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Old Feb 13, 10, 9:44 pm   #1
 
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Getting a TV to India - Customs Question

I have always seen many passengers from Singapore/Dubai bring in flat panel TVs and wondered if there are any customs restrictions for the same?

I'd like to bring a 42/40" LCD from SFO to MAA on my next trip abroad. Its 1/2 the price of Chennai retail. What can I expect in MAA customs?

Anyone bring a large screen TV as checked-in baggage? Or should I just take the plunge in Chennai?

I have a trip coming up shortly...

Thanks,
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Old Feb 13, 10, 10:39 pm   #2
 
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There's a thread here on customs regulations from about ten days ago:

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/airli...ms-limits.html
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Old Feb 14, 10, 12:03 am   #3
 
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Yes, you need to pay duty on anything exceeding a certain limit (its around 30k or something). I think it still works out cheaper than purchasing the same TV in India, which is why people choose to bring it from abroad. If its in the original packing, it should be able to survive the journey.
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Old Feb 14, 10, 4:27 am   #4
 
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Rs 25k is the limit. As long as that is not breached (and that includes booze, cigs, everything), you can get it into India without paying duty. Anything above Rs 25k, you need to pay duty.
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Old Feb 14, 10, 7:51 am   #5
 
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Some things to note :

* The duty is assessed on the "value" of the goods rather than the figure that may be written on any "invoice" produced by the importer. Customs have a database which is used to assess the value so underdeclaring value to avoid duty doesn't work anymore.

* Allowances cannot be pooled, even among family members.

* Do not try to bribe a customs officer to avoid the duty unless he asks you for a bribe first. The penalties for being caught initiating a bribe are quite significant and unpleasant nowadays.
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Old Feb 14, 10, 9:05 am   #6
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by B747-437B View Post
Some things to note :

* The duty is assessed on the "value" of the goods rather than the figure that may be written on any "invoice" produced by the importer. Customs have a database which is used to assess the value so underdeclaring value to avoid duty doesn't work anymore.

* Allowances cannot be pooled, even among family members.

* Do not try to bribe a customs officer to avoid the duty unless he asks you for a bribe first. The penalties for being caught initiating a bribe are quite significant and unpleasant nowadays.
Really?
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Old Feb 14, 10, 11:21 am   #7
 
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Be careful in taking a TV from USA. India works on PAL, 230 Volts and 50 HZ whereas US TVs work on 110 Volts,NTSC and 60 HZ. Unless you buy an India compatible TV normal US TVs do not work in India.They are pricey in USA but not in Dubai.
Large LCD TVs are reasonably priced in India and most of the shops will reduce 10-20% on bargaining. They also will include free delivery, wall mounting, free voltage stabilizer(A must for India) and occasionally a satellite connection. Do not forget the hassle of taking it, paying duty ,unpacking it and mounting it.
My advice buy a local Samsung TV The 46"and above LEDs are an excellent bargain in India or if you are able to break journey buy one from from BKK or KUL. Last time when I was in India I saw a great bargain in LED TV at SHAHs showroom in Old Mahabalipuram road.
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Old Feb 14, 10, 2:03 pm   #8
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aniruddh77 View Post
Rs 25k is the limit. As long as that is not breached (and that includes booze, cigs, everything), you can get it into India without paying duty. Anything above Rs 25k, you need to pay duty.
Correct.
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Old Feb 14, 10, 2:56 pm   #9
 
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Originally Posted by drbala View Post
My advice buy a local Samsung TV The 46"and above LEDs are an excellent bargain in India or if you are able to break journey buy one from from BKK or KUL. Last time when I was in India I saw a great bargain in LED TV at SHAHs showroom in Old Mahabalipuram road.
I would do this as well. Choices and prices are both good in India now. I don't think the price you save is worth the trouble of lugging it.
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Old Feb 14, 10, 6:09 pm   #10
 
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Unless you're buying a voltage converter and a plug adapter it will not work.

Secondly, you will not get any warranty coverage in india.

http://www.indiamike.com/india/elect...-india-t11243/
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Old Feb 14, 10, 6:58 pm   #11
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In addition to the following:

- customs duty on value of goods exceeding your allowance
- NTSC tuner on a USA TV vs PAL transmission in India
- voltage and frequency differences

it may be better to buy something local. Everything is available in India these days, and buying locally gives you the much-needed after-sales service when needed.

Unless, of course you are able to buy one for Indian specs in the middle east or Singapore/KL.
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Old Feb 16, 10, 11:40 am   #12
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Originally Posted by WASBLR View Post
I would do this as well. Choices and prices are both good in India now. I don't think the price you save is worth the trouble of lugging it.
I understand that the quality of the TVs is not the same. A former employee had two identical TVs with the only difference being that one came form Singapore and one was bought locally. The quality of the picture on the one from SG was far superior.
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Old Feb 16, 10, 11:48 am   #13
 
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Listen to drbala

Listen to drbala-it is not worth. Consider potential damage in transit, duty and transportation, changes in voltage and frequency, warranty, registration and warranty repair of foreign models, and many other issues.
It is not worth. India has plenty of great TV models that come with attractive features.
Thirty five years back when TV was just introduced in India, I took one from Japan. It wasn't worth even then and it is not worth now.
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Old Feb 16, 10, 1:47 pm   #14
 
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Originally Posted by yrs View Post
In addition to the following:

- customs duty on value of goods exceeding your allowance yeah, be sure to calculate this as any large screen is likely to go over the allowance
- NTSC tuner on a USA TV vs PAL transmission in India I think this is probably the biggest thing to worry about - will you get PAL signals in your foreign TV?
- voltage and frequency differences most big ticket electronics are 110-220 compatible these days; just need an adapter plug which you can find for ~20 Rs.

it may be better to buy something local. Everything is available in India these days, and buying locally gives you the much-needed after-sales service when needed. I haven't had much luck with getting warranties to cover problems in the past. And I rarely ever have to worry about it since product quality is more stable these days. It would be peace of mind to be covered, sure, but I don't make purchasing decisions based on warranties anymore.

Unless, of course you are able to buy one for Indian specs in the middle east or Singapore/KL.
Are TVs cheaper in SG/KL than in the US? Comparable quality?
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Last edited by Mr. Bean; Feb 16, 10 at 2:00 pm. Reason: Removed the thing about family allowance pooling - not possible
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Old Feb 16, 10, 3:29 pm   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chennaitraveler View Post
I have always seen many passengers from Singapore/Dubai bring in flat panel TVs and wondered if there are any customs restrictions for the same?

I'd like to bring a 42/40" LCD from SFO to MAA on my next trip abroad. Its 1/2 the price of Chennai retail. What can I expect in MAA customs?

Anyone bring a large screen TV as checked-in baggage? Or should I just take the plunge in Chennai?

I have a trip coming up shortly...

Thanks,
The Digital broadcast standard selected by India is DVB-T while that in the U.S., it's ATSC. Analogue standards (PAl and NTSC) are incompatible too. Make sure the U.S> bought TV will work in India.
You can take one into India, regardless. You will have to pay appropriate duty.
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