Post Office charging Customs Handling Fee on Imports

DaveSemm

Active Member
Joined
Oct 2, 2008
Messages
83
#1
I order little gadgets from China about once a month. Up to now I've only been charged import duties and/or VAT once or twice. I wouldn't mind paying so long as I know the rules. I assume I'm normally not charged because the packages are small and low value.

So today I received 3 switches worth $1.71 all together, and I was charged R24. I was given a receipt that says "INCOME PROTECTN, Payment Reason: 058, Cost Center Code: 49723".

Is this something new, or is this always charged for switches? I checked the customs schedule and it says there are no duties on switches.
 

AstroTurf

Lucky Shot
Joined
May 13, 2010
Messages
26,784
#2
I order little gadgets from China about once a month. Up to now I've only been charged import duties and/or VAT once or twice. I wouldn't mind paying so long as I know the rules. I assume I'm normally not charged because the packages are small and low value.

So today I received 3 switches worth $1.71 all together, and I was charged R24. I was given a receipt that says "INCOME PROTECTN, Payment Reason: 058, Cost Center Code: 49723".

Is this something new, or is this always charged for switches? I checked the customs schedule and it says there are no duties on switches.
The R24 thing seems to be standard now for imports of any value.
 

LazyLion

King of de Jungle
Joined
Mar 17, 2005
Messages
101,050
#3
This just confirms my theory that customs just slap on any old amount or charge that they can dream up.
There is no consistency or reason or rationality to customs.
 

ffbdorp

New Member
Joined
Oct 24, 2017
Messages
1
#4
Sapo are now charging R24 on EVERY registered incoming international mail item before you can collect your parcel ! Is this legal at all ? It has nothing to do with customs and excise, and is a "handling" fee...
 

Pox

Expert Member
Joined
Sep 13, 2005
Messages
3,244
#6
Is this a SAPO charge or a customs charge? Either is bad, but if SAPO it's just another reason to avoid using them wherever possible.
 

SauRoNZA

Honorary Master
Joined
Jul 6, 2010
Messages
31,239
#7
Customs charge I believe.

There has always been a handling fee and I think it’s actually just being standardised now instead of completely random.

The problem for most people is that they got used to their packages slipping under the radar for free when they really always should have been charged.

That being said R24 for someone to basically scan and process a package is a bit rough.

The term income protection does tell me they want to protect the local market from these Chinese and other imports.
 
Joined
Aug 25, 2008
Messages
14,864
#8
Waiting for my "slip" to arrive at home, I see my packages from early AUG is starting to arrive.

Will probably also have to pay R24.
 

xrapidx

Honorary Master
Joined
Feb 16, 2007
Messages
36,001
#9
I had a registered letter arrive the other day - on the slip it had hand written :R24 Handling Charge.

Seems its a new scam to make money by another SOE.
 
Joined
Aug 25, 2008
Messages
14,864
#10
I had a registered letter arrive the other day - on the slip it had hand written :R24 Handling Charge.

Seems its a new scam to make money by another SOE.
I posted imported docs to IRISH embassy in PTA via registered mail, hopefully they pay the R24 otherwise the docs are not going to be submitted!
 

FNfal

Executive Member
Joined
Jul 6, 2011
Messages
5,513
#12
Yip paid the R24 standard fee for all incoming parcels .
Just another day and an additional charge .
May be a good thing in the long term , the more people this government p*isses of the more chance we have of getting rid of the incompetents .
 
Last edited:
Joined
Jul 19, 2011
Messages
629
#13
Well, I will be glad to pay the R24-00, but having to wait more than a month for the sluggards to do their job, process my package and send it to the nearest post office is not on. I expect a service if I have to pay for it. Just like most of this country they want to be paid and do nothing for getting paid. Oh, wait... They do have to protest every second week to be a nuisance
 
Joined
Jul 19, 2011
Messages
629
#16
I don't really understand. We've already paid the postage - isn't that the way it's supposed to work?
I pay the customs assessment fee when it comes up, but if it's not being assessed, why do I have to pay?
Because you need to pay for the fees must fall ****ers to waste money wasting time on University. You need to pay for the ****ers of the ANC to get housing, water and Soweto for the electricity being used and not billed. You need to pay for each and every corrupt ass wipe of this ****-tree.
 

airborne

Executive Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2007
Messages
8,755
#17
Sapo are now charging R24 on EVERY registered incoming international mail item before you can collect your parcel ! Is this legal at all ? It has nothing to do with customs and excise, and is a "handling" fee...
Nothing to do with customs or duties, it's only on CN22 intl parcels, CN22 signifies lower value parcels, below around R5000.

I posted imported docs to IRISH embassy in PTA via registered mail, hopefully they pay the R24 otherwise the docs are not going to be submitted!
Don't worry it's only for intl parcels we receive, not send.

Per small CN22 package, apparently R48 if it's a bigger CN22 parcel, I'm not sure what they define as big.

I don't really understand. We've already paid the postage - isn't that the way it's supposed to work?
I pay the customs assessment fee when it comes up, but if it's not being assessed, why do I have to pay?
The Universal Postal Union UPU agreed terminal dues(basically an agreement on the fee for the receiving Postal system to deliver a letter or parcel) is supposed to cover all "handling, transport and delivery of letter-post items from abroad", more here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Universal_Postal_Union. Apparently the receiving country is allowed to charge a customs inspection fee at their discretion, which is why they have cleverly framed it as "A Customs Handling Fee of R24".

That fee is stated in their yearly postal rates:
"Customs Clearance (Handling Fee)
A customs clearance fee of R46,50 is charged on all incoming parcels and
R24,00 on all other postal items. This fee is charged by the Post Offce to cover
costs incurred in clearing the parcel/postal item on behalf of the addressee.
This fee is levied over and above any customs duties, VAT, etc charged by
SARS or any other entities and is levied even if no other charges are due."

