Twas on a Monday Morning, the VAT man came to call
The Postman wouldn’t deliver – he would not call at all
He could not let me have my parcel without a hefty fee
I pleaded and I pleaded and even offered tea
Oh, it all makes work for the Border Agency.
With apologies to Flanders and Swann
I tried an experiment to source a year’s supply of Pharma grade Biotin powder from outside the UK, as I failed to find a supplier within the Bunker of Albion.
PureBulk offered 100 grams (about a year’s supply if you take the suggested dose of 300 mgs daily) @ $138.00 plus postage of $7.37 making a total of $145.37. When I placed my order on 1st August, I paid £114.34.
I had checked the possible import costs beforehand and discovered that parcels under the value of £135 would not incur customs duty but would attract VAT and a fixed handling charge of £8.
Today I received my notification from Royal Mail that my parcel was ready for collection subject to a payment of £29.95 (ie, VAT plus handling charge). Phew, my calculations were correct. For a year’s supply of Biotin I paid, at the exchange rate current at 1 August 2018, £144.29.
The purpose of this rambling tale is as follows. A year’s supply @ £144.29 worked out at a breezy 40p per day. It cost me nothing as I used part of the princely sum doled out from the Alms of the Blessed Saint Esther (aka PIP). Naturally, I have a statue of the Blessed Saint by my bedside.
Hopefully, this will be of some interest to my fellow users.