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Moving to island... Duty on my stuff in suitcases? #359141
11/26/09 10:33 AM
11/26/09 10:33 AM
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 506
ohio, soon to be san pedro
A C Offline OP
A C  Offline OP
So if Im brining two suitcases with the following items:

clothes, laptop, monitor, projector, xbox360, wii, speakers.

(all of the above are used items, not in original packaging what so ever). What are the duty/tax rules for things like this?

Do we pay duty on everything or just new items shipped in? What about art work, or collector items, how do they calculate value/tax on these? I have a HUGE knife/sword collection I was thinking of bringing down for decoration.

thank you!


Re: Moving to island... Duty on my stuff in suitcases? [Re: A C] #359151
11/26/09 12:45 PM
11/26/09 12:45 PM
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 963
Fishers, Indiana UISA
lovey and thurston Offline
lovey and thurston  Offline
Aaron, Not sure the exact amount of duty on used items. A lot will depend on the customs agent you draw. Some can be lenient or they can give you a hassle. Be sure to tell them all items are for your personal use and to remain on the island. Make a list of your things (don't worry about clothes) to show them if necessary. You might want to rethink a large collection of knives and swords if you are using them for decoration. Not only a hassle to bring down, but if someone breaks into your house , it would be the first thing to go. You'll find all kinds of interesting things and art in the country that could be the start of a whole new collection and a nice reminder of your time in Belize when you decide to return to the U.S.
Everyone on the board recommends a copy of "Don't Stop the Carnival" for any newbie coming down. Good choice and must reading, but also buy yourself a copy of Dr. Suess, "Oh, the places I'll, the Things I Will See." Your young and starting a new adventure make the most of it. Judy

R.B. Mernitz
Re: Moving to island... Duty on my stuff in suitcases? [Re: lovey and thurston] #359176
11/26/09 08:39 PM
11/26/09 08:39 PM
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 1,436
Caye Caulker
Cooper Offline
Cooper  Offline
I travel back and forth to the States twice a year..always taking out computers, printers laptops etc...usually in need of replacement to bring new ones back. Usually they are still under warranty as I have an art gallery and its not unusual for me to print 100 to 200 prints a day. My equipment seldom last more than a year.Initially I signed my equipment into THE BOOK..7 yrs ago..customs knows what THE BOOK is. Usually if you sign in your equipment saying you are here on an extended stay that you will be leaving with what you brought in then no duty is charged. If you do not have residency or a work permit then you are just a visitor on a visa.However the Duty is 30% plus 10% be sure to have some type of receipt for value of items, even if they are can make a receipt up , just research the used value on craigslist etc...In the last 7 yrs I have never paid duty on any computer they have always replaced my initial equipment. that I am not intending to leave here if I ever leave here. Now that I have completely confused you..and in rereading this I am laughing outloud at how comical it sounds...make it simple,you may enjoy the simpler lifestyle here with less stuff..and it is just actually luck and the agent you get. Every situation can be treated differently...........Good Luck...Absolutely do not say you are leaving anything here...that will mean you will be gifting or selling your items when you leave...I am assuming you are only on a visa....I would get in the items to declare line..say I am in Belize for an extended stay and have personal items I need to sign into the book which i intend to leave with................have receipts in hand....I have done this about 20 the end its the truth....and have always found the custom guys charming...

Re: Moving to island... Duty on my stuff in suitcases? [Re: Cooper] #359348
11/28/09 02:37 PM
11/28/09 02:37 PM
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 6,260
San Pedro AC Belize
Diane Campbell Offline
Diane Campbell  Offline
Computers don't have duty so that is not a worry. A new one would attract sales tax of 10%, but with an old one doing what Debbie said should work fine.

If your clothes are clearly your clothes and not all brand new, no duty. Public nudity being illegal in Belize, you can rightly claim that you really do intend to wear them while you are here ......

My chronic and boring advice to just about everybody coming down for a few months or for a lifetime is travel light and try to buy locally. Three reasons - first, most folks bring too much stuff anyway and second, if you live here it is in your own (hopefully enlightened) self-interest to see Belizean economy survive (buying from foreign vendors doesn't help that goal much) and third, it's easier!

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