With the large volume of online orders sent to Trinidad and Tobago, many shippers - and importers - are asking about the import fees. The duty and taxes can be significant and now includes a 7% levy for all on online purchases imported to Trinidad. In this updated blog, we explain the duty and taxes for importing Trinidad and Tobago from Canada and also review the carrier options.
Jet Worldwide and our partners work closely with shippers to ensure goods sent from Canada to Trinidad are cleared efficiently with proper documentation. We offer a complete set of warehousing options from Canada, Miami, the UK and Amsterdam to the Caribbean.
The following guidelines can apply to Canadian parcels shipped to Trinidad and Tobago via Canada Post, FedEx Canada, UPS Canada, Purolator and Jet Worldwide Canada.
Import duty and Fees
Shipping Trinidad and Tobago from Canada and USA
Valuation and "landed cost"
Trinidad and Tobago Customs and Excise calculate the Duty on the "Landed Cost." Most shippers mistakenly assume that duty is calculated on their declared value.
To calculate duty, customs uses the “C.I.F.” value (Cost, Insurance Freight). This is also referred to as the “landed cost.”
Calculation of Landed Cost
Cost of the item
+ transport cost
= Landed Cost
Online Purchase Tax
Since 2016, the Trinidadian Government imposes an additional 7% on goods purchased online and imported to Trinidad and Tobago.
Criteria for the implementation of the import tax include:
- Goods purchased online
- Parcels imported into Trinidad and Tobago by air transportation & "transit shed"
- Parcels consigned to a consumer
Calculation of Duty for parcels to Trinidad and Tobago:
Duty rates average between 20% and 30% and calculated on the landed cost (as explained above).
Note: As mentioned above, many shipments are being subjected to a 7% levy in addition to the published duty rate.
Although duty rates vary by commodity and subject to change, most consumer commodities (including electronics and clothing) are subject to a 20% duty plus Vat (12.5%).
Example of Duty Assessment
Item: New clothing
Landed Cost: $200 CAD
Amount in TTD$ (using 5.37787): TTD$ 1,075.57
Duty Calculation with online import tax:
Landed cost + 7%: 1057.57 + $75.29 =$1132.86
Duty rate for new clothing = 20%
Duty cost: $226.58 (1132.86 + 20%)
Duty Calculation (without import tax)
Calculation for duty (landed cost x duty rate)
Duty rate for new clothing = 20%
Duty cost: $215.11 (1075.57 * 20%)
Calculation of VAT for parcels to Trinidad and Tobago:
The Value added Tax (VAT) in Trinidad and Tobago is 12.5%. The Vat is calculated on the total of the landed cost + duty. Trinidadian businesses can often claim back the Vat they have paid.
So, to continue with the example from above:
Vat Sample Calculation
Landed rate + duty (1075.57 + 215.57) = TT$1291.14
Vat rate = 12.5%
Duty cost ($1291.14 * 1.125) = TT$161.39
Often, our Canadian clients wish to pay customs fees to ensure cost free delivery to their consignee (who is often a family member or client). Our Delivery Duty Paid service to Trinidad provides the option for the shipper to pay the Trinidad and Tobago Customs Duty and Vat.
Common Duty Rates for Parcels from Canada to Trinidad
Although duty rates vary, the fees generally can be broken down into the following categories:
- Consumer commodities (such as clothing): 20%
- Automotive parts: 30%
- Educational Books for school: 0% (with no Vat)
- Computer laptops and tablets: 0%
Restricted Items To Trinidad and Tobago:
The list of items that cannot be sent to Trinidad and Tobago are common to other destinations and include:
- Coins and currency
- items that contain Camouflage patterns
- Arms and ammunition
- Toy guns which closely resemble a real firearm
- Goods with trademark infringement
Note: The information provided is for general information only. Customs interpretations, regulations and rates are subject - and often do- change. For up to date information on a specific parcel to Trinidad and Tobago, contact our team.
- Parcel delivery to Trinidad/ Tobago from Canada
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Carrier Options: Shipping Trinidad and Tobago from Canada
The main shipping options to Trinidad from Canada include:
Canada Post shipping options to Trinidad and Tobago
Canada Post offers parcel delivery options to Trinidad and Tobago and are the best option for individuals shipping small packages. Shipments sent via Canada Post to Trinidad are delivered via TT Post.
Shipping small parcels to Trinidad from Canada Post
Canada Post "Small Packet" service is the lowest cost for individuals who occasionally send to Trinidad and Tobago. The Small Packet service includes a surface and air option.
Shipping parcels Trinidad from Canada Post parcel services
Canada Post offers 2 levels of parcel service to Trinidad: Ocean and Air. Their Xpresspost service is their fast option with delivery within 2 weeks. Contact our team for a comparison quote for shipping to Trinidad and Tobago.
Shipping to Trinidad via FedEx and UPS
FedEx and UPS are North America's largest carriers and offer reliable (if expensive) service to Trinidad and Tobago and all the Caribbean.
Shipping to Trinidad via Jet Worldwide
Jet Worldwide offers low cost parcel delivery options via international carriers and our local affiliated agent. We provide a full range of parcel delivery including warehousing and distribution services from our American and European gateways. Contact Jet's logistics professionals for information on shipping to the Caribbean from the USA and Canada.