Amazon.co.uk vs grey camera gear, prices so close.

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1,149
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Steven
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I'm thinking of getting some new camera gear and the prices between grey and Amazon.co.uk variants is so small on the gear I was wondering why I should go grey/amazon.
The amazon has the standard warranty, but the grey gear has a 3 year warranty by panamoz.
Why would I still pick up the amazon equivalent?
 
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Paul
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I have used Panamoz a few times, they have been great with me. Tina in customer services sorted a problem I had in no time at all. Was not happy with a lens that I bought, they picked it up and sent me a brand new one out within the week. Cannot fault them to be honest. Is the gear you are after from Amazon themselves ??? or a third party reseller as the warranty might be totally different.
 
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It depends on whether you trust the Panamoz warranty or not. Trustpilot rates them 98% 5 star on 2,344 votes.
 
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It's supplied/sold by Amazon.co.uk themselves, whether they are imports or not I'll have no idea.
If the price virtually matches e.g. Panamoz then I think the answer is clear ... much like HDEW (only they no longer appear able to sell Nikon kit).
 

Caerus

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Amazon customer service is off this planet.

I wont go into details because some people will use the info to cheat their good will.
 
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Stu
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I've used grey suppliers such as Panamoz before and have no issue in using them again, but when UK prices on some items are so close I'd be buying from a British store - bit of a no brainer I'd say.
 

magicaxeman

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Of course by buying from the grey market you are breaking the law, but no one seems to care about that and the closure of UK camera stores caused by buying from the grey market instead of UK dealers.
 
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Rich
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Hard choice, one mob that pays no tax and the other that actively tries to avoid it.
Question is which one is which in the above sentence.

Probably go with Amazon myself as mentioned above their customer service is excellent.
 

StewartR

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Why would I still pick up the amazon equivalent?
Because you care about not breaking the law ?
Because you care about paying taxes to support the NHS / military / [insert your choice here] ?
Because you care about preserving warehouses and shops and jobs in the UK?

Take your pick.
 
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Andrew
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Of course by buying from the grey market you are breaking the law, but no one seems to care about that
Not necessarily. There's an assumption by some that grey market means avoiding taxes.

That isn't always the case.

Traditionally grey market simply involves buying from a market where the price is cheaper - either because the manufacturers choose to differentiate - or the local distributers choose to impose a larger markup.

and the closure of UK camera stores caused by buying from the grey market instead of UK dealers.
I have mixed feelings about camera stores. Over the last 20 years they don't seem to do much actual storing - most stuff I'd want to buy needs to be ordered in (or ordered for direct delivery). There sometimes doesn't seem to be much point to them.
 
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Tommy
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Because you care about not breaking the law ?
Because you care about paying taxes to support the NHS / military / [insert your choice here] ?
Because you care about preserving warehouses and shops and jobs in the UK?

Take your pick.
With the way Amazon avoid taxes in the U.K these points don't matter as much if they are the alternative to buying grey import.

I like to support my local shop's where possible so where possible I use W.E.X for as much as I can.

I like their shop and their staff are great, if there isn't a huge difference price they are my preferred camera dealer.
 
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Because you care about paying taxes to support the NHS / military / [insert your choice here] ?
Because you care about preserving warehouses and shops and jobs in the UK?
Serious question ... how does buying from Amazon accomplish most of those things?
 

StewartR

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With the way Amazon avoid taxes in the U.K these points don't matter as much if they are the alternative to buying grey import.
Yeah but no but. Amazon are good at avoiding UK corporation tax, by questionable methods. I don't want to defend them, but in this instance I think we should be looking at the bigger picture.

Corporation tax is charged as a percentage of profits, and their profit margins on individual items aren't going to be huge because the market is competitive. For example, suppose you're buying a camera or lens worth £1000 and their profit margin is £100. Then the corporation tax which they're working hard to avoid is £19. But you've still paid £167 in VAT, £50 or so of import duty if it's a lens, and Amazon can't really avoid payroll taxes for all their staff. The amount of tax you've legally paid by buying from Amazon UK is much, much more than the amount of corporation tax they're trying to avoid. So it's really not the same as buying an illegal import.

I like to support my local shop's where possible so where possible I use W.E.X for as much as I can.
I like their shop and their staff are great, if there isn't a huge difference price they are my preferred camera dealer.
I'm not going to disagree with you there!
 

StewartR

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There's an assumption by some that grey market means avoiding taxes.

That isn't always the case.

Traditionally grey market simply involves buying from a market where the price is cheaper - either because the manufacturers choose to differentiate - or the local distributers choose to impose a larger markup.
Maybe, in theory, for some kinds of goods. (There was that thing many years ago when Tesco were sourcing Levis 501s from the USA and that was cheaper than using the official European distributors.) But we all know that, in practice. for camera equipment, "grey market" really means "black market". There isn't a single documented case, to my knowledge, of a "grey market" photographic retailer actually importing equipment legally.
 
