Internet shopping

Before shopping online, you need to be aware that you may have to pay Customs charges and/or GST on top of the advertised purchase price when the goods arrive in New Zealand.

You can use our online estimator What's My Duty to estimate how much duty you may need to pay on many commonly imported items.

You should also be aware of what goods cannot be brought into the country or which goods need approval before bringing in.

Before ordering, make sure of the import regulations as they apply to you, and what charges may be due on the goods you wish to bring in.

Collecting GST on low-value imports

Customs is always looking at ways to improve its services.  We aim to make complying with border requirements easy to do for traders and travellers.

The rapid growth of online shopping has led to concerns that goods and services bought online from an overseas supplier are not subject to the payment of duties, in particular GST.

Customs, Inland Revenue, and Treasury are currently looking at whether it is feasible to collect GST from overseas online purchases. A discussion paper outlining a range of issues related to online shopping and options for collecting GST is being developed and will be available for public comment later this year.

The Government does not currently collect GST on lower value goods for practical reasons – the administrative costs would be higher than the money collected. A 2011 review found it was not cost effective to collect GST and Customs duty (where applicable) if the amount totals less than $60.

Within this section

  • Internet shopping and illegal goods

    ​While the internet has broken down borders and opened up the world of online shopping – buying goods on the net can still be a risky business.

  • Tips for internet shopping

    Before making any overseas purchases online, be sure that you think it through carefully, and that you know all the possible pitfalls.

  • Private imports by post or courier

    ​If you import goods from overseas using post and international courier services, be aware that Customs duties and taxes may be chargeable.

  • Refunds when you return an item

    If you're charged duty and GST on an item you have bought online and then return it, there are only limited times when that duty and GST can be refunded to you.

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