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Process for bringing goods to donate?

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cerF
7/28/2019 16:56 EST

I figured maybe this forum may be of some help:

I'll be moving to Nicaragua in April of next year. I recently purchased a hostel in the Popoyo/Jiqueliste area in Tola. Last time I was there I noticed many local kids who wanted to surf, but they simply couldn't afford a board and were either using junk equipment or sharing 1 board between them. My plan is to carry ~15 used bodyboards (boogie boards), used swim fins, a handful of used surfboards, and some used wetsuits along with me on my flight down and donate them to the local kids. I've heard that there may be problems with customs at the airport and hefty import fees if you bring too much with you Nica. My extra baggage fees will be high already and I'm hoping to avoid having to pay any more at customs if possible.

Do the import fees apply to items that will be donated to the Nica community also?

I speak Spanish, so I will not have trouble communicating my donation intent to the customs agents, but perhaps there is some paperwork I could complete beforehand so that I may avoid a confrontation with customs at the airport? If so, where to start?

Thanks!

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00abuse

elduendegrande
7/29/2019 07:52 EST

In the eyes of the law insanity is no excuse! Your effort will be viewed as a commercial enterprise and you will pay the appropriate import duties.

The regime is hurting post coup and needs money. Customs has had a shakedown. Exonerations for expats have been cut substantially.

Surfers may be the one area of tourism that has not crashed. They are a fun bunch and live low on the food chain.

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00abuse

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JustSomeGuy
7/31/2019 14:02 EST

I would be curious to know how many of the kids still have their gifts 2 weeks after you give them to them.

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00abuse

elduendegrande
8/1/2019 08:53 EST

Yep, we all go thru that learning curve here. Between what is lost, damaged, given away and stolen you eventually wonder if any of it is worth YOUR effort.

Anyway, my experience walking a caja thru customs was that they valued things very low, much to my relief, and common things like used closes are not taxed. Whether this is true post coup I do not know, the govmint needs money. Keep us advised.

In any case, bring a detailed inventory in Spanish, be patient, and have sufficient cash to pay the duties.

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00abuse

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