#2
Some guitars you're not legaly allowed to import like ESPs. There's ways of getting round it though like Ebay etc.
#3
It's gonna' cost a bit for shipping, taxes and so on.

What guitar are you thinking of getting?
"Breathe, breathe in the air
Don't be afraid to care"

Fender Strat/Tokai LS80>few pedals>Orange Rocker 30
#4
shipping usually varies from 80-140 bucks. Then if you get done on import tax, thats gonna cost u at least another 20%. I know american guitars are alot cheaper ont he face of it due to the low tax economy in the US. But rly, its not worth it unless its an absolute bargain, or as the other guy said. if u buy off ebay, then it can be worked around. but it can be dodgy. The more expensive the guitar, the more ur likely to save by buying in the US. i wudnt say it was worth it on anything less than 500 quid.
#5
@tubey: I dunno much about import regulations etc...but why can ESP's not be imported to the UK legally?
Just a curious question - sorry *g*.
#6
Quote by bonfire36m
@tubey: I dunno much about import regulations etc...but why can ESP's not be imported to the UK legally?
Just a curious question - sorry *g*.


I'm not actually too sure why. I asked a guitar shop from america and they gave me a big list of guitars I wasn't allowed to buy due to import law. It might be due to being able to get guitars cheaper if you import.
#7
A: Overall, shipping guitars into the UK from the USA is pretty much - an effort. Importing a $1500 guitar will save you around 100 pounds after import duties etc. and shipping costs.
If **** hits the fan and it gets lost, or god knows what, you're screwed. International shipments are nowhere near as "easy" as good ol Royal Mail.

B: As soon as that guitar touches down in the UK, it's warranty is voided, and the only way of getting it repaired is to spend another 100-150 pound to ship it there, and another 100-150 to get it back. Naturally you could take it down to your local guitar shop / luthier, but that'll still cost a pretty penny.

Details:
Your average cost will be about 100-150 for shipping
Import tax on instruments is 22-23% - variable depending on a few factors.
Time - has to come all the way over the pond, clear customs, then be delivered to you

Why are guitars in Britain more expensive?
A number of reasons, mainly the Queen's 17.5% VAT
That gets thrown onto the end of every single guitar. Instantly shooting it above USA market price. Next up, import costs. Despite bulk shipping is usual, the marginal cost of shipping a guitar is still fairly high, especially from Korea, China and Japan (and of course the USA).
Then, your local guitar shop has to make a profit - so thats another 100-200 margin on top of it.

Essentially - you're wasting your time trying to import a guitar, unless it is +$2000, and the problems remain. Unless you GO to America, avoid customs at Gatwick and Heathrow well, it's pretty much a **** option.
Just note, you're screwing over the UK economy by doing so as well - BoP deficit increases, multiplier changes, the more you import, the more it'll hurt you in the long run.
....It's like you never had wings....
#8
Quote by R_H_C_P
It's gonna' cost a bit for shipping, taxes and so on.

What guitar are you thinking of getting?

fender strat HSS
#9
Trust me, it'll be a lot cheaper just to buy from the UK after all those costs and so on.

And which HSS Strat? There's a few models.

And if you really wanted to save money, you could just get one used.
"Breathe, breathe in the air
Don't be afraid to care"

Fender Strat/Tokai LS80>few pedals>Orange Rocker 30
#11
A mate did manage to buy an ESP Deluxe EC-1000 from america via Ebay. He didn't have a single problem getting it and the guitar was in perfect condition. Saved himself about £200 (at the time, EC-1000s seem to be cheaper now) and re-sold it on Ebay to make some money.
#12
"Breathe, breathe in the air
Don't be afraid to care"

Fender Strat/Tokai LS80>few pedals>Orange Rocker 30
#13
1. It's not illegal to import any brand of guitar into the UK. It is a condition imposed on stores by their suppliers, where they will not ship to a region that has its own supplier.
2. Generally speaking goods in the UK cost the same in pounds as they do dollars in the US, so you can initially save quite a bit e.g $1000 dollar guitar = £541, and you're paying £1000, so you initially could save almost 50%.
3. Import duty is not 20% , for an electric guitar (and yes I've done it) it's around 3.5 - 4%. What adds real cost is the VAT at 17.5% which is added to the total value of the guitar plus the import duty, plus the shipping, plus the Post Office or carrier fee for paying the duty on your behalf. So you can end up paying around 22 -25% on top. Depending on the cost of shipping ($50-80) you can still save some money.
4. These days shipping times are a lot quicker - a couple of weeks at the most, airmail, for large items, and for smaller ones, less than a week.
5. On the question of warranty, most US suppliers will accept a return, at your cost, so you'll have to take that into consideration.
6. If you have a good local supplier, then it's probably worth sticking with them to avoid any grief, in spite of the potential savings.
7. Where you can really save is in the secondhand market - there's such a big market in the US that you can always pick up a great bargain, if you don't mind a bit of a gamble.
8. If like me you've found it impossible to get the guitar you want in the UK, then you have no choice.
#14
Quote by reeced
8. If like me you've found it impossible to get the guitar you want in the UK, then you have no choice.


Take the Eurostar into Paris and look for it there.
Lyrics, just breaks between killer solos.
#15
Another question, I am trafing a guitar with a guy from the US. Is it going to cost me import tax? no money has exchanged hands and the guitar is worth hardly anything.
My Gear:

Schecter Hellraiser C-1 FR (EMG 85/81)
Mesa Boogie Stiletto Deuce
LOPO Custom 2x12 (Celestion V30s)
#16
I've found that there's not a lot from the US that you can't get if you look for it.

Have you tried GAK? They're based in the UK and have a real good selection, including Fender custom shops.

Also, you don't necessarily spend the same amount in ££ as you do in $$. The BB King Lucille (Gibson custom) goes for $2400 in the US (musiciansfriend.com) but £1800 in the UK (gak.co.uk.)
Guitars often up equivalent price + extras, rather than double price (which would be dollars to pound conversion)
Posers are like punks, except they do it for fashion

notUG PUNK FORUM PRESIDENT!
#17
If you know anybody that would be willing to sell you the guitar and then hold it for 6 months then the guitar will cost you half what it will in the UK. The import law says you only have to pay duty if the item is less than 6 months old.
Not taking any online orders.
#18
^^^^^^ score!!! lol
My Gear:

Schecter Hellraiser C-1 FR (EMG 85/81)
Mesa Boogie Stiletto Deuce
LOPO Custom 2x12 (Celestion V30s)
#20
Not if you don't declare it.

On Customs duty, if you have the package marked as a gift of value <£15, you won't be charged.
Posers are like punks, except they do it for fashion

notUG PUNK FORUM PRESIDENT!
#21
^ yes, but then if you get found out, you will be charged ..... and then arrested for fraud
My Gear:

Schecter Hellraiser C-1 FR (EMG 85/81)
Mesa Boogie Stiletto Deuce
LOPO Custom 2x12 (Celestion V30s)
#22
Well, yeah.

But only if you get found out. It's not an unrighteous thing to do.
Posers are like punks, except they do it for fashion

notUG PUNK FORUM PRESIDENT!