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Ports of entry for shipping household goods—is Germany or UK better than Italy

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5/20/2019 12:35 EST

I just read that it’s far better to ship from the US to a port of entry in the UK or Germany rather than ship directly to Italy. I am contemplating shipping household goods by shared container to Mestre (Venice) and wonder whether I should go with a company that ships to ports of entry in Europe other than Italy.
Anyone have any insights on this?

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5/20/2019 13:08 EST

Hi Grintosa,
We shipped direct to Mestre for Padova. Later, I shipped my bike over here separately (long story most have already heard). Shipper wanted to land it in Germany because it was convenient for him. I checked the law and discovered that I would have to pay customs for every country it passed through before reaching Italy (ie-Germany and Austria = customs x 2). Because it was duty-free in Italy, I could then file a report once the bike reached me and request a refund.

Here's my take on that: if I don't give the govt money then I don't have to ask for it back. AND, on that same point, if you ask a question, then "NO" is one of several legitimate responses. I like to avoid all that, and insisted that the bike land in Livorno.

Big mistake on that, too, but for other reasons, mostly having to do with carelessness and incompetence of the folks at the port over there.

I can get you in touch with a shipper (Trasloche company) who will pick up your stuff and deliver it. He's in Padova, but gave us truly great service and really great pricing. Same guy drove right down to Livorno for me to pry my bike out of the hands of the customs bandits, err-r-r, "officers" down there.

Also remember that there are port fees due on this end. I forget exact amounts, but it seems like it was around EU 800. It was 1-1/2 yrs ago, so that number is just what comes off the top of my head. Truth to tell, I might have converted it to 800 dollars in my mind, not EU, because that's what I did when I first got here. Port fees are not usually included in shipping: the shipper gets it to the port and that's the end of it unless you pay for door-to-door delivery. Someone else can answer that portion of the equation better than I can.

Glad to help if you need it; let me know.

Cheers, John.

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5/20/2019 13:20 EST

Thank you for the helpful information—especially about the great service you got from your trasloche company. I might take you up on that. I am waiting for the shipping company to send me an estimate. It should arrive very soon. The rep said their service is door to door. But I will definitely get more information about that.

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5/20/2019 17:08 EST

If you can get your stuff into boxes , even relatively heavy large ones, consider Polonez Parcel Service, which ships into Poland and then delivers to Italy by truck from Poland. Takes about 15-18 days, and you have to drop the parcels off at the shippers office. However, if you don't have furniture and can get your stuff into 40 or so movers boxes, you will save a lot of money and hassle.

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5/25/2019 13:06 EST

If this is going to be after the 31/10/2019 be very careful as the UK may well have left the EU so you would probably have to import into the UK through customs and the export to Italy. I would be safe and go to another EU port of entry.

Good luck.

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