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Old Friday, February 27th, 2009, 10:41 PM
Rob O Rob O is offline
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Default Import Duty on Alcohol

I have heard that Aruba has increased enforcement of import duty fees. Does anyone have any first hand knowledge or experience?

More specifically, I usually bring alcohol. How much may I bring? If I exceed the amount allowed, how much will I have to pay?
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Old Saturday, February 28th, 2009, 01:48 AM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

rob, from what i understand, they only take note of what you bring in if you are carrying a duty free package. rarely if ever do they open checked luggage on your way out of the airport.

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Originally Posted by Rob O View Post
I have heard that Aruba has increased enforcement of import duty fees. Does anyone have any first hand knowledge or experience?

More specifically, I usually bring alcohol. How much may I bring? If I exceed the amount allowed, how much will I have to pay?
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Old Saturday, February 28th, 2009, 08:47 AM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

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Originally Posted by sherry View Post
rob, from what i understand, they only take note of what you bring in if you are carrying a duty free package. rarely if ever do they open checked luggage on your way out of the airport.
Thanks for reply.

That's how it used to be....however....the rumor is that they're getting more strict. I hope someone who's carried alcohol into Aruba recently can share their experience.
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Old Saturday, February 28th, 2009, 09:42 AM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

rob, we had a thread similar to this about cigarettes http://bb.visitaruba.com/f2/bringing...o-aruba-11172/

and what we found out was it was just that, a rumor. if you flaunt what you do the guards are obligated to do what they have to do. otherwise, they really don't worry very much.

if this had become a problem, i guarantee that it would have been blasted all over this forum, lol.

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Originally Posted by Rob O View Post
Thanks for reply.

That's how it used to be....however....the rumor is that they're getting more strict. I hope someone who's carried alcohol into Aruba recently can share their experience.
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Old Saturday, February 28th, 2009, 09:54 AM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

Quote:
Originally Posted by sherry View Post
rob, we had a thread similar to this about cigarettes http://bb.visitaruba.com/f2/bringing...o-aruba-11172/

and what we found out was it was just that, a rumor. if you flaunt what you do the guards are obligated to do what they have to do. otherwise, they really don't worry very much.

if this had become a problem, i guarantee that it would have been blasted all over this forum, lol.
Sounds good to me....thanks.
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Old Saturday, February 28th, 2009, 11:53 AM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

when we arrived jan 20 customs charged us $29 duty for being over the limit. you are allowed 1 liter pp and we had 2 1.75 of vodka and 1 of whiskey. they checked thru luggage of many passengers. guess they are just enforcing the rules now.
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Old Saturday, February 28th, 2009, 03:57 PM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

john, did they go thru everyone's checked luggage or just carry on items?

also, once in a while they have an inspection. if you go in that day, you are SOL.

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when we arrived jan 20 customs charged us $29 duty for being over the limit. you are allowed 1 liter pp and we had 2 1.75 of vodka and 1 of whiskey. they checked thru luggage of many passengers. guess they are just enforcing the rules now.
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Old Sunday, March 1st, 2009, 07:14 PM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

Last Sept. when we ARRIVED in AUA, they were checking everyone's luggage 100 %. It took forever to get thru. People had to go to a separate area to pay duty.

When I arrived last Nov. it was normal, everyone was let right thru.

When Karen & I arrived Jan. 5, they werre searching luggage, but only on about half the people. It still took foreveras there was only 2 lines. They also had dogs "checking" all luggage.

I'm not sure what the duty is or how much alcohol is allowed for free, but if they are searching, plan on paying duty. If this is a problem, wait and buy it in Aruba.
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Old Sunday, March 1st, 2009, 07:20 PM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

I am amazed to hear this. In the 24 years (and 50 visits) I have never seen luggage being searched. I guess I am lucky. As far as alcohol is concerned I feel that the prices are fair in Aruba. I would recommend you purchasing alcohol in Aruba.
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Old Sunday, March 1st, 2009, 07:31 PM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom H. View Post
...I'm not sure what the duty is or how much alcohol is allowed for free, but if they are searching, plan on paying duty. ...
Free import by non-residents older than 15 years (15y/o...)
(residents may import half the duty free quantities).

1. 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars;
2. 1 litre of distilled beverages or 2.25 litres of wine or 3 litres beer;
3. gift articles up to a value of AWG 100.-.

