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  • FIRST POST
    • funkey_monkey
    • By funkey_monkey 30th Sep 17, 8:22 PM
    • 316Posts
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    funkey_monkey
    Purchasing Mobile Phone from China/Hong Kong
    • #1
    • 30th Sep 17, 8:22 PM
    Purchasing Mobile Phone from China/Hong Kong 30th Sep 17 at 8:22 PM
    Hi,

    I'm looking into purchasing a new mobile phone as my contract is now soon and I want to avoid buying the phone through the contract.

    My current phone is very old - as the one I got during the contract had issues which EE refused to correct due to "wear and tear".

    Anyhow, I'm looking to purchase a Xiaomi Note 4 online. I've looked into them and checked the 4G bands etc and I'm happy to progress with the purchase.

    However, what is the process for getting these into the UK in terms of customs? Are they likely to incur a customs charge? If so, how much and is it unavoidable?

    Has anyone done this and if so, what retailer did they use?


    Thanks.
Page 1
    • JJ Egan
    • By JJ Egan 1st Oct 17, 10:41 AM
    • 10,180 Posts
    • 4,227 Thanks
    JJ Egan
    • #2
    • 1st Oct 17, 10:41 AM
    • #2
    • 1st Oct 17, 10:41 AM
    China/ HK are you returning the phone to China for warranty ??
    Plus no sale of goods consumer regulations apply .
    • Jon 01
    • By Jon 01 1st Oct 17, 11:08 AM
    • 4,992 Posts
    • 1,595 Thanks
    Jon 01
    • #3
    • 1st Oct 17, 11:08 AM
    • #3
    • 1st Oct 17, 11:08 AM
    If you have it sent China post, you're 99% safe for customs fee's as they tend to put 'MP3 player. $12' on the paperwork. But it will take 3 to 4 weeks to get here.

    If you have a faster delivery (DHL for example) you will get hit with import fee's and a processing fee from the carrier (anything up to £12).

    But as JJ says above, you've no rights under UK consumer law if it goes wrong and it would have to go back at your cost to China/HK if it needed to. that can be upwards of £40.
    • oldagetraveller
    • By oldagetraveller 1st Oct 17, 11:30 AM
    • 3,034 Posts
    • 1,539 Thanks
    oldagetraveller
    • #4
    • 1st Oct 17, 11:30 AM
    • #4
    • 1st Oct 17, 11:30 AM
    I have bought two mobiles from Chinese sellers and had no problems whatsoever. I opted for insurance and Netherlands Post and there was full tracking all the way.
    I have never had to pay any import duties, v.a.t. etc. on any Chinese purchases.
    I had a problem with a faulty Android t.v. box which was purchased from the same seller as the phones. Their C.S. was excellent and the return was to a Birmingham, U.K. address. I did have to pay for that but was refunded, less my postage (circa £3), through Paypal, the full amount in five days.
    Last edited by oldagetraveller; 01-10-2017 at 11:34 AM.
    Did you hear about the politician who had a backside transplant? It rejected him.
    • funkey_monkey
    • By funkey_monkey 1st Oct 17, 3:11 PM
    • 316 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    funkey_monkey
    • #5
    • 1st Oct 17, 3:11 PM
    • #5
    • 1st Oct 17, 3:11 PM
    Hi - thanks for all the replies.


    In regards of the warranty risk, yes that is an issue. However, like I said in the OP, having a phone from EE meant I was going to still fork out ~£100 for the repairs to the handset, and as this handset is circa £125 there is little difference.


    oldagetraveller - can you remember what Chinese retailer you made your purchases from?
    • funkey_monkey
    • By funkey_monkey 17th Jan 18, 5:52 PM
    • 316 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    funkey_monkey
    • #6
    • 17th Jan 18, 5:52 PM
    • #6
    • 17th Jan 18, 5:52 PM
    In the end I got a Xiaomi Note 4 from the Solution Shop. Quick delivery and has a two year warranty (for what its worth...).
    Very happy with the handset so far.

    It wouldn't be Samsung quality and the MIUI interface has a few gremlins that you would not get on Android (based on it), but for the price it is a good device.
    • Korkyb
    • By Korkyb 21st Jan 18, 1:56 AM
    • 182 Posts
    • 51 Thanks
    Korkyb
    • #7
    • 21st Jan 18, 1:56 AM
    • #7
    • 21st Jan 18, 1:56 AM
    If you use a replacement launcher that will get past any oddities with the interface (and make it much more configurable).