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10,187
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Steve
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With the way Amazon avoid taxes in the U.K these points don't matter as much if they are the alternative to buying grey import.

I like to support my local shop's where possible so where possible I use W.E.X for as much as I can.

I like their shop and their staff are great, if there isn't a huge difference price they are my preferred camera dealer.
Amazon pay tax in the UK but they do use legitimate and legal ways to reduce that tax.

https://www.channel4.com/news/factcheck/factcheck-why-does-amazon-pay-so-little-tax

I doubt the companies such as HDEW use legitimate and/or legal ways to pay less tax.
 
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Brian
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Personally I try to avoid buying from Amazon because of their questionable tax reduction policies.
In most cases you can find a better price if you shop around.
To suggest that HDEW and other companies employ illegal tax policies is potentially libellous, and you should be very careful what you say.
 
OP
wilt
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1,149
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Steven
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Because you care about not breaking the law ?
Because you care about paying taxes to support the NHS / military / [insert your choice here] ?
Because you care about preserving warehouses and shops and jobs in the UK?

Take your pick.
I do to all them. I have a love/loathe feeling about amazon. Their prices and service are hard to beat, but their dubious tax practices and that impossible to like Jeff Bezos. The need to find my own money to fix after a year if it breaks, is more of a concern than any of the above.
 
OP
wilt
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1,149
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Steven
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With the way Amazon avoid taxes in the U.K these points don't matter as much if they are the alternative to buying grey import.

I like to support my local shop's where possible so where possible I use W.E.X for as much as I can.

I like their shop and their staff are great, if there isn't a huge difference price they are my preferred camera dealer.
I like to support my local shop's where possible so where possible I use W.E.X for as much as I can.

I like their shop and their staff are great, if there isn't a huge difference price they are my preferred camera dealer.
I do like using WEX Belfast as much as I can, I purchased both my D500 and D850 from them, but they're not competitive on these items. It's a shame as they've great members of staff in there.
 
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wilt
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1,149
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Steven
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Of course by buying from the grey market you are breaking the law, but no one seems to care about that and the closure of UK camera stores caused by buying from the grey market instead of UK dealers.
I do understand that it's not ideal for everyone and the lack of bricks and mortar stores is a shame. However price and service is king.
 
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2,324
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Of course by buying from the grey market you are breaking the law, but no one seems to care about that and the closure of UK camera stores caused by buying from the grey market instead of UK dealers.
You're not breaking the law by importing, only when you don't declare it.

Which is different from the criticism leveled at Amazon of destroying the competition and arranging their business to lower their profits so they pay less corporation tax (which every businesses does, most not to the degree of Amazon but it is only a question of degrees). They're not evading duty/vat, everything they sell will have the correct duty/vat applied which again is separate from their marketplace sellers as there's bound to be a reasonable number evading.

Has this conversation moved on any from the last million times it's cropped up?
 
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Clearly not.


Back to the topic
Amazon.co.uk slightly more expensive £120 more over £3000, standard warranty.

Panamoz £120 cheaper, 3 year warranty.
But where is the Warranty exercised? Plus if deemed to be UK check is the maker has any Warranty bonus extensions ........in regard to the Panamoz source just where do you have to send kit for a claim?
 

MartynK

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Martyn
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Of course by buying from the grey market you are breaking the law, but no one seems to care about that and the closure of UK camera stores caused by buying from the grey market instead of UK dealers.
What law are you breaking?
 
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Rob
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What law are you breaking?
If you are the importer (majority of grey sellers make you the importer) you’re responsible for paying the VAT and exercise duties if they are applicable. If thy’re Not paid you’re liable to be fined or prosecuted.

https://www.gov.uk/goods-sent-from-abroad

This thread is going to go the way of every other grey import thread......:popcorn:
 
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4,969
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Of course by buying from the grey market you are breaking the law, but no one seems to care about that and the closure of UK camera stores caused by buying from the grey market instead of UK dealers.
Buy grey is not breaking the law. It’s called importing and is done every day by thousands.

Not paying the taxes is against the law, but let’s not get people started on that.
 
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2,069
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Brian
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If you are the importer (majority of grey sellers make you the importer) you’re responsible for paying the VAT and exercise duties if they are applicable. If thy’re Not paid you’re liable to be fined or prosecuted.

https://www.gov.uk/goods-sent-from-abroad

This thread is going to go the way of every other grey import thread......:popcorn:
If the supplier makes a false declaration on their paperwork the onus is on them, not the purchaser.
I've bought from Panamoz and never been hit with any additional costs.
A lot of companies (I can't recall if Panamoz is one) say they will reimburse you if you are hit by any additional costs.

