Tuesday, August 19, 2014

The Postal Lifeline

What you see above is part of a constant stream of a few letters but mostly PACKAGES that get delivered to our door almost daily.

The only paper we receive are communications we cannot control  (Government Tax Bills, Insurance Bills, Charity Bills ....) and are small in nature,

PACKAGES tend to be large in both size and frequency.


Because we operate a Postal Lifeline to Goods and Services not found easily in Switzerland.   Whilst we do shop for food exclusively in Switzerland everything else, and this is mainly technology, sports items or clothes comes from outside of Switzerland.

  • In some cases the exact same items are available in Switzerland but at grossly inflated prices,  Often at least double in price.

    Some people are making a lot of money here, because to re-iterate these goods are NOT made in Switzerland, just imported and put on a Shop shelf
  • Our normal ethical rule is this:  Is the same or equivalent product available from Switzerland at a similar/ fair and reasonable price. Note, the Warranty and Return conditions must also be comparable. If YES  to all then buy direct from Switzerland, else Mail Order
  • We don't follow this rule for Food (except Sports nutrition) which is bought wholly in Switzerland despite what I can only describe as a suspicious Swiss Supermarket Food cartel.
  • Just like England about 30 years ago Switzerland has a comprehensive network of Local Post offices, and if an item is too large for your postbox it is kept there for pickup
  • Swiss Post Offices have pretty lean opening times.  This post refers
  • When a package is inbound it is normally opened and inspected!  How rude.  But apparently some sellers and buyers conspire to put false values on the paperwork.   Hmmm.
  • The inspection costs about 20 CHF!  (>20 USD)
  • They also charge 8% VAT on the product if the value including postage is above 62 CHF
  • Do to the inspection costs goods should either be below 62CHF or significantly above so that the 20CHF one off charge is proportionately small
  • Since Swiss VAT is only 8% importing goods from the UK whose VAT rate is 20% is particularly effective

Overall, Marcus and Agata regard our local Swiss Post Office, located about 300 metres away as one of our best friends.  They keep our packages safe and in return they recevie an almost daily revenue stream of VAT and inspection fees from us, allowing us to have the best Worldwide products at much lower, non Suisse prices.