    Personally I use Nova Launcher but there are loads available:


    https://www.androidauthority.com/best-android-launcher-apps-222408/


    https://www.tomsguide.com/us/pictures-story/590-best-android-launchers.html
    • PHK
    • By PHK 21st Jan 18, 9:35 AM
    • 94 Posts
    • 59 Thanks
    PHK
    • #8
    • 21st Jan 18, 9:35 AM
    • #8
    • 21st Jan 18, 9:35 AM
    Just to add that MIUI is not just a skin and so there are some issues with using other launchers. They aren't major things but I would try the free versions of the launcher first.
    • Frozen_up_north
    • By Frozen_up_north 21st Jan 18, 11:33 AM
    • 1,365 Posts
    • 660 Thanks
    Frozen_up_north
    • #9
    • 21st Jan 18, 11:33 AM
    • #9
    • 21st Jan 18, 11:33 AM
    Be aware that goods imported from outside the EU and valued at more than £15, inc post/packing/insurance, are liable to incur 20% vat and a handling charge. Many (mostly far eastern sellers) fraudulently claim the goods to be worth less than £15.

    https://www.gov.uk/goods-sent-from-abroad
    • boatman
    • By boatman 21st Jan 18, 7:33 PM
    • 3,713 Posts
    • 2,619 Thanks
    boatman
    As far as customs are concerned, you are the importer and are liable for any taxes. As others have said stick to standard free postage and should be ok. Don't make the mistake of buying the global ROM version, you need to buy the global version, subtle but important difference. Xiaomi don't have an official store on AliExpress, Goldway seem to be one that quite a few people have used, https://m.aliexpress.com/store/311331?#/
    Last edited by boatman; 21-01-2018 at 7:45 PM. Reason: ii
    • funkey_monkey
    • By funkey_monkey 22nd Jan 18, 12:10 PM
    • 316 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    funkey_monkey
    Be aware that goods imported from outside the EU and valued at more than £15, inc post/packing/insurance, are liable to incur 20% vat and a handling charge. Many (mostly far eastern sellers) fraudulently claim the goods to be worth less than £15.

    https://www.gov.uk/goods-sent-from-abroad
    Originally posted by Frozen_up_north
    Solution Shop prepaid this for me - one of the reasons I opted for them.
    • d123
    • By d123 22nd Jan 18, 3:45 PM
    • 6,984 Posts
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    d123
    Solution Shop prepaid this for me - one of the reasons I opted for them.
    Originally posted by funkey_monkey
    They declared the full value and paid this to HMRC?

    Most HK shops declare a tiny value and pretend they’ve paid, most aren’t even authorised to collect import vat on behalf of HMRC.

    Did you receive an Import VAT Prepaid statement with your parcel?
    ====
    • funkey_monkey
    • By funkey_monkey 22nd Jan 18, 4:16 PM
    • 316 Posts
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    funkey_monkey
    They are a UK company and are registered at Companies House. I didn't pay much attention to that as they had it covered - although the invoice did state that Tax was prepaid (might have been partial payment - can't remember).
    • d123
    • By d123 22nd Jan 18, 4:38 PM
    • 6,984 Posts
    • 4,476 Thanks
    d123
    They are a UK company and are registered at Companies House. I didn't pay much attention to that as they had it covered - although the invoice did state that Tax was prepaid (might have been partial payment - can't remember).
    Originally posted by funkey_monkey
    They are more likely an HK company who have cleverly assumed that people will believe they are a UK company by showing a UK company number.

    If they were UK based they are breaking the law by all the omissions on their website.

    In short, all business websites must address the following points to be legally compliant:

    Registered information:

    For a UK registered business, the website needs to display the Company Information i.e. the business name, place of registration, registered number, registered office address and if it is a member of a trade association. For sole traders and partnerships, the address of the principle place of business must be displayed.
    http://www.ukwda.org/blog/is-your-website-legal

    Most of those are missing from https://thesolutionshop.global/about-us/

    Also, I don’t know of many UK businesses that operate in US$

    Shipping
    We will pay for shipping costs for the return of your item upto a cost of 35$ (USD). Original Shipping costs are non-refundable. If you receive a refund, the cost of the original shipping will be deducted from your refund.