A lot of these "grey" dealers ship from warehouses in Europe to bypass duty and tax laws.
 
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MartynK

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If you are the importer (majority of grey sellers make you the importer) you’re responsible for paying the VAT and exercise duties if they are applicable. If thy’re Not paid you’re liable to be fined or prosecuted.
Obviously, but the post stated that 'by buying from the grey market you are breaking the law '. It didn't mention duties and taxes so I ignored them. You are not breaking the law by purchasing grey imports.
 
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6,019
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Rob
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If the supplier makes a false declaration on their paperwork the onus is on them, not the purchaser.
I've bought from Panamoz and never been hit with any additional costs.
A lot of companies (I can't recall if Panamoz is one) say they will reimburse you if you are hit by any additional costs.

A lot of these "grey" dealers ship from warehouses in Europe to bypass duty and tax laws.
To be honest I’ve never ordered from Panamoz so I don’t know how their import declaration looks or if it’s declared correctly to the full value and correct item described. Their website says the duties are charged to their shipping account or if you’re billed they will pay you back. If it’s incorrectly declared its probably likely you should report it so correct import duties are paid rather than say not my problem. The onus would then be on the importer to pay those duties (whoever is the importer) as that’s what HMRC say.

There has been lots of talk about Europe warehouses bypassing tax laws. The EU was trying to clamp down on it but I seem to remember it was the UK government that vetoed it.

Obviously, but the post stated that 'by buying from the grey market you are breaking the law '. It didn't mention duties and taxes so I ignored them. You are not breaking the law by purchasing grey imports.
Correct it’s not breaking the law purchasing but rather the importer not declaring it correctly. It all depends on Whois the importer and that’s not always clear. I think we know what magicaxeman meant by saying what he did.

To be honest I’m out of this grey import thread as it only goes one way and I can’t be arsed discussing any it again as it’s been done to death on here.
 
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wilt
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1,149
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Steven
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OK folks, I've purchased from Amazon.

The grey import market does hurt our economy, but it's prices are hard to ignore.
With the recent price drops on Nikon gear it just made it a difficult decision. If they hadn't have dropped the prices I'm 100% sure I'd have went with the import/Grey.
The Nikon 50mm 1.8S is £210 cheaper at amazon than panamoz. So import isn't always cheaper.
 
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Redsnappa
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The inland revenue does not seem overly keen to punish those companies involved in grey imports, MP's claiming dubiously claiming expenses, Companies with billion dollar profits paying next to no tax... I feel no guilt at all using the grey market.

The grey import market does hurt our economy
Only because the Inland revenue are so inefficient at collecting erm.. revenue
 
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The inland revenue does not seem overly keen to punish those companies involved in grey imports, MP's claiming dubiously claiming expenses, Companies with billion dollar profits paying next to no tax... I feel no guilt at all using the grey market.
Those companies aren't in the UK, what can they really do? The important thing to remember though, it's your responsibility not theirs.
 
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Redsnappa
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If a lump like Trump can try to address the issue then so can our government and their agencies.
 
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Brian
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The inland revenue does not seem overly keen to punish those companies involved in grey imports, MP's claiming dubiously claiming expenses, Companies with billion dollar profits paying next to no tax... I feel no guilt at all using the grey market.

Only because the Inland revenue are so inefficient at collecting erm.. revenue
The sums involved may be significant to us as individuals, although the savings are usually only of the order of hundreds of pounds, which is insignificant in the great scheme of things. The Inland Revenue are more used to dealing in millions, if not billions of pounds, so the amount they can recover by pursuing the odd import duty loss is insignificant in the overall scheme of things. They only have limited resources, which are more beneficially employed pursuing the "big fish."
As far as I'm concerned, the only losses from buying "grey" are losing the benefits of any "cash back" that official importers may offer, and the savings are normally much greater than any cash back.
 

StewartR

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The inland revenue does not seem overly keen to punish those companies involved in grey imports...
I don't think it's as simple as that. The problem is that the cost of monitoring and achieving compliance would be astronomical.

When Sony (say) imports 20,000 cameras into the UK, they'll arrive in one container with customs paperwork declaring that there are 20,000 cameras in there. It's pretty easy for HMRC to check. There may have even been checks carried out in Japan before the container was sealed.

But when 20,000 UK consumers buy 20,000 cameras from (say) Panamoz, they arrive in 20,000 different parcels, all individually labelled and addressed to those 20,000 customers, and they'll be spread all through the logistics networks. The only way of checking compliance is to individually inspect them, open them up, and check whether the contents of the package match the declaration on the label. But they're mingled in with millions and millions of other parcels, and it's simply not economic. If they arrived in a single container from Panamoz, it would be easy. But they don't.
 
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Also remember that govt services like Customs have been cut. There probably aren’t enough officers.
 
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