Complaint Review: B&H Photo, Video & Pro Audio - New York New York
Cameras etc can be imported duty free into Australia up to the value of A$1,000, beyond that a 10% GST fee applies to the whole amount. I purchased US$998 camera gear. Unfortunately the A$ dipped below US$ that day (my fault for not checking). B&H compounded the problem - they listed freight & credit card surcharge as cost of goods AND reported a lens bundled at $100 as a $250 item.
Consequently DHL asked for A$200 to release the goods. If that's the B&H standard way of filling in costs for customs purposes, then even an $800 purchase would still have attracted duty - a very unfortunate situation for the purchaser.
I did not take possession of the goods, and told B&H that I was prepared to lose the $55 DHL delivery fee and asked them to simply treat this as a "return" as stated in their "return policy" (after all the goods were definitely new and unopened). I also asked if they had any advice for alternative ways of solving this problem.
After exchanging several emails, they quantified my cost for returning the goods (on top of the $55 DHL delivery fee) - "Please be advised that following will be deducted upon return.
Return cost $70.03 + charges $210.40 + fee $15.00 = $295.43"
They wanted $350 to restock $1000 worth of goods! That's the biggest rip-off I've come across so far this century. (That's saying something since I sometimes purchase from China.) I since checked with DHL - the duty would not be payable by anyone if the goods were returned to sender - B&H would have simply kept the $210.40.
B&H don't offer PayPal for international transactions (now I know why) so I only had the much weaker Visa protection. It became obvious that B&H had no interest in helping, but were simply playing me for a sucker, so I paid the $200 duties & fees and had the camera delivered. I only hope I never have a warranty claim.
If you are an overseas purchaser then be very, very wary of these people. Once they have your money, they aren't interested in offering any assistance, and their "return policy" is worthless.
This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 10/29/2011 02:10 AM and is a permanent record located here: https://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/bh-photo-video-pro-audio/new-york-new-york-10001/bh-photo-video-pro-audio-beware-placing-overseas-orders-with-bh-they-asked-350-to-793264. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content
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