Also if you import more then the limit the whole quantity is dutiable.
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Old Sunday, March 1st, 2009, 07:38 PM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

i'm sure seashelldiver will verify this. the search is on when there is a tip that drugs are coming in.

personally, i think mary is right. i would bring in the most expensive of my bottles only and purchase the rest there. no matter what you pay on island, making your own drinks will save money over going to the bar for them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom H. View Post
Last Sept. when we ARRIVED in AUA, they were checking everyone's luggage 100 %. It took forever to get thru. People had to go to a separate area to pay duty.

When I arrived last Nov. it was normal, everyone was let right thru.

When Karen & I arrived Jan. 5, they werre searching luggage, but only on about half the people. It still took foreveras there was only 2 lines. They also had dogs "checking" all luggage.

I'm not sure what the duty is or how much alcohol is allowed for free, but if they are searching, plan on paying duty. If this is a problem, wait and buy it in Aruba.
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Old Sunday, March 1st, 2009, 10:27 PM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

I am going to Aruba for the first time in a couple of months. I assume that alcohol is more expensive in Aruba than the US which is why some people are carrying liquor with them. How much more expensive is it? Is all alcohol (beer, wine, liquor) higher in Aruba, or just certain kinds? Also how many here carry alcohol with them in their luggage? Finally can you only send your alcohol through with your checked luggage, or can you bring it in your carry on luggage?

Thanks,

Tom
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Old Sunday, March 1st, 2009, 11:10 PM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

scroll thru this thread tom and you will see that qlaval listed the legal limits. i would expect, from what we are hearing on the board, carrying it in your checked luggage is a better idea because they don't usually check it. however, be prepared that it is possible and if they check and you are over the limit, you will have to pay the tax. from the things i have purchased, i would say that alcohol is about 20-30% more. to me it is worth it not to have to carry the stuff.

of course, my philosophy is that it is a vacation and i am willing to pay a little more for a week's worth of booze, lol. i also take advantage of happy hours. remember though that two for one drinks means two of the same type of drink. some of us have learned the hard way as our second frozen drink melted down completely in the aruban heat, lol.

my advice, carry the limit per person and get the experience of a grocery trip. remember that the prices are in florins so reduce the price by around 40% in your head before you panic and think the price is in dollars. one usd is equal to 1.75 afl.



Quote:
Originally Posted by tombo4357 View Post
I am going to Aruba for the first time in a couple of months. I assume that alcohol is more expensive in Aruba than the US which is why some people are carrying liquor with them. How much more expensive is it? Is all alcohol (beer, wine, liquor) higher in Aruba, or just certain kinds? Also how many here carry alcohol with them in their luggage? Finally can you only send your alcohol through with your checked luggage, or can you bring it in your carry on luggage?

Thanks,

Tom
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Old Sunday, March 1st, 2009, 11:16 PM
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I Love Aruba Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

You can't take alcohol in your carry-on luggage, unless you have the little bottles that are 3 oz. or less, and then they have to all fit in the one-quart baggie just like other liquids in carry on baggage. You can take it in your luggage, but see the discussion above regarding duties and fees. We have never taken alcohol with us, we just buy it at the store in Aruba. (I like some of the Caribbean rum for rum & diet Coke anyway....) I don't know whether other people bring it along, but it seems to me like it is more trouble than it is worth....plus you have to make sure that it doesn't break or spill in your bag. They have bags you can get for wine and alcohol bottles at Magellans.com (I have seen them other places too, but you want the ones that seal so that your clothes don't get ruined). As Sherry said, regardless of what you pay at the store, it will be cheaper than what you would pay at the bar!
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Old Monday, March 2nd, 2009, 12:10 AM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

Quote:
Originally Posted by sherry View Post
...carrying it in your checked luggage is a better idea because they don't usually check it. however, be prepared that it is possible and if they check and you are over the limit, you will have to pay the tax. ...
I suspect that it could be a lot worst then that.
Usually they will ask first if you bring alcohol with you if so which quantity.
If they decide to check all your luggages and find more then previously declared you will not only pay for the import tax but you could be subject to a fine and charge for a false declaration and this is far more serious...

