So the Hamburger Phones and Sushi USB's arrived on May 22, 2009.
Sadly, claiming the package wasn't exactly a pleasant encounter for any one of us.
And the ever loathsome VAT is the one responsible.
Stupid, stupid, stuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuupid VAT.
Why the hell should we be charged for VAT when the goods were purchased OUTSIDE the country? Did it not even occur to those greedy officials that we buy items overseas to escape the overly high interest rate that they've been planting on domestically sold products that are already costly on their own?
Charging for processing fees when claiming your package is okay. Paying for document and BIR stamps can be quite understandable as well.
But VAT? That 12% extra charge from your TOTAL payment value?
Especially when USB's and other electronic gadgets (minus mobile phones) are declared as FREE from customs tax as their tariff rates equal to 0%.
Declaring the package as a gift doesn't even make a difference to your expenses anymore. A GIFT, for Christ's sake. What's the essence of giving a gift when the recipient has to make unnecessary payments in order to get it?
With this, we at "Curls & Twirls" commend our government with an eager applause and cynical smiles. No matter what happens, they are still able to find ways to gain profit from everyone's OWN business.