I have paid the above but only when a parcel was inspected and duties charged, ie when there was a legitimate handling fee due to the Post Office.

The issue is that these parcels that are being charged a "Customs Handling Fee" are not being inspected for duties, they are using it as an excuse to charge the fee to recoup or make a profit over and above the terminal dues that they are paid per parcel.

Another point that may show the dodgyness involved: each time your are charged this fee they use a fake SAPO International Registered Letter Tracking number as the reference on your invoice, each teller has an unused SAPO RJ International Registered Letter Tracking number that they scan whenever this "Customs Handling Fee" is levied, check the invoice they give you, if its multiple items each one has the same tracking number next to it. I'm assuming they are using that to somehow legitimise the fact that they have "handled" the parcel and are therefore due the fee.
 
Last edited:

eehellfire

Executive Member
Joined
Sep 25, 2007
Messages
9,185
#18
Nothing to do with customs or duties, it's only on CN22 intl parcels, CN22 signifies low value parcels below 2kgs


Don't worry it's only for intl parcels we receive, not send.


Per small CN22 package, apparently R48 if it's a bigger CN22 parcel, I'm not sure what they define as big.


The Universal Postal Union UPU agreed terminal dues(basically an agreement on the fee for the receiving Postal system to deliver a letter or parcel) is supposed to cover all "handling, transport and delivery of letter-post items from abroad", more here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Universal_Postal_Union. Apparently the receiving country is allowed to charge a customs inspection fee at their discretion, which is why they have cleverly framed it as "A Customs Handling Fee of R24".

That fee is stated in their yearly postal rates:
"Customs Clearance (Handling Fee)
A customs clearance fee of R46,50 is charged on all incoming parcels and
R24,00 on all other postal items. This fee is charged by the Post Offce to cover
costs incurred in clearing the parcel/postal item on behalf of the addressee.
This fee is levied over and above any customs duties, VAT, etc charged by
SARS or any other entities and is levied even if no other charges are due."

I have paid the above but only when a parcel was inspected and duties charged, ie when there was a legitimate handling fee due to the Post Office.

The issue is that these parcels that are being charged a "Customs Handling Fee" are not being inspected for duties, they are using it as an excuse to charge the fee to recoup or make a profit over and above the terminal dues that they are paid per parcel.

Another point that may show the dodgyness involved: each time your are charged this fee they use a fake SAPO International Registered Letter Tracking number as the reference on your invoice, each teller has an unused SAPO RJ International Registered Letter Tracking number that they scan whenever this "Customs Handling Fee" is levied, check the invoice they give you, if its multiple items each one has the same tracking number next to it. I'm assuming they are using that to somehow legitimise the fact that they have "handled" the parcel and are therefore due the fee.
So who can we escalate this to?
 

airborne

Executive Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2007
Messages
8,755
#19
So who can we escalate this to?
Lets get a concerted effort going, I don't know if approaching SAPO first will be of any use, we probably need to escalate this directly to the UPU. I have a feeling this is a violation of the terminal dues agreement, they are basically unilaterally charging a handling fee which would appear they are not entitled to.

The point we need to nail them on is to clarify if a customs inspection is in fact conducted on every CN22 parcel or not, if that is not the case then they can't charge a fee for it. The fact that they are charging the fee across the board is a clear indication that it must be illegitimate because I know almost for a fact that customs does not inspect each and every CN22 parcel so no "Customs Handling Fee" can be applicable to every CN22 parcel that is collected at a SAPO branch. Their directive to each SAPO branch manager is that it's a blanket charge that must be levied on each and every CN22 parcel that they receive.

Is there anyone one the forum that knows the Customs process for CN22 Postal Mail packages?
And anyone that works for the Post Office back office that would have similar info?

Just for clarification, the fee application as stated in their yearly postal rates:
"Customs Clearance (Handling Fee)
A customs clearance fee of R46,50 is charged on all incoming parcels and
R24,00 on all other postal items. This fee is charged by the Post Offce to cover
costs incurred in clearing the parcel/postal item on behalf of the addressee.

This fee is levied over and above any customs duties, VAT, etc charged by
SARS or any other entities and is levied even if no other charges are due."
 

eehellfire

Executive Member
Joined
Sep 25, 2007
Messages
9,185
#20
Lets get a concerted effort going, I don't know if approaching SAPO first will be of any use, we probably need to escalate this directly to the UPU. I have a feeling this is a violation of the terminal dues agreement, they are basically unilaterally charging a handling fee which would appear they are not entitled to.

The point we need to nail them on is to clarify if a customs inspection is in fact conducted on every CN22 parcel or not, if that is not the case then they can't charge a fee for it. The fact that they are charging the fee across the board is a clear indication that it must be illegitimate because I know almost for a fact that customs does not inspect each and every CN22 parcel so no "Customs Handling Fee" can be applicable to every CN22 parcel that is collected at a SAPO branch. Their directive to each SAPO branch manager is that it's a blanket charge that must be levied on each and every CN22 parcel that they receive.

Is there anyone one the forum that knows the Customs process for CN22 Postal Mail packages?
And anyone that works for the Post Office back office that would have similar info?

Just for clarification, the fee application as stated in their yearly postal rates:
"Customs Clearance (Handling Fee)
A customs clearance fee of R46,50 is charged on all incoming parcels and
R24,00 on all other postal items. This fee is charged by the Post Offce to cover
costs incurred in clearing the parcel/postal item on behalf of the addressee.

This fee is levied over and above any customs duties, VAT, etc charged by
SARS or any other entities and is levied even if no other charges are due."
I think we should start bombarding Mark Barnes (SAPO ceo) with tweets
 
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