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Old 05-01-2019, 19:25   #1
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shipping electronics to the Bahamas

Hey Everyone, hows it goin? I am trying to help a friend get a NPPT controller to Georgetown. If anyone has info on how this can be done please respond so I can help get their boat back up and running. they took on several feet of water and ruined all their electronics. Thanks in advance, RJ
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Old 05-01-2019, 21:42   #2
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Re: shipping electronics to the Bahamas

Last season I was in George Town and struck by lightening. It took a while to figure it all out but here it is:

Ship your item to Reggie Express in Ft. Lauderdale.

Reggie will need a bill of sale for the item (explained later) as well as who the package is going to in George Town.

Reggie will fly it down to George Town.

Doe Boi Unlimited will pick up the package from Reggie at the airport.

Doe Boi will take the package to Customs, with the aforementioned bill of sale, and Customs will assess VAT (Value Added Tax) and Duty.

Your friend will then go to Doe Boi (very close to the George Town dinghy dock, 1/2 block walking distance) and retrieve the item.

Your friend will then pay Doe Boi:

Reggie's shipping fee
Bahamas VAT and Duty
Doe Boi's fee for handling

Sounds like quite the process but really not all that bad. I had ordered a radio, antennas, Engel fridge/cooler and a Blue Sky solar controller. I found out the Bahamas is strict on solar imports (for whatever reason) and I paid almost 50% duty and VAT!

Good luck!

Oh, and welcome to CF!


WAIT! After proofing this I realized I may have given Reggie a card over the phone.. Whatever, they will take your hand and lead you through this.
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Old 06-01-2019, 06:44   #3
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Re: shipping electronics to the Bahamas

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I found out the Bahamas is strict on solar imports (for whatever reason) and I paid almost 50% duty and VAT!
That's how they fund their government.

Choosing items more likely to be imported by wealthier residents and visitors than their less wealthy citizens, a Good Thing.

Ideally they would devise a subsidy scheme for the latter, in the interest of carbon reduction.
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Old 06-01-2019, 06:58   #4
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Re: shipping electronics to the Bahamas

Try and get a copy of the cruising permit to Reggie Express. Send it along with the package marked “vessel in transit”. This usually works, but it is up to the individual customs official that handles it.
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Old 06-01-2019, 07:54   #5
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Re: shipping electronics to the Bahamas

Spare parts and replacement boat parts may be brought in duty free, as long as they are intended for installation on vessels that have a transire (cruising permit). You must show your cruising permit to qualify for this. Items should be marked: “VESSEL IN TRANSIT “YourBoatName” = FOR MARINE USE ONLY.
Goto ➥ Home - Customs Department
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Old 06-01-2019, 08:44   #6
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Re: shipping electronics to the Bahamas

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Spare parts and replacement boat parts may be brought in duty free, as long as they are intended for installation on vessels that have a transire (cruising permit). You must show your cruising permit to qualify for this. Items should be marked: “VESSEL IN TRANSIT “YourBoatName” = FOR MARINE USE ONLY.
Goto ➥ Home - Customs Department
My experience has been somewhat different. The only boat related items coming in duty free are limited to parts required for navigation, communications, or propulsion. A cruising permit is a requirement. Thus, a mppt controller is not exempt. They duty on a typical part is 40% to 50%, plus, 12% VAT, plus shipping, plus stamp tax. It maybe less expensive for solar related items, but that's just a guess. Bringing parts to the Bahamas can be expensive.
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Old 06-01-2019, 10:01   #7
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Re: shipping electronics to the Bahamas

The simplest solution I have found over several transactions is to ship via watermakers air to Staniel Cay from Ft Lauderdale. They handle it all and quickly. The West Marine is not far from their base and on occasion I have been able to make arrangements to have someone drive a purchase over and even had same day delivery!All the customs stuff happens in Ft Lauderdale and when it gets to the yacht club you just pick upthe package.
Its a day sail from Georgetown to Staniel and was worth the time for me.
Tom
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Old 06-01-2019, 17:41   #8
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Re: shipping electronics to the Bahamas

I have no idea what a nppt controller is, however, computer parts are duty free. The Bahamian question would be, " What dis tingum is?"
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Old 06-01-2019, 20:41   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pitchondesign View Post
My experience has been somewhat different. The only boat related items coming in duty free are limited to parts required for navigation, communications, or propulsion. A cruising permit is a requirement. Thus, a mppt controller is not exempt. They duty on a typical part is 40% to 50%, plus, 12% VAT, plus shipping, plus stamp tax. It maybe less expensive for solar related items, but that's just a guess. Bringing parts to the Bahamas can be expensive.
Yup, that was my experience. I actually went to Customs a day early and sat down with the person making decisions. He and I bantered back and forth and I found him to be both nice and reasonable. It pays to "discuss" some items with them if they initially deny them. In my case it was the VHF radio and antenna. He finally approved them duty/VAT free.

The unofficial rumor was someone in government must control the diesel needed for the generators on the islands and that is why they hammer solar imports. Someone wants to keep the diesel flowing.
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Old 10-01-2019, 22:37   #10
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Re: shipping electronics to the Bahamas

ATTN SV BACCUS... your quote: I found out the Bahamas is strict on solar imports (for whatever reason) and I paid almost 50% duty and VAT!



Is the 50% VAT/DUTY the purchase price or value of the item?
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Old 11-01-2019, 04:29   #11
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Re: shipping electronics to the Bahamas

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pitchondesign View Post
My experience has been somewhat different. The only boat related items coming in duty free are limited to parts required for navigation, communications, or propulsion. A cruising permit is a requirement. Thus, a mppt controller is not exempt. They duty on a typical part is 40% to 50%, plus, 12% VAT, plus shipping, plus stamp tax. It maybe less expensive for solar related items, but that's just a guess. Bringing parts to the Bahamas can be expensive.
They learned from the British...Belize, another former British colony, also has outrageous duties.
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Old 11-01-2019, 12:13   #12
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Re: shipping electronics to the Bahamas

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Originally Posted by RJwants2sail View Post
ATTN SV BACCUS... your quote: I found out the Bahamas is strict on solar imports (for whatever reason) and I paid almost 50% duty and VAT!



Is the 50% VAT/DUTY the purchase price or value of the item?
It was on the purchase price, that explains the need for a sales receipt. If you or a friend already own the item I'm not sure how they would figure worth???
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Old 11-01-2019, 13:25   #13
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Re: shipping electronics to the Bahamas

I had to have an autopilot linear drive motor shipped into Marsh Harbour in the Spring of 2013. It was mailed to Sailing Vessel Tranquility, care of Harbourview Marina. I did not have to pay VAT on it. I believe that I had to show my cruising permit to the delivery driver, but I can't fully recall. I absolutely did not pay VAT, though.
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Old 11-01-2019, 14:13   #14
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Re: shipping electronics to the Bahamas

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I have no idea what a nppt controller is
Just a typo, MPPT, as in solar controller.
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Old 11-01-2019, 14:16   #15
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Re: shipping electronics to the Bahamas

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They learned from the British...Belize, another former British colony, also has outrageous duties.
Outrageous to you perhaps, but each sovereign territory gets to choose how they fund their governments.

Choosing to tax items more likely to be imported by wealthier residents and visitors than their less wealthy citizens is entirely rational, and IMO a Good thing.
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