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Old 17th January 2013, 15:46   #31
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Hi this is what happened to me when I got my Sony 40" LED in Feb2012,
Thank you Sir! This is quite possible for someone who has the courage...but for those who haven't spent much time in India, it definitely is very stomach churning to even ask of this!

4800 bucks is not bad if there's a receipt to be had.
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Old 17th January 2013, 18:40   #32
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Thank you Sir! This is quite possible for someone who has the courage...but for those who haven't spent much time in India, it definitely is very stomach churning to even ask of this!

4800 bucks is not bad if there's a receipt to be had.
I could have bargained a little more and could have easily saved another 500 but I was tired and wanted to get out plus was with family. Once a person asks for such bribes youcan easily get the price down afterall these are under the table dealings and something very common in India! Just to save some money we all do such things but at the end of the day giving bribe and taking bribe is a crime!
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Old 18th January 2013, 04:52   #33
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Hi All,

I am returning to Bangalore in couple of weeks after my stay in USA for 5 months. Have bought many electronic goods(self, friends) during the thanksgiving and holiday season. To name them mainly
1. PS3 super slim
....
I have had to carry electronic stuff sometimes willingly and some times not so willingly over my more than a decade long nomadic life , some basic things that might help;

1. Carry the original invoice
2. As much as possible do not carry the items in original packing
3. Carry some spare cash ( INR) with you
4. Be conversant with what you are carrying
5. If possible speak in local language
6. Do not be excited / act surprised if they ask you to move to the red channel, maintain calm and do not panic
7. In case you are questioned explain what the item is, speak in layman's terms
8. My personal opinion is not to haggle too much
9. Carry something that you can part with without much damage to your purse / ego.
10. Finally be confident when you pass through the channel and have the passport and the customs form ready.
11. If you have checked in some of the electronic stuff with your checked in luggage , be ready for the red channel.

All the very best and have a safe flight!!!
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Old 18th January 2013, 10:20   #34
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I had a shipment to be inspected at the old port (the one behind CST/ VT in Mumbai). I was asked to be there by 11am, and I reached accordingly. This customs officer strolled in at 12.40, chatted to a few of his colleagues and subordinates and proceeded for lunch. He returned at 2pm, and was chatting on his mobile for another half hour. The logistics guy with me (assigned by my company) was trying hard to get this officer to do the inspection. So finally he sauntered down at 245 for a visual inspection of the shipment. He quoted an amount for (say) 5x to be paid and asked our logistics fellow to follow him. A few minutes later the logistics fellow turned up and told me that 'saaheb' is willing to agree to payment of 3x but no receipt will be given. I refused point blank and told him I am willing to pay 5x. The logistics guy trotted off and returned with a fresh quote of 2.5x. I didnt know whether to laugh or to shout. I told him point blank I am not negotiating and will pay whatever amount is quoted based on a printed receipt.

The customs fellow grumpily stomped off for his tea. I waited for the shipment to be closed again (didnt want anything taken) and then proceeded to pay the whole amount "in white". While we were doing the payment formalities, "saaheb" picked up his bag and left the office at 345pm.

In effect, he only worked on my case and that too because he sniffed some money. The rat. I wonder why he should be paid his salary for turning up at his workplace and not offering any value addition to the government. I am sure such people would be fired on their first day in the private sector.
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Old 19th January 2013, 06:13   #35
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Default Re: Question about Indian Customs and your experience

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I have had to carry electronic stuff sometimes willingly and some times not so willingly over my more than a decade long nomadic life , some basic things that might help;

10. Finally be confident when you pass through the channel and have the passport and the customs form ready.
11. If you have checked in some of the electronic stuff with your checked in luggage , be ready for the red channel.

All the very best and have a safe flight!!!
Thank you very much for your advice. AV Receiver will be part of the check-in luggage.

Will they oblige my invoices(amazon invoice print outs) OR customs will come up their own pricing for the items?

Last edited by ravikn : 19th January 2013 at 06:28.
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Old 19th January 2013, 20:25   #36
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Thank you very much for your advice. AV Receiver will be part of the check-in luggage.

Will they oblige my invoices(amazon invoice print outs) OR customs will come up their own pricing for the items?
Original invoices are always the irrefutable proof of what you paid... stick to that stand,haven't seen customs coming with their own guesstimate in my experience.
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Old 20th January 2013, 14:01   #37
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@mazdalife,

Thanks a lot for helping. This certainly boosts my confidence as I would not mind paying customs if they accept the original invoices
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Old 20th January 2013, 14:10   #38
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Default Re: Question about Indian Customs and your experience

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In effect, he only worked on my case and that too because he sniffed some money. The rat. I wonder why he should be paid his salary for turning up at his workplace and not offering any value addition to the government. I am sure such people would be fired on their first day in the private sector.
And the story is the same in every govt department. That is the sorry state of affairs our country is living in as of today. No wonder in the end most of us are forced to pay bribes after facing repeated frustrations and helplessness. The funniest thing is that they have stooped to such low levels that they even start negotiating with you as happened in your case.
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Old 20th January 2013, 21:02   #39
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Default Re: Question about Indian Customs and your experience

Carry receipts of everything you are carrying and insist on paying duty. Duty free limit is 25000 bucks and not 35000 (unless it was revised in recent months).

