather pay the extra and just buy from UK for anything expensive
 
Caporegime
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I was a little worried there'd be hidden charges but with everything paid up front and it going through customs fine is good to hear



Seems a bit long winded, I'd rather pay the extra and just buy from UK for anything expensive

Yeah it is I'm not going to bother with it as it's a lot of hassle but I've saved maybe £170 over 3 products doing this. It was more of an experiment I've never done it before and doubt I will again.
 
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How is buying from Aliexpress these days now the brexit dust has somewhat settled ?

It's fine. I've been buying a bit of camping gear from AliExpress (including a Nuturehike Cloud Peak 2 and Lanshan 1 Plus tent plus various footprints and Titanium cookware) and it's still cheaper than buying in the UK even with the taxes added - at least this way you know if you'll get charged taxes rather than it being a lottery - and It also means I don't have to pay the Parcelforce/UPS/Fedex Robin Hood tax as well! Delivery times have actually improved as they seem to clear customs quicker now.
 
Associate
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Using AliExp I ordered a few things from two suppliers about 3-4 weeks ago, One did show VAT the other had no mention of it when buying.
The one with the VAT paid arrived in just over two weeks without issues the other a week later also without issues but it did show the value of the the item at (USD) $0.01 real cost was £3.77
The last few Items I ordered from Ebay never arrived and the one that did was the wrong Item so I've basicly switched to AliExp.
 
Soldato
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I've started buying using a middle man. It's a bit of a minefield. I have to find someone who buys the type of stuff I want. They then buy it for you and get it shipped to their address in china. They test it for you and take pics making sure you are happy with the product.

They then either ship it directly to you or ship it to a friend or family local to where you are in bulk including all the other purchases for other people.

That person then splits it up and posts it to you. It's called triangle shipping.

Triangular trade used to be goods to Africa, slaves to the Caribbean, then sugar to the UK. They could have picked a less evocative name.
 
Caporegime
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Anyone get nuisance calls after using AE? I get calls from what looks like a UK mobile number but it's just some woman speaking Cantonese or Mandarin.
 
Soldato
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I just received item which was ~£20 and for which AE had charged UK VAT during checkout.

Value declared on the package was $6 and had clearly been cut open by customs. Make me wonder what would have happened if customs decided the item was under valued.

Official VAT invoices states, '(UK VAT ID in progress by tax authority)'. Hmmm...
 
Soldato
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I just received item which was ~£20 and for which AE had charged UK VAT during checkout.

Value declared on the package was $6 and had clearly been cut open by customs. Make me wonder what would have happened if customs decided the item was under valued.

You'd have a bill to pay/argue about.

Unless the seller is up to something dodgy they should have declared the correct value and that UK VAT had been paid.
 
Soldato
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Seems to be a gamble on if you get taxed or not.

But it still beats ebay. That is full of Chinese tat now anyway and the high seller fees are killing it.
 
Soldato
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Trying my first punt on cheap aliexpress tat.

Got a surprisingly fast notice that it was "in my country" a week ago then it apparently cleared customs. Still waiting :p
 
Soldato
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How does this work then? I used to buy lots from BG and AE, haven't really since covid as some of my interests are on hold. How to HMRC know they've paid the correct VAT?

If you buy something for £50 through Ali Express then you'll be charged £60 and the customs declaration should show £50 plus £10 VAT. Ali Express will account for the £10 to HMRC.
 
Soldato
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The trouble is AE sellers don't seem to be aware that AE are now collecting UK VAT during checkout. So some are continuing with the old practice marking the value low and no tax is shown on the declaration. The seller I chatted with said he had no way to add tax information to the declaration.

The AE Help Center still states that the buyer is responsible for all taxes & duties on receipt, that these are normally collected by the shipping company and are never covered by AE.

I don't think I would risk any high value items until the process is working better.
 
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