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LHR T5 collect duty free goods on return?

West Sussex, United...
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231 posts
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LHR T5 collect duty free goods on return?

Is it possible to buy duty free goods (for example a designer handbag) and the colllect it on your return from the USA? I don’t particularly want to take it with me for the holiday but dutyfree price is £130less than uk shop price so considerable saving.

3 replies to this topic
Salisbury, United...
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1. Re: LHR T5 collect duty free goods on return?

Only possible if flying to EU or UK. LHR web site has all the info, a good place to look.

https:/…heathrow-shopping-services

Brussels, Belgium
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2. Re: LHR T5 collect duty free goods on return?

What you propose is to buy an (expensive) item in a duty-free shop, on presentation of a boarding card for the U.S., but have the shop commit customs fraud for you by selling it free of VAT (and possibly duty, if it was made outside the EU) on the grounds that it is to be exported, when they would know - if they were to agree to keep it for you to collect on return to the UK - that you in fact intended to introduce your duty-free purchase directly into the UK tax territory - and from the general thrust of your question, undoubtedly without declaring it to UK Customs so that the correct duties and taxes can be charged on what is effectively a sale in the UK (non-export)!

If the shop COULD keep supposedly exported items for people to collect on the way (back) into the UK, there would be no point in requiring a non-EU (and by definition, non-UK) boarding card in the first place, and as a matter of fact even if you did export it, but then brought it back, it would be taxable. New items purchased abroad are also dutiable in the UK if their value exceeds 390 GBP (which must surely be the case if the VAT is 130 GBP) (cf https://www.gov.uk/duty-free-goods/arrivals-from-outside-the-eu).

The reason why it is possible to buy goods in airport shops at LHR and have these kept for you while you fly to a destination within the EU (which currently still includes the UK) and then collect them on your return, is that such goods are sold at prices including duties and VAT, as at any other shop in the UK (or elsewhere in the EU). That is not the case with what you are proposing, so no it isn't possible.

West Sussex, United...
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231 posts
137 reviews
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3. Re: LHR T5 collect duty free goods on return?

Looks like I’ll buy the item and take it on holiday with me them.

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