Sometimes, even if you go through RED channel and try to pay duty, the officer on duty may try to pursue you not to pay duty and instead bribe him/her an almost same amount as custom duty.


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Hi All,

Can I carry PS3 super slim as part of cabin luggage and claim it as personal effects? coz.. the overall cost of good is around 900 USD and I know upto 35K we get exemption from duty. If PS3 can be claimed as a personal item/used then I would need not paying any duty.
Please help. any inputs/sharing your experience with Bangalore customs would be very useful for me.
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Old 21st January 2013, 15:10   #40
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My Customs story. The short version.

Me and wifey were on our way back from Mauritius to Ahmedabad. Technically, we are allowed 4 1Ltr bottles of liquor. But it just happened that we were carrying five. One was some sparkling champagne bottle that was offered free to us during our stay in one of the hotels in Mauritius. We just didn't find the time to gulp that one down and thought we'd bring a souvenir back to India. Bags at the Ahmedabad airport went through the usual scan and we were called on the side because obviously they could see 5 bottles instead of 4. I tried to explain them that we were back from our honeymoon and this was a gift, but they wouldn't bulge. While I was talking to one of the officers, the rest of the other officers saw this particular champagne bottle that I was holding in my hand and they all "gheroed" me in to check out the bottle and see if they could lay their hands on it. No doubt, the bottle was the usual exclusive looking champagne bottle, I just mentally doubted it was really expensive, since it was given out for free! I could literally see their mouths dripping and then their throats run dry on sights of some "champagne bottle". I could hear whispers that tonight they feast on chicken and champagne...There was no point in arguing and I had to leave that bottle on their counter for them to party and get drunk on Royal Mauritian champagne that night! Only then I was allowed to leave in peace.

The best part is, later on, probably the next day, I googled the name of that bottle and to my surprise I figured it wasn't an alcoholic drink at all. It was just one of those stupid sparkling cider bottles. I didn't notice it while packing it in and the customs didn't bother checking the label as well. Get high on that officers!

FAIL.

Last edited by 9thsphinx : 21st January 2013 at 15:12.
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Old 21st January 2013, 22:50   #41
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Default Re: Question about Indian Customs and your experience

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Carry receipts of everything you are carrying and insist on paying duty. Duty free limit is 25000 bucks and not 35000 (unless it was revised in recent months).

Sometimes, even if you go through RED channel and try to pay duty, the officer on duty may try to pursue you not to pay duty and instead bribe him/her an almost same amount as custom duty.
Thank you infotech58, will carry all the receipts.

below links that I was referring for 35K as the limit. I have gone through the customs website and it still refers the amount as 25K

http://www.business-standard.com/ind...abroad/468045/

http://articles.economictimes.indiat...ort-developers

Last edited by ravikn : 21st January 2013 at 22:59.
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Old 21st January 2013, 23:07   #42
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Default Re: Question about Indian Customs and your experience

Looks like the limit was revised to 35k. I mentioned 25k because I remembered (from sometime during mid 2012) the custom form still said 25k; not sure if they have updated the forms now.



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Originally Posted by ravikn View Post
Thank you infotech58, will carry all the receipts.

below links that I was referring for 35K as the limit. I have gone through the customs website and it still refers the amount as 25K

http://www.business-standard.com/ind...abroad/468045/

http://articles.economictimes.indiat...ort-developers
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Old 22nd January 2013, 05:05   #43
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not sure if they have updated the forms now.
IMHO govt do not like to educate people by printing correct forms. Customs will take this advantage and only people who are aware will get benefit and customs continue to rip the common man
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Old 5th February 2013, 11:39   #44
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Hi All,

Thank you very much for your valuable suggestions. Back in Bengaluru last week and got through customs without much hassles. I could see that the customs form has its limit increased to 35000/- INR and this did boost my confidence and walk through the green channel as the total cost of the items was around that amount.
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Old 5th February 2013, 12:30   #45
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Default Re: Question about Indian Customs and your experience

When I returned from the US a year ago, I carried electronics worth over 2 lacs.

Upon landing in Bangalore, my bags were marked with the famous "X" in chalk that the folks who X Ray your bags before sending it on to the baggage conveyor belts (this is their ultra secret and hi-tech way of notifying the customs officials to check your bags!)

When the customs chap pulled me over, I was prepared. Brought out all the receipts I'd hoarded over the past 2 years, all neatly filed and ready for inspection.

He then asked me to pay him 20k to let me take my stuff home. I politely said I will sp long as he gives me a receipt. He then, equally politely, asked me why I wanted the receipt and I replied saying that since I had the bills for everything, I wasn't going to pay anything extra and if I was going to pay extra, I'd like to have the receipt to validate with my lawyers as to whether this was the right amount or not. I then asked him for an id and began noting down his name and badge number. All of this was being politely with no fuss or tantrums or name dropping.

Surprise surprise, he asked me to take me stuff and go.

Moral of the story: They will rob you blind if they can. But if you start taking a stand and show them that you're genuinely not afraid, they realize that they're better off preying on less gullible folks and let you go.
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