Sherry's advice of carrying the limit per person and get the experience of a grocery trip is probably your BEST choice.
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Last edited by qlaval; Monday, March 2nd, 2009 at 02:46 AM.
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Old Monday, March 2nd, 2009, 12:23 AM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

Quote:
Originally Posted by lmccollom View Post
You can't take alcohol in your carry-on luggage, unless you have the little bottles that are 3 oz. or less, and then they have to all fit in the one-quart baggie just like other liquids in carry on baggage. You can take it in your luggage, but see the discussion above regarding duties and fees. We have never taken alcohol with us, we just buy it at the store in Aruba. (I like some of the Caribbean rum for rum & diet Coke anyway....) I don't know whether other people bring it along, but it seems to me like it is more trouble than it is worth....plus you have to make sure that it doesn't break or spill in your bag. They have bags you can get for wine and alcohol bottles at Magellans.com (I have seen them other places too, but you want the ones that seal so that your clothes don't get ruined). As Sherry said, regardless of what you pay at the store, it will be cheaper than what you would pay at the bar!
Thanks for all the answers. I have never carried my liquor with me on any vacation unless I was driving there. After reading this thread I thought that it might be something I needed to do on my upcoming Aruba trip. If it is just a little more than the cost of liquor in the US I am not even going to consider carrying it with me. Thanks for saving me from packing 2 litres of liquor in my luggage.

The only time I ever put alcohol in my luggage was about 20 years ago when I smuggled a case of Coors beer back home in my luggage on the airplane. At that time you couldn't buy Coors east of the Mississippi and everyone thought that it was the best beer in the world. Now it is for sale everywhere around here for cheap prices and I never drink it. Ohh the forbidden fruit is the sweetest...
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Old Monday, March 2nd, 2009, 08:14 AM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

i'm actually thinking of a poll on this entire subject. and you are right about forbidden fruit, lol.

you will love the experience of an aruban grocery. lings is the fanciest but they are all interesting and carry foods from around the world. grab up some dutch cheeses and lunch meats while you are in there. they are worth the trip.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tombo4357 View Post
Thanks for all the answers. I have never carried my liquor with me on any vacation unless I was driving there. After reading this thread I thought that it might be something I needed to do on my upcoming Aruba trip. If it is just a little more than the cost of liquor in the US I am not even going to consider carrying it with me. Thanks for saving me from packing 2 litres of liquor in my luggage.

The only time I ever put alcohol in my luggage was about 20 years ago when I smuggled a case of Coors beer back home in my luggage on the airplane. At that time you couldn't buy Coors east of the Mississippi and everyone thought that it was the best beer in the world. Now it is for sale everywhere around here for cheap prices and I never drink it. Ohh the forbidden fruit is the sweetest...
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Old Monday, March 2nd, 2009, 09:12 AM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

Thanks for the advice on Lings. I will be reading a lot of threads and asking a lot of questions before I go. I always hate to return home from a trip to hear someone say did you eat at XYZ restaurant or did you see so and so sight (which I didn't), because their response inevitably is that was our favorite thing we did on our trip. I try to make sure to at least hit the highlights my first time I go anywhere.

Thanks again,

Tom
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Old Monday, March 2nd, 2009, 09:39 AM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

the problem with aruba is that there are so many great restaurants that it is hard to get the best. one year we went to 14 restaurants and rated 13 of 14 a 10. the 14th was about a 7 and isn't there any more, lol.

i do hope you will rent a car for one day and just drive around the island getting lost. the flavor of the island isn't accurate until you get away from the hotels. the beauty on the 'other side' is breathtaking. even being lost is fun. it's not hard to get 'unlost'.

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Originally Posted by tombo4357 View Post
Thanks for the advice on Lings. I will be reading a lot of threads and asking a lot of questions before I go. I always hate to return home from a trip to hear someone say did you eat at XYZ restaurant or did you see so and so sight (which I didn't), because their response inevitably is that was our favorite thing we did on our trip. I try to make sure to at least hit the highlights my first time I go anywhere.

Thanks again,

Tom
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Old Monday, March 2nd, 2009, 07:40 PM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

Quote:
Originally Posted by sherry View Post
the problem with aruba is that there are so many great restaurants that it is hard to get the best. one year we went to 14 restaurants and rated 13 of 14 a 10. the 14th was about a 7 and isn't there any more, lol.

i do hope you will rent a car for one day and just drive around the island getting lost. the flavor of the island isn't accurate until you get away from the hotels. the beauty on the 'other side' is breathtaking. even being lost is fun. it's not hard to get 'unlost'.

