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Customs at the airport

Posted By: Melanie B

Customs at the airport - 05/31/16 03:07 PM

Have any of you brought home goods through customs at the airport? Our realtor recommended purchasing bedding, towels, etc in the US. We will be bringing suitcases with these items on the plane and through customs at the airport. We are wondering how difficult this might be?
Posted By: elbert

Re: Customs at the airport - 05/31/16 04:13 PM

Towels, bedding and such are for sale here on the island and it's not necessary to smuggle them in. If you do decide to bring them in a suit case the customs inspector will charge you a fee or several fees making it even more impractical. I've brought things into Belize in my suitcase by unwrapping them and not declaring but items that one might have in a suitcase normally like clothing and cameras. You might have some embarrassing and difficult explanations and find the smuggling business isn't your forte with no real profit to show for the experience.
Posted By: Melanie B

Re: Customs at the airport - 05/31/16 07:34 PM

We aren't trying to smuggle them. We have a list of what is in each bag, with the price and receipts. We assume we will have to pay some fees, we are just wondering how complicated this is.
Posted By: SimonB

Re: Customs at the airport - 05/31/16 08:05 PM

It's not complicated.
Posted By: Diane Campbell

Re: Customs at the airport - 05/31/16 08:25 PM

A caveat if you haven't already purchased ...... don't go for high thread count sheets. They are way too hot for this climate.
Recommend 350 at most. If you like fancy, I recommend the birch-satin sheets from BB & B. They are soft and lightweight and just about perfect for the tropics.

Great deals on nice towels can be had at Mirab in Belize City. Towels are so bulky I cannot imagine packing and flying them in.

Pretty sure you need cash (not credit cards) for customs so be sure to come prepared.

Posted By: SimonB

Re: Customs at the airport - 05/31/16 08:31 PM

To each their own, I'm on my second set of these - http://www.amazon.com/Echelon-800-E...t=true&ref_=oh_aui_search_detailpage and I don't sleep with A/C. Love them...
Posted By: ragman

Re: Customs at the airport - 05/31/16 08:33 PM

I don't believe they will accept a credit card or check so have either USD or Bz with you to pay the duties. Make sure to bring some small bills too because at times I've had trouble and delay because they couldn't make change. The whole process is very easy. I have never volunteered the receipts and have only needed them on electronic items because they had no idea how to estimate value on such items.

It varies depending on who the individual custom officer is but overall they are fair and OK to deal with as long as you are somewhat reasonable on your reporting. Duties vary on classification of goods brought in. Keep smiling and be respectful. One time I had the customs officer lower my estimated value.
Posted By: JZB

Re: Customs at the airport - 06/01/16 03:07 PM

Melanie B, it is an easy process and something our Customs Officers are used to doing on a daily basis. Just show them what you have, how much it cost and they will tell you how much duties you have to pay. Not a problem. Although they do sell sheets and towels and just about everything else in Belize, I find the quality is not always the best for the price.
Posted By: Amanda Syme

Re: Customs at the airport - 06/01/16 03:29 PM

Recently the customs officers at the airport simply google pricing for items being imported so they have a very easy method on ascertaining current values on items.

The customs declaration form asks you to itemize and value the items you are importing and you will typically expect to pay somewhere between 37.5%- 45% of that value in importation duties.
Posted By: larrypied

Re: Customs at the airport - 06/01/16 09:18 PM

So what is the charge per dollar value of the item. Say you have a towel that you paid $5, What is the duty?
Posted By: SimonB

Re: Customs at the airport - 06/01/16 10:13 PM

$5 x .375 = $1.88
Posted By: Diane Campbell

Re: Customs at the airport - 06/01/16 10:42 PM

Originally Posted by larrypied
So what is the charge per dollar value of the item. Say you have a towel that you paid $5, What is the duty?

Every product type has its own duty rate. The duty book is bigger than the local phone book.
When I want an accurate answer I ask a customs broker.
Also note that there is also GST and environmental tax on some or most imported items. Personally, I prefer to buy here for 'most everything.
Posted By: awhatukeeguy

Re: Customs at the airport - 06/02/16 02:09 PM

A few years ago after a very long day my wife and I were going thru customs with some household goods which we declared. My wife made a remark to the inspector that he needs to get a life (he was so somber). Big mistake!
Posted By: ron

Re: Customs at the airport - 06/02/16 11:43 PM

i always use a credit card when paying duties whether at the airport or at the port.
Posted By: Go South

Re: Customs at the airport - 06/04/16 03:06 AM

Not sure if too many people would stop off in Belize City and go to Mirabs for towels or bedsheets especially after a long journey to Belize. Vacuum bags are good for towels and other clothing items, just use a vacuum cleaner and take out the air. You declare what you have to declare and you have what you want.
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