Post Office charging Customs Handling Fee on Imports

SauRoNZA

Honorary Master
Joined
Jul 6, 2010
Messages
33,287
Maybe they’ve started to actually check and process every package? Thus the fee.
 

airborne

Executive Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2007
Messages
9,321
Maybe they’ve started to actually check and process every package? Thus the fee.
When that happens they charge duties virtually without fail, I've been charged R5 duties before + R46,50 Customs Handling Fee.

If that was actually the case then it would be people complaining about the Customs Handling Fee and duties being religiously levied, which is not the case. Also there's no ways the SAPO customs department has the capacity to inspect each and every CN22 parcel, that's a few 100,000 if not million parcels each month, people would also be reporting parcels being opened and sloppily re-closed with SARS Customs tape which is a fail safe sign an item was inspected.

If they were inspecting each and every parcel then the delivery times would go from 1-3 months to who knows what, my parcels are still coming through at the same snail pace as before the "Customs Handling Fee" was unilaterally applied.
 

SauRoNZA

Honorary Master
Joined
Jul 6, 2010
Messages
33,287
Well I didn’t mean they need to open every single one.

I meant more like X-ray and check.

And yes I know that’s how it always was in the past but they are also trying to change the game.
 

bromster

Expert Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2012
Messages
4,304
On commercial imports, you would need to arrange an agent to handle the customs clearing and forwarding to the collection point. "Clearing Agents"

Because the post office does this customs calculation, clearing and forwarding on your behalf, they are acting as your clearing agent and charge you accordingly. (Much less than you would pay an actual clearing and forwarding company by the way) These companies would also insist on the original invoice and would legally have to ensure that the correct customs duties were paid in addition to the handling fees.


TL;DR : The Post Office is lazy. The R24 is probably less than you should be paying anyway. Be lekker.
 

airborne

Executive Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2007
Messages
9,321
I know from past experience they just about totally ignore CN22 parcels sent from the far east unless it's very big or heavy, yet each and every parcel I've received from the US/Europe is inspected by customs and charged duties.

The point is that they aren't inspecting the vast majority of the CN22 parcels yet they are still charging a customs handling fee for every last one.

They obviously don't open every parcel they inspect but they do open a fair amount which is why I mentioned it, because if the new policy was that customs inspections were being done on each and every CN22 parcel then you would have numerous people complaining of parcels having being opened and duties being charged.
 

Sinbad

Honorary Master
Joined
Jun 5, 2006
Messages
65,645
This is quite normal and quite cheap. The courier companies charge a lot more than this.
 

Sinbad

Honorary Master
Joined
Jun 5, 2006
Messages
65,645
For example

Duty and Tax Collection
Advance Payment
This service covers any import of a non-document shipment for which DHL advances customs duties, taxes or regulatory charges for receivers with whom DHL has no contractual business relation e.g. private consumers. DHL assumes the risk of non-repayment by the receiver, for which an administrative charge is applied based on the credit advanced, subject to a standard minimum.
Customs Service How We Charge Additional Charge
Advance Payment Per shipment ZAR 150.00 or 2% if higher
 

airborne

Executive Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2007
Messages
9,321
Interesting what the SAPO guy says in terms of what the charge covers:
"However, head of mail operations Mark van Rensburg said the handling fee was not new. "The handling fee on postal parcels imported from abroad is not new and was charged in previous years. The handling fee is meant to offset the cost of parcel sorting‚ processing‚ assessment for import duty and transport‚" he said. "The post office has discovered that the fee was not consistently charged in the past."
https://www.businesslive.co.za/bd/companies/2017-10-25-post-office-handling-fee-can-cost-more-than-goods-bought-online-from-china/

According to that statement the fee is being used to cover a lot more than just customs handling.
 

MozamPete

Member
Joined
Dec 5, 2007
Messages
26
This is quite normal and quite cheap. The courier companies charge a lot more than this.
Agree, courier companies charge a fortune for the clearance administration.

More annoying than paying the fee is that no international packages/envelopes will actually get delivered to my house anymore. I will have to go to the post office to collect every single one just to pay the fee. Maybe the posties were getting sick of delivering a large number of packages?
 

Drifter

Honorary Master
Joined
Dec 19, 2012
Messages
17,794
Got told by SAPO staff that you pay the R24 if there is a tracking number.
 

airborne

Executive Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2007
Messages
9,321
Got told by SAPO staff that you pay the R24 if there is a tracking number.
I wish that was the case, it's a blanket levy on every parcel labeled CN22/small packets, whether it has a tracking number or not.
 

Drifter

Honorary Master
Joined
Dec 19, 2012
Messages
17,794
I collected some items that came from Wish, paid the R24 on two of them and nothing on the 3rd.
 

satanboy

Psychonaut seven
Joined
Sep 13, 2007
Messages
96,011
Received another Wish package this morning, no charge.

Here's holding thumbs.
 

airborne

Executive Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2007
Messages
9,321
I collected some items that came from Wish, paid the R24 on two of them and nothing on the 3rd.
Did you collect all 3 at the counter at the same time?
Received another Wish package this morning, no charge.

Here's holding thumbs.
That is weird, apparently all the packages they are told to charge the R24 levy all comes in one special bag when it arrives at the post office branch, they don't go to the local distribution hub first like they used previously where the smaller parcels would go out for street delivery and the bigger ones to the branch.

Perhaps a few slip in with the normal parcel mail or there's still some trickling in from the local depot that arrived there before this was implemented.
 

xrapidx

Honorary Master
Joined
Feb 16, 2007
Messages
36,531
This is a pure money making scam.

Today I received a notice to collect a parcel too large for my postbox (At home) - arrive at the post office and they won't give it to me unless I pay R24... not a registered item - just an item too large for my post box.
 

Eti1

Expert Member
Joined
Feb 26, 2016
Messages
1,805
I paid my R24 today, last week I had one thrown in the postbox, the one before that I got a slip for too large and didn't pay the R24.

All small items with tracking numbers.

I guess it remains a lottery.
 

Drifter

Honorary Master
Joined
Dec 19, 2012
Messages
17,794
Wife picked up another 3 yesterday, no charge.

Did you collect all 3 at the counter at the same time?
@Airborne, no I collected one, went to back of the queue and waited my turn again. :twisted: Yes, I did.
 

airborne

Executive Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2007
Messages
9,321
This is a pure money making scam.

Today I received a notice to collect a parcel too large for my postbox (At home) - arrive at the post office and they won't give it to me unless I pay R24... not a registered item - just an item too large for my post box.
From what I understand every single CN22(basically any parcel below R4000) will have to pay the R24 and be collected at the post office counter, no more street deliveries no matter the size, unless that is a few come in under the radar every so often.

This is going to mean an enormous amount of extra work for the branch staff, they now have to write a collection slip for each and every parcel.
 

chickenbeef

Executive Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2008
Messages
7,978
This is going to mean an enormous amount of extra work for the branch staff, they now have to write a collection slip for each and every parcel.
Probably intentional due to the decrease in revenue from businesses moving to private couriers and digital transmission of communication.
 

xrapidx

Honorary Master
Joined
Feb 16, 2007
Messages
36,531
From what I understand every single CN22(basically any parcel below R4000) will have to pay the R24 and be collected at the post office counter, no more street deliveries no matter the size, unless that is a few come in under the radar every so often.

This is going to mean an enormous amount of extra work for the branch staff, they now have to write a collection slip for each and every parcel.
South African Post Office 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. Please view our Rates Brochure, Page 18. http://www.postoffice.co.za/Con.../Questions/Postalrates.pdf
Link didn't work - but that is their response on facebook.
 
Top