All the prices quoted on this site are in Australian dollars, unless otherwise noted. The 10% Australian Goods & Services Tax (GST) is not levied on exports, so please ensure you are viewing the various export price lists for the correct tax-free pricing. If unsure, please ask us for the appropriate export price.
On your request over the counter, your own bank—subject to local exchange regulations—is probably able to issue a bank draft (“cashier’s check”) on its corresponding Australian bank. You would then simply airmail that draft to us. This is by far the most reliable method of payment from overseas because of both its low application cost at your end, and the fact that no additional bank clearance charges are levied at this end.
Alternatively, you may prefer the speed and convenience of arranging a direct “telegraphic transfer” from your bank to our account in Sydney. We will provide our account details on request. Telegraphic transfers typically take 24 to 48 hours from the time your account is debited, to the funds being received at this end. Because of the speed of transfer, your bank may charge a little more for this service than for a draft. Please be prepared to add AUD20 to the invoice amount to cover the Interbank transfer fee this end, and ensure that you tick “All charges to account of sender” on the application you make to your bank, otherwise each bank en route is able to deduct charges from the amount forwarded.
Please note that some banks in some countries do not sell Australian dollars. Do not send their calculation of equivalent United States dollars (USD), because there will always be a shortfall. Instead, please contact us to determine the exact amount required based on our bank’s buying rate of USD on the day.
For payment arranged by Giro cheque, please add AUD20 to the invoice amount to cover their automatic issuing fee deduction.
Please understand that any shortfall in proceeds received because of bank transmission charges or cheque clearance charges must be to your account.
We prefer to ship instruments and kits by prepaid air and are very pleased to assist our overseas purchasers by arranging packing, insurance, documentation and freight at competitive prices. It is often possible for us to quote you a figure for door-to-door shipment, or at least to your nearest international gateway. Our workshop is situated within fifteen minutes from Sydney International airport, and we have long-established relationships with both our specialist packing company nearby, and our import/export handler.
Note that harpsichords tend to be light and bulky, and shipments are always “cubed”. For example, a crate of dimensions 1m x 1m x 1m occupies 1m3 of volume, and for international freight purposes is assumed to weigh a minimum of 200kg, even if it only physically weighs half that or less. This is to prevent aircraft flying at a loss if full of feather pillows, for example!
Commercial shipping documentation
Ivory & CITES
Therefore, even if obviously antique, any instrument with ivory key coverings requires CITES export clearance before it can legally leave Australia. This entails an application which, as exporter, we must lodge on your behalf with Environment Australia in Canberra: In the case of pre-CITES instruments (ie instruments clearly dating from before 1976), the application fee has recently been waived. Upon our request, Environment Australia informs us of the contact details of the CITES authority in your country. A provisional permit number is usually granted to us in less than a month. It is usually necessary for you to then lodge an import application in your country, quoting the Environment Australia provisional export permit number. To assist your application, we can fax the provisional export permit from Environment Australia.
It has been reported in some areas that the African elephant has been removed from the most-endangered Appendix I list, opening ivory trade and obviating the need for this permit. However, putting this species on Appendix II is only relevant for exports of new ivory from three specified African countries—in the meantime this formality is essential otherwise you risk having your shipment seized and/or destroyed. The international cooperation with the CITES legislation has been very effective in eliminating the immediate threat of extinction of all the highest-listed species.
for small parts & accessories
We normally send small parts by Australia Post’s Airmail service from Australia. Our minimum postage and packing charge for overseas orders is AUD16.00, and as the goods are sent at your risk, we highly recommend Extra Cover (Insurance). The maximum insurable value is AUD5000, depending on country of destination. Please note that insurance or tracking may not be not available to all countries. Australia Post also offers the rapid and competitive EMS Courier service, or you may prefer UPS, FedEx, or DHL if you already have a special account arrangement with any of those companies.
Local Customs agencies determine any duties or taxes that may be levied against packages arriving from outside your own country. These additional fees are your responsibility: We cannot be held responsible for any costs you incur due to shipment failure or late delivery.
We will prepare and send you the invoice in pdf file
format: This requires Adobe Acrobat Reader v6 or later to view and print,
a free download from Adobe if
the program is not already on your computer. You may pay our invoice using
your credit card on PayPal.
The normal ordering procedure is as follows: When you have chosen the instrument you wish to purchase, we will request a deposit (normally 50%) and withdraw the instrument from the market. We will then commence packing arrangements.
When crated, we will obviously have established the exact finished size and weight. The shipment is picked up by the freight forwarder, who will normally provide us the exact freight costing within 24 hours for your approval and kind payment of balance. When your balance including this figure for packing and freight is received, the instrument is ready for export and the forwarder hands the shipment over to the airline concerned for transit.
Custom clearance and local delivery
Under normal procedure, you would expect a phone call within a few days from the local representative of the freight handler, who being pre-alerted of the shipment and your contact details, will request your choice of company to handle the customs clearance and delivery, or whether you would like to do this yourself. You are under no obligation to use the services or recommendations of the particular company that notifies you of the arrival of your shipment. However, we do recommend you have the clearance undertaken by professionals: It is relatively inexpensive, and they are aware of any necessary government regulations which must be complied with. If you decide to use their services, you will obviously be liable for their charges, and local delivery from the gateway to your front door.
Duties & Taxes
Free Trade Agreements
As an example for the recent China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA), the base duty rate for code 9201 (including harpsichords) for China is 17.5%. On January 1 2016, under the ChAFTA, this duty rate was reduced to 10.5%. This slowly reduces each year to eventually reach 0% (duty free) after January 1 2019. Items need to be accompanied by an official Certificate of Origin which costs about AUD150. Many items are not eligible for a Certificate of Origin, particularly if they were made from imported parts which according to the rules were not transformed sufficiently as they did not change chapter of HS Tariff code (Musical instrument parts into a finished musical instrument.) This has yet to be tested.
None of us want to pay more duty or tax than what we are obliged to, but we must acknowledge that it is the right of governments to collect their duties and taxes on imported goods. The extra cost for some countries is high. It is unethical as well as highly illegal for the invoice value to be falsified, and the penalties are severe: The invoice value must truly match the exported goods.
Overseas maintenance service
Please do not hesitate to ask for any further information: We look forward to receiving your order, and being of service.
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