Save the 20% sales tax when shopping with forward2me

Save the 20% sales tax when shopping with forward2me


In a major new development, forward2me has significantly enhanced its service offering to customers from around the world (outside of Europe) by opening a brand new VAT free warehouse on the island of Guernsey.

Access VAT free prices by shipping via our Guernsey Warehouse

Guernsey is an English-speaking island located in the English Channel between France and the UK.  It is not part of the United Kingdom or a member of the European Union, instead it is a self-governing Crown Dependency. As such, Guernsey doesn’t have the same legal obligations around taxes such as VAT and GST on good and purchases as apply in mainland UK.

This has allowed us to offer a really exciting service to our customers from around the world. By opening a new warehouse in Guernsey, we have simultaneously opened up the doors to tax-free shopping for international customers – offering savings of up to 20% on the price of goods!

So as a result, customers that live internationally (outside of Europe) that wish to buy items in the UK can elect to have them shipped to our warehouse in Guernsey, therefore removing the need to pay VAT – a tax that stands at 20% and is applied to the majority of goods bought and sold in the UK.

As an example…

A customer from the USA purchases a Huawei Mate 20 Pro Smartphone in Twilight – costing £799 from John Lewis. In opting to have the phone delivered to forward2me’s Guernsey warehouse, the potential saving to be made is £133.16 – not an insignificant sum!


Shop in the UK – ship to Guernsey VAT free

In practice, many UK retailers deliver to Guernsey on a regular basis. Due to Guernsey’s independent legal status, and therefore having no VAT or GST, when a UK retailer ships to Guernsey they should not be charging VAT.

Different retailers go about this in different ways. Amazon, for example, ship to Guernsey and will deduct the VAT from the cost of your goods when you enter a Guernsey delivery address. Other retailers, such as Superdry, John Lewis, Boden, Harvey Nichols and Hamley’s, will go about it slightly differently – charging the VAT at the checkout but then refunding it after the items have been shipped.

Although legally, VAT shouldn’t be charged when items are shipped to Guernsey, not all retailers are aware of these rules. If you are considering making a purchase and using our parcel forwarding facility in Guernsey, it is always worth checking with the company themselves first what their policy is.


Is shipping via Guernsey always the right option?

Due to Guernsey’s location as an island, it is not classed being part of mainland UK so far as shipping services are concerned. As a result, many retailers will charge a higher fee for shipping as opposed to the ‘standard’ UK charge to cover their additional costs of sending items to Guernsey. For lower value items, or items that are particularly bulky or heavy, the potential savings to be made from shopping tax free may be reduced or even erased altogether by these higher initial shipping costs. As a general guide, only items weighing less than 60kg volumetric and worth more than £100 will be suitable for our Guernsey VAT free shipping service. If you are at all unsure, we would be happy to discuss your shipping options with you. You can contact us here – we would always recommend doing so before you make your purchase.

It is also worth remembering that not all items have VAT added. There are several categories of everyday items that are VAT exempt – such as books, children's shoes and clothes and groceries. In the event of a purchase of these items, there would be no benefit to using our Guernsey based shipping warehouse, so we would recommend you use our main parcel forwarding hub in Preston, Lancashire. For more detail on the items that do not carry VAT in the UK, see Amazon's help page on items eligible for 0% VAT in the UK.

We have provided a handy calculator to help you work out what savings can be made by using our parcel forwarding service based in Guernsey.

Using forward2me’s parcel forwarding services

forward2me is recognised as one of the leading parcel forwarding companies in the UK.  We are extremely proud to have recently won the Feefo Gold Trusted award for customer service for the 6th consecutive year – a real demonstration of how happy our customers are with our range of shipping and forwarding services.

We offer 24 hour customer service, including live chat – meaning that customers can call and discuss their shipment at a time that is convenient to them.

In addition to offering parcel forwarding for single shipments, we also offer a wide range of other services.

This includes a parcel returns service, our popular Combine and Repack service, bespoke large shipping service for bulkier items, and parcel forwarding services for businesses. Find out more about the full range of parcel forwarding services we provide.


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