After receiving an eBay item I ordered from abroad, having to take a trip to the Royal Mail collection point & send ni-on a tenner in charges from Royal Mail, I wondered if there was a tool that work out the import taxes in advance. And there is!
Import Duty Calculator
At DutyCalculator.com you can work out in advance how much import duty you’re likely to be charged for an item, as a bonus, they have a tool for working out the likely duty to be paid for eBay items.
In the example images below, ironically the eBay item I picked as an example, incurred no import duties and most annoyingly used up the 3 free trials of the tool on the very same item.
I had a look around a couple of them and categories and sub-categories offered and the categorisation was relatively straight forward to work out which classification the items would fall under, as it’s not the simplest of jobs for one off items and varied orders, as the import duty classifications are rather deep on the HMRC site and they change the exchange rates often too.
I’m not sure it’s worth the $19.90 a year for the basic version, it would really depend on the level of your buying habits from foreign sites, if its high and varied, this could be an excellent forewarning for items being received for which the contents are properly declared.