friend visiting japan will buy for me - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 10-07-2002, 05:12 PM - Thread Starter
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a colleague will be in japan in a few weeks and is willing to pick up a PJ for me. I am making purchase arrangements on the japan side, but am wondering how he will fare as he comes back into the US. perhaps someone will either have direct experience with these qstns, or can speculate about them:

1) is it true that the 5% tax paid locally is refundable at the departure airport? does it matter at the departure airport whether the purchase documents are in his or my name?
2) how is customs stateside likely to treat him? are they likely to levy duties? (the rules appear to stipulate PJs have a 5% duty on everything over the current $800 exemption). is it true that classifying the item as a computer display (incomplete) is legitimate and may be treated more liberally? is he likely to be treated differently if he is the listed buyer?

thanks, i appreciate any advice any of you can offer
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post #2 of 3 Old 10-08-2002, 01:13 AM
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I don't have experience in this, but someone in the other forum suggested taking some "property of coca cola" (or whatever is applicable) type stickers along and slapping them on the pj at that end. Also, put it in the carrying case and discard the brown cardboard box. In extreme/desperate cases you might want to put a few scratches on it :)

ps. I'm not being serious about this... :D

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post #3 of 3 Old 10-08-2002, 06:45 AM
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I can only address your question 1), I'm afraid. It is possible for the 5% tax to be refunded, but there is a lot of paperwork (and legwork) involved and your friend will not receive the refund until several weeks/months later. It will have to be done by him/her because a passport copy is required. Also, this is only available to persons visiting Japan on tourist visas. Anyone with any sort of residence visa, short term or otherwise, will not be able to get the tax refund.

The one possibility you should consider is having your purchase made at a larger chain electronics store (e.g., Bic Camera, as they will do all of the paperwork for you and give you the 5% refund on the spot (they get your refund check when the paperwork comes through). The problem with this is that the larger stores' prices are generally higher than you will find on

Personally, I don't understand why you want to go through this hassle. What you may save over going with ********** would not be worth it if you had any warranty issues. In fact, if you get unlucky and have to pay duty, you will probably end up paying substantiontially more than buying it via **********.

Good luck!
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