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Hello WUS -

So ordered a watch from Baltic. Very excited for it to arrive. The DHL tracking shows it has crossed the ocean twice (bounced around Europe a bit) and has been sitting in Franklin IL for 9 days. Over one week ago I provided the breakdown for customs of the "value" movement, case, strap etc. I was told over a week ago (automated by text) that it would take 3-5 days to process.

Is this typical of the DHL / Customs experience? I'm assuming I may need to pay a fee? Does not feel like this has gone smoothly AT ALL.

Any thoughts or experiences appreciated. Happy to be patient but need to know if this is typical.

Cheers
APWINTER
 

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I wouldn't say that's ever happened in my experience recently with the last 2 or 3 dozen DHL international shipments. Not all were watches.
 

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I ordered a watch on Feb 4th. Went from Singapore to HongKong to NYC and has cleared customs as of 1:40 AM today.
Expected del. date to Mass. is Feb 9th (Tuesday)
 

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Something sounds off. If it were me, I'd call DHL and speak directly to a manager.
 

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I had a similar experience with FedEx and a watch that came from Germany. It was a week or so after I sent in the form that it was released and it finally made its way to me 4-5 days later. I then got a bill from FedEx in the mail a week or so after that for the customs charges, which were not insignificant. Definitely puts me off trying to purchase a watch from outside the US again.

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For a watch costing more than $800, seems like a story I've read here before. The delays may be longer due to COVID related backlogs, but the process (watch value worksheet) sounds normal.
 

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This has happened to me a couple of times now. I think it depends upon how the seller fills out customs form at their end. If they mark it as a wrist watch then you get this correspondence from DHL. You have to spell out the cost for movement, case, battery etc. as long as total value is less then $800, you will not be charged with any extra fee. If the total is over $800 then you get charged custom fee.
Due to Covid things have been very slow and it has been taking a couple of weeks for things to be cleared otherwise it takes 2-5 days generally, at least in my experience.
So yes, don’t worry, this is pretty normal. You will receive your watch. I just hope the total value was less then $800 otherwise you will be charged customs.


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I’ve recently had a horror story with DHL (ok, horror story is somewhat exaggerated but it was bad and still unresolved).

I might do a detailed writeup but the TL/DR version is:
Avoid DHL from overseas like the plague
 

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I avoid DHL whenever it's possible, not a single time has it gone smoothly with them and customs.
 

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Is this typical of the DHL / Customs experience? I'm assuming I may need to pay a fee? Does not feel like this has gone smoothly AT ALL.
Yes, unfortunately it is common. Yes, you'll likely have a (relatively) small customs duty to pay, based on the watch materials and breakdown of value (I forgot what the basic exemption $$ amount is set at these days). It will eventually arrive - mine would often be transferred to the USPS after clearance, even though DHL is active in my area - I have no idea why.
 
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After DHL gouged me on custom/administrative fees I am done ever buying anything when custom fees are involved and they are the courier.
 

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A lot of people are put off by this. Others don't see an issue. I think most manufacturers will be force to get a distributor in the US if they want the market.
 

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I bought a bracelet from Gnomen for my olive Willard. DHL took three days from Gnomen to NY. Never had a problem with them, except once when dealing with Christopher Ward CS's minimal assistance with DHL when I was returning a watch to them unrepaired for a second time.

I have had problems with FedEx, and have paid "Carriage Fees" to them, particularly on items from the UK, on several occasions. I'm not a big fan of FedEX as they suck for home deliveries.

Lately, I have had problems with shipments from the UK and Germany taking weeks and weeks, and several getting lost.
 

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DHL has always been amazingly efficient from my past international ordering experience. However, I ordered a watch from Christopher Ward last month which totalled $806 and thus triggered an import duty. I was charged a $79 duty through DHL, which turned out to be assessed entirely at the more expensive strap rate percentage of 9.8% for the entire purchase. The strap was only $70 of the purchase price. The rest of the total should have been charged at the lower 4.2% case rate, which would have cut the amount owed by over half. When I contacted DHL about the discrepancy they said there was a $90 fee to send it back through customs at the correct rates... 😣.
 

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I ordered a bracelet from Guinand in Germany in mid-November. All DHL tracking updates stopped 72 days ago. It seemingly never made it to customs.
 

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My Christopher Ward order was stopped until I provided some form of ID. I sent them my passport and it came thru within two days.

You can chat with DHL customer support, couldn't get thru via phone.

Good luck!
 

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Hmmm... I've bought eight watches from Japan, all sent by DHL, without a hitch at all. They all arrived with 4 - 5 days. I'm in the U.S. Flawless experience with DHL from Japan.

The longest overseas delivery was my most recent... A purchase from Hong Kong. Sent by the regular HK mail, then USPS once it hit the U.S. That took 13 days from clicking the buy button to delivery.

None of my overseas purchases have exceeded $800, though.
 

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DHL sounds like a nightmare. I used TNT/FedEx for a Brellum a couple of weeks ago, and it only made a brief 2-day stop for the watch worksheet and the customs form. I was sporting the watch a couple of days later thinking the the overseas buy wasn't nearly as tough as I thought it would be... could be I was just fortunate with the carrier.
 

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Once, I had to fill out the paperwork you did with value of the movement, watch etc. Didn't pay duties. That was a watch under $800 from CW. Recently, I purchased a watch that was more than $800, but didn't have to do the paperwork and still did not have to pay duty.
 

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I ordered a bracelet from Guinand in Germany in mid-November. All DHL tracking updates stopped 72 days ago. It seemingly never made it to customs.
Seems a lot of shipments to America from Germany are going by ship these days, which takes months.
 
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