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  • Writer's pictureCharlie McBroom

IOSS, DDP, DAP - EU Shipping

Hey there online retailer! If you've ever shipped products to the European Union, you've likely encountered the labyrinth of VAT regulations. Fear not, we're here to shed some light on the subject in a breezy, easy-to-understand way.

IOSS - Your VAT Superhero

Let's start with IOSS, your friendly neighborhood VAT solution. IOSS, or Import One-Stop Shop, is a hassle-free way to handle EU VAT compliance. It's like a magical portal that grants you a single IOSS number, which works for VAT registration in all 27 EU Member States. With this golden ticket, you can effortlessly collect, declare, and account for VAT within the EU and make a single monthly payment. Say goodbye to complex VAT calculations and hello to faster Customs clearance for your parcels. Plus, your customers won't have to pay a dime upon delivery, and you won't be stuck with pesky clearance fees.

The Lowdown on IOSS

Just remember, IOSS is your sidekick for B2C orders under €150. And here's the plot twist – you'll need an EU-based intermediary to get the ball rolling. Don't worry; if you're unsure where to start, consider seeking some professional tax advice. You'll be saving the day in no time.

DTP - Duties & Taxes Paid

If your goodies exceed that €150 limit or you're still getting cozy with IOSS, DTP (Duties & Taxes Paid) might be your go-to option. With DTP, the sender foots the bill for Duties & Taxes, so there are no surprises for your customers. Just like IOSS, your parcels sail through Customs smoothly.

One Slight Hitch

But hold on, not all carriers offer DTP, and it might not be available for all countries. You might need to play matchmaker with multiple carriers, selecting the best service for each parcel, case by case.

DDP - The Close Cousin of DTP

Diving into DDP (Delivered Duty Paid) is pretty much like choosing DTP, with one key difference – the sender must be the Importer of Record. That's the official superhero responsible for ensuring delivery complies with all the destination country's rules. However, this person often needs to be tax-registered in that country. Some carriers have workarounds where the receiver can play the hero, but that's not a universal service.

Here's the Deal

If you lack an intermediary in the destination country, be prepared for a potential border blockade. Germany is particularly stern about this; they won't clear any DDP parcels if the sender isn't tax-registered. Keep this in mind to avoid sticky situations.

DAP - The Usual Suspect (Formerly DDU)

Lastly, there's DAP, or Delivered At Place, which used to go by DDU (Delivered Duty Unpaid). This is your default shipping setting, where your customers are the designated duty and tax payers. It's simple but can sometimes be a speed bump for your customers, causing hesitation and surprise bills.

The DAP Dilemma

This might be the easiest route, but it can lead to hiccups in the customer experience. Some potential buyers might have second thoughts or feel uneasy about unexpected charges. So, be ready for a few bumps in the road.

In the grand scheme of things, choosing the right VAT solution for your business is like picking the right costume for a superhero – it depends on your unique powers and circumstances. So, put on your VAT cape and choose the option that suits you and your customers best. Happy shipping! 🚀📦


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