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Regular Industry Development Updates, Opinions and Talking Points relating to Manufacturing, the Supply Chain and Logistics.

No-Deal Brexit Will Cause Christmas Gift Chaos Next Year, Warns International Courier

David Jinks MILT (pictured)
Head of Consumer Research, Parcelhero
No-Deal Brexit Will Cause Christmas Gift Chaos Next Year, Warns International Courier
The international parcel delivery comparison site ParcelHero is warning that Customs delays are likely to double next Christmas in the event of a no-deal Brexit. Even under normal conditions 12% of all overseas gifts missed Christmas day entirely last year, and over 30% were significantly delayed. Next year Brexit chaos could mean 25% of all presents miss the Big Day, warns ParcelHero. Says ParcelHero’s Head of Consumer Research, David Jinks MILT: ‘The first time many parcel senders will experience the new EU frontier is likely to be next Christmas. It’s the only time of the year many people ever send parcels. When forced to complete unfamiliar Customs invoice forms, inexperienced parcel senders are bound to find them confusing for the first time. And in the same way any gifts coming into the UK from friends and retailers in the EU are likely to meet similar delays, and possibly unexpected duties and taxes.’

David cautions: ‘I don’t want to sound like the Grinch; but if we experience a hard Brexit, the red tape and unanticipated duties to pay on gifts from the EU means there’s likely to be many empty spaces under the Christmas tree next year. And remember that people buying eBay or Amazon goods from the EU next Christmas will need to factor in additional time for Customs clearance. We’re even expecting experienced online traders purchasing EU-sourced items for peak period will find their stock caught up in border delays as clearance issues mount up.

Adds David: ‘Under a no-deal or Norway-style arrangement there will be new forms to fill in for items being sent to the EU, and duties to pay on gifts worth over £135 coming into the UK, if we mirror current regulations for items arriving from beyond the EU, which seems likely. These duties are expected to be in the order of 2.5% of the value of the gifts.

‘Shippers will need to understand that, when sending presents to the EU next Christmas, they must be sure to specify what is inside the package on the Custom’s documentation. On average parcels labelled simply ‘gift’ or ‘present’ were held 30% longer in Customs last Christmas. If there is a hard Brexit there will need to be a significant public education exercise to ensure people understand how to send a parcel overseas.’

Continues David: ‘Many people only send a parcel abroad at Christmas, and they need potential delays and tax exemption limits on gifts to be fully explained. It’s vitally important everyone knows the final mailing dates: including Customs clearance.’

ParcelHero has already launched its stress-busting 2018 Christmas overseas mailing page to ensure no one misses this year’s final sending dates published here.

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