Brexit and import/customs fees

The majority of our cuckoo clocks are sent to our customers directly from European countries such as Germany, Italy and Switzerland. Due to Brexit, as of the 1st of January 2021, the UK is now outside of the customs union and so we no longer benefit from the reduced costs afforded to us by being part of the customs union. This means that several extra costs have to be factored into our pricing so that we can protect our business, and also make sure that customers are not surprised by any extra costs which they would otherwise have to pay to UK customs. 

In doing so, we can now confidently say to our customers that:

  • We will never ask you to pay any additional customs or import fees to release your parcel from UK customs. Instead, we will be covering all import and customs fees on your behalf with 'Delivered Duty Paid (DDP)' by us. 
  • We will still never charge you extra shipping costs for all UK and European customers. We will be covering all of the additional shipping costs (and extra costs for customs documentation).

Please also note that our small family business has needed to hire additional accounting assistance and 3rd party consultancy to keep abreast of shifting import rules and extra paperwork. All of this is an ongoing cost, but we have not factored these additional costs into our product prices so that we can keep our prices competitive whilst also doing our best to offer accurate and timely services.

Please see additional information below:

After January 1, 2021, import VAT and tariffs will be chargeable to our clocks that are coming from our clockmakers in the European Union. We have opted to use 'Delivered Duty Paid (DDP)' so that we can be responsible for any import costs that are required when goods cross the borders. We have done this to save our customers time and money. 

Please see below for a comparison between the two systems:

  • Delivered Duty Paid (DDP). This term indicates that the seller is assuming responsibility for any import costs, such as VAT and duties, that might be payable when goods cross borders. This option keeps your customer from paying unexpected fees or taxes on receipt of the goods, but DDP requires you to manage the import process, and might create VAT registration obligations.
  • Delivered At Place (DAP). Also called delivered duty unpaid (DDU). This term indicates that the seller only takes responsibility for shipping the product, and requires the customer to pay any import costs, such as VAT, duties, and clearing fees. This option might keep you from having to manage the import process, but DAP creates unexpected costs for your customer and can result in delayed or returned shipments.