I have reserved a 5 day compact car rental through Hans at Tropic since so many reccomended him. I have read about tours to the hidden pool, lighthouse, church, caves and other places that they say you can't reach by car. Are those places worth seeing, and if so is ABC Jeep tour or another company's tour the way to go? Should I forget the tours and not worry about the places my subcompact won't go? Or should I spring for a jeep one day and do it by myself?

I am asking a lot of questions in advance lol.
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Old Monday, March 2nd, 2009, 08:00 PM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

the only thing you can't get to by car is the natural pool. everything else you listed is easy to get to via yaris, which is what tropic will be renting to you. do NOT take a yaris to the natural pool. is it worth a tour to see it? beats me. it's the only thing i haven't seen because i am a lazy coward. lazy in that even if you take a jeep you still need to hike in the heat and coward because there is often a major undertow there and more than one person has drowned there.

everything from the bridge to baby beach, the church, the ostrich and donkey farms, the lighthouse, the caves, the goldmine, the fort and just about everything else on the island is a car ride away but if you want to do a tour besides it can be fun. personally i wouldn't but that's because i don't do tours anywhere. we prefer to run around seeing what we want to see without others dictating where when and how long.

btw, good choice with tropic. i swear by hans.

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Originally Posted by tombo4357 View Post
I have reserved a 5 day compact car rental through Hans at Tropic since so many reccomended him. I have read about tours to the hidden pool, lighthouse, church, caves and other places that they say you can't reach by car. Are those places worth seeing, and if so is ABC Jeep tour or another company's tour the way to go? Should I forget the tours and not worry about the places my subcompact won't go? Or should I spring for a jeep one day and do it by myself?

I am asking a lot of questions in advance lol.
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Old Monday, March 2nd, 2009, 10:48 PM
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Smile Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

Quote:
Originally Posted by sherry View Post

of course, my philosophy is that it is a vacation and i am willing to pay a little more for a week's worth of booze, lol. i also take advantage of happy hours. remember though that two for one drinks means two of the same type of drink. some of us have learned the hard way as our second frozen drink melted down completely in the aruban heat, lol.

l.
Im with you Sherry. I would not put alcohol in my checked bags for sure. My mouthwash, after shave even toothpaste usualy ends up all over the baggies its packed in.
However, my wife and I get drinks together at happy hour so we each get one. i know its against the rules but the bartenders dont seem to mind if one of us gets them and takes them away from the bar area.
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Old Wednesday, March 4th, 2009, 12:16 AM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

On some flights they do offer duty free that you can puchase on the plane. Last year I didn't because I was planning on purchasing at the kiosk when you deplane before immigration. That has since been closed and from what I've been told will not re-open. If you have time prior to your flight going to Aruba you can always pick up a liter of booze per person and put that in your carry-on. Like stated earlier, get rid of the duty free bags.
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Old Wednesday, March 4th, 2009, 12:53 AM
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Smile Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

Quote:
Originally Posted by tombo4357 View Post
I have reserved a 5 day compact car rental through Hans at Tropic since so many reccomended him. I have read about tours to the hidden pool, lighthouse, church, caves and other places that they say you can't reach by car. Are those places worth seeing, and if so is ABC Jeep tour or another company's tour the way to go? Should I forget the tours and not worry about the places my subcompact won't go? Or should I spring for a jeep one day and do it by myself?

I am asking a lot of questions in advance lol.
Sherry is correct about driving to everything. I also have never been to the natural pool. Same reason. Be sure to drive to Baby Beach for swimming and snorkeling. Stop in at Charlies bar on your way back for lunch and a drink. Its a fun place.
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Old Wednesday, March 4th, 2009, 12:57 AM
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Default Re: Import Duty on Alcohol

I think I remember reading somewhere (maybe TSA site???) that alcohol is not allowed in checked bags, as it is a safety hazard (as in flammable).

Not only that - but I have a hard enough time staying under the 50 lb limit with my clothes and a bottle of sunscreen - can't imagine how much that sucker would weigh if I started packing booze too!

We usually make a run to Ling's to pick up breakfast & lunch items and booze when we get in - and occasionally take advantage of the two for one's at happy hour (we share).
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