    Depending on where you live, the time it may take for your exchanged product to reach you may vary.

    If you are shipping an item over $75, you should consider using a trackable shipping service or purchasing shipping insurance. We don’t guarantee that we will receive your returned item.

    We are not responsible for returns until we have received them.
    https://thesolutionshop.global/return-policy/

    And why would a UK company need the following in its terms of service?

    You agree that you allow The Solution Shop Retail Limited or any third party appointed or directed by them to pay taxes (including but not limited to import taxes, import customs, VAT & Sales Tax) on your behalf. This does not mean that all taxes will be paid on your behalf irrespective of the shipping method accepted by you.

    You agree If it is not advertised that taxes (including but not limited to import taxes, import customs, VAT & Sales Tax) are paid, pre-paid or similarly at checkout then the taxes fall at the sole responsivity ofyou and/or their specified delivery person. The Solution Shop Retail Limited will not fall liable for any import taxes unless specified as pre-paying them at checkout.
    https://thesolutionshop.global/terms-of-service/
    ====
    • funkey_monkey
    • By funkey_monkey 23rd Jan 18, 8:15 AM
    • 316 Posts
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    funkey_monkey
    https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/search?q=10381147
    • d123
    • By d123 23rd Jan 18, 10:40 AM
    • 6,984 Posts
    • 4,476 Thanks
    d123
    You do realise there!!!8217;s no law that would prevent a HK retailer from having someone in the UK set up a front that purports to be the retailer?

    How about addressing the all the actual points raised of why it!!!8217;s more likely it!!!8217;s a HK (or other foreign) retailer?

    Edit

    LOL wow!

    The Solution Shop had a working capital of £5 when incorporated. That would pay for a lot of cheap Chinese phones, wouldn!!!8217;t it?

    Incorporation
    Statement of capital on 2016-09-17
    GBP 5
    It!!!8217;ll be interesting to see what their accounts say if they file them this year...
    Last edited by d123; 23-01-2018 at 10:43 AM.
    ====
    • funkey_monkey
    • By funkey_monkey 23rd Jan 18, 10:50 AM
    • 316 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    funkey_monkey
    How about addressing the all the actual points raised of why it’s more likely it’s a HK (or other foreign) retailer?
    Originally posted by d123
    Because I don't really care?
    • d123
    • By d123 23rd Jan 18, 11:05 AM
    • 6,984 Posts
    • 4,476 Thanks
    d123
    Because I don't really care?
    Originally posted by funkey_monkey
    You cared enough to post your recommendation and to then make a follow up post trying to show them in a good light as a “UK seller”...
    ====
    • funkey_monkey
    • By funkey_monkey 23rd Jan 18, 11:14 AM
    • 316 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    funkey_monkey
    Lies!

    I did not recommend them. I only stated where I got the handset from. In fact if you read what I had written, I doubted the validity of the 2yr warranty that they provide with the handset. Hardly a recommendation!

    Trying to show them in a good light? Behave yourself!!!
    I replied to your questions with answers based on my dealing with them.
    • d123
    • By d123 23rd Jan 18, 12:11 PM
    • 6,984 Posts
    • 4,476 Thanks
    d123
    Lies!

    I did not recommend them. I only stated where I got the handset from. In fact if you read what I had written, I doubted the validity of the 2yr warranty that they provide with the handset. Hardly a recommendation!

    Trying to show them in a good light? Behave yourself!!!
    I replied to your questions with answers based on my dealing with them.
    Originally posted by funkey_monkey
    I think your definition of “recommend” differs somewhat from the dictionary?

    Or are you saying your shilling enthusiasm for a company that wasn’t even previously mentioned in the thread was a warning not to deal with them?

    You even came back to vigorously defend your recommendation when the inconsistencies of their website were pointed out...


    Solution Shop prepaid this for me - one of the reasons I opted for them.
    Originally posted by funkey_monkey
    They are a UK company and are registered at Companies House. I didn't pay much attention to that as they had it covered - although the invoice did state that Tax was prepaid (might have been partial payment - can't remember).
    Originally posted by funkey_monkey
    ====
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