Shipping personal items to Buenos Aires


May 3, 2010

We are looking to move to Buenos Aires and would like to ship our personal items there. Today, the moving company came back with the following:

Pay 50% on FOC shipemnt value declared (If a long term working visa (for one year) is not available. Short term visa (3-6 month has to pay duty & tax).

If this is true, we may just sell our things or not ship them. Can anyone shed some light on this?

We are arriving in BA without sponsorship/jobs. Thus, the above is a concern.

Many thanks in advance for your response and/or suggestions.
Yes. This is true. And shipping goods out is no picnic either.
If you are comming as a Perma Tourist, without work or marital connections then either store you stuff or sell it.
Have already spent time here? Are you sure that Argentina is the place for you? You will get a thousand quetions here regarding the "why" part of the move.
Yet again I can look back and smile. I've had plenty of good luck to go along with the bad!
I arrived here 3 years ago, on a standard 90 day tourist visa (having already bought a house in Iguazu), with 11 x 30kg suitcases*, full of clothes, electronics, CDs/DVDs/records, books.....all my worldly possessions in fact. I tipped a 'porter' waiting at the baggage carousel (US$20) and he loaded them all onto 2 trolleys and we waltzed straight through customs as if invisible!

* Of course there's often a downside to one of my 'stories' - I'd set off with 12 suitcases! British Airways managed to lose one of them and it eventually turned up a few weeks later, having had £2000s worth of CDs stolen from it. :-/
kolichka said:
Pay 50% on FOC shipemnt value declared

Having subsequently come to know the customs and immigration officials on the border in Iguazú pretty well - I can assure you that the above statement isn't quite accurate. They will charge you 50% of the value that they decide, NOT what you declare!
Alzinho said:
They will charge you 50% of the value that they decide, NOT what you declare!

Very important sentence!

Bring as much as you can with you. As Alzinho says it's easier to get it through customs as the airport than if it's shipped unaccompanied.
yes load up on suitcases...I have brought 4 huge suitcases all 70 pounders about 4 times down here..... just say you are here for 3 months as a tourist..... I have not had any problems.....
I have heard so many horror stories on shipping and taxes ....
just bring a laptop.. an ipod... even a unlocked cell phone.... and all the clothes you can....
If you can get a DNI.. you have a 3 month period I hear you can ship goods......
but I think you just have to suitcase what you can... and buy the rest... your personal items I dont think will be worth it after a 50% tax..the cost of shipping and the time and hassle.............. good luck!!!
My own experience was that of my US employer shipping me and my belongings to BsAs as part of a final payoff. Little did I know that I then personally would be paying approx. $500 pesos every 3 months (every time I renewed my tourist visa) and $2000 a year for my permiso ingreso renewals whilst my residency permit malingers for 5 years with the guys in Puerto Madero. In hindsight I should have sold my furniture and furnishings and only came with suitcases..thank God I did sell the antique car in US however, can´t imagine what state it would be in here by now!
fifs2 - I don't understand. Why are you paying for renewing your tourist visa? And what's the $2000/year for?
That`s a very good question and one I have asked many times. Transpack, the moving company is required to prove and pay for my "temporary importation" - I can understand they want to ensure I haven´t imported my furniture for retail purposes and solid it for a large sum hence the 3 monthly and/or yearly supply of tramites and $0000 pesos but even I´m starting to wonder am do all expats moving here with goods suffer the same charges and will the charges indeed stop once (if) I ever become legal.