New VAT rules not that bad in EU after all

With 1st July 2021, EU declared there will be no exemptions on items under certain value like we had till this date. From now on, if you buy something for 1€ or 5000€, you’ll have VAT applied to it. Given I had experience with customs before, the times looked pretty grim for ordering anything outside EU, especially on the cheap from AliExpress as it would add massive extra costs. If stuff is stopped in customs, you get annoying delays, they slapped VAT on top of original price and their extra fees were absurd. Last time I imported stuff and went through customs, their “manipulation fee” was like 8€ or some shit. And I think it’s a fixed fee and not item value based, so if you ordered something for 2€ you’d pay 10€ because of their sticky fingers.

Well, it looks like it’s not that grim after all, at least for AliExpress in particular. AliExpress now charges VAT during purchase already for EU customers which is slight annoyance, but whatever. This is purely based on costs of the item and per my country, the VAT is at 22%. Which is not that terrible addition when buying certain cheaper gadgetry or spare parts for stuff. I was looking for some 3rd party spare parts for my robot vacuum and I got bunch of filters and side brushes for 22€. I paid a bit over 4€ of VAT for it. Given I’d get a single filter and single pair of side brushes for this price for official genuine parts, it was still well worth it. And since VAT was already paid, this means I should be exempt in the customs. They’ll see the VAT was paid and the package should go through without extra costs or delays. At least that was my experience from before anyways, if I paid VAT at purchase time already. And since they know AliExpress automatically charges VAT now, I shouldn’t even be required to provide receipt from purchase, assuming sellers properly equip packages with required documentation. We’ll see in 1 month time when stuff should arrive…

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