Importing Condensers from China

My packet of 100 condenser lenses arrived two weeks after ordering from AliExpress. A surprisingly honest customs declaration of 33.81 USD attracted the attention of the Border Force here in the U.K. which charged me £5.08 VAT. Then the Royal Mail charged me a handling fee of £8.00. Those of you doing a bulk buy for school microscopes and the like may wish to add these figures to your budget.

I’ve imported a lot of electronics from AliExpress over the years and this is the first time I’ve been charged any sort of duty. I would have been happy to buy a few but the minimum order